USA - Do you hear the people sing? Yes, some better than others. BroadwayGlobal named Les Miserables the 2012 movie of the year. Yes, because of the technical aspect of the sound being sung live to film, in Les Miserables the movie . Yes because Les Miserables is a Global phenomenon. Because of the message, history and iconic journey Les Miserables the musical has effected the Universe.
Yes, Anne Hathaway will walk away with an Oscar. Maybe even Hugh Jackman will be nominated for a few awards. But, Russell Crowe was missed cast vocally, especially for a musical that is known for its' singing vocal arrangements. It is not Chicago, A Chorus Line or Nine, where the choreographed dance numbers let you look past any vocals. It is Les Miserables that has been performed around the world to music lovers.
All of the smaller roles in the film shine vocally. The cinematography is breathtaking but one wonders if even Victor Hugo is turning over in his grave, by the sound of a Crowe. Even the famous novel that shouts social injustice may parallel the social injustice in casting of Les Miserables the movie, which is based on Victor Hugo's famous novel. "Do you here the people sing? Singing the songs of angry men..." The only angry men should be those cast in the wrong roles. The strained, back in your throat, out of pitch or navel effects from some of the leads are horrendous.
The message and story of love are the reasons Les Miserables will win its global battle in box office ticket sales. The film will be translated in every language possible. The film will win a few Oscars, and may even go down in history as a classic for the first film to record singing live while filming, instead of taping in a recording studio.
If Cameron is to bring Miss Saigon to film, let him as the man who created magic, remain the last word in casting magic. Don't let a production company tell you what stars you can cast to sell tickets. Whoever you choose from Broadway veterans would have been global iconic stars, because of the iconic musical. Musical theatre performers can sing!
Special thanks for casting a handful of back artists. Broadway has always been known for casting just a few black artists, and Les Miserables the movie doesn't stray to far in numbers of black actors for the film. The ratio in ethnic casting is proven in Les Miserables the movie, that stays close to Broadway casting ratios. Maybe this classic movie will shed light in the future on non traditional casting for film, TV and Broadway for classics.
The two gay white guys, with an adopted child or two, as shown in sitcoms or films today, needs to change, into the black lesbian lawyer, living with her straight girlfriends brother, taking care of the child from his first baby's momma (but hire Broadway singers for the musical!). The world that we know today as all white Annies is not all Thoroughly Modern Milles.
If you are going to be ground breaking as dramatic Les Miserables is with sound, why not be groundbreaking for non-traditional casting hiring a black Broadway singer for Cosette. If there is one thing Les Miserables proves that our society is still not demanding to be heard. The sound of non-traditional casting would have broken the sound barrier for this classic. But that barricade has not been built in Les Miserables.
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