Todd Haynes’ 2002 pic “Far From Heaven” is getting the tuner treatment, with “Grey Gardens” songwriting pair Scott Frankel and Michael Korie teaming with scribe Richard Greenberg (“Three Days of Rain,” “Take Me Out”) for a stage musical version commissioned by Off Broadway’s Playwrights Horizons.
Project is one of three to be commissioned as part of a program funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Playwrights Horizons Musicals in Partnership Initiative, which sees the Off Broadway company partner with a regional theater to develop each tuner.
Playwrights originally produced “Grey Gardens” — from composer Frankel, lyricist Korie and book writer Doug Wright — in an Off Broadway run that yielded a commercial Broadway transfer in 2006.
Modeled on Douglas Sirk films but tapping contempo themes, “Far From Heaven” follows a 1950s suburban housewife struggling with a marital crisis. The 2002 Focus Features pic is one of a number of quirky indie films on the way to the stage, including “Little Miss Sunshine,” “Kinky Boots” and “Like Water for Chocolate.”
A musical version of Pedro Almodovar film “Women on the Verge of the Nervous Breakdown” is playing a Broadway run that shutters Jan. 23. “Sunshine,” from “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” team of songwriter William Finn and writer-helmer James Lapine, is lined up for a spring production at the La Jolla Playhouse with a cast that will include Hunter Foster, Malcolm Gets, Dick Latessa and Jennifer Laura Thompson.
“Heaven” reps the second project to be announced for Playwrights’ tuner development initiative following “The Burnt Part Boys,” which played Gotham earlier this year in a co-production with the Vineyard Theater and in partnership with New York Stage and Film. One more offering remains to be announced.
No regional partner has yet been nailed down for “Heaven.” Helmer and a production sked also remain to be confirmed.