Exclusive: Hugh Jackman Talks His Return to Broadway and Gives Update on THE GREATEST SHOWMAN ON EARTH

     October 3, 2011


In addition to pulling off the brooding action star thing from time to time, Hugh Jackman is also very much a song and dance man. He won numerous awards, including the Tony, for his starring turn in the stage musical The Boy from Oz, and later this month Jackman is returning to Broadway for a 10-week run of Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway. Steve recently got the chance to speak to the actor about his upcoming sci-fi pic Real Steel, but the actor also talked about returning to Broadway, how he chose the songs he’s performing, his love for the stage, and he also gave an update on the P.T. Barnum-style movie musical The Greatest Showman on Earth. Hit the jump to see what the actor had to say.

hugh-jackman-image-1.jpgJackman talked about the motivation behind putting together this 10-week run of shows, and what kinds of songs he chose to perform:

“It took me a year [to choose which songs I would perform].  My overall goal was that I desperately wanted to sing these songs.  So the whole show would have a thing for me where if I’m busy and let’s say I have two weeks off, I would be like ‘I really want to go do this show for a week.’ rather than ‘Okay. I’m doing this show.’ It was really important to me to really choose stuff that I love and not just stuff that I thought people would love.  I have an eclectic kind of…there is some musical theater from stuff that I’ve done and there’s stuff that I have wanted to do that I haven’t done.  There are also standards, rock and roll, and a little bit of everything.”

hugh-jackman-image-3The thesp also talked about what drew him back to Broadway and the experience of performing there contrasted with other theaters:

“I’m lucky to have worked in theater all over the world, but there’s something magical about Broadway.  The audiences are smart, they’re educated.  They go in ready and they’re up for it, they’re up for the party.  It’s a whole different atmosphere.  A lot of the other places where you do theater you have a feeling that you have to win them over.  There’s little bit of them sitting on their hands.  In Broadway, if they don’t like you, they’ll let you know early on.  But then they’re like ‘Alright.  Let’s go.  We’re ready for a good night.’  There’s some combination between that, the history, the proximity of all of these theaters, and the community that exists in the theater – it’s just amazing.  There’s actually footage of me somewhere in 1996 when I was doing a musical down in Australia.  They sent me to New York to do a column piece, it was like an Australian 60 Minutes.  There’s footage of me in Times Square being a dickhead going, ‘Can you believe this?!  Look at this!  Maybe one day…’ So you have to be careful what you wish for.”

Finally, Jackman gave a brief update on the P.T. Barnum-esque movie musical The Greatest Showman on Earth, saying production is probably still a ways off:

“[It’s] this idea of a Barnum type character, that story about him, which I’ve always found fascinating, but not using the Cy Coleman music that was there, finding new music, finding a different way to tell the story. That came to me and I thought, ‘This is a great idea.’  I thought it would be a great part to play.  There is a script, but there is no music yet.  So it’s fair to say that it’s a long ways off.”

So it sounds like the well-rounded actor is plenty busy. After his 10-week run on Broadway, the actor will move to Tom Hooper’s adaptation of Les Miserables. If you missed his comments on that movie musical, including the possibility of shooting in 3D, click here. Also, click here to see what Jackman had to say about his X-Men: First Class cameo, and click here for his comments on The Wolverine script.


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