BootLeg Betty

How Producer Craig Zadan Got Bette Midler To Star In Gypsy

Variety
Neil Meron on Craig Zadan: ‘He Had a Singular Passion for Producing’
By CYNTHIA LITTLETON
AUGUST 23, 2018 

Producer Craig Zadan with Bette Midler on the set of ‘Gypsy’

Zadan was also tenacious, in a charming way. It took many phone calls to Bette Midler to convince her to star in Zadan and Meron’s 1993 production of “Gypsy” for CBS – the show that Zadan and Meron considered to be the “Mount Olympus” of Broadway efforts. One night Zadan reached Midler after she had just come out of a sauna, Meron recalled. “He said to Bette, ‘Is this not the greatest role in theater for a woman?’ And she said ‘Yes.’ He said ‘Is this not the greatest musical of all-time?’ And she said ‘Yes.’ And he said ‘Well, what’s your problem?’ ” When Midler finally relented, Zadan hung up quickly so as to not give her time to back out, Meron said.

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