Fran Drescher Is Adapting 'The Nanny' Into a Broadway Musical
By Stacy Lambe
Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images
The Nanny could be headed to Broadway. The hit ‘90s sitcom starring Fran Drescher is being developed into a new musical by the actress and her ex-husband, Peter Marc Jacobson, who both created the series.
Drescher and Jacobson, who will co-write the book, are teaming up with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend creator and star Rachel Bloom, who will write the lyrics. She and Adam Schlesinger, who worked with Bloom on the CW series’ original music and lyrics, will also compose music for the production. Marc Bruni (Beautiful: The Carole King Musical) is set to direct.
“We are so excited to be working on the Broadway musical The Nanny,” Drescher and Jacobson said in a statement. “We’re equally excited that the wildly talented Rachel Bloom will be writing the lyrics and music with the fantastic Adam Schlesinger, and to have the brilliant Marc Bruni directing.”
While no cast has been announced -- “we’re plotting -- but we feel confident we will find a fabulous actress who is funny, charming and has a great voice,” Drescher said -- the actress confirmed that she will not be reprising her role.
“Of course I would do it myself,” she added, “but we’d have to change the title to The Granny.”
For six seasons, Drescher played Fran Fine, a Jewish fashionista from Flushing, New York, who became the nanny of three children from high society before the show went off the air in 1999. The Nanny earned the actress two Primetime Emmy nominations while the series won one Emmy in 1995 for costume design.
“The Nanny was a fundamental part of my childhood because it was the first time I saw an openly Jewish female protagonist on television,” Bloom said in a statement. “The story of Fran Fine, however, is a universal one that has touched the hearts of people of every race, religion and orientation. I am so proud to be using the characters established by The Nanny to tell a new story about one woman's journey to becoming proud of who she is and what makes her different.”
The announcement by producers Brian Zeilinger and Scott Zeilinger comes after years of speculation that the series might get rebooted for TV. In June 2018, Drescher told ET, “We’re talking about it. Peter and I are talking about it.”
“She would’ve maybe gotten involved in more things [that] Fran Drescher is involved with,” the actress said at the time. “All kinds of things from environmental issues, to health, to civil liberties, that’s what I think Fran [Fine] would be doing now -- opening her big Queens mouth for the greater good.”
Later, the reboot got more steam behind it when Drescher confirmed that she was in talks with rapper Cardi B about potentially taking over the role.
“That was just kind of laying out groundwork,” Drescher told ET of the meeting in 2019. “I do think she's great, and she would be kinda like my top choice, if she's disciplined to do this show every week. It can be a grind, but she's got a baby now and it could be a very comfortable, lovely way to, you know, work, be seen worldwide, and still do mini-concert tours when you're on hiatus.”
While the series has been off the air for over a decade, it’s been discovered by a new generation of fans. And the star has taken notice.
“It's kinda become a classic TV hit, and people who were just being born when the show started are now obsessed with it and are fans of mine, and I couldn't be more appreciative,” Drescher said. “I always want to give my audience a lot of bang for their buck.”