Smash's Bombshell Musical About Marilyn Monroe Is Actually in the Works

Will you let Bombshell be your new musical star?

By Chris Harnick Jun 22, 2015 7:47 PMTags
Bombshell Benefit ConcertJay Brady/The Actors Fund

The show must go on, and for Smash and Bombshell, it just took a little longer to continue. NBC canceled the musical drama in 2013 after two seasons, but now it could get a new life of sorts on stage. Bombshell, the Marilyn Monroe musical at the center of the series, is being developed into a real Broadway musical. This news comes after the cast, including Katharine McPhee and Megan Hilty, reunited for a charity concert benefiting The Actors Fund. The show sold out in pre-sale and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"There is a still a lot of love for Smash and a rabid fan base out there, and we're thrilled to be able to keep the dream alive as we work towards bringing Bombshell to theatre audiences," Robert Greenblatt, chairman of NBC Entertainment, said in a statement. "Smash was ambitious because every episode was a complicated musical for television and we also built the foundation of the musical-within-the-musical about Marilyn's endlessly fascinating and tumultuous life. Over the course of two seasons an entire Bombshell score was written to service Smash storylines, and now that show will have a chance to stand on its own."

Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman wrote the songs for Bombshell in the series and will serve composer and co-lyricists. The show hailed from executive producers Craig Zadan, Neil Meron, Steven Spielberg and starred McPhee, Hilty, Debra Messing, Christian Borle, Jeremy Jordan and Anjelica Huston. Zadan and Meron are also producing the stage version of Bombshell. Spielberg is also expected to be involved with the project. Rumors about taking the show to stage first started when Smash season one ended, but nothing ever materialized.

No casting has been announced and nobody from the show's cast is currently involved with the stage musical. A book writer will be announced at a later date.

"We are so thrilled that Smash isn't over and that Bombshell gets to live on," Zadan, said in a statement. "The Emmy-nominated songs by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, including the iconic ‘Let Me Be Your Star,' are every bit the caliber of their Tony- and Grammy-winning Broadway work. The Actors Fund benefit reinforced how alive this material is on stage and how much the audience wants to see the Marilyn Monroe musical in its entirety."

Joshua Bergasse will serve as choreographer for Bombshell. His work on Smash earned him an Emmy.

"Whether watching the Smash cast at the benefit at the Minskoff Theatre or hearing teenagers across the world on YouTube, it's been thrilling for us to hear our songs so embraced and performed so phenomenally," Shaiman and Wittman said in a joint statement. "We can't wait to see what happens next."

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)