Best Movies Adapted From Musicals

How do franchises like Harry Potter and Hunger Games gain worldwide popularity and recognition (for their authors) these days? Through adaptation, of course. The same goes for playrights and their plays. How well were musicals adapted into films?
The Top Ten
1 Sunshine On Leith

For those who don't know, Sunshine on Leith is based on a Dundee Reps (the Scottish equivilant to Broadway or the West End) stage production of the same name. Like Mamma Mia!, Sunshine on Leith is a jukebox musical in which the songs being used were pre-existiing (Mamma Mia! Is of course based around ABBA songs while Sunshine on Leith is based around the songs of The Proclaimers).

There's a fleeting gag about Trainspotting in this musical. Unlike most grimey Scotland set movies, the upbeat Sunshine on Leith has the luxury of getting away with Trainspotting jokes.

2 Mamma Mia

All that romantic Greek island paradise...I dream of going to a Greek island one day. I also dream of what it would be like to be Sophie and live on one with your mother. See the beach everyday, ride your own boat; without a doubt, one of the best all-time musicals.

I love this movie and play so much. The music is all beautiful and I love the age it is sat in with the amazing bell bottom jeans! it has some complicated ideas, but it is beautiful and so much fun.

3 Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Worst pies in London? That's debateble these days considering a certain horse meat scandal.

But surely The most annoying nun in Salzburg has nothing on this deranged barber from London. Sacha Baron Cohen is the real scene stealer.

Sacha Baron Cohen does fake Italian pretty well. And who would have thought that Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter can belt out a few tunes?

Defining lyrics: How gratifying for one to know that those above will serve those down below.

4 Grease

Honestly, who doesn't love Grease? The times when you'd go to a soda fountain with friends, own Eldorados and Mustangs, wear poodle skirts or leather jackets, watch movies at drive-in theatres with your date; Grease lets you imagine yourself at that time and enjoy it, at the same time, keeping you on your dancing shoes.

Not exactly subtle is it? Grease wished it was as subtle as Sunshine on Leith.

Kenickie was so hot! Kenickie's hotter than Danny for sure!

5 Les Misérables

Better than most modern movie musicals. I adored Anne Hathaway as Fantine, Samantha Barks as Eponine, Eddie Redmayne as Marius, Hugh Jackman as Valjean, Aaron Tveit as Enjolras, Helena Carter as Madam T, both of the major kids, and Amanda Seyfreid as Cosette. The only mistakes were Russel Crowe as Javert and Sacha Baron Cohen as Thenardier (personally I think David Tennant would have been better if they wanted big names) but overall amazing!

Definitely my favourite on this list. I love this because the content of the film doesn't differ at all from the stage. An excellent cast, top director and a wonderful, uplifting score.

6 Chicago

I'd argue that Chicago has a more interesting setting than Grease.

The times when gangsters would hide out in speakeasies, jazz would be played 24/7, mobsters would do drive-bys with 50 round Tommy Guns, people would wear zoot suits or fishnets and suspenders and crime & corruption were all part of the show. Chicago lets you imagine yourself at that time.

Never before has Prohibition-Era Chicago looked so glamorous. To quote Richard Gere, "Though you are stiffer than a girder, they'll let get away with murder"

7 Hairspray
8 The Sound of Music
9 Funny Girl
10 West Side Story

SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS was (and still is) wonderful--some great songs and some incredible dancing, very athletic. Later it was adapted into a stage
play, reversing the usual progression from stage to screen.

Plenty of romance and plenty of comedy

The Contenders
11 The Phantom of the Opera
12 Hello, Dolly!

Amazing film. Did it for my school musical and absolutely loved it

13 The Rocky Horror Picture Show
14 Oliver!

Based more from the West End production of Lionel Bart than Dickens.

Nothing like a bit of Oom-Pah-Pah to get you drinking in a tavern.

15 Rock of Ages

Tom Cruise's singing is so good he could take up a rock career if he wanted.

16 Annie
17 Little Shop of Horrors
18 My Fair Lady
19 Rent
20 Jesus Christ Superstar
21 The Producers
22 Jersey Boys
23 Into the Woods
24 South Pacific
25 West Side Story (2021)
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