Four Films We’d Can’t Wait To See On Stage

The Addams Family

Romeo and Juliet, Evita, Les Miserables, The Phantom of the Opera, Hairspray, Rent, Macbeth…There are many stage greats that have been magnificently translated into cinematic masterpieces in recent years. The words that have echoed across grand theaters throughout the ages have blared from surround sound speakers in darkened cinemas, telling their stories to a new and enchanted audience. 

Occasionally, the formula has been turned on its head. Films like Ghost, The Goodbye Girl, Sunset Boulevard, and even Beauty and the Beast have shown it can also work the other way around, luring in huge audiences, many of them drawn by a well-known name and a story they’re confident will suit their tastes.  

So it got us to wondering: What other films either would make or have made fantastically good stage adaptations? We had a long, hard think about it, and here are a few we’d like to see. 



Bronson (2008)

Source: Facebook via Bronson
Source: Facebook via Bronson

When it comes to Nicolas Winding Refn’s 2008 film, it’s fair to say that it’s best interpreted as a play which has been filmed for the silver screen. The motion picture frequently flits between theatrical and cinematic formats, with Tom Hardy delivering a dazzling performance that would keep any theatre audience hooked. The biopic, which is based on the true story of Britain’s most violent prisoner, has already done much of the hard work for anyone who might wish to adapt it, with its on-screen action utilizing an artistry and expressionism that would translate beautifully onto the stage. Indeed, many have likened the titular character’s frequent speeches to the soliloquys found in Shakespearean pieces – a good sign that it would work well in either form.     

Casino (1995)

Released in 1995, American crime epic Casino is some of the finest work produced by cinematic great Martin Scorsese. Brought to life by the acting talents of Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone, and Joe Pesci, it delivers the dazzling tale of a gambling handicapper, Sam, who falls in love with a hustler and former prostitute: the inimitable Ginger McKenna. Throw in a psychotic enforcer, a mob-controlled gambling outfit, and some of the most harrowing and memorable scenes ever brought to life on screen, and you have a story that would leave theatre audiences wound up taut by the tension of the moment. We wouldn’t be surprised if all they wanted when they got home was to find an online bonus at a site such as Oddschecker and roll the dice for themselves in order to relive the thrill of the theatrical happenings seen on stage. It’s what we’d do.

Trainspotting (1996)

Source: Facebook via Trainspotting
Source: Facebook via Trainspotting

The 90s produced some incredibly gritty dramas, and Trainspotting is another script we’d love to see transported from the silver screen, so it’s a good job playwright Harry Gibson shared this view. Its black humor is the sort that works perfectly on stage, and there’s a reason this cinematic sensation became one of the highest grossing British films of all time. Charting the story of a group of heroin addicts living in the 80s, its look behind the curtains of working class Edinburgh managed to shine a light on drug addiction and urban poverty in a way nothing has since. The thought of watching its surrealist drama play out as a live performance in the theatre is definitely an intriguing one. We’ll definitely be adding it to our watchlist.       

The Addams Family (1991)

There’s also something rather different that we’ve always dreamed of seeing on stage: The Addams Family. A far cry from the nitty-gritty action of films like Trainspotting and Casino, this gothic comedy is a celebration of the macabre and the eccentric – two of the things theatre does best – and it’s now available in musical form thanks to Andrew Lippa. Bringing to life a satirical inversion of the perfect American family, its central plot revolves around a loan shark intent on seizing the Addams family fortune – by any means necessary. Quirky, comically brilliant, and an absolute dream for an adventurous costume designer, we knew it would require the most amazing of sets and charismatic of actors to bring it to life, and now we’re confident that the theatre scene has delivered. We can’t wait to see it with our own eyes.   

It seems to us that many of the touches that make a fantastic film are also those that translate into epic on-stage productions. Borrow some ideas, aesthetics, and even stories from the former, and theatre would have a wealth of brilliant new performances to delight enraptured audiences from around the globe. Tell us, which magical movies would you add to our list?


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