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Funny Girl: Lea Michele, Ryan Murphy production unlikely, they reveal at EW Fest

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Monica Schipper/Getty Images

Last year, Ryan Murphy acquired the stage rights for Funny Girl, the Broadway musical-turned-film that won Barbra Streisand her first Oscar. 

It was naturally assumed that Lea Michele would take on the leading role, though Murphy told EW at the time that he was unsure whether Michele was “willing to make the commitment to go back to Broadway,” adding that he was looking into a number of directors and leading men and “testing the waters.” 

However, the project never really came to fruition, and at the first-ever EW Fest on Saturday, Murphy said it wasn’t happening any time soon. “We had talked about it for sure,” Murphy said. “But then I feel like we so many of those songs and so many of those scenes [on Glee] that in a weird way, I feel like we did it in some way.”

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Indeed, in her role as Rachel Berry, Michele performed such Streisand classics as “Papa, Can You Hear Me?,” “My Man,” “Being Good Isn’t Good Enough,” and more. 

Despite not readying Funny Girl, Murphy still has his sights set on the stage: He’s currently producing the Eugene O’Neill masterpiece Long Day’s Journey Into Night in association with the Roundabout Theatre Company; former American Horror Story mainstay Jessica Lange will star when it officially opens in April.

See the full panel above — Funny Girl talk begins at the 47-minute mark. (In related Streisand news, you should probably head to the 29-minute mark to hear what it was like when Murphy and Lady Gaga toured Streisand’s home shopping mall.)