San Francisco Chronicle
After lying about ‘Spider-Man,’ Santos can go step further
I don’t think George Santos quite understands lying. He gets caught lying a lot, but the lies are not the usual strategic lies you’d expect from someone elected to Congress. The lies are just absurd now.
The representative from New York has thus far been caught lying about all of the following: his name, his grandparents’ surviving the Holocaust, whether he’s Jewish or just “Jew-ish,” whether his mother died as a result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center, whether he was a drag performer in Brazil under the name Kitara, and whether he stole money meant for a homeless veteran’s dying dog.
Now it’s being reported by Bloomberg that Santos told donors during his campaign in 2022 that he was one of the producers of the Broadway musical “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.”
Yes, you heard that correct: “Spider-Man” the musical.
The 2011 show was one of the biggest, most highly publicized debacles in recent theatrical history. In addition to the total lunacy of turning the Marvel superhero into a song-anddance man, its creative team was a strange combination of talents. Music and lyrics for the rock-infused score were by U2’s Bono and the Edge. “The Lion King” Broadway director Julie Taymor conceived the show’s vision, which included aerial stunts, cartoonish sets, and a confusing plot about the teen hero and an ancient spider goddess.
At the time, I closely followed the ongoing horror stories about its development, which included Evan Rachel Wood and Alan Cumming leaving the cast early on, stunts gone wrong, and power struggles behind the scenes. It went on to lose an estimated $60 million.
So it’s curious that Santos claimed to produce the huge financial flop and subject of pop culture schadenfreude. It’s like bragging you invented the Microsoft Zune or wrote the script to “Black Adam.”
Lying about producing one Broadway bomb is hardly a respectable fake career in the theater. I compiled a fraudulent resume that Santos is free to use — and because it’s so filled with legendary failures, I bet he will.
George Santos, a.k.a. Kitara
Special skills: Horse riding, lion taming, dart throwing, jazz, tap, ballet. Some knowledge of government.
Vocal range: Somewhere between Barry White and Mariah Carey.
Biography: I have an extensive career both onstage and behind the scenes. In addition to producing “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark,” I’ve also acted, written and choreographed a number of shows, including “Nick & Nora,” “The Pirate Queen” and the musical adaptation of “Doctor Zhivago,” which ran a thrilling 23 performances.
I have a deep love of the musical art form since first seeing Robert Preston in the original run of “The Music Man” in 1957. The story of a con man who comes to a small town and grifts the community really spoke to me (though I still disagree with its theme of redemption through honesty). “Moose Murders” (1983): Understudy for role of Hedda Holloway, played by Holland Taylor. Also swing performer for role of Moose. Although this play received universally dismal reviews and closed after only a single performance, I went on tour with it for several months, playing mostly Trump casinos and Trump University campuses.
Starred with Boy George as the chameleon in the musical’s “Karma Chameleon” finale. At 100 performances and a loss of $10 million, it was a massive success.
“King Kong” (2013):
Designed all the special effects and dance numbers for the title character. Also did tap duet with Kong to Irving Berlin’s “Puttin’ on the Ritz” to close Act One. It was my idea to make the giant primate a romantic tenor. “Diana: The Musical” (2021): Wrote, directed and starred as the late Princess of Wales, based on my research as a royal correspondent for the Daily Planet news organization.
“Cats” (2019): Although I did not have the honor of producing the original version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s beloved musical, I did produce and star in the film adaptation as Grizabella and won a Grammy for my performance of “Memory.” This award sits next to the Oscar I won for writing the screenplay to “Gigli.” Miscellaneous credits: Stunt coordinator, “Waterworld.” Dubbed Pierce Brosnan’s singing in “Mamma Mia!” and “Mamma Mia 2: Electric Boogaloo.” Came up with the idea for New Coke. Published O.J. Simpson’s book “If I Did It.” Social media manager for J.K. Rowling.