Fans of Whitney Houston are in for a treat — her most famous on-screen role is being adapted into a musical headed for Broadway. Grammy and Tony award winner Heather Headley will star as Rachel Marron, the role made famous by Houston, in a production of The Bodyguard scheduled to open in London’s West End this November.
All of the songs featured in the The Bodyguard movie will be a part of the production, and the score will be amplified by a dozen other songs that Houston made famous, including some of her greatest hits like “I Will Always Love You,” “Queen of the Night,” “So Emotional,” “One Moment in Time,” Saving All My Love,” “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” “Run to You,” “I Have Nothing,” and “I Wanna Dance with Somebody.”
In October, Headley confirmed via Facebook that she would be taking on Houston’s most infamous role. “Yes! I’ve been offered the role of Rachel in the musical version The Bodyguard. Very honored! The script has been rewritten a bit and it’s very interesting. Needless to say, the music is great (they’re using many of the songs of Whitney’s catalogue) — very challenging, but great. We’ll start on the West End in London and then we’ll move to Broadway (if all goes well — I think it will),” she said.
When The Bodyguard opened in 1992, it received mixed reviews from critics. Entertainment Weekly’s Owen Gleibermann wrote at the time: “To say that Houston and Costner fail to strike sparks would be putting it mildly.”
The album that accompanied the film, however, became the best-selling soundtrack of all time, selling 42 million copies worldwide, and remains Houston’s best-selling album to date.
True Whitney fans have kept the momentum of The Bodyguard going two decades later, and for many, the film is considered a cult classic.
To celebrate the film’s 20th anniversary, Warner Brothers and NCM Fathom Events have teamed up to release the film in theaters throughout the country for one night only on March 28th. The recent death of Houston is sure to prompt fans to head to theaters to see her on the big screen, as well as buy tickets to The Bodyguard musical when it reaches Broadway.
Headley, who will reprise Houston’s role, won a Tony Award in 2000 for best actress in a musical for playing the title role in Aida. She also originated the role of Nala in Broadway’s The Lion King. Her debut album, This Is Who I Am, was nominated for two Grammy Awards in 2002. In 2010, she also won a Grammy in best contemporary R&B gospel album for her third album, Audience of One.
Follow Chris Witherspoon on Twitter at @WitherspoonC