Robert De Niro has pretty much done it all in Hollywood and now he’s turning to theater to make his Broadway directorial debut. The actor, who starred and directed the 1993 film “A Bronx Tale,” will co-direct a new musical adaptation with stage veteran Jerry Zaks.
“A Bronx Tale: The Musical” is based on the one-man show written by Chazz Palminteri, which centered on his childhood on the streets of the New York neighborhood and his conflict between his father and a local Mob boss.
“It’s a Bronx boy’s dream come true for ‘A Bronx Tale, The Musical’ to move to Broadway!” Palminteri said in a statement. “It’s a great story and a great story can morph into many different forms – a one-man show, a movie and a now, a musical. We get the best of both worlds with De Niro having directed the film and Zaks having directed the one-man show. There are only three things you can do to an audience – make them laugh, make them cry or you can scare them. In ‘A Bronx Tale, The Musical’ we do all three.”
The musical made its debut in February at New Jersey’s Paper Mill Playhouse and received positive reviews. The Broadway show will be produced by Tommy Mottola, with the Dodgers (“Jersey Boys”) and De Niro’s Tribeca Productions.
Alan Menkin and lyricist Glenn Slater will compose the score. Palminteri will pen the book, set design is by Beowulf Boritt, costumes by William Ivey Long, and lighting by Howell Binkley, who just won his second Tony Award for “Hamilton.” Sergio Trujillo is in charge of choreography.
De Niro is also in negotiations to star in the Dimension Films comedy “The War With Grandpa,” about a young man who’s grandfather moves in and engages in a series of pranks meant to drive him out. Though, his gramps is also pretty good at pulling off tricks.
The production for “A Bronx Tale: The Musical” begins previews November 3 at the Longacre Theatre, with the official opening set for December 1.