Showtime and Steven Spielberg are moving ahead with plans for a scripted series about the development of a Broadway tuner, hiring scribe Theresa Rebeck to pen the pilot.
Rebeck has the resume for the assignment. She’s an experienced playwright whose works include the 2007 Broadway play “Mauritius” plus Off Broadway’s “The Scene,” “Bad Dates” and “The Understudy,” the last of which bowed in November at the Roundabout Theater’s Off Broadway space.
She’s also worked extensively as a film and TV scribe-producer, with stints on “NYPD Blue” and “Law and Order: Criminal Intent,” among other shows. Feature credits include “Harriet the Spy” and “Gossip.”
Ambitious project stems from Spielberg’s interest in mounting a TV series that would chronicle all aspects of the development of a fictional Broadway tuner, from its creative inception to the fund-raising process through opening night (Daily Variety, Sept. 23). It also aims to delve into the backstories of key players and depict how the commitment to such a major undertaking impacts their lives and relationships. The hope is that the still-untitled show’s first season would end with the tuner’s opening-night perf, with the legiter-within-the-show mounted live at least once in a Broadway venue.
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, who also have plenty of stage and screen experience, are aboard as producers along with Spielberg and DreamWorks TV’s Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank. Tunesmiths Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, who wrote the music and lyrics for the tuner adaptation of Spielberg’s 2002 pic “Catch Me if You Can,” are at work on the music and lyrics.