"Kinky Boots," the 2005 film comedy about a drag queen cabaret performer who helps revitalize a failing British shoe company by creating a line of fetish wear, is being developed as a Broadway-aimed musical.
Broadway producers Daryl Roth (August: Osage County) and Hal Luftig (Movin' Out, Legally Blonde) are partnering on it. Roth reportedly fell in love with the film after seeing it at the Sundance Film Festival, and snagged the stage rights. Luftig told Playbill.com he's Roth's producing "sous chef" on the project. He loved the movie and agreed with Roth that its heart and humanity (and bigger-than-life leading "lady") would translate well to musical theatre. He said feelers are being put out for a book writer and a composer and lyricist.
Tony Award-winning choreographer Jerry Mitchell, who directed Legally Blonde, is in discussions to direct. Luftig said the project is in the very early development stage, with no timeline to be made public at the moment.
Geoff Deane & Tim Firth penned the screenplay. The film was directed by Julian Jarrold. Chiwetel Ejiofor (who played vivacious Lola) was nominated for a 2007 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy. The U.K. release was in 2005; the U.S. release was in 2006.
In the movie, a son inherits his dead father's dying shoe company, which produces functional footwear for which there is no market. An encounter with a drag performer changes the lives of those in shoe business.
"The story is really about relationships," Roth told the Hollywood Reporter, "and I want to find the heart at the center of it."