Friday, January 14, 2011

Memphis to Be Filmed for HD Screenings is reporting that the Tony-winning muaical Memphis will be filmed live for broadcast in HD across the country in the spring.*  This is an interesting, and rare, move for a show still running on the main stem because there are always questions, as Variety brings up, about the filmed version cannibalizing the live show's commercial prospects. The Hollywood treatments of Chicago and Phantom of the Opera seem not to have done much harm to their stage shows' prospects, and when MTV filmed and broadcast Legally Blonde, they essentially set the show up for success as a national tour.  This is an interesting angle in relation to this show because there was a lot of speculation last spring that Memphis won the Best Musical Tony largely because of its prospects as a successful touring show.  Specifics of the Broadcast have yet to be released.

*To be clear ... this is not a film adaptation of the show but, rather, a filmed version of the stage play.


  1. Does that mean that it will be broadcast in theaters? Will this enhance or reduce the prospects of a touring company?

  2. I think it will be broadcast in theaters, but only certain types of theaters like the Lincoln Center library and the like. That will definitely enhance the prospects of the show's ability to tour because this will make the show familiar to a wider audience. If all these revivals we've been seeing more of recently are any indication of anything, people would much rather see something they know than something they don't.