Jason Robert Brown is poised to bring teens and the Torah to the small screen. The Tony-winning composer shared that he is at work on a Netflix adaptation of his musical 13.
The show, featuring a book by Dan Elish and recent Tootsie Tony Award winner Robert Horn, premiered in Los Angeles in 2007, going on to bow on Broadway the following year. The production marked the first—and to date, only—musical to feature a cast and band comprised entirely of teenagers. Among the company were a young Graham Phillips, Allie Trimm, and Ariana Grande.
Brown first revealed the news at the 2019 Broadway Teachers Workshop in July. Horn will adapt the script for the screen; attached to direct is Tamra Davis.
Plans for a movie version of the title were first announced in 2014 with CBS Films, with Bert V. Royal (Easy A) attached to pen the screenplay.
The musical centers on Evan Goldman, who, on the verge of turning 13 and following his parents’ divorce, moves to Indiana with his mom. Thrown into a new environment, he must now navigate crushes, cool kids, and a little more homework as his Bar Mitzvah approaches.
Brown, a Tony winner for Parade and The Bridges of Madison County, previously saw his work go from stage to screen with the 2014 movie adaptation of The Last Five Years starring Jeremy Jordan and Anna Kendrick. He currently maintains a monthly residency at New York City’s Subculture, which served as the breeding ground for his 2017 album How We React and How We Recover.
Meanwhile, Netflix is also developing a movie version of another musical focused on Indiana teens: The Prom. The Ryan Murphy project is slated to feature Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, and 13 veteran Grande.