Back in January, there was a report in the New York Times that Barbra Streisand had met with Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents, co-writers of the 1959 Broadway musical Gypsy, to talk to them about playing Mama Rose in a movie version of the musical.
Well, it looks like that movie may not happen now according to Laurents, who spoke to the Hartford Courant‘s Frank Rizzo about how the project came together and how it now seems to not be happening anymore.
According to Laurents, it’s Sondheim himself who questioned the reasons for making a movie based on their musical. Laurents told Rizzo the following story about talking with his partner who got cold feet:
“He said, ‘What is the point of it?’ And I said, ‘They have this terrible version with Rosalind Russell wearing those black and white shoes.’ And then Sondheim told me something that he got from the British — and it’s wonderful. He said, ‘You want a record because the theater is ephemeral. But that’s wrong. The theater’s greatest essence is that it is ephemeral. You don’t need a record. The fact that it’s ephemeral means you can have different productions, different Roses on into infinity.’
“So I don’t want it now. I don’t want a definitive record. I want it to stay alive.”
Laurents goes on to say that Streisand is disappointed with Sondheim’s decision, especially because Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) was interested in directing the movie.
Streisand is staying busy following her appearance in Little Fockers by co-starring in the Seth Rogen comedy My Mother’s Curse for Paramount with Anne (The Proposal) Fletcher directing.