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Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan

Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan

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Fan123
#1Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 5:54am

According to Google Translate's interpretation of this article (https://spice.eplus.jp/articles/330303):

"Although this performance is a revival, there have been some changes to the script and the addition of new songs, and this version will be the world premiere.

(...)

Q: What is new about this version of "Modern Millie"?

Kaori Kobayashi [director and translator]: I think the biggest change is that it has been changed so that everyone can enjoy it equally, regardless of the audience. The world premiere of the Broadway version was performed in 2002, and we performed it in 2022. 20 years have already passed, and two more years have passed this time. As expressions related to race have changed with the times, the Broadway team rewrote Mrs. Mears, played by Ichiro Maki, into a completely new role to make it appropriate for 2024. The big point is that there have been changes that allow everyone to enjoy the show comfortably without having to worry about racial aspects.

(...)

Q: What changes have you made specifically?

Ichiro Maki ['Mrs Mears']: Everything. I was originally an American pretending to be Chinese, but my nationality remains American. I've taken on the role of an unsuccessful chorus girl with no luck or talent who can't give up on her dreams and is eager to make a comeback as an actress."

I wonder if this version will end up being the licensed version going forward?
Production website: https://www.tohostage.com/modern_millie/

Updated On: 7/10/24 at 05:54 AM

BwayLB
#2Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 9:37am

I admit when I discovered the original movie during lockdown, I wasn’t a fan of the Japanese slavery subplot

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BrodyFosse123
#3Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 9:43am

BwayLB said: "I admit when I discovered the original movie during lockdown, I wasn’t a fan of the Japanese slavery subplot"

And the film is almost 60 years old so it’s a true product of its time. If you watch some of the comedy films of the 1970s and 1980s, your head will explode. Nothing was off limits during those decades. cheeky


BwayLB
#4Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 9:45am

^ I’ve seen better movies where its age is not showing too much. And I’m not just talking Julie Andrews filmography. Until TMM, I never imagined being disappointed with one of her flicks. Not every movie musical can be Mary Poppins. If I choose to see TMM on stage, maybe it’ll be better.

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Kad
#5Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 9:46am

I highly doubt that a translation of a Japanese adaptation would become the licensed English version. Though I do wonder if the Lauren Yee revised version that was going to be done by Encores in 2020 will ever see the light of day. 


"...everyone finally shut up, and the audience could enjoy the beginning of the Anatevka Pogram in peace."

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CATSNYrevival
#6Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 9:57am

Seems pretty clear from the interview that they’re performing the revised version that was originally announced for Encores, so yes this will likely be the version that is eventually licensed.

Also the original slavery subplot involved sending the girls to China, not Japan, just to correct the prior “Japanese slavery” comment.

BwayLB
#7Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 10:34am

^ It’s been a couple years since I saw the movie I got mixed up. And both countries are on the same continent.

Ke3
#8Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 11:54am

I wish people would accept that Millie cannot be revised and we should just give it up. I've said before that it's really shocking to me that in 2002 somebody decided to turn a wildly racist British musical from the 50s into a brand new musical comedy. It was on borrowed time the day it premiered. It came out the same season as the revised Flower Drum Song while banging the same Orientalist drum that the original Flower Drum was being revised to correct. And yet, it was "new".

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Fan123
#9Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 5:03pm

CATSNYrevival said: "Seems pretty clear from the interview that they’re performing the revised version that was originally announced for Encores, so yes this will likely be the version that is eventually licensed."

This was my interpretation as well. This is just my speculation, but I'm guessing that Lauren Yee is no longer available/interested to work on this, so the original team have forged ahead with making some changes themselves, and are trying them out in Japan because this production was slated to happen in Japan already. The article, at least in translation, implies that the original team made the changes, not the Japanese adaptors.

Updated On: 7/10/24 at 05:03 PM

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IdinaBellFoster
#10Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 5:58pm

The rights are still restricted so I imagine they are still actively working on the new version. To pause the money (especially from high school productions) has to mean changes are still coming.


"Oh look at the time, three more intelligent plays just closed and THE ADDAMS FAMILY made another million dollars" -Jackie Hoffman, Broadway.com Audience Awards

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ErmengardeStopSniveling
#11Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/10/24 at 10:23pm

IdinaBellFoster said: "The rights are still restricted so I imagine they are still actively working on the new version. To pause the money (especially from high school productions) has to mean changes are still coming."

This.

As for Lauren Yee, it was never clear what her exact involvement was because she was billed on the City Center announcement as a "creative consultant," not a co-author or additional author. So she may have been more of a guiding force for Dick Scanlen & Jeanine Tesori to make the edits themselves.

I'm surprised the revised version hasn't premiered already –– be it at City Center or Paper Mill or even at a college theatre program or lower-level regional to see how it plays with actors.

Updated On: 7/10/24 at 10:23 PM

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raddersons
#12Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 12/31/99 at 7:36pm

Ke3 said: "I wish people would accept that Millie cannot be revised and we should just give it up. I've said before that it's really shocking to me that in 2002 somebody decided to turn a wildly racist British musical from the 50s into a brand new musical comedy. It was on borrowed time the day it premiered. It came out the same season as the revised Flower Drum Song while banging the same Orientalist drum that the original Flower Drum was being revised to correct. And yet, it was "new"."

The book is a problem, but people are wild about this score. I’d be willing to bend over backwards to see “Forget About The Boy” on a stage again. 

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Fan123
#13Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/11/24 at 6:04pm

Bump... this thread weirdly disappeared because, I've just realised, the most recent post prior to this one is somehow dated to 1999. Haven't seen that one before, lol.

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TheatreMonkey
#14Revised THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE in Japan
Posted: 7/11/24 at 7:51pm

Fan123 said: "Bump... this thread weirdly disappeared because, I've just realised, the most recent post prior to this oneis somehow dated to 1999. Haven't seen that one before, lol."

This is the second time in as many weeks a (new) post has had the date of 12/31/1999 -- I guess we should party like it's 1999?! 


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