Rocket Pictures are to produce an animated feature film of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT.
Announced today, Elton John’s Rocket Pictures has acquired the film rights to Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s world-wide stage phenomenon, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and is embarking on a new animated family feature film, in association with The Really Useful Group.
Rocket Pictures CEO Steve Hamilton Shaw and David Furnish will produce the film with The Really Useful Group. Andrew Lloyd Webber, Tim Rice and Elton John will executive produce.
Steve Hamilton Shaw of Rocket Pictures commented; “Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat is one of the most popular musical experiences ever conceived. We are excited about the huge potential of a contemporary animated version, and we’re thrilled to bring this to the big screen in partnership with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice.”
The Really Useful Group’s Managing Director Barney Wragg commented; “Developing Joseph as a new feature film marks the beginning of a new stage in the Really Useful Group’s plans to co-produce and fund new films, television and stage productions from our theatrical shows which play continuously worldwide.”
Andrew Lloyd Webber commented; “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat started in a school and was the first step on the path that led to my musicals with Tim Rice. It is now being performed all over the world by a fourth generation of school kids, and a great movie can only help Joseph be part of the lives of many more.”
Tim Rice commented; “I have always thought Joseph was a strong contender for an animation production, and I’m delighted this is now going to happen.”
Originally created by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice to be performed in schools, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is the most performed musical in history. Today it is performed thousands of times a year by school children around the world. The success of the production in schools has given rise to an international theatrical phenomenon.
Joseph was first presented as a 15-minute pop cantata at Colet Court School in London in 1968. After the success of the Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice classic, Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph received stage productions beginning in 1970 and while still undergoing various transformations and expansions, the musical was produced in the West End in 1973, and in its full format was recorded in 1974 and opened on Broadway in 1982.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat has now been viewed by an estimated 26 million people, bringing in more than $600m at the box office as it continues to delight audiences around the world. The Broadway production made its debut at the Royale Theatre and became a critical and box office hit, landing multiple Tony Award and Drama Desk nominations including Best Musical and Best Original Score. The show has achieved a record 30 years of uninterrupted professional touring around the U.K, and will tour the U.S. later in 2014 and is a regular in international markets including South Africa and Korea.
The project is the latest for Rocket Pictures’ feature film portfolio. Rocket Pictures is currently producing Rocketman, the highly-anticipated spectacular musical reinvention of Elton John’s life, with Tom Hardy starring as Sir Elton John, co-financed by AI Film and Focus Features distributing. Rocket Pictures is also at work on Sherlock Gnomes, the sequel to Rocket Pictures’ 3D animated hit Gnomeo & Juliet, which was released by Disney and earned $200 million worldwide, and the animated family film Will Gallows and the Snake Bellied Troll, written and to be directed by Kelly Asbury.
Rocket Pictures is Elton’s film, television and theatrical production company that concentrates on family and music-related projects across multiple platforms.
The Really Useful Group is Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theatre producing and rights licensing company and controls the theatrical rights for all of Andrew’s works, including The Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita and Sunset Boulevard.
The Really Useful Group reached over 20 million people across the globe last year from live theatre and concert audiences, cinema goers, television viewers and music fans, to social media and art lovers. 2014 will see The Really Useful Group continue to work across film, television and theatre as it produces and develops new projects and partnerships worldwide alongside its ongoing work in education, amateur licensing and music publishing.