Give me a second … I’m trying to calm down. Ok. So. There’s been talk of a big-screen adaptation of the hit musical Les Miserables floating around for a while, and I’ve mostly been ignoring it in the hopes that it wasn’t true. The reason why is that I love the musical (and the novel on which it’s based), and the stories keep talking about how the film will star Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway. Now, I understand that they are both singers and blah blah blah. But I really don’t enjoy Jackman, and I don’t think he has the acting chops to take on Valjean, and I think Hathaway is too young (and too big a star) to play Fantine (which is actually a fairly small role). So, I’ve been grumbling about all this news, regardless of the fact that Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) is attached to direct. As a matter of fact, I said to my brother just last week that the only way they would get me interested in the project would be if they had the brilliance (IMO) to cast Russell Crowe as Javert.
YOU GUYS, HE’S IN TALKS. RUSSELL CROWE IS IN TALKS TO PLAY JAVERT, who is one of the best ambiguously villainous characters EVER. Also, if it’s a musical, HE WILL SING. I am so excited I don’t know what to tell you. Seriously, this is the best movie news of the year. And if you know how much I dislike Hugh Jackman, to say that I would automatically be excited about this movie and would see it on opening night is a really huge deal. But back to Crowe: I have long said that he needed to play more villains. Javert is a great character, an increasingly tortured soul, who really requires a focused and nuanced actor who can sink his teeth into the role. I’ve also expressed a desire to see him do a musical, and Javert’s got one of the best songs in the show. Yes, Russell Crowe does sing. In fact, he’s done a bit of stage musical work himself, and has long had a band going. I don’t normally think much of their music, but I do think he’s got an excellent voice, and he can totally do this. PLEASE LET HIM DO THIS.
So yeah. I am hugely excited about this development. But! That’s not all that’s being reported today. Supposedly, Geoffrey Rush and Helena Bonham-Carter are also eyeing the project. This is also excellent news. The report I read conjectured that HBC would be playing Madame Thenardier, which I think is a safe assumption, and I would further be willing to bet that Mr. Rush would likely be playing the Master of the House himself.
Did you get that I’m excited about this suddenly? It’s an amazing turn-around. But what about you? Are you a fan of the musical? Do you agree with my casting of Javert? Would you be as excited as I to see this film, even with the inclusion of the Smarminator??