Broadway’s ‘Once on This Island’ Will Be Adapted by Disney+
The wait for a new musical phenomenon is over: Disney is developing a live-action adaptation of the beloved Broadway show Once on This Island.
Whether you are a theater nerd or you just fell in love with Hamilton, Disney has the right thing for you. On July 30th, the company announced that a plan to adapt the musical Once on This Island for Disney+ is in the works.
Based on Rosa Guy’s book My Love, My Love; or, The Peasant Girl, Once on This Island tells the story of Ti Moune, a young peasant girl living in the Jewel of the Antilles. The island is split between social classes and ruled by four gods. As Ti Moune questions her purpose in life, she ends up saving aristocrat Daniel Beauxhomme and falling in love with him. With this, the gods decide to test whether love can be more powerful than death. While the original Broadway production of Once on This Island opened in 1990, the show recently gained popularity with its 2017 Broadway revival. In the 2018 Tony Awards, the revival scored eight nominations and won the award for Best Revival of a Musical.
Unlike with Hamilton, Disney shared that they will be producing an adaptation rather than editing a stage recording. School Girls playwright Jocelyn Bioh and Rafiki director Wanuri Kahiu will be leading the project. There is still no news on a release date, but fans already can’t wait to watch it.
I’m grateful to be directing the film adaptation of Once On This Island for Disney+ with scriptwriter Jocelyn Bioh @jjbioh (School Girls/ She Gotta Have It/ Russian Doll)!!!
A musical about true love, Gods and the magic of radical hope!https://t.co/egSHsE7DQF
— Wanuri (@wanuri) July 30, 2020
Many people were quick to begin theorizing a potential cast list for the adaptation. Some fans expressed their desire to see the Broadway revival cast in it, while others wanted to know how they could audition for it. One particular fan looking to participate in it is To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You actor Jordan Fisher. On his Twitter, Fisher asked to play the role of goddess of love Erzulie, so he could perform the incredible solo in “Human Heart.”
MANIFESTATION I WANNA PLAY ERZULIE IN THE DISNEY+ ADAPTATION OF MY FAVORITE MUSICAL ONCE ON THIS ISLAND PLEASE AND THANK YOU MANIFESTATION MANIFESTATION MANIFESTATION
— Jordan Fisher (@jordanfisher) July 30, 2020
However, the most popular request so far has been for Alex Newell to reprise his role as Asaka, Mother of the Earth. He was part of the Broadway revival cast, and fans still aren’t over his iconic performance of the song “Mama Will Provide.” Newell already tweeted a post with his performance, seeming to indicate that he is on board with it. Actress Hailey Kilgore, who played Ti Moune in the revival, also expressed her support for the casting on social media.
I’m sayin https://t.co/rHFzJH9Am2
— HK (@HaileyKilgore) July 30, 2020
Hopefully, fans will get what they wish for. Until then, we are counting the days to watch this new Disney+ adaptation of Once on This Island.
While you wait for more news on Once on This Island, you can prepare for it by listening to Once on This Island on Spotify or watching the Broadway cast revival performance for the Tony Awards below.