'Sleepless in Seattle' -- The Musical'? Is God punishing me?

Sleeplessinseattle_l So…there’s a musical version of Sleepless in Seattle in the works. Why yes, that is a Margaret-shaped hole in the wall at PopWatch HQ, which I made when I ran screaming out of here upon finding out about this production.

I know, I know, movie-to-musical adaptations are all the rage right now. Billy Elliot is a showgasm, etc etc. Fine. But people drastically overestimate how much they like Sleepless in Seattle. Guess what? It’s not that awesome. It’s fine, and I watch it if I happen to catch part of it on cable, but it’s really not that good, and oh yeah, Meg Ryan’s character is engaged for almost the whole movie, and maybe it’s a huge bummer to set your widower dad up with a stranger you "met" on the radio, and Tom Hanks doesn’t need a girlfriend/wife so much as some serious grief counseling and therapy.

According to the press release, "Sleepless in Seattle-The Musical will remain pegged to 1993, reflecting the culture, fashions and music[*] of the era." This brings me to my next point of concern, which is how dated so much of Sleepless feels. I’ll even grant them the enduring power of terrestrial radio, but the letter-writing, the kids’ shenanigans with booking plane tickets, and how many of the movie’s central plot conflicts could have been resolved with Google make the already-pushing-it story ring even more false now. (I think this is a Sleepless problem and not an early-’90s issue in general; ER and Friends came out a year later, and those first seasons still feel contemporary.) Finally, if you’re going to make a musical based on a 1993 movie, can you at least have the decency to pick Jurassic Park? Now that is something to sing about.

So does anyone think this is a good idea? What other not-so-great ideas would still be WAY better than a Sleepless musical?


*The number-two selling album of 1993: Kenny G’s Breathless. It’s true!

addCredit(“Everett Collection”)

Comments (19 total) Add your comment
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  • chelle

    Amen, sister.

  • Kevin J

    Sometimes, I think, the populous is running out of ideas and, at other times, someone says “We’ll produce the first thing you blurt out of your pie hole!”
    My money is on “Total Recall: The MUSICAL”!!! I can hear it now:
    “Get your ass to Mars,
    Get your ass to Mars,
    Hi, Ho, The Mars-e-o,
    Get your ass to Mars”

  • e.y.e.

    Ridiculous idea. I can hear the grand love song about “Affair to Remember” now…bleh.

  • Kevin

    Hey, cool it with the hate! It’s a good movie with some truly funny moments. Forget about the schmaltzy romance… this movie is, for the most part, the last time Tom Hanks was in a funny movie. You’ve Got Mail wasn’t funny. The Terminal…not funny. The Ladykillers, kind of funny but pretty bad as a movie. So that leaves this movie and that wonderful scene between Hanks and Victor Garber as they talk about The Dirty Dozen. I’ll take Sleepless over, say, Titanic any day.

  • queenc1109

    Goonies: The Musical would be waaaaaayyyy better. Especially with that Cyndi Lauper song as the closing number.

  • Aimee


  • Houstonian Jen in DC

    Margaret, you had me until “It’s not that awesome”. I own it, love it, watch it on cable whenever it’s on. Heck, I’ve even watched it on HULU! I’ve had multiple copies of the soundtrack (my original tape was played too much, my original CD was stolen).
    I agree that the Movie-to-Musical thing got old a few years ago, but my objections are more about the lack of creativity on Broadway than the quality of Sleepless in Seattle as a film.
    Now, if you had bawked to a ‘You’ve Got Mail’ musical adaptation, I would have been there with you.

  • shoegirl

    what?! The ideas just get worst and worst! Come up with an origonal idea!

  • Houstonian Jen in DC

    My next question is, Has anyone actually been to one of these Millionaire Lovin’ web sites that always end up in the comment section? I’m just curious.

  • el

    I’m glad I’m not the only one that thinks sleepless in seattle is way overrated. Bring on the ‘When Harry Met Sally’ musical instead. C’mon — ‘Surry with a fringe on top’, anyone?

  • Melinda65

    My question, as a follow-up to Houstonian Jen in DC, is why we’re told that EW “may delete your comment” if we don’t stay on the subject, but those stupid _______Dating.com trolling posts seem to stick around. Between here and TV Guide’s website, I’m assailed with them all the time.

  • Melinda65

    As to Sleepless in Seattle as a musical, I have to say that the trend to turn movies into musicals is objectionable, but I like the movie itself. I just would like to see the “creative” types be, oh, I don’t know…creative and come up with new ideas. What’s next? A musical Schindler’s List?

  • Sina

    Sleepless in Seattle!? I’ve been waiting years for Broadway to do Moulin Rouge. Forget Sleepless in Seattle, I want to hear Come what may sung live on a theatre stage.
    Also the only thing really good about that movie is that Bye Bye Blackbird song. I had to get that on my IPod.

  • mikey

    If you have to make a musical out of a Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan RomCom, why not “Joe Versus the Volcano?” That one could actually be fun.
    As for 1993, just cut to the chase and take “The Fugitive,” “Addams Family Values” or “The Beverly Hillibillies” to complete the TV Show-to-Movie-to-Musical “we’ve completely given up thinking of new ideas” trifecta.

  • Vance

    I always felt Sleepless in Seattle was a chick flick for guys actually. (Think about it, guy gets another mans girl and doesn’t even have to do much except call a radio station. AND he lives on a houseboat).
    That said, while some movie-to-musical adaptations have worked (Billy Elliot, Lion King, the spoof Top Gun which was HILARIOUS), Sleepless the musical does NOT sound good (plus the team behind it haven’t exactly done amazing stuff before).

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