“Crazy Rich Asians” Is Being Developed Into a Broadway-Bound Stage Musical with Film's Director Jon M. Chu

The musical's score comes from a trio of talents, with music by 'KPOP' composer Helen Park and lyrics from Amanda Green and Tat Tong

<p>Warner Bros.</p> Henry Golding and Constance Wu in

Warner Bros.

Henry Golding and Constance Wu in 'Crazy Rich Asians'

Crazy Rich Asians is the latest title to make the jump to the stage.

Producers on Wednesday, April 17 announced the development of a new Broadway-bound musical based on Kevin Kwan's acclaimed worldwide bestselling trilogy of books and its beloved 2018 film adaptation.

Casting, a full creative team and production dates haven't been announced just yet, but the musical will be helmed by Jon M. Chu, who directed the Crazy Rich Asians movie. Chu knows a thing or two about musicals, having directed the movie versions of In the Heights and the upcoming two-part adaptation of Wicked. This will be Chu's Broadway directorial debut.

Leah Nanako Winkler — an award-winning playwright from Kamakura, Japan, and Lexington, Kentucky — is penning the musical's book. She's currently a co-executive producer and write on CBS' Elsbeth, and has written on a number of other hit shows including Ramy, Love Life and Schmigadoon!

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Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images Jon M. Chu
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images Jon M. Chu

Related: Kit Connor and Rachel Zegler Are Romeo + Juliet in New Broadway Production with Music by Jack Antonoff

The musical's score comes from a trio of talents. KPOP's Tony Award-nominated composer Helen Park — who made history as the first Asian female composer to be produced on Broadway — will write the music, while Amanda Green and Tat Tong are collaborating on lyrics.

Green is a Tony-nominated lyrics and composer too with a string of Broadway favorites on her resume, including Hands on a Hardbody (lyrics, co-composer), Bring It On (co-lyricist), High Fidelity (lyrics) and On the Twentieth Century (additional lyrics). Tong is a Singaporean record producer and songwriter, known as a member of the production-writing duo The Swaggernautz (alongside Jovany Javier, of American Idol fame). Working with a number of artists including Troye Sivan and Hailee Steinfeld, Tong's discography has produced over 20 No. 1 hits and 60 Top 20 hits worldwide.

Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures is producing the Crazy Rich Asians musical, Warner Bros. having also produced the film. They've been behind a number of other movie-to-musical adaptations, including The Notebook, The Outsiders, Days of Wine and Roses, Beetlejuice, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Misery, The Bridges of Madison County and Elf (among others). They're also working on musical versions of Dave, 17 Again and A Star Is Born.

Related: Rachel McAdams ‘Can’t Wait’ to See Broadway’s The Notebook Musical – and Hopes the Rain Is ‘Gentler’ on Its Cast

Warner Bros. Pictures Nico Santos and Michelle Yeoh in 'Crazy Rich Asians'
Warner Bros. Pictures Nico Santos and Michelle Yeoh in 'Crazy Rich Asians'

Crazy Rich Asians follows Chinese-American professor Rachel, who is shocked to learn that her humble boyfriend Nick is a member of one of the richest families in Singapore when she travels there with him on vacation.

Constance Wu played Rachel on screen, alongside Henry Golding as Nick. The movie also starred Gemma Chan, Harry Shum Jr., Lisa Lu, Awkwafina, Ken Jeong, and Michelle Yeoh.

Follow-ups to the romantic comedy have been in the works for years.

Adele Lim, the screenwriter who co-wrote the original film's script with Peter Chiarelli, dropped out of working on the sequel in 2019 after a dispute with Warner Bros. In 2022, Deadline reported that both a Crazy Rich Asians sequel and a spinoff centering around Chan and Shum Jr.'s characters were in early development at the studio. Both projects were reported to be based on the second book in Kwan's trilogy of novels, China Rich Girlfriend.

Related: Awkwafina Says Making 'Crazy Rich Asians' Sequel Would Be 'So Meaningful' for Cast: 'Like My Family'

For what it's worth, the movie's stars have all expressed their enthusiasm about working on a sequel.

"It would be so meaningful [to make a sequel]," Awkwafina said on Good Morning America in May 2023. "They're like my family, and at this point it's been so long. We would love to all get back together."

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