Thomas Meehan (writer)

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Thomas Meehan
Born Thomas Edward Meehan
(1929-08-14) August 14, 1929 (age 87)[1][2]
Ossining, New York, U.S.
Occupation Writer
Nationality United States
Alma mater Hamilton College
Notable work(s) Annie
The Producers
Works with Mel Brooks
Awards Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical
Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Book of a Musical

Thomas Edward Meehan (born August 14, 1929) is an American writer, best known for Annie, The Producers, and Hairspray.

Life and career[edit]

Meehan grew up in Suffern, New York, and graduated from Hamilton College.[3] He moved to New York at age 24, and worked at The New Yorker's "Talk of the Town".[4]

He has received the Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical three times: Annie (1977), his Broadway debut; The Producers (2001); and subsequently shared the 2003 award with Mark O'Donnell for Hairspray.[5][6]

Additional credits include Ain't Broadway Grand; Oh, Kay!; Bombay Dreams, a musical adaptation of I Remember Mama; and Annie 2: Miss Hannigan's Revenge, which was subsequently reworked and re-staged Off-Broadway as Annie Warbucks.[7] He also wrote the libretto to the opera 1984.[5][6]

In addition, Meehan is a long-time contributor of humor to The New Yorker; an Emmy Award-winning writer of television comedy; and a collaborator on a number of screenplays, including Mel Brooks' Spaceballs; a remake of To Be or Not to Be; the film adaptation of The Producers; and One Magic Christmas.[8]

Meehan wrote the book for the musical Young Frankenstein, a 2007 musical stage adaptation of the 1974 film of the same name and Cry-Baby. He co-wrote the book, with Bob Martin, for Elf the Musical.[5][6][9] He co-wrote the book for the production of the musical Limelight: The Story of Charlie Chaplin which ran at the La Jolla Playhouse in 2010[10] and premiered on Broadway in 2012. In 2011 he revised the book originally written by Peter Stone for the Off-Broadway musical Death Takes a Holiday with music and lyrics by Maury Yeston.[11]

In 2012, Meehan wrote the book from the original screenplay by Sylvester Stallone[12] for the musical Rocky.[13] The show premiered in Hamburg in 2012,[14] before transferring to Broadway in 2014.[6][15]


  1. ^ Date information sourced from Library of Congress Authorities data, via corresponding WorldCat Identities linked authority file (LAF) .
  2. ^ Some other sources state 1932 and 1934 as a year of birth. The U.S. copyright office entry under his name lists 1929.
  3. ^ "Thomas Meehan bio", accessed March 12, 2011. according to this biography, Meehan was born in 1929)
  4. ^ Gurley, George and Larocca, Amy. "Thomas Meehan, Writer – Horst of Fifth Avenue", The New York Observer, November 14, 1999
  5. ^ a b c "Thomas Meehan". Who's Who,, Retrieved January 30, 2011. Archived January 8, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ a b c d "Thomas Meehan Broadway Credits and Awards", accessed October 17, 2015
  7. ^ Rothstein, Mervyn. "Troubled 'Annie 2' Closing Out of Town; Revisions Planned". The New York Times, January 16, 1990
  8. ^ One Magic Christmas at the TCM Movie Database
  9. ^ Hetrick, Adam."Beth Leavel, Mark Jacoby and George Wendt to Star in Elf – The Musical on Broadway", August 11, 2010
  10. ^ Jones, Kenneth."Limelight Musical, Starring Robert McClure and Ashley Brown, Opens at La Jolla Sept. 19", September 19, 2010
  11. ^ Suskin, Steven. "On the Record. Maury Yeston's 'Death Takes a Holiday' and the London Album of Styne, Comden and Green's 'Do Re Mi'",, October 20, 2011
  12. ^ "'Rocky' musical bound for Broadway in 2014". USA Today. April 28, 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Yo, Adrian! I'm Singin'!". New York Times. December 5, 2012. Retrieved December 27, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Sylvester Stallone talks 'Rocky' musical". Toronto Sun. October 17, 2013. Retrieved October 22, 2013. 
  15. ^ "'Rocky' Musical Set for a Bout With Broadway". Variety. April 28, 2013. Retrieved October 24, 2013. 

External links[edit]