Dominic Cooke, who directed the National Theatre’s Olivier award-winning production of Follies, is to adapt the Stephen Sondheim musical for the screen, it has been announced.
The film rights for Follies have been secured by Heyday Films and BBC Films, while Cooke has been brought on board to direct the big screen version.
Sondheim said many attempts had been made in the past to adapt Follies into a film, but added: “Not until Dominic Cooke’s brilliant production at the National Theatre did it seem like it could be a real movie. I’m more than delighted, I’m thrilled, that it’s finally going to happen.”
Cooke’s production ran at the National in 2017 and 2019, winning two Oliviers for best musical revival and Vicki Mortimer’s costume design.
Performers who appeared in the show included Imelda Staunton, Janie Dee and Tracie Bennett.
No casting or further creative team members have yet been confirmed for the film, which will be produced by David Heyman and Rosie Alison.
It will be executive produced by Rose Garnett, director of BBC Films.
Cooke said Follies felt like “natural material to turn into a movie”.
“I’ve always loved Stephen Sondheim’s work and directing Follies at the National Theatre was a dream come true. Every note, every word of every song from Losing My Mind through Broadway Baby to I’m Still Here charts exactly where the character is emotionally and psychologically,” he said.