It’s the Broadway musical that launched Ariana Grande, Elizabeth Gillies, and Graham Phillips’ careers. They were all teenagers at the time they starred in 13: The Musical in 2008. A new generation of young performers is tackling their roles in a new Netflix movie musical adaptation, which will be available beginning August 12.
The coming-of-age story revolves around Evan (Eli Golden), a 12-year-old whose parents divorce just as he is about to become a bar mitzvah. He and his mother relocate from New York City to Indiana, where he must make new friends in the hopes that they will attend his service and party. The film, directed by Tamra Davis and written by the original book’s author, Robert Horn (Tootsie), differs slightly from the Broadway production. For one thing, this version includes adults, whereas the Broadway cast included only 13 children.
A Mother-Daughter Duet
Evan’s mother is played by Debra Messing. Jason Robert Brown, the film’s composer, wrote three new songs for the film, including a duet between the two (Mr. Saturday Night).
“It felt like a privilege to be asked to be a part of this, where adults were being welcomed in places they had never been before.” “It was fantastic,” Messing said to Broadway Direct. She previously sang on ABC’s Dirty Dancing remake and briefly on NBC’s Smash. (Not to mention her Will and Grace’s deliberate off-key singing antics.) The song “It Would Be Funny” explores Messing’s character’s woes of having to return to her childhood home after being abandoned by her husband (Younger’s Peter Hermann) for another woman.