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Heather Headley Cast In The Whitney Houston Role In Stage Musical Version Of "The Bodyguard"

by Tambay A. Obenson
September 9, 2011 9:36 AM
3 Comments
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We already told you about the planned remake, as well as a stage musical adaptation of the 1992 film, 'The Bodyguard, which starred Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston.

Nothing new on the film remake front; however, casting for the David Ian-produced stage musical is underway, with the goal being to open the show on London's West End, in 2012; and Tony and Grammy award winner Heather Headley will reportedly star in the role originated by Whitney Houston.

Thea Sharrock (Equus with Daniel Radcliffe) will direct.

Headley's past stage credits include, among other shows, the title role in Aida, for which she won the 2000 Tony.

The story again goes… When arrogant and domineering musical superstar (Whitney Houston in the film) begins receiving death threats, she hires a bodyguard. Enter an ex-Secret Service agent (Kevin Costner in the film) with his own demons, and his unpopular, stringent security measures. Inevitably, Costner and Houston fall in love, and some other predictable drama ensues.

A successful run in London could very well mean a transfer to the bright lights of New York's Broadway stage (as we've seen with other recent plays that took that route, notably Katori Hall's The Mountaintop which will star Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett this fall), and, quite possibly, a film adaptation of the musical, much like we saw with Nine a couple of years ago - itself based on a stage musical of the same name, which was an adaptation of Federico Fellini's masterpiece, 8 1/2.

However, according to the Daily Mail in the UK... "... the stage version of The Bodyguard won’t just be repeating the film. Instead, playwright Alex Dinelarius has written a sharp new book that isn’t a word-for-word copycat of the picture. Plus, several other numbers associated with Houston, such as I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me), will be used in the show."

Interesting... so I suppose they'll be mining Whitney's library of music for songs to use in the show, and not just material from the film's soundtrack.

The 1992 film that grossed over $400 million worldwide, at the box office.

I should note that the original script for that film was written by Lawrence Kasdan in the late 1970s, as a vehicle for Steve McQueen and Diana Ross, but McQueen backed out. And by the time it got produced, some 16 years later, McQueen was dead, and Kevin Costner gave us his best Steve McQueen impression, haircut and all!

Congrats to Ms Headley. And if you're not familiar with her vocal talents, a sample follows below:

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3 Comments

  • Lynn | September 11, 2011 12:12 PMReply

    I was JUST wondering where she was. I'm glad she's coming back to Broadway.

  • James Madison | September 11, 2011 8:36 AMReply

    I'm late -

    I like Heather. She should get more light her way. Period.

  • Geneva Girl | September 9, 2011 10:35 AMReply

    I saw her in Aida and she was wonderful. The Brits make a lot of popular films into West End productions, e.g., Saturday Night Fever. There's a built-in audience who loved the movie and already know the music. It should do well.

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