A follow-up to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Phantom of the Opera,” which has been produced in more than 20 countries and translated into multiple languages, is being prepped for release in 2009.

“Following a successful sing-through of the complete score of ‘Love Never Dies’ (the sequel to ‘The Phantom of the Opera’) in the lead-up to Christmas, I have decided to greenlight the production,” the composer said in a statement.

The show could open simultaneously in the U.K., U.S. and Far East in autumn if it proves logistically feasible, he said.

The musical, set in America’s Coney Island, picks up with the characters of the Phantom, Raoul, Christine, Madame Giry and Meg about 10 years after the beginning of the original story.

“It was the place,” Lloyd Webber told the Times of London. “Even Freud went because it was so extraordinary … people who were freaks and oddities were drawn towards it because it was a place where they could be themselves.”

Gerard Butler, who played the Phantom in the 2004 film version, or Hugh Jackman have been floated as possible leads for the sequel, the Times said.