Two Grammys presented during the pre-telecast have rewritten the record books. For the first time in 10 years, the Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album has gone to a cast album for a show based on a motion picture. “Once: A New Musical” is the first movie-turned-stage musical to win this category since “Hairspray” took home the trophy in 2003.
Before it opened on the Broadway stage, “Once” was a motion picture, released in 2006. “Hairspray” was a 1988 film written and directed by John Waters. It was translated to the Broadway stage in 2002.
“Once: A New Musical” is the fifth Broadway musical based on a motion picture to win a Grammy in this category. Before “Hairspray,” this award went to “The Producers” in 2002, “The Lion King” in 1999 and “Promises, Promises” (based on the 1960 film “The Apartment,” though that movie was not a musical) in 1970.
In 1994, “The Who’s Tommy” won in this category, and while there was a previous motion picture in 1975, it’s fair to say the stage musical was based on the double-LP “Tommy” released in 1969. The cast album for “Mame” starring Angela Lansbury won in 1967 and while there was an “Auntie Mame” film, there was a play and a novel that preceded the movie. In 1964, “She Loves Me” won the cast album category. The musical was based on a Hungarian novel that became a movie, “The Shop Around the Corner,” and a Judy Garland musical film, “In the Good Old Summertime.”
More recently, “Monty Python’s Spamalot” won the stage musical Grammy in 2006. It was only loosely based on the 1975 film “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”
This year’s Grammy for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media was awarded during the pre-telecast to “Midnight in Paris.” It’s the first win for a Woody Allen film. The only other nomination for a soundtrack to a film that included Allen in the credits occurred in 1966, when Burt Bacharach was up for a Grammy for “Casino Royale.” Allen didn’t write or direct this spoof, but he did play James Bond’s nephew, Jimmy Bond.