Loved 'Em in Little Shop? 7 Other Musical Pairings for Ellen Greene & Jake Gyllenhaal

News   Loved 'Em in Little Shop? 7 Other Musical Pairings for Ellen Greene & Jake Gyllenhaal
We have to agree with The New York Times' Ben Brantley, who wrote that Ellen Greene, reprising the role that made her a star, and Oscar nominee Jake Gyllenhaal, as down-on-his-luck plant-shop worker Seymour, had "sweet, sweet chemistry" in the recent, critically acclaimed, sold-out concert stagings of Little Shop of Horrors. In fact their pairing was so magical, suggests seven other musicals to keep this duo on a New York stage.

Sunset Boulevard
Greene has always seemed like she stepped out of an earlier era, and we would love to see the colors she would bring to the former silent-screen star Norma Desmond, including her two showstoppers, "With One Look" and "As If We Never Said Goodbye." And, Gyllenhaal would be a perfect fit for the rugged, struggling screenwriter Joe Gillis, who becomes unwittingly entangled in Norma's delusions.

Pal Joey
Yes, we would be "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered" — not to mention completely thrilled — by Greene's casting as wealthy widow Vera Simpson opposite Gyllenhaal as gigolo Joey Evans. In fact, if they asked us, "we could write a book" about that casting.

It's hard to believe Greene hasn't played merry murderess Roxie Hart in the Tony-winning revival of Chicago. We would love to see the Little Shop star flanked by a bevy of boys, and Gyllenhaal would certainly add his own charm to the role of slick lawyer Billy Flynn.

Guys and Dolls
Greene scored raves for her work as the perpetual cold-suffering Miss Adelaide in the Hollywood Bowl's summer staging of the classic Frank Loesser musical. We would love to see her reprise that part on Broadway with Gyllenhaal as gambler Sky Masterson.

Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Who wouldn't want to catch Jake Gyllenhaal rock it out in drag as the internationally ignored Hedwig? And, Greene would certainly bring new dimension to Hedwig's put-upon husband Yitzhak. We can already picture her in the over-the-top final outfit. Truth be told, though, we also think Greene would make an extraordinary Hedwig!

Sweeney Todd
We're not sure why she has never played the role, but Greene seems a natural successor to Angela Lansbury in the role of the kooky, pie-making Mrs. Lovett. A few weeks ago, we might have suggested Gyllenhaal for the role of the lovestruck Anthony, but after watching (and hearing) his work as Seymour, we think the film actor is up for the task of the avenging barber himself, Sweeney Todd.

Phone rings. Door chimes. In comes company. We can easily see both Ellen Greene and Jake Gyllenhaal coming through Stephen Sondheim's door: Greene as the biting Joanne — belting out "The Ladies Who Lunch" and imbuing her with an untapped vulnerability — and Gyllenhaal as the perennial bachelor, who longs for someone to "vary [his] days."

Little Shop of Horrors
Of course, we would also love a transfer of the superb City Center Encores! production of the Howard Ashman and Alan Menken musical to Broadway. Read's coverage of the evening here.

Ellen Greene and Jake Gyllenhaal in <i>Little Shop of Horrors</i>
Ellen Greene and Jake Gyllenhaal in Little Shop of Horrors Photo by Joan Marcus
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