On Broadway

(USA/2021—directed by Oren Jacoby)

As audiences return to live theater after an unprecedented absence of 18 months, an all-star cast tells the inside story of the last time Broadway came back from the brink – and in doing so, illustrates a wonderfully colorful and fast-paced history of the Broadway theatrical tradition as well as the ever-evolving face of Times Square itself. 

Recounting innovative work, a new attention to inclusion and the often-uneasy balance between art and commerce, theatrical legends including Hugh Jackman, Helen Mirren, Christine Baranski, August Wilson, Viola Davis and Ian McKellen take us behind the scenes of groundbreaking and beloved shows from Company to A Chorus Line to Hamilton. 

Archival clips of performances by Lin Manuel Miranda, Patti Lupone, Bernadette Peters, James Earl Jones and more punctuate this hurly-burly ride through the resilient main street of American show business, all while documenting the birth pains of a brand-new show in rehearsal. 

Completed just prior to the pandemic, the immersive crowds, sights and sounds of On Broadway are both a tonic and a wrenching reminder of what’s changed. With New York City – and the world – facing an uncertain path forward, this bracing documentary’s tireless show-biz optimism provides one model of how it might return. (85 minutes)

“Delves into the 1970s’ near-demise of Broadway and the unconventional minds behind its revival, among them Stephen Sondheim, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jonathan Larson.”- Jami Ganz, New York Daily News

“A lament for days gone by, and a cautious look toward the future of an American institution.”  - David Reddish, Queerty

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