“Finding Neverland,” the Broadway musical produced by Harvey Weinstein’s Weinstein Live Entertainment, will close in August, prior to the launch of a U.S. national tour this fall and a West End production targeting a spring 2017 opening.
In a statement announcing the closing along with the West End stint, Weinstein revealed big plans for the show. In addition to engagements in London in 2017 and Asia in 2018, the movie mogul said he intends to begin work on developing the musical version of “Finding Neverland” into its own film.
He added that the Nederlander Organization — the owner of the show’s current Broadway home, the Lunt-Fontanne Theater — has offered the production a Broadway spot to return to once it finishes its U.S. tour. Such an arrangement would not be unprecedented; the musical “Motown” will have a return run at a Nederlander theater this summer after an extended hiatus.
Based on the 2004 Miramax film, “Finding Neverland” was a passion project for Weinstein, who shepherded the show through a sometimes-rocky development process that saw one creative team jettisoned in favor of the current group of creators who got the show to Broadway. The production launched there in spring 2015 with robust sales, regularly topping $1 million per week throughout its first summer. But it’s since seen grosses fluctuate, with last week’s tally ringing in at about $580,000.
The production doesn’t look on track to recoup all of its capitalization costs (reportedly weighing in at some $20 million), but future productions would likely yield additional revenue to investors.
Directed by Diane Paulus (“Waitress”), a Tony winner for “Pippin,” “Finding Neverland” has music by Gary Barlow and Eliot Kennedy, book by James Graham and choreography by Mia Michaels. The Broadway production shutters Aug. 21, with the tour launching Oct. 11 in Buffalo. Exact dates and other details for the West End staging are due to be announced next month.
Weinstein already has his next Broadway show lined up: He intends to bring the Theatre du Chatelet’s staging of “Singin’ in the Rain” to New York in 2017.