Empire Records Is Being Remade as a Broadway Musical

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Cult movie Empire Records is coming to Broadway soon.

First released in 1995, Empire Records is a movie that enjoys a cult following.  Panned by critics when it first came out, the movie follows a group of record store employees trying to save their store from being sold to a large retail chain.  The cast is found grappling with a variety of young adult dramas, while preparing for a visit from the fictional washed-up pop star Rex Manning.

Liv Tyler, Renée Zellweger, Robin Tunney, Ethan Embry, Rory Cochrane, and Johnny Whitworth were the stars of the movie.  The Gin Blossoms’ “Til I Hear It from You” was the lead single of Empire Records soundtrack, one that also featured 90s stars like Better Than Ezra and the Cranberries.

The film was a critical and commercial failure, but it did gain a following over time.  In fact, its rather moribund performance and brutal criticism formed the perfect start for a small cult following.  And it may have resonated with the right people at the time.  Robin Wilson, the frontman of Gin Blossoms, once waxed, “[It’s] a classic film that only a handful of people really saw, but it definitely made an impact on that generation. It was really cool to have been a part of that.”

Now, a lot more people are going to experience Empire Records — albeit in a different format.

Bill Weiner, the musical producer of Empire Records, explains why it is the perfect film to turn into a Broadway show.

“The film has developed a cult audience over the years, and addresses issues that people of all ages can identify with,” Weiner stated. “It also evokes an interesting period in time, the 90s, where the music business was changing – and a lot of people remember that as part of their youth.”

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“I knew we had something when I would tell people about the show and consistently see faces light up – everyone has a story, whether it’s that they saw the movie 10 times, stole the video cassette from an older sibling or the soundtrack was the first CD they ever purchased.”

According to Pitchfork, Empire Records the musical will debut in 2020, roughly 25 years after the movie debuted.


One Response

  1. Brittney

    Please tell us it is not that boring musical we saw in Cali a few years ago. I think it was called Empire the Musical. My aunt wanted to see it. It was a nightmare to sit through. Even my aunt said so.