AceShowbiz - The Broadway revival of Melvin Van Peebles' 1971 musical "Ain't Supposed to Die a Natural Death" will go on as planned, despite the filmmaker's death earlier this week (beg20Sep21).
Producers of the planned 2022 show, including Van Peebles' son Mario, have confirmed the show will proceed but it will now be dedicated to Melvin, who passed away on Tuesday, aged 89.
The revival, to be directed by Kenny Leon, was announced in the spring (21).
The original production landed seven Tony nominations, including Best Musical and Best Original Score.
Melvin Van Peebles, dubbed the Godfather of Black Cinema, was the brain behind cult classics "Watermelon Man" and "Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song".
He shot to fame with his mainstream directorial debut, "The Story of a Three-Day Pass", and landed the job of bringing "Watermelon Man" to the big screen in 1970.
The racial satire, starring Godfrey Cambridge, was a huge hit, scoring Van Peebles a three-picture deal at Columbia, but movie executives were not keen on his plans for his follow-up, "Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song", forcing the director to make the movie a low-budget affair, using cash loaned to him by Bill Cosby.
Melvin wrote, directed, produced, scored and edited the film while also starring as the title character. The movie became the highest-grossing independent film in history.
He then released "Ain't Supposed to Die a Natural Death" and followed it up with a film version of "Don't Play Us Cheap!".