Can you imagine better casting for the role of Audrey II in the upcoming Little Shop of Horrors movie than Billy Porter? I certainly can’t, and I say as much in the clip above from an upcoming episode of Collider Connected. In celebration of the FX series Pose – an absolute must-see if you haven’t watched it already – Porter was generous enough to take a moment to talk about some upcoming projects and that, of course, includes Greg Berlanti’s take on Little Shop of Horrors.
It all began with the Roger Corman-directed feature film in 1960 that went on to inspire the hugely popular stage music of the 80s which was then adapted into the 1986 film that starred Rick Moranis as Seymour, Ellen Greene as Audrey, Steve Martin as Dr. Scrivello and, of course, Levi Stubbs voicing the giant man-eating plant, Audrey II. It’s a truly iconic voice performance so Porter does have his work cut out for him with this one, but he’s got history with the material and certainly seems keen on going big with the role. Here’s what he told me when asked how he’s approaching the part:
“This was one of the musicals that is from my generation, from the 80s, so I’ve known it, the songs have been my audition songs for years. And I was also in the out-of-town revival tryout before it went to Broadway back in 2002, and I got let go from that so I’ve already played the voice of the plant. And I just approached it from the standpoint of what it truly is; it’s kind of like the Faustian story. It’s kind of like the devil story. Like, ‘Sell your soul to me and I’ll give you everything you want.’ He’s a villain! And I don’t get to play villains very often, so get ready because he’s gonna be everything. All of the things! I’m gonna use all of the different ranges of the voice!”
Our last update on Little Shop of Horrors came in February when it was revealed that Chris Evans was in talks to take the role of dentist Orin Scrivello. It was also previously reported that Taron Egerton was in negotiations to play Seymour and Scarlett Johansson was circling the role of Audrey to round out the main ensemble.
That’s all from Porter on Little Shop of Horrors, but we covered a lot more in his full episode of Collider Connected. You’ll have to wait until mid-June for that, but keep an eye out for another short clip from the conversation about Pose and, in particular, how star Mj Rodriguez deserves even more acclaim for her performance coming to Collider soon!