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Barenaked Ladies Stripped From Animal House Musical; David Yazbek to Take Over as Composer

Barenaked Ladies Stripped From Animal House Musical; David Yazbek to Take Over as Composer
'Animal House'
The new 'Animal House' musical will be composed by David Yazbek, not Barenaked Ladies.

Looks like the Barenaked Ladies won’t be attending the Broadway toga party after all! The alternative rock band, which was originally tapped to pen a musical adaptation of the 1978 movie Animal House, has been dropped from the project, according to The Canadian Press. Broadway composer David Yazbek has taken over the project and will work alongside writer Michael Mitnick. Casey Nicholaw, the Tony-winning director of The Book of Mormon, is set to direct and choreograph.

“It just wasn’t something we liked,” Matty Simmons, producer of the Animal House film and the new musical, said of BNL’s score. “We wanted music that would fit the story and the nature of the story and the raucousness of the story. The movie has a personality and the music had to suit that, you know? And it had to be good. I mean, I’m very big on music where when you walk out of the theatre you remember the music. Most musicals nowadays you don’t [remember the music]. Years ago when Rodgers & Hammerstein and [Irving] Berlin and people like that were writing music on Broadway, you walk out, you remember eight songs. Now you’re lucky if you remember one.”

Set at a college in 1962, the film tells the story of the Delta Tau Chi Fraternity, and the Dean who is determined to expel the entire group of misfits. A spinoff from humor magazine National Lampoon, Animal House starred John Belushi, Tim Matheson, Karen Allen, Tom Hulce and Kevin Bacon.

Yazbek wrote the music and lyrics to Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Full Monty and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown on Broadway, earning Tony nominations for all three productions. He also served as a contributing lyricist for Broadway's Bombay Dreams.

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