It might surprise you, but the folks behind some of Broadway’s biggest hits were often sports fans. Before the smash hit Damn Yankees, Jerry Ross and Richard Adler’s 1955 baseball-themed retelling of the Faust legend, there was Good News, a 1927 musical written by Laurence Schwab, B.G. DeSylva, and Lew Brown, which followed a college football star. And last summer’s cheerleader musical Bring It On (based on the ’90s cult classic starring Kirsten Dunst) just earned a 2013 Tony nomination for Best Musical. It’s no shock that another famous sports movie, Rocky, is also headed to Broadway in musical form. One imagines there are plenty of other sports-themed movies that would make terrific Broadway musicals. Here are a few solid suggestions.
A League of Their Own
Penny Marshall’s 1992 comedy about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League brought in big bucks at the box office, legitimized Madonna’s acting career, and forged a complicated relationship between basic human emotions and baseball. It’d also make a great musical. What better way for Madonna to regain some of her relevance than by writing some lyrics for a Broadway adaptation in the vein of Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5: The Musical or her pop-star contemporary Cyndi Lauper’s work with this year’s Kinky Boots. After all, she’s already got one solid tune with the film’s theme, “This Used to Be My Playground.”