Cover image for Into the woods
Into the woods
Lapine, James, librettist, director.
[DVD version].
Publication Information:
[United States] : Brandman Productions, Inc. ; Chatsworth, CA : Distributed by Image Entertainment, [1999]

Physical Description:
1 videodisc (153 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.
The fairy tale characters of Little Red Ridinghood, Cinderella, and Jack (and the Beanstalk) are linked together with the characters of a baker and his wife. Their stories intertwine as they all search for something different in the woods. After they have all found happiness, they must band together to fight a giant.
General Note:
"American Playhouse presents a Brandman production"--Container.

The 1987 Broadway musical was produced as a television play in 1990.

Winner of 1998 Tony Awards for Best score, Best book and Best actress.

For specific features see interactive menu.
Added Uniform Title:
American playhouse (Television program)

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DVD 3364 Adult DVD Open Shelf
M1500.S6 I587 1999V Adult DVD Central Library
M1500.S6 I587 1999V Adult DVD Central Library
DVD 3364 Adult DVD Audio Visual
M1500.S6 I587 1999V Adult DVD Audio Visual

On Order



Originally broadcast as part of the American Playhouse series on PBS, this video captures a performance by the original cast of the popular Broadway musical. With songs and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by James Lapine, who also directed the stage production, Into the Woods humorously combines a number of classic fairy tales into one over-arching narrative. A baker and his wife are assigned a number of tasks by a nearby witch; only after completing these duties will they be able to give birth. During their quest to fulfill the witches' demands, they encounter Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, Cinderella, and numerous other fairy tale figures. The traditional stories are parodied and altered at will, yet the original fairy tales' sense of wonder and, at times, darkness remains intact. The score, winner of Broadway's Tony Award, includes such songs as Children Will Listen, Giants in the Sky, and No One Is Alone. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

This picture book-adaptation of the Broadway musical brings together many favorite characters in one tale, including the childless baker and his wife, Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood and Jack with his beanstalk. Talbott's adaptation retains the flavor of Sondheim's lyrics, and those who know the score will find themselves singing along. All ages.(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved



From: Part I Once Upon A Time, in a far-off kingdom, there lived... a fair young maiden, a sad young lad, and a childless baker with his wife. The maiden, called Cinderella, wished more than anything, more than life, to go to the King's festival. The lad, named Jack, also had a wish. He wished., more than anything, more than fife, more than riches, that his cow would give him some milk. The Baker and the Baker's Wife were wishing, too. They wished more than anything, more than life, more than riches, more than the moon, that they had a child. Cinderella's mother had died, and her father had taken for his new wife a woman with two daughters of her own. All three were beautiful of face but vile and black of heart. And, jealous of Cinderella's good qualities, they cruelly thrust upon her the dirtiest tasks around the house. "You wish to go to the festival?" the Stepmother asked mockingly. "Look at your nails!" chuckled Lucinda, one of Cinderella's stepsisters. "Look at your dress!" giggled Florinda, the other. "You wish to go to the festival and dance before the Prince?!" they all exclaimed, and fell down laughing out of control. Jack, on the other hand, had no father. And his mother was concerned about her son and his devotion to his cow, Milky-White. "You foolish child! What in Heaven's name are you doing with the cow inside the house?" she demanded. "A warm environment might be just what Milky-White needs to produce his milk," replied Jack. "It's a she! How many times must I tell you? Only shes can give milk! Besides, she's been dry for a week straight. We've no food or money and no choice but to sell her while she can still command a price. "But Milky-White is my best friend in the whole world," Jack pleaded. "Look at her! There are bugs on her dugs. There are flies in her eyes. There's a lump on her rump big enough to be a hump. Weve no time to sit and dither while her withers wither with her. And no one keeps a cow for a friend!" Meanwhile, the Stepmother was playing a cruel joke on Cinderella. "I have emptied a pot of lentils into the ashes," she told the girl. "If you have picked them out again in two hours' time, you shall go to the festival with us." But the Stepmother was unaware that Cinderella had friends in high places. No sooner had the cruel woman left than Cinderella sang out: "Birds in the sky, Birds in the eaves, In the leaves, In the fields, In the castles and ponds. Quick, little birds, Flick through the ashes. Pick and peck and sift, But swiftly. Put the lentils into my pot." As she sang, flocks of birds fluttered down into the ashes and busily set to work sorting out the lentils and dropping them into the pot. The task completed, Cinderella thanked them, bade them farewell, and awaited the Stepmother's return. Because the Baker had lost his mother and father in a baking accident -- or so he believed -- he was eager to have a family of his own and was concerned that all efforts had failed. The reason for this misfortune was explained to him that afternoon when the creepy old Witch from next door paid them a visit. "What do you wish?" the Baker asked. "It's not what I wish. It's what you wish," the hag cackled as she pointed to his wife's belly. "Nothing cooking in there now, is there?" The ancient enchantress went on to tell the couple that she had placed a spell on their house. "In the past," she informed the Baker, "when you were no more than a baby, your father brought your mother and you to this cottage. She was with child, and she developed an unusual appetite. She took one look at my beautiful garden and told your father that what she wanted more than anything in the world was greens, greens, and nothing but greens! Parsley, peppers, cabbages and celery, asparagus and watercress and fiddleferns and lattice! "He said, 'All right,' but it wasn't, quite, 'cause I caught him in the autumn in my garden one night! He was robbing me, raping me, rooting through my rutabaga, raiding my arugula, and ripping up the rampion. My champion! My favorite! I should have laid a spell on him right there. Could have turned him into stone or a dog or a chair..." At which point, the Witch went into a trance, shuddering and gurgling with ghastly noises of joy. The Baker and the Wife could only stand by, trembling with fear, when without warning the Witch continued chattily. "But I let him have the rampion -- I'd lots to spare. In return, however, I said, 'Fair is fair: You can let me have the baby that your wife will bear. And we'll call it square.'" "I had a brother?" asked the Baker. "No...but you had a sister," the Witch hissed. However, she refused to tell him any more of his sister -- not even that her name was Rapunzel. "I thought I had been more than reasonable," the Witch continued petulantly, "and we all might have lived happily thereafter. But how was I to know what he'd also put in his pocket?! You see, when I had inherited that garden, my mother warned me that I would be punished if ever I were to lose any of the beans." "Beans?" asked the couple. "The special beans! I let him go, I didn't know he'd stolen my beans! I was watching him crawl back over the wall when bang! crash! and the lightning flash! and the -- never mind, that's another story. This book is adapted from the play Into the Woods copyright © 1987 by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine, Inc. Illustrations and adaptation copyright © 1988 by Hudson Talbott Excerpted from Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim, James Lapine All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.