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Prince’s Purple Rain Is Coming to Broadway/Photo by @Prince/Instagram
BOTWC Staff
Published: 11 January 2024

Just in time for the 40th year anniversary!

Prince’s 1984 hit film Purple Rain is being adapted into a Broadway musical, People reports. The motion picture was the late icon’s debut, earning $100 million worldwide and being added to the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry in 2019 for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”  Prince would follow up with two other major pictures, 1986’s Under the Cherry Moon and 1990’s Graffiti Bridge, the sequel to Purple Rain. 

Still, the original was Prince’s biggest hit, the soundtrack sparking classics like “When Doves Cry” and “I Would Die 4 U,” along with the title track “Purple Rain.” The album sold more than 25 million copies worldwide, spent 24 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard charts, and earned the late icon two Grammys and an Oscar for Best Original Song Score. Now, 40 years after the film and album’s release, Purple Rain is coming to Broadway!

“It’s been almost 40 years since Prince’s legendary film, Purple Rain, took the world by storm, and we can’t think of a more fitting tribute than to honor Prince and the Purple Rain legacy with this stage adaptation of the beloved story,” producers L Londell McMillan and Lary Mestel said via statement.

The musical will follow the plot of the original film, telling the story of “an up-and-coming rock musician in the Minneapolis club scene, as he contends with a tumultuous home environment, a rival band, and a budding romance.” The show will also feature a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, which is based on the original screenplay by Albert Magnoli and William Blinn, as well as original music and lyrics from Prince.

The legend passed away on April 21, 2016, at the age of 57, but his legacy is alive and well. Tony nominee Lileana Blain-Cruz is set to direct, with Orin Wolf set to produce. No stranger to bringing big movies to the stage, Wolf also helped produce Broadway productions of the 2014 hit musical Beautiful: The Carole King Story, The Band’s Visit (2017), which earned the Tony award for Best Musical, and 2018’s To Kill a Mockingbird. 

“We are thrilled with our Broadway partners and creative team, who are bringing a theatricality to the film’s original fictional story. We can’t wait for a new generation to discover Purple Rain and for lovers of the original film and album to experience its power once again, this time live, added McMillan and Mestel. 

No word yet on when production begins, but we’ll be first in line for our tickets!

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