The soundtrack for the upcoming "Chicago" film is due in stores Dec. 17 on the Epic/Sony Music label.
A Miramax spokesperson confirmed the news of the release of the disc, which will feature Kander and Ebb's songs from long-in-the-making movie. As of press time, a track listing for the recording was not yet finalized. That information is expected within the next week or two.
Miramax also said that Danny Elfman has composed some of the film's music, and it is still being determined whether a new Janet Jackson song will run during the end credits of the film.
Anxious "Chicago" fans can get a preview of the film's soundtrack by logging on to www.chicagosoundtrack.com. The website offers excerpts from the Sony Music recording, including such tracks as "All That Jazz" (featuring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Renée Zellweger), "Cell Block Tango" (featuring Zeta-Jones and Mya), "I Can't Do It Alone" (featuring Zeta-Jones), "Razzle Dazzle" (featuring Richard Gere) and "Nowadays" (featuring Zellweger). There has been no announcement of an official release date for the recording; the movie hits screens Dec. 27.
Featuring a star-studded cast led by Zellweger (Roxie Hart), Zeta-Jones (Velma Kelly) and Gere (Billy Flynn), the "Chicago" company also includes John C. Reilly (Amos Hart), Dominic West (Fred Caseley), Christine Baranski (Mary Sunshine), Queen Latifah (Mama Morton) as well as Taye Diggs, Colm Feore, Lucy Liu, Mya, Marc Calamia, Deidre Goodwin, Sebastian La Cause, Mary Ann Lamb and a cameo from original Chicago star Chita Rivera.
Rob Marshall, the choreographer of Broadway's Kiss of the Spider Woman and the revivals of Damn Yankees, She Loves Me, Cabaret and Little Me, directs the $45 million film, his motion-picture debut. Bill Condon has written the "Chicago" screenplay for Miramax Studios, and the film's cinematographer is Dion Beebe. The Tony-winning lighting team of Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer are the movie's lighting designers.
John Kander and Fred Ebb's musical, which features such songs as "All That Jazz," "Mister Cellophane," and "Nowadays," debuted on Broadway in June 1975 with choreography by the late Bob Fosse and a cast led by Gwen Verdon, Chita Rivera and Jerry Orbach. The Tony-winning revival opened in Nov. 1996 with Bebe Neuwirth, Ann Reinking, Joel Grey and James Naughton in the lead roles. Featuring direction by Walter Bobbie and choreography by Reinking "in the style of Bob Fosse," the musical satire continues to thrill audiences at the Shubert Theatre. Chicago moves to the Ambassador Theatre Jan. 29, 2003.
—By Andrew Gans