Christina Aguilera will executive-produce a new stage musical based on the 2010 movie Burlesque. Aguilera starred in the musical film directed by Steven Antin opposite Cher, Kristen Bell, Cam Gigandet, Stanley Tucci, Julianne Hough, and Peter Gallagher.
Entertainment Weekly reports that Antin wrote Burlesque: The Musical and “includes songs written for the film by Aguilera, Diane Warren, and Sia, with additional tunes created by RuPaul's Drag Race choreographer Todrick Hall and Jess Foley. It is expected to debut in the United Kingdom in the near future.”
“Yes, the stage musical adaptation is happening,” wrote Antin in an email to Entertainment Weekly. “Very exciting.”
Burlesque Was a Box Office and Critical Disappointment, but Developed a Cult Following
“Campy and clichéd” is the overall critical consensus of the movie Burlesque, which made $90.5 million globally against a production budget of $55 million. Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune wrote, “The choicest dialogue in Burlesque provokes the sort of laughter that other, intentionally funny films only dream of generating.” Despite ridicule from critics, Burlesque managed to develop a cult following by those who appreciated the songs performed by Aguilera and Cher, such as “Something's Got a Hold on Me” and “You Haven't Seen the Last of Me.”
In a Burlesque retrospective piece published by Entertainment Weekly in 2020, Aguilera sings the praises of Antin. “I'd been presented other acting and movie opportunities, but was holding out for something that felt right,” says Aguilera. “Timing can play a big factor in balancing between album and touring cycles.” She continues:
“In songwriting, I had to tackle both the tender moments of Ali falling in love with Jack, while also tackling the opposite energy of the up-tempo [songs] where I needed to embody and exude the powerful, sensual, and celebratory sides that encompass a woman. In preparation of shooting, I worked with an acting coach. I'd never been taught or exposed to such a wide range of ‘technical' dance and so many different styles and levels all at once while rehearsing and filming this movie.”
Cher — who played a struggling burlesque lounge owner in Burlesque — had kind words about her costar in the same article. “One of my favorite scenes is when I was helping Christina with her makeup,” she says. “It was all very spontaneous. It reminded me of when I was a young girl and my mom and all her friends would put on makeup together.”
Antin told Entertainment Weekly in 2020 that he was working on a TV continuation of Burlesque, which has since evolved into Burlesque: The Musical. “It's inspired by Burlesque: a reimagination,” said Antin at the time. “It morphs what's best about TV, Broadway, film, and digital entertainment. It's a hybrid television event/series taking the movie to the next level.”
Robert DeSalvo is a professional writer and editor with over 25 years of experience at print and online publications such as Movieline, Playboy, PCH, Fandango, and The A.V. Club. He currently lives in Los Angeles, the setting of his favorite movie, Blade Runner. Robert has interviewed dozens of actors, directors, authors, musicians, and other celebrities during his journalism career, including Brian De Palma, Nicolas Cage, Dustin Hoffman, John Waters, Sigourney Weaver, Julianne Moore, Bryan Cranston, Anne Rice, and many more. Horror movies, sci-fi, cult films as well as gothic, postpunk, and synthwave music are what Robert geeks over.