Billy Zane ("Titanic") and Grace Jones ("Conan the Destroyer") are currently in negotiations to star in A Celebration of the Lizard, a musical themed around the poetry of Jim Morrison and featuring music by one of rock and roll's classic bands, The Doors.
A staged reading of Lizard will be presented by San Diego Rep on June 17, for an invitation-only audience. If all goes as expected with the reading, Lizard is planning a summer 2000, pre-Broadway bow at San Diego Repertory Theatre.
A production spokesman told PBOL (June 14), that the musical will feature the text Morrison wrote, adapted for the stage by the producer, Joel Lipman.
Lipman, of Lipman/Sachnoff Entertainment, told Variety the show "centers on Jim's post-apocalyptic vision of Los Angeles. It's the story about a stranger chosen as the one to unite the tribes, so to speak, who's going to save the people."
San Diego Rep artistic director Sam Woodhouse (It Ain't Nothing But the Blues) is attached to helm. The June 17, reading of Lizard has the three surviving Doors members -- Robbie Krieger, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore -- serving as creative consultants. Morrison died in 1971, after a hard night of drinking and drugs. Lizard would not be the first link between Morrison and legit theatre; Morrison designed several sets for stage productions (including one for Fiddler on the Roof) while a student at Florida State University. Morrison was also rumored to so affected by a production of The Living Theatre's Paradise Now, he exposed his genitals during a concert -- and subsequently underwent a highly publicized arrest.
Morrison often performed the "Celebration" poem as part of his live concerts and recorded a sections of it on The Doors' "Waiting for the Sun" album. The piece contains the famed Morrison phrase, "I am the Lizard King, I can do anything."
-- By Sean McGrath