broadway The Best Musicals Based on Movies  

Buster McDermott
4.2k votes 305 voters 14.6k views 66 items

List Rules Only stage musicals that cite films as their original source material - no adaptations directly from other mediums

List of musicals based on movies, ranked by fans and casual critics. Stage theatre has been a primary form of entertainment for thousands of years, in the forms of plays, operas, and musicals. Around the world, dozens of theatrical performances are brought to life on stages big and small. Most notably, the theatre districts of Broadway in Manhattan and the West End in London are home to the catchiest, most elaborate, most memorable musicals. Nothing is more inspirational than experiencing the art of actors who can also sing and dance with grace and style in front of a large audience of people. It’s no wonder that plays and musicals have remained so popular throughout the years! What are the best musicals based on films?

This list includes the greatest plays and musicals that were inspired by movies, ranked according to the opinions of voters. Which soundtracks have you played nonstop? Which lyrics have you memorized? Some of these plays on this list were smash hit successful Broadway productions that scored several awards and made the actors instant successes. Others are newer shows that are still in trial runs for smaller audiences in cities like Chicago and Los Angeles.

In addition to direct adaptations from film to stage, this list includes musicals inspired by movies that weren't musicals to begin with. Wondering why you don't remember the songs from Billy Elliott or Sunset Boulevard? That's because there weren't any. 
list ordered by

1
126 33
The Lion King is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
The Lion King (1997) Mark Mancina , Elton John , Jay Rifkin - The Lion King (1994)

2
98 33
Beauty and the Beast is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Beauty and the Beast (1993) Alan Menken , Linda Woolverton , Howard Ashman - Beauty and the Beast (1991)

3
88 38
Mary Poppins is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Mary Poppins (2004) Richard M. Sherman , Robert B. Sherman , George Stiles - Mary Poppins (1964) and the book series by P.L. Travers

4
81 40
The Little Mermaid is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
The Little Mermaid (2007) Alan Menken , Howard Ashman , Doug Wright - The Little Mermaid (1989)

5
88 46
Hairspray is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Hairspray (2002) Scott Wittman , Marc Shaiman , Thomas Meehan - Hairspray (2007), which was based on the movie Hairspray (1988), dir. by John Waters

6
65 30
Disney's Aladdin: A Musica... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Disney's Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular (2003) Aladdin (1992)

7
73 39
Newsies (2011) is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Newsies (2011) Newsies (1992)

8
69 40
Chicago is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
unlimitedbroadway added Chicago Bob Fosse , Fred Ebb , John Kander

9
66 42
Little Shop of Horrors is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Little Shop of Horrors (1982) Alan Menken , Howard Ashman - Little Shop of Horrors (1960)

10
63 40
Legally Blonde: The Musical is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Legally Blonde: The Musical (2007) Heather Hach , Laurence O'Keefe , Nell Benjamin - Legally Blonde (2001) and the novel by Amanda Brown

11
44 27
Heathers (2010) is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Heathers (2010) Heathers (1988)

12
54 39
Singin' in the Rain (1983) is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Singin' in the Rain (1983) Singin in the Rain (1952)

13
58 46
Shrek: The Musical (2008) is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Shrek: The Musical (2008) Shrek (2001), which was based on the book Shrek! (1991) by William Steig

14
49 41
The Producers is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
The Producers (2001) Mel Brooks , Thomas Meehan - The Producers (1968), dir. by Mel Brooks

The Greatest Musicals Ever Performed on Broadway, Ranked

15
34 26
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (2002) Richard M. Sherman , Robert B. Sherman , Jeremy Sams - Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968)

16
50 45
Spamalot is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Spamalot (2004) Neil Innes , John Du Prez , Eric Idle - Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

17
43 39
Footloose is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Footloose (1998) Eric Carmen , Sammy Hagar , Tom Snow - Footloose (1984)

18
43 41
Billy Elliot the Musical is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Billy Elliot: The Musical (2005) Elton John , Lee Hall - Billy Elliot (2000)

19
34 31
Elf: The Musical (2010) is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Elf: The Musical (2010) Elf (2003)

20
36 35
Thoroughly Modern Millie is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Thoroughly Modern Millie (2002) Jeanine Tesori , Richard Morris , Dick Scanlan - Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967)

21
27 25
Snow White and the Seven Dwarf... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1979) Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)

The Greatest Broadway Stars of All Time

22
37 38
Sister Act the Musical is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Sister Act: The Musical (2009) Alan Menken , Glenn Slater , Cherie Steinkellner - Sister Act (1992)

23
28 29
White Christmas (2004) is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
White Christmas (2004) White Christmas (1954)

24
39 43
Young Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Young Frankenstein (2007) Irving Berlin , Mel Brooks , Thomas Meehan - Young Frankenstein (1974), dir. by Mel Brooks

25
33 36
9 to 5 (2008) is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
9 to 5 (2008) 9 to 5 (1980)

26
29 31
A Wonderful Life (1991) is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
A Wonderful Life (1991) It's a Wonderful Life (1946)

27
27 29
Seven Brides for Seven Brother... is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954) Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954), which was based on "The Sobbin' Women" by Stephen Vincent Benét

28
24 27
Scrooge is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Scrooge (1992) Leslie Bricusse - Scrooge (1970), which was based on the novella A Christmas Carol (1843) by Charles Dickens

Incredible Ways Gene Kelly Changed Movie Musicals Forever

29
27 32
The Wedding Singer is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
The Wedding Singer (2006) Chad Beguelin ^! Matthew Sklar ^! Tim Herlihy - The Wedding Singer (1998)

30
24 29
A Christmas Story: The Musical... is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
A Christmas Story: The Musical (2009) A Christmas Story (1983)

31
26 32
Once (2011) is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Once (2011) Once (2006)

32
28 35
Kinky Boots (2012) is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Kinky Boots (2012) Kinky Boots (2005)

33
25 31
Fame (1988) is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Fame (1988) Fame (1980)

34
26 33
Sunset Boulevard is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Sunset Boulevard (1991) Christopher Hampton , Don Black , Andrew Lloyd Webber - Sunset Boulevard (1950)

35
23 30
Catch Me If You Can is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Catch Me If You Can (2009) Terrence McNally , Scott Wittman , Marc Shaiman - Catch Me If You Can (2002), which was based on the autobiography (1980) by Frank Abagnale, Jr.

The Best Broadway Plays of the '90s

36
19 25
Meet Me in St. Louis is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Meet Me in St. Louis (1989) Hugh Wheeler ^! Hugh Martin ^! Ralph Blane - Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)

37
27 38
Saturday Night Fever is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Saturday Night Fever (1998) Nan Knighton - Saturday Night Fever (1977)

38
24 34
The Who's Tommy is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
pigonthewing added The Who's Tommy Des McAnuff , Pete Townshend

39
22 32
42nd Street is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
42nd Street (1980) Mark Bramble , Al Dubin , Harry Warren - 42nd Street (1933), which was based on the novel (1932) by Bradford Ropes

40
23 34
Tarzan of the Apes is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Tarzan (2006) Tarzan (1999), which was based on Tarzan of the Apes (1912) by Edgar Rice Burroughs

41
21 32
Big: the musical is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Big: The Musical (1996) John Weidman , Richard Maltby, Jr. - Big (1988)

42
24 37
High School Musical on Stage! is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
High School Musical on Stage! (2007) David Simpatico - High School Musical (2006)

The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Musical Movies

43
20 32
Bring It On (2011) is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Bring It On (2011) Bring It On (2000)

44
17 29
Nine is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Nine (1982) Maury Yeston , Arthur Kopit - 8½ (1963), dir. by Federico Fellini

45
20 34
Victor/Victoria is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Victor/Victoria (1995) Blake Edwards , Frank Wildhorn , Leslie Bricusse - Victor Victoria (1982)

46
11 22
Der Glöckner von Notre Dame is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Tom Islava added Der Glöckner von Notre Dame James Lapine , Alan Menken , Stephen Schwartz - The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996), which was based on the novel of the same name by Victor Hugo

47
20 36
Ghost the Musical is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Ghost (2011) Glen Ballard ^! Bruce Joel Rubin ^! David A. Stewart - Ghost (1990)

48
18 33
Xanadu (2007) is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Xanadu (2007)  Xanadu (1980), which was based on the movie Down to Earth (1947)

49
18 33
The Full Monty is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
The Full Monty (2000) Terrence McNally , David Yazbek - The Full Monty (1997)

50
16 30
Big Fish (2013) is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Musicals Based on Movies
Big Fish (2013) Big Fish (2003), which was based on the novel Big Fish: A Novel of Mythic Proportions (1998) by Daniel Wallace