If Glee had a baby, it would be named . . .

. . . Smash.

One of the best bits of news to hit Broadway in years happened just last week, when NBC officially ordered episodes of the new pilot entitled, Smash.  What’s it about?

It’s about the making of a Broadway musical.

As one of our industry vets once told me, hits beget hits, and the success of Glee has inspired competing networks to jump on the Broadway bandwagon.  And that’s great news for all of us, as the words Broadway, Broadway, Broadway are repeated over, over and over, in front of millions, millions and millions of viewers every week.

And that’s even if the show sucks.

But from what I hear, it doesn’t.

I had a spy at NBC’s “upfronts” today (which is when the network previews its new shows for advertisers).  My guy reports that the room was so quiet during the Smash preview, you could hear a false eyelash drop . . . and that the room erupted in cheers when the trailer came to and end.

But you be the judge . . . the trailer is below.

Oh, and you know what else is cool?  Like some talent-trade deal, NBC enlisted actual Broadway talent to play Broadway peeps, as if to say thank you for us hiring so much Hollywood talent over the last few years (it doesn’t hurt that Robert Greenblatt, the President of Programming at NBC is a Broadway lover, having produced 9 to 5 just a few years ago).  In the trailer you’ll see Megan Hilty, Christian Borle, Brian d’Arcy James, and a few more.  (Do you think Hollywood actors are b*tching about Broadway folks getting the good roles?)

Oh, and the show headlines Anjelica Huston, Debra Messing and a guy with a really cool name . . . Jack Davenport.

In case you needed another reason to tune in, the Exec. Producer is Steven Spielberg.

But you didn’t need another reason, did you?  This show had you at hello, Dolly.  You’re all planning your viewing parties already aren’t you?

I know we are.  In fact . . . maybe we’ll do a premiere party!  (unfortunately, we’ll all have to wait a bit because Smash is a mid-season replacement.)

It deserves a party.  Because it could be our best bet at a new audience in years.

In fact, Smash not a Glee baby.  This is one heck of a big mama.




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  • Amyleigh1982 says:

    Riding on the back of Glee’s success with touch of Black Swan and Chorus Line added in. I’m wondering if they’ll knock the forth wall down (like Glee does when they start singing in bedrooms, malls, ect.) or stick to performance pieces. A MASSIVE step for theatrekind!
    (P.S. Am upset that I’m currently in Las Vegas ajacent to where the NBC Research Center would have been. Curse you, abandoned project for not letting me get a preview of the pilot!)

  • A victory for highschool theatre nerds everywhere! Now they just need shows about band, Dungeons &Dragons, and A/V club and we will be on the road to victory. And the geek shall inherit the Earth…or at least the mid-season line up.

  • Lisa G says:

    Yay! It’s about time TV realized how brilliant Christian Borle is!!! Is Marc Shaiman still doing the music for this? I’m surprised he’s not mentioned in the promo.

  • Ann LaGravenese says:

    Thanks Ken for putting this up! Love Jack Davenport, but it certainly looks from this trailer that the people behind it know their stuff. The pilot was written by acclaimed playwright/screenwriter Theresa Rebeck (“Mauritius,” “NYPD Blue”). Craig Zadan and Neil Meron (Oscar-winning “Chicago,” “Hairspray”) and Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey (“United States of Tara,” “The Borgias”) will also serve as executive producers. Original songs are written by Tony and Grammy Award winners Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (“Hairspray,” “Catch Me If You Can”), who also serve as executive producers.
    All I can say is Wow!

  • Adam says:

    Luckily it’s not a FOX pilot or it would get cancelled if it doesnt get at least 10 million viewers. Or if its not a program packaged with Idol. Still it’s NBC and they have been known to make some iffy calls as well on re-orders.
    Why would Hollywood actors be upset? Cause trained pros are getting jobs?

  • Amazing! But what I would really like to see is a Reality TV show about making a Broadway musical.. has it ever been done Ken?

  • Katherine says:

    How cool is this? Hooray for Broadway-hood … !

  • jery says:

    Finally, something that I truly want to watch on tv!!! Thanks so much for sharing this!!

  • Wow! It looks fantastic.
    I’ve liked Katharine McPhee since her Idol days. Glad to see her really shining in this role. I think this will do wonderful things for her career.
    (and of course wonderful things for Broadway as well).
    Ken, you’ll do a post before the series airs, right? Thanks for sharing the trailer.

  • “…hear a false eyelash drop.” Ken, you slay me!

  • Shaun Peknic says:

    NBC totally has a hit show in it’s pocket. Great cast, great concept. This is going to be big for NBC and for the theater world. Thanks for sharing.

  • AcePPO says:

    Huh… truthfully, I’d probably be more interested in a show called “Flop”. Maybe that’ll be Season 2…
    And INTRODUCING Katherine McPhee? Most of America knows her better than they know all the Broadway people in the cast.

  • Is it nice isn’t it? But there’s much better name than that.

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