The 192-page tome from Newmarket Press features Bill Condon's Oscar-nominated screenplay, the lyrics of the Kander and Ebb score and over 180 color photos and illustrations. The hardcover book also boasts interviews with stars of the Miramax film, including Renée Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Richard Gere, John C. Reilly, Queen Latifah, Christine Baranski and Lucy Liu. The suggested retail price is $40.
Other highlights of "Chicago: The Movie and Lyrics" include an introduction by director Rob Marshall, a foreword by writer Condon and a preface by Martin Richards, who co-produced the original Broadway production of Chicago as well as the much-in-the-news film. In the preface producer Richards writes, "When we did Chicago in the mid-1970s, it was considered a very offbeat musical, and some people thought, 'You don't do musicals about murderesses.' It took O.J. Simpson for everyone to really understand Chicago. That's because a lot of people had trouble figuring out what the heck was happening with yellow journalism, and murder trials, and people singing and dancing. But now there are all these bestselling books and made-for-TV movies based on real-life murders and murder trials being televised. So Chicago found its time."
"Chicago" opened wide Feb. 8 and now plays at more than 2,268 screens. Recently, the film garnered 13 Academy Award nominations, the most of any motion picture this season. The soundtrack of the film is available from Epic Records.
Featuring a star-studded cast led by Zellweger (Roxie Hart), Zeta-Jones (Velma Kelly) and Gere (Billy Flynn), the "Chicago" company also includes Reilly (Amos Hart), Dominic West (Fred Caseley), 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. Marshall, the choreographer of Broadway's Kiss of the Spider Woman and the revivals of Damn Yankees, She Loves Me, Cabaret and Little Me, directed the $45 million film, his motion-picture debut. Bill Condon wrote the "Chicago" screenplay for Miramax Studios, and the film's cinematographer was Dion Beebe. The Tony-winning lighting team of Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer lit the film.
John Kander and Fred Ebb's musical, which features such songs as "All That Jazz," "Mister Cellophane," "Class" 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 November 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 recently reopened at the Ambassador Theatre Jan. 29 after a lengthy run at the Shubert.