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'20 Feet From Stardom' As An Hour-Long, Scripted TV Drama Series & A Broadway Musical?

by Tambay A. Obenson
January 22, 2014 11:39 AM
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Interesting and unexpected, but I like the idea!

The Oscar-nominated documentary 20 Feet From Stardom just might become an hour-long scripted TV series, as well as a Broadway musical - that is if Mick Jagger has his way.

Jagger, along with Victoria Pearman (via their Jagged Films company), is said to be "in talks" to adapt the documentary, which provides an intimate look at the lives of the backup singers (photo above) behind some of the greatest musical legends of the 21st century.

Per The Hollywood Reporter, the TV series would focus on back-up singers of present-day musicians, while the Broadway musical version would actually feature some of the singers in the documentary.

They are the voices behind the greatest rock, pop and R&B hits of all time, but no one knows their names. In the award-winning film, director Morgan Neville (who will also work with Jagger on any adaptations) shines the spotlight on the untold stories of such legendary background singers as Darlene Love (known for her hit “Christmas, Baby Please Come Home”), Merry Clayton (whose voice haunts the classic 1969 track by the Rolling Stones, “Gimme Shelter”), Lisa FischerClaudia Lennear, Judith Hill and more. 

These are the triumphs and heartbreaks of music's greatest unsung talents, featuring rare behind-the-scenes footage, vintage live performances, and interviews with superstars Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Stevie WonderBette Midler, and, of course, Mick Jagger.

After much success on the festival circuit, RADiUS-TWC released 20 Feet From Stardom on June 14, 2013.  The film earned about $5 million at the box office.

If you missed its theatrical run, look for it on DVD and Blu-Ray right now.

By the way, it's a contender for the 2014 Best Documentary Oscar.

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More: Morgan Neville, TV News

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  • Alias | January 23, 2014 9:58 PMReply

    I agree with @ Will Wright that this brilliant documentary deserves to bask in its singularity.
    How could this possibly be a reality TV series? The film already addressed all of the ups and downs that singers endure. The backstories of their lives. ...What more is there to know or learn? This sounds like a really stupid idea. A bastardizing of an already sound and great project. I hope these women are smart enough NOT to sign up for this crap. It will only dilute their great careers.

  • Will Wright | January 22, 2014 12:57 PMReply

    While a one-hour program might be worthwhile – interestingly the Reality TV genre is omitted, yet I believe implied here – I believe, more importantly, that the incisive and edifying (imperfect) documentary deserves to bask in its singularity. If viewers are eager to watch the documented lives of present-day back-up singers, then a team should produce a follow-up or next-generation documentary.

    I assume that Millennial viewers understand the difference between a documentary and the "realities," which Reality TV programs present.

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