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'Amelie' Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet 'Disgusted' by Musical

Amelie / A Self-Made Hero
"Amelie" poster

The helmer says he agreed to the deal in order to donate proceeds to charity.

PARIS – Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet is “disgusted” by plans to turn his 2001 hit film Amelie into a Broadway musical, despite selling the rights to the film.

The Oscar-nominated international hit starring Audrey Tautou, which brought in $174 million worldwide, will be adapted for the stage by Tony- and Pulitzer Prize-nominated playwright Craig Lucas (Prelude to a Kiss) and composers Dan Messe and Nathan Tysen. Tony winner Pam MacKinnon (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) is set to direct.

However, Jeunet is still unimpressed with the pedigreed team charged with changing his beloved film.

“I absolutely hate musicals and I hate Broadway. I believe that it is the epitome of mediocrity,” he said in an interview on France’s RTL.

Jeunet said that he turned down several offers to sell the rights to the film over the years, but ultimately decided to let the movie about a magical little neighborhood in Paris be recreated on the Great White Way in order to donate the proceeds to charity.

“I resisted for a long time, I refused all proposals,” he said. Despite his heart not being in it, he decided to sell the rights in order to donate to Mecenat Chirurgie Cardiaque (Cardiac Surgery Patronage), which sponsors operations for needy children around the world.

"We need €10,000 to save a child. I have participated in saving a dozen children and then I tell myself there’s an opportunity to save others," he said. “Maybe I could save some lives.”

“So I silenced my little problems of conscience, but this musical deeply disgusts me.”

He promises he won’t be one of the ticket buyers.

“I can tell you I will not see it, I don’t want to hear it, I will not hear it,” he added.