“Purple Rain,” Prince’s breakout rise-of-a-rock-star film, is being adapted into a stage musical featuring some of the pop musician’s best-loved songs.
Orin Wolf, the producer who previously shepherded the Tony-winning adaptation of “The Band’s Visit” to the stage, and who is currently backing the theatrical adaptation of another music industry movie, “Buena Vista Social Club,” announced on Monday that he is developing the musical, based on the 1984 film.
The stage adaptation will feature a book by the playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant winner whose family drama, “Appropriate,” is now running on Broadway. The director is Lileana Blain-Cruz, whose revival of Thornton Wilder’s “The Skin of Our Teeth” (with new material contributed by Jacobs-Jenkins) had a short run on Broadway in 2022.
“Purple Rain” is about an ambitious musician, called the Kid, facing strife with his parents, his love interest, and his fellow musicians. The film won an Academy Award for best original song score.
Wolf did not announce any other details, including when or where there might be an initial production (most musicals have runs either Off Broadway or outside New York before braving the high costs and intense glare of Broadway). Prince died in 2016; representatives of the rightsholders to his music were quoted in a news release describing themselves as supportive of the production.