Before Alan Menken and Howard Ashman jumpstarted Disney animated features with their movie musicals, and long before Donna Murphy joined their Disney family as vain and villainous Mother Gothel in 2010’s animated musical feature Tangled, Murphy’s first time singing Menken and Ashman was actually the writing team’s first collaboration: Little Shop of Horrors.
Menken and Murphy recently reunited—along with four of his other Disney leading ladies—to celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Little Mermaid. While filming a bonus special (available on The Little Mermaid new Walt Disney Signature Collection digital, 4k Ultra HD, Movies Anywhere February 12 and on Blu-ray February 26), Murphy recounted her star turn as Little Shop’s Audrey in the exclusive clip above.
“I only went on once,” she says.
“There’s a section where Audrey is being pushed back to the shop by her sadist dentist boyfriend and I said to the actor [during put-in rehearsal], ‘Don’t be afraid to give me a good push.’ He pushed me and I nicked my knee into this little metal box backstage.”
Murphy got nine stitches in her knee that afternoon. And while production offered to call someone else, Murphy insisted “You’re not calling anybody! I’m going on!”
In the video, Murphy sings her slight re-write of the lyrics the way she performed “Somewhere That’s Green” that night. “That was the one time I went on, and it was magical.”
Hear more from Menken and His Leading Ladies in the full bonus special on the re-release of The Little Mermaid. And check out one more exclusive clilp from their chat below!