Paul McCartney is making his first foray into the world of theater. The musician has spent the past year writing a stage musical adaptation of the 1946 Frank Capra film It’s A Wonderful Life, according to the New York Post.
McCartney has teamed up with writer Lee Hall, the screenwriter behind Billy Elliot and Rocketman, and producer Bill Kenwright. Hall previously worked with Elton John on the West End adaptation of “Billy Elliot: The Musical,” which opened in 2005.
“Writing a musical is not something that had ever really appealed to me,” McCartney said in a statement. “But Bill and I met up with Lee Hall and had a chat and I found myself thinking this could be interesting and fun. It’s A Wonderful Life is a universal story we can all relate to.”
Kenwright originally asked Capra for the stage rights to the film years ago, according to the Post, but the filmmaker said no. After the producer was offered the rights by Paramount, he reached out to McCartney in 2016 and asked if he would be interested in writing the music. “Our hero was a musical theater writer,” Kenwright said of McCartney after hearing the first song.
The production is set to premiere in the U.K. in late 2020 with plans for a later move to Broadway, according to Variety.
McCartney recently reunited with Ringo Starr during a performance at Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium. The pair collaborated on two Beatles classics, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)” and “Helter Skelter.”