Why Are Studios Hiding the Fact That Their Musicals … Are Musicals?

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Marketing campaigns for “Mean Girls” and “Wonka” avoided musical elements as Hollywood seeks to broaden appeal

Renee Rapp and Avantika from “Mean Girls,” Timothee Chalamet from “Wonka,” and Fantasia Barrino and Taraji P. Henson of “The Color Purple” (TheWrap/Chris Smith)

If you sat down to see Warner Bros.’ “Wonka” in December, odds are you were expecting a whimsical origin story led by Timothée Chalamet’s star power. But you may have been surprised to find in the film’s opening moments that Chalamet was singing. Because “Wonka” is a full-on musical with no less than eight elaborate musical numbers — not a second of which was teased in the film’s trailers.

Similarly, Paramount’s new box office hit “Mean Girls” was marketed as a colorful update of Tina Fey’s 2004 comedy when in fact it’s also an adaptation of the Broadway musical of the same name, a bona fide singing extravaganza with over 15 numbers.


One response to “Why Are Studios Hiding the Fact That Their Musicals … Are Musicals?”

  1. hollywood Avatar

    As the new year begins, Hollywood’s largest media conglomerates are hip-deep in a cycle of merger-and-acquisition mania after years of disruption in traditional TV and film, and a particularly chaotic year in 2023.

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