But fear not, fans of the afterlife — the stage-version of Tim Burton’s 1988 film about a pesky poltergeist isn’t going away entirely. After the curtain comes down on Broadway, “Beetlejuice” is embarking on a 26-city national tour, beginning on Dec. 6 in San Francisco.
It’s the latest in a long line of recent Broadway closures, including “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Dear Evan Hansen” and “Come From Away.”
“Beetlejuice” opened in 2019 to mixed reviews and weak ticket sales. But the musical became a viral hit among younger audiences on social media, fueling attendance and boosting box office returns in the process. “Beetlejuice” producers capitalized on the digital fervor through contests and promotional efforts on Facebook and Instagram, especially during the spooky month of October.
“Beetlejuice” was presumed to be leaving Broadway in June of 2021, when “The Music Man,” starring Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster, set up shop at the Winter Garden Theater. But thanks to fan enthusiasm, the show’s backers were able to revive the show in a different venue. In early 2022, “Beetlejuice” found a new home, at the Marquis Theater, a venue big enough to house the elaborate set designs and fancy pyrotechnics necessary to recreate the night of the living dead.
When “Beetlejuice” makes its final Broadway bow, it will have played 27 previews and 366 regular performances at the Winter Garden Theatre and 313 regular performances at the Marquis Theater, for a total of 679 shows.
Alex Timbers (“Moulin Rouge: The Musical”) directed the stage adaptation with a score by Eddie Perfect and a book by Scott Brown and Anthony King. Alex Brightman originated the role of Beetlejuice on Broadway and received a Tony nomination for his performance.
Like the movie, the stage version follows a married couple who buy a new home and almost immediately fall to their death. In the afterlife, they encounter Beetlejuice, a devious ghost from the Netherworld who promises to help them haunt the house’s new inhabitants: a widowed father and his young daughter named Lydia.