The happy trails to Broadway may have turned into a long and winding road but writer Marshall Brickman’s biotuner project about cowboy and cowgirl marrieds Roy Rogers and Dale Evans is back on track with a fleshed out creative team. Brickman (Annie Hall, Jersey Boys, etc.) and producer Larry Spangler have signed eight-Oscar winner Alan Menken to compose the music for Happy Trails, with Disney specialist Glenn Slater (ABC’s Galavant, Tangled, Broadway’s The Little Mermaid) on board for the lyrics. Director Des McAnuff, who helped make Jersey Boys a global hit and has his hands full this spring with the musical version of Doctor Zhivago, will direct the show, which is now aiming to ride into Broadway town in 2016.
The show will follow Rogers from impoverished childhood in Ohio to his reign, or rein, with wife Evans, horse Trigger and Bullet The Wonder Dog to a three-decades-long pop stardom that crossed genres and mediums from comic books to movies, recordings, TV and radio. “I think audiences will be surprised at what trail blazers Roy and Dale were,” Slater said without irony, in a statement, “and how their story and ideals continue to resonate today.”