Friday, February 27, 2009

Can't Escape Those "Damn Yankees"


For a genre pronounced dead just ten years ago movie musicals sure are having a good run. There have been three 100 million dollar grossers (Dreamgirls, Hairspray, Mamma Mia) in the last three years and now New Line Cinema has picked up Jim Carrey and Jake Gyllenhaal to play the field in their new adaptation of the 1950's musical "Damn Yankees."

The film about a fan of a hapless baseball team (Gyllenhaal) who makes a deal with the devil (Carrey) to help change the fortunes of his beloved squad. "Damn Yankees" will mark the first musical for both leads.

I'm all for the movie musical but "Damn Yankees" is a piece of theater which belongs squarely to its era. Will this be a period piece ala "Chicago," "Hairspray," and "Dreamgirls"? Will the screenwriting duo of Ganz and Babaloo Mandel bring the plight of the Senators into modern times? Is a Babaloo a real name? Only time will tell.

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