Monday, November 30, 2015
Return to the Forbidden Planet
Few works symbolize the affection Britons hold for the period more than "Return to the Forbidden Planet." This West End hit, scheduled to open in New York next Sunday at the Variety Arts Theater Off Broadway, is based on the 1956 sci-fi movie "Forbidden Planet" and relocates the plot of "The Tempest" to outer space. But its pulling power derives principally from its exhortation to the audience to sing, clap and dance to vintage hits such as "Great Balls of Fire" and "Shake, Rattle and Roll."... In London, to the disgust of the impresario Cameron Mackintosh, "Forbidden Planet" beat his production of "Miss Saigon" for the 1990 Olivier Award for Best Musical. ~ New York Times. 1991.
When I wrote it, it was the plot that came first and then the songs suggested themselves. I didn’t try and write a scene around Great Balls of Fire. I took Shakespeare’s actual tempest scene in The Tempest and thought “What’s the obvious song?” If you’re in outer space it’s going to be an asteroid storm so therefore it’s obvious to use Jerry Lee Lewis’s Great Balls of Fire, which is cut around Shakespeare’s tempest scene. ~ Bob Carlton Interview. 2015.