Doc ‘Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened’ Due Digitally May 23 From Virgil

The 2016 documentary Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened is being released for digital rental (VOD) and purchase May 23 from Virgil Films.

Merrily We Roll Along is one of the most legendary musicals in the history of Broadway. Originally a play from 1934, Hal Prince decided to do a musical version in 1981 — with a cast almost exclusively of teenagers and young adults — and brought on his friend and long-time collaborator Stephen Sondheim to do the music and lyrics. Everyone thought it was going to be the lauded team’s next big hit, but instead it closed after just 16 performances.

Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened draws back the curtain on the extraordinary drama of Merrily’s creation and tells the stories of the hopeful young performers whose lives were transformed by it. Directed by Lonny Price, a member of the original cast, the film is a bittersweet meditation on the choices we all make, and the often-unexpected consequences of those choices through success and failure.

The film features exclusive appearances by the late Stephen Sondheim and Hal Prince as well as Jason Alexander, Mandy Patinkin, Adam Guettel, Frank Rich and the original Broadway cast of Merrily We Roll Along.

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Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened appears on many “best of” lists, including the “best of the year” (New York Times, The Wrap, Newsweek), “best theater documentaries of all time” (Playbill, Broadway World) and Esquire’s list of “20 Documentaries That Will Change Your Life.”


Disney Sets Transactional Home Release Dates for ‘West Side Story’ Remake

Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution will release Steven Spielberg’s remake of the classic 1961 musical West Side Story through digital retailers March 2, and on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray two weeks later on March 15

As previously announced, the 20th Century Studios production be available for streaming on Disney+ and HBO Max starting March 2 as well.

West Side Story, which is nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, tells the tale of fierce rivalries and young love in 1957 New York City. The remake stars Ansel Elgort (Tony); Ariana DeBose (Anita); David Alvarez (Bernardo); Mike Faist (Riff); Brian d’Arcy James (Officer Krupke); Corey Stoll (Lieutenant Schrank); Josh Andrés Rivera (Chino); with Rita Moreno (as Valentina, who owns the corner store in which Tony works); and introducing Rachel Zegler (Maria.) Moreno also serves as one of the film’s executive producers. 

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The film’s creative team includes Kushner, who also served as an executive producer; Tony Award winner Justin Peck, who choreographed the musical numbers in the film; Los Angeles Philharmonic conductor and Grammy Award winner Gustavo Dudamel, who helmed the recording of the iconic score; Academy Award-nominated composer and conductor David Newman, who arranged the score, Tony Award-winning composer Jeanine Tesori, who supervised the cast on vocals; and music supervisor Matt Sullivan, who serves as executive music producer for the film.

Extas include various making-of documentaries under the banner “The Stories of West Side Story,” including a look at the actors who play rival gangs the Sharks and the Jets, and a tribute to the late Stephen Sondheim, who wrote the lyrics to the film’s musical numbers. Bonus features on the digital editions vary by retailer.