This March, a slew of films that inspired stage adaptations are coming to streaming from Rocky to Pretty Woman. In addition, at least two stage-to-screen works, For Colored Girls and Sweeney Todd, are now available to watch.
There's plenty of new content this month, too. The second season of Staged, starring David Tennant and Michael Sheen, debuts on Hulu. HBO presents a documentary of Tina Turner, including footage from her namesake bio-musical. And, Cynthia Erivo plays the Queen of Soul in National Geographic's latest Genius installment.
Check out the options for theatre lovers below. Titles are available March 1 unless noted.
For Colored Girls
Tyler Perry directs this film based on Ntozake Shange’s 1974 play that interweaves the stories of African American women through a series of poems, both individual and choral, which trace their battles through life, love, violence, and self discovery. The star-studded cast boasts Whoopi Goldberg, Phylicia Rashad, Anika Noni Rose, Loretta Devine, Kerry Washington, Janet Jackson, Thandie Newton, Jurnee Smollett, Kimberly Elise, and Macy Gray.
The Full Monty
This charming film follows a group of unemployed factory workers in rural England who, against all odds, decide to bare all—and that means all—in a striptease act for their family and friends. David Yazbeck and Terrence McNally moved the action to Buffalo, New York for their 2000 stage musical adaptation starring Patrick Wilson.
Based on Bret Easton Ellis’s 1991 novel, this film centers on a yuppie investment banker in Manhattan who turns out to be living a gruesome second life as a violent serial killer. The same novel formed the source material for a stage musical by Duncan Sheik and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, which starred Matt Smith on the West End in 2013 and Benjamin Walker in its 2016 Broadway bow.
Sweeney Tood: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Tim Burton, one of the cinema’s favorite gothic-horror directors, took on Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler’s gothic-horror musical masterpiece in 2007. Burton had reportedly been interested in adapting the work for the screen since seeing the original production’s West End run in the early 1980s. Burton regulars Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter star as Sweeney Todd and his accomplice Mrs. Lovett in a notably gorier take on the operatic musical’s story of murder, revenge, and, of course, cannibalism. Broadway and West End favorite Laura Michelle Kelly co-stars as the Beggar Woman.
Raya and the Last Dragon (March 5)
Vietgone playwright Qui Ngyuen co-writes the screenplay for this Disney first: a Southeast Asian lead protagonist. Kelly Marie Tran voices Raya in the myth-inspired film following a warrior princess as she tries to save the fictional kingdom of Kumandra from evil.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (March 19)
Calling this project theatre-adjacent might be a stretch, but any excuse to include a link to this photo gallery of Sebastian Stan in Picnic makes an inclusion worthwhile. Stan plays the Winter Soldier opposite Anthony Mackie as the Falcon in this latest Marvel series—the second on Disney+ after the critically acclaimed WandaVision featuring stage and screen favorite Kathryn Hahn. The action follows the title heroes following the events of Avengers: Endgame.
Driving Miss Daisy
Written by Alfred Uhry, the 1989 movie stars Jessica Tandy, Morgan Freeman, and Dan Aykroyd. Uhry also penned the Pulitzer Prize–winning play upon which the film is based; it was most recently on Broadway in 2010, starring Vanessa Redgrave, James Earl Jones, and Boyd Gaines.
Rocky (March 6)
The movie that birthed a seven (and counting)–film franchise and a 2012 Broadway musical with a score by Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens, Rocky is written by and stars Sylvester Stallone as the titular working class boxer who gets a shot at becoming the World Heavyweight Champion. Stallone co-wrote the book to the musical adaptation as well, collaborating with Annie and Hairspray playwright Thomas Meehan.
Tina (March 27)
This new feature documentary covers the life and career of Tina Turner with her former husband Ike, through her solo career in Vegas, then her resurgence in the 1980s. The film concludes with her bow on opening night of the Tina: The Tina Turner Musical, the Tony-nominated Broadway biomusical musical based on her life. Tina will feature interviews with Turner herself, as well as interviews with playwright Katori Hall, who co-wrote the libretto for the musical; Turner's husband, producer Erwin Bach; and media mogul Oprah Winfrey.
Julia Roberts and Richard Gere star in this romantic comedy about a call girl who falls in love with her wealthy businessman client over an opulent weekend booking. Samantha Barks and Andy Karl starred in the film’s stage musical adaptation, which was directed by Jerry Mitchell and opened on Broadway in 2018.
The Social Network
Tony winner Andrew Garfield (Angels in America) steals the show in this origin story as Eduardo Saverin, one of Facebook’s co-founders and initial investors. The film was a huge hit upon its release in 2010 and scored an Oscar for Sorkin’s adapted screenplay. Off-Broadway favorite Jesse Eisenberg plays Mark Zuckerberg, a performance that earned him an Oscar nomination.
Staged: Complete Season 2 (March 16)
David Tennant and Michael Sheen star as themselves in this BBC comedy series that follows the cast of a West End production furloughed due to the current pandemic. The show is filmed using a combination of video conferencing technology and self-shooting. Expect cameos from big names like Whoopi Goldberg, Cate Blanchett, Jim Parsons, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
Genius: Aretha (Premieres March 21 at 9 PM ET on National Geographic, available on Hulu March 22)
Tony winner Cynthia Erivo plays The Queen of Soul in NatGeo’s latest limited series installment Genius: Aretha. Joining Erivo on screen are Courtney B. Vance as C.L. Franklin along with Rebecca Naomi Jones (Oklahoma!) and Patrice Covington (who appeared in The Color Purple with Erivo) as Franklin's sisters Carolyn and Erma, respectively. Pulitzer Prize winner Suzan-Lori Parks serves as showrunner.
After spending 10 years in prison, a man seeks revenge on those who conspired to keep him captive. This stage production, filmed especially for the screen, stars Takaya Kamikawa, Izumi Inamori, and Taichi Saotome.
A Week Away (March 26)
A new musical series that follows a teenager who gets sent to a Christian summer camp thanks to a run-in with the law. With the help of camp regulars, he finds a sense of belonging in the last place he expected to find it. Adam Watts provides the music with choreography by Paul Becker and Melena Rounis.