Friday, 22 June 2012

Hugh Jackman on his Love of Theatre & Les Miserables

As the longest running musical in the world, Les Miserables is one of theatre’s best loved shows, so it is no surprise that the magic from the stage is soon to be transformed on to the big screen.
hugh jackman in les miserables
(Photo courtesy of by Chris Spargo)
December 2012 sees the release of Les Miserables, a film inspired by the much-loved West End musical. Originally based on the novel of the same name by Victor Hugo, the story is set in the French Revolution. The cast list for this epic, ensemble musical is an impressive one, with actors such as Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe, Sacha Baron Cohen, Helena Bonham Carter… and the list goes on! However it is Hugh Jackman who is set to star as the iconic Jean Valjean in the upcoming film adaptation of the musical.

As well as film acting, Jackman is now a Broadway stage favourite having starred in Carousel, The Boy From Oz,  A Steady Rain and Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway.  He has won countless awards including a Tony Award for ‘Outstanding Actor in a Musical’ as well as hosting the award show three times!
He has most recently been awarded a Tony award for his contribution to Broadway and is clear he holds the stage close to his heart. His love for acting in the theatre is obvious when he says, “Still to this day, anytime I’m doing any show, no matter what time I come on, if it’s the beginning or the end, I always go down just after places is called and just stand close to the curtain and listen to that buzz in the audience. For me, it’s one of the great things, hearing the excitement of an audience coming to see a show.”
“As an actor” he goes on to say, “of my top 10 moments, all of them would be on stage. Not to knock movies but something magical can happen on stage.” Perhaps his role in Les Miserables, the movie, is a compromise between stage and screen? The film is allowing him to keep the essence of stage acting alive as each musical number in the film is sung live in each take, something of a first for a musical film.
Lets hope that the film does this legendary musical justice and captures the drama and theatricality of the story. The film’s cast are sure to draw in new, younger audiences to the theatre, which can only be a great thing!
The 5 star musical, Les Miserables is playing at London’s Queen’s Theatre until April 2013, if you want to discover the film’s inspiration!

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