Aaron Tveit Will Climb the Barricades of "Les Misérables" Movie; Is Sacha Baron Cohen Master of the House?

News   Aaron Tveit Will Climb the Barricades of "Les Misérables" Movie; Is Sacha Baron Cohen Master of the House?
 
Film star Sacha Baron Cohen (Borat) and Broadway's Aaron Tveit (Catch Me If You Can) are the latest names linked to the coming film musical version of Les Misérables.

Aaron Tveit
Aaron Tveit

Cohen is in early negotiations to play corrupt innkeeper Thenardier ("Master of the House" is his memorable song), whose band of thieves intertwines with the lives of Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) and adopted daughter Cosette (an actress yet to be named) in early 19th-century Paris.

Tveit, who created the role of Gabe in Next to Normal on Broadway and later starred as Frank Abagnale Jr. in Catch Me If You Can, has been offered the role of heroic student Enjolras, who inspires an uprising against the government. The actor is currently in negotiations, his representative told Playbill.com. Enjolras sings the anthemic "Do You Hear the People Sing?" in the international hit musical by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg.

The news about Tveit and Cohen first surfaced Dec. 9 in Bamigboye's column in The Daily Mail.

As previously reported, Tom Hooper ("The King's Speech") has gathered a cast that so far includes Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean, Russell Crowe as Inspector Javert, Anne Hathaway a Fantine and Tony Award winner Eddie Redmayne (Red) as Marius.

Helena Bonham Carter's name has been mentioned in published reports about the casting of Madame Thenardier. Filming reportedly begins in March. *

In days of social unrest in early 19th-century France, Marius and his buddies protest the government, build barricades and face down bullets. Marius also falls in love with Cosette, whose guardian is the fugitive Jean Valjean (played by Tony Award winner Hugh Jackman, who is currently playing a concert engagement called Back on Broadway at the Broadhurst Theatre).

The Les Miz film, from Universal, Cameron Mackintosh and Working Title, will be released Dec. 7, 2012, according to Universal. William Nicholson ("Gladiator," "Nell," "Shadowlands") is writing the screenplay. 

Mackintosh, the stage musical's producer, is also the film's producing partner. He said in a Sept. 8 statement: "Even though I have dreamt about making the film of Les Misérables for over 25 years, I could never have imagined that we would end up with the dream director Tom Hooper, and the dream cast of Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe as the two great protagonists Jean Valjean and Javert. Not only were they born to play these roles vocally, but they thrillingly inhabit this great score. Producing this film with Eric Fellner, Working Title and Universal Pictures is indeed a dream come true and I can't wait to hear the people sing at my local Cineplex."

In the London, Broadway and international hit musical, Javert is the policeman who doggedly pursues Valjean, a petty thief who changes his fortunes, over several decades in socially turbulent times.

Director Hooper won the Academy Award for his direction of the Oscar-winning Best Picture "The King's Speech."

The film is drawn from the Claude-Michel Schonberg-Alain Boublil musical, which has English lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer. Among its famous musical numbers are "I Dreamed a Dream," "A Heart Full of Love," "Do You Hear the People Sing?," "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables," "Bring Him Home," "Stars" and "Master of the House."

The original London production continues in the West End. An American touring production of the revised 25th anniversary version of the show is now traveling the country. A separate Canadian production will be spawned in Toronto in 2012.

The stage musical is by Boublil (book), Schönberg (book and music) and Herbert Kretzmer (lyrics).

Hooper's film credit before the Oscar-winning "The King's Speech" was "The Damned United," about an English football coach. He was also director of the acclaimed miniseries "John Adams."

Hathaway played Viola in The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park production of Twelfth Night in 2009. Her film credits include the upcoming Batman picture "The Dark Knight Rises" (as Catwoman), plus "The Princess Diaries" and its sequel, "The Devil Wears Prada," "One Day," "Rachel Getting Married" (for which she was nominated for an Oscar), "Bride Wars," "Love and Other Drugs," "Alice in Wonderland" and more.

Jackman, who was seen on screen in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," is also known for his film roles in the "X-Men" trilogy, "Someone Like You," "Swordfish," "Kate and Leopold," "Van Helsing" and the recent "The Fountain" and "Happy Feet" (in voice). His stage credits also include Trevor Nunn's staging of Oklahoma! at Britian's National Theatre and award-winning work in productions of Sunset Boulevard and Beauty and the Beast in his homeland, Australia.

Russell Crowe's films include "Gladiator" (for which he won the Academy Award), "A Beautiful Mind," "L.A. Confidential," "Master and Commander," "Robin Hood," "State of Play," "Body of Lies," "The Insider," "The Sum of Us" and more.

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