Mean Girls musical won't return to Broadway when pandemic eases

The show is the fourth Broadway closing prompted by the pandemic.
The show is the fourth Broadway closing prompted by the pandemic.PHOTO: MEAN GIRLS ON BROADWAY/FACEBOOK

NEW YORK (NYTIMES) - The coronavirus pandemic has felled another Broadway show - Mean Girls.

The musical's producers, led by Lorne Michaels of Saturday Night Live, announced on Thursday (Jan 7) that they would not seek to reopen in New York once the pandemic eases. However, the producers do plan to restart the show's tour in the United States.

The show is the fourth Broadway closing prompted by the pandemic.

Disney announced in 2020 that it would not reopen Frozen, and the producers of two plays that had been in previews, playwright Martin McDonagh's Hangmen and a revival of late playwright Edward Albee's Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?, decided not to wait out the shutdown at all.

The Mean Girls closing was prompted by the costs of keeping the production intact while theatres are dark. Broadway has been closed since last March, and it seems likely that most shows will not return until late 2021.

The musical, adapted from a 2004 film starring Lindsay Lohan and Rachel McAdams, features a book by actress Tina Fey; music by composer Jeff Richmond, who is married to Fey; lyrics by Nell Benjamin; and direction by Casey Nicholaw.

It opened in 2018 and was a hit, recouping its US$17 million ($22.5 million) capitalisation costs and grossing US$124 million over 834 performances, according to the production.

But it won none of the 12 Tony Awards for which it was nominated, and its weekly box office had softened over time.

The Mean Girls' US tour began in Buffalo, New York, in 2019, and a London production, which was in the works before the pandemic, is still planned, according to Michaels.

Paramount Pictures announced last January that it would make a film version of the stage musical, produced by Michaels and Fey.