New Line is getting musical-happy. The studio, who just announced they were planning a sequel to last year's hit, Hairspray, have won a studio bidding war for the rights to the rock musical Rock of Ages, an off-Broadway show that pairs '80s rock ballads with an on-stage love story (a la Mamma Mia!) that's currently rocking out in New York.
The musical tells the story of a man and a woman who fall in love at a Sunset Strip rock club called Rock of Ages, but are torn apart by the rock lifestyle. The show features a bunch of songs pretty much everyone knows by heart (with varying degrees of admission), by bands like Bon Jovi, REO Speedwagon, Journey, Pat Benatar, Joan Jett and Foreigner. Spurred by the recent box-office success of its predecessors (see: Mamma Mia!), New Line bought the film rights with Tobey Maguire's production company Maguire Entertainment taking the reins, and will keep the musical's current off-Broadway creative producers, Matthew Weaver, Scott Prisand and Carl Levin (not the Michigan senator -- I checked) on board for the film. Chris D'Arienzo, who wrote the book for the on-stage show, will pen the screenplay and direct.
Though I haven't been lucky enough to have seen the on-stage show, I do have high hopes for the on-screen version, as I have an affinity for loving movie musicals and have long wanted to know what puts the REO in "REO Speedwagon." My only real request is that when Rock of Ages hits theaters, I don't happen to sit in front of the same set of drunk 30-something women who sang every single lyric to every single song in Mamma Mia! directly into my right ear canal.