Hot on the heels of streaming Hamilton, Disney+ is developing a movie adaptation of another Broadway title: Once On This Island. Playwright Jocelyn Bioh (School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play) will write the script for the Wanuri Kahiu-helmed project, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Marc Platt is also on board as a producer. No word yet on casting or a production timeline.
Featuring a book and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens and a score by Stephen Flaherty, Once On This Island is based on Rosa Guy's 1985 novel My Love, My Love; or, The Peasant Girl and follows Ti Moune, a peasant girl who falls in love with a boy from a wealthy family on the other side of their island. Joining her on her journey to tear down cultural walls are an assortment of powerful gods.
The musical premiered Off-Broadway before a Broadway bow in 1990. It returned to Broadway in 2017 in a production directed by Michael Arden, which won the 2018 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical. The cast included Hailey Kilgore (earning a Tony nomination for her work as Ti Moune), Merle Dandridge, Quentin Earl Darrington, Alex Newell, Lea Salonga, and Isaac Cole Powell.
Bioh's additional works include Nollywood Dreams—which was to have opened at MCC Theater this spring but was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic—and the musical Goddess, which received a workshop presentation last year and will officially premiere next year at Berkeley Repertory Theatre.