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Friday
May172019

Elton John working on Tammy Faye Bakker musical, eyeing London 2020 premiere

Eric Neitzel/WireImageElton John may be retiring from the road, but he seems to be as busy as ever.  Not only is he developing a musical version of the hit movie The Devil Wears Prada, he's also working on bringing to the stage the story of late televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker.

A reporter for the U.K.'s Daily Mail says Elton confirmed to him at the Cannes Film Festival that he's collaborating on the project with musician Jake Shears of the band Scissor Sisters and Tony-winning playwright James Graham.

According to Elton, a workshop for the musical is planned for later in 2019, and the team wants to debut the production in London's West End in 2020.

As Playbill notes, this is the third Tammy Faye Bakker project in the works: There's another musical about her, with Kristen Chenoweth attached to star, and a movie based on the 2000 documentary The Eyes of Tammy Faye, starring Jessica Chastain in the lead role, is in production.

Tammy Faye Bakker, later Messner, died in 2007.  She was married to televangelist Jim Bakker; the couple co-founded the show The PTL Club and built the Christian theme park Heritage USA. Unlike many televangelists, she preached love and acceptance of the LGBTQ community, AIDS victims and victims of drug abuse.

She was famous for wearing an excessive amount of eye makeup, and for crying on camera while supporting Jim Bakker after he was accused of assaulting model and actress Jessica Hahn.  He was eventually imprisoned for fraud and conspiracy.

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