The Integration of the Film and Theatre Industries: <i>The Producers</i>, 1968–2007

Alex Symons

in Mel Brooks in the Cultural Industries

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780748649587
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780748676484 | DOI:
The Integration of the Film and Theatre Industries: The Producers, 1968–2007

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Mel Brooks has capitalised on adapting material between theatre and film in order to sustain his long career in show business — a strategy clearly apparent in the invention and prolonged life of his film The Producers (1968). This process started with The Producers itself, which Brooks originally manufactured largely by appropriating content from Broadway shows. This film, best understood as a jarring hybrid between Broadway and Hollywood, made Brooks's name as a director, and in later years, gradually became a ‘cult’ work with film critics, in part, for its ‘theatrical’ qualities. Brooks then capitalised on that critical popularity by remediating his 1968 film into a Broadway musical, The Producers (2001–7). That version was a massive commercial and critical success internationally. Following that project, Brooks then prolonged the work through adaptation into yet another Hollywood film, The Producers (2005).

Keywords: film; theatre; Broadway musical; The Producers; adaptation

Chapter.  13248 words. 

Subjects: Film

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