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How Tootsie Navigated a Minefield on Its Road to the Tonys

The musical's creators rebuilt a 1982 film with 2019 sensitivities.

Tootsie is up for 10 Tony Awards this year, and the musical's creators could not be more relieved that they pulled off what they consider one of the greatest challenges of their careers. Composer David Yazbek, book writer Robert Horn, and director Scott Ellis were tasked with updating the 1982 film to meet the needs of a 2019 audience — and as they look back on their journey, they all agree that step one in the creative process was booking Santino Fontana.

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