Songwriters Discuss Writing Rogers: The Musical For Marvel’s Hawkeye
Musicals starring Marvel characters don’t have the best track record (thanks a lot, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark). Regardless, the MCU is hoping to change that with a new in-universe production set to premiere during the events of Marvel’s Hawkeye series. The show’s first trailer revealed that New York’s theater circuit is hosting a Broadway show based on the life of Captain America dubbed Rogers: The Musical. And to add some extra authenticity, Marvel hired composers Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman to write one of its songs.
Marvel clearly wanted a showstopper on their hands, because Shaiman and Wittman are songwriting royalty. The two shared a Tony Award win in 2003 for scoring the Broadway adaptation of Hairspray. They also received an Academy Award nomination for “The Place Where Lost Things Go” from Mary Poppins Returns. Shaiman has also netted several additional Oscar nods on his own over the years, including one for co-writing the song “Blame Canada” from South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut in 1999.
While speaking to Marvel.com, Shaiman and Wittman discussed how they got involved with Hawkeye in the first place. And apparently, we have Kevin Feige to thank for bringing them onboard.
“[Scott and I] were at an Academy Award dinner, and I’m sitting there and someone taps me on the shoulder and says, ‘Excuse me, Kevin Feige would love to meet you,’” said Shaiman. “I knew who Kevin was, and I was like he wants to meet me, really? Turns out Kevin is a film score nerd. He started talking about [the scores I’ve written] one by one and I was like, I cannot believe this is happening. We started trading emails about scores and this and that, and when I would see [Marvel movies] I would send him an email. I guess when this idea came up for Hawkeye, for there to be a musical on Broadway, he luckily thought of us, and [Scott and I] couldn’t be more ecstatic about it.”
Both Shaiman and Wittman confessed that they needed to brush up on their MCU history before starting work in earnest. But luckily, Shaiman’s husband was already a big fan of the franchise, so he was happy to lend a hand. And before long, they cranked out a song revolving around Steve Rogers’ valiant efforts during the Battle of New York.
“It seemed fate that I married a man who was a total Marvel nerd,” continued Shaiman. “So, I would go with him as a good husband to go watch all the movies, then we would usually sit in the parking lot of the movie theater, and I’d say what did I just see? How does that all work and who’s who, and little by little I started putting all the pieces together. We were both lucky to have [my husband, because] he could just spit out whatever the words are like, you know, ‘Tesseract.’ I never knew that Scott and I would write a song with the word ‘Tesseract’ in it.”
Hawkeye will air its first two episodes on Disney+ on November 24.
Are you excited to see what Shaiman and Wittman came up with for Rogers: The Musical? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: Hawkeye, Vol. 1: My Life as a Weapon
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