Saturday, March 17, 2012

He Sings: Movie Musical Revivals Starring Richard Armitage





We’re in Day Six of  FanstRAvaganza 3 in THE FREEFORM tagteam chain! see my partner’s posts at C.S. Winchester and Something About Love (A).






From the moment I saw the first trailer for The Hobbit and heard Richard Armitage sing I've had a burning desire to see him in a movie musical. 


Hollywood hasn't been doing too well with film musicals in the last few decades, I think one of the few successful ones was the Academy Award winning Chicago (2002).  But maybe now after the success of the new American television series SMASH the movie public will be yearning for the days of the film musicals to return.


Is this Richard Armitage?
Is this Richard Armitage in CATS? I'm not sure if it is him, from the Richard Armitage Board.

Who better to star in the revival of the film musical than Richard Armitage. For those that may not know, Armitage started his career on the musical stage, including 42nd Street (1990-1991) and CATS (1993-1995).  Of course, a new musical written just for him, including a few scenes of him dancing the tango, would be ideal. In the meantime there are a few musicals out there that could use a film revival and that would be perfect for Richard Armitage. 


Try to imagine him in the role as you view the clips below.

Kiss Me Kate








A Cole Porter musical based on "The Taming of the Shrew" by William Shakespeare.  The story follows a troop of actors behind-the-scenes and on stage rehearsing a musical production of Shakespeare's play.  The actors that play Petruchio and Katherine used to be married but are now feuding on stage and off. Of course, being a musical, the fighting between the two actors can only mean that they are still in love. In this film clip from the 1948 movie we see Howard Keel, who plays Petruchio/Frederick sings "Where is the Life that Late I Led?" and I can certainly see Richard Armitage in this comedic leading man role.









Company





Considered one of the first musicals to deal with adult themes, this 1970 musical by Stephen Sondheim and George Furth revolves around the birthday party of single man Bobby and his group of married friends. Instead of a linear plot the musical is a series of vignettes revolving around different themes about relationships. One good thing about making a film with Richard Armitage as Bobby is that I believe Company has never been made into a film. The nature of this musical calls for an imaginative director along with an imaginative actor (Armitage) to make this work on film.  Below is a clip with Dean Jones as Bobby signing "Being Alive" in the original 1970 cast album. 











The Fantasticks 






One of the longest running musicals ever by Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones (not the one you're thinking of!) this 1960 musical was based on Edmond Rostand's play "Les Romanesques".  In a small town two fathers hire a traveling company of actors, led by El Gallo, to trick their children, Matt and Louisa, into falling in love. 
The musical was made into an unsuccessful film in 1995 (released in 2000) so there is lots of room for improvement with the right director and with Armitage as El Gallo. The name El Gallo means The Rooster in Spanish and you really need a man who embodies those "gallo" qualities, and no one will do that better than Richard. Below is a clip with British actor Jonathon Morris as El Gallo from the film:












My Fair Lady


Who is that man on the left? Jeremy Brett

The 1958 musical by Alan Lerner and Frederick Loewe is based on George Bernard Shaw's "Pygmalion" and was made into a film in 1964. It is the story of  Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle and misogynistic phoneticist  Prof. Henry Higgins.This would be the musical on my list that I would be reluctant to remake. Why tamper with a perfect and much loved film with performances by Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison? Because the only contemporary actor that I believe could rival Rex Harrison in playing a charming curmudgeon in this comedy/romance is Richard Armitage. We can also add that Harrison really was not as handsome. Below a clip of Rex Harrison singing "I've Grown Accustomed to her Face": 



You can also download and watch at link below.





Please vote on the POLL in the right hand sidebar and select which one of the musicals profiled above you think Richard Armitage should star in. You can also select Other and write your selection in the comments section of this post. 

I will post the results of the poll a week after FanstRAvaganza 3 and also update this post with the results.



For more of THE FREEFORM tagteam in FanstRA 3, see my partner’s post at C.S. Winchester and  Something About Love (A).  Tomorrow The FREEFORM tagteam continues at La Loba,  Me, My Thoughts, and Who Knows,  and I Want To Be A Pin- Up . All previous The FREEFORM posts and All F3 links can be found here.


This is my last post for FanstRAvaganza 3.  It has been incredible fun and a privilege to be part of this special week to celebrate Richard Armitage and his wonderful fans, my fellow fans. Thank you all so much for reading, viewing, and commenting. Looking forward to next year's FanstRA.

22 comments:

  1. I know how you felt hearing him sing in the trailer. I think I stopped breathing. I play it all of the time. As a matter of fact, Richard and I sang a lovely duet on my way home from running errands today. Wouldn't he make a GREAT Prof in My Fair Lady? Or maybe VonTrapp in the Sound of Music?

    BTW, love your Eye of the Dragon graphic at the top left!! If you did it..way to GO!! Very eye catching, no pun intended....

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    1. You know, I hadn't thought about VonTrapp, but that would also be an excellent musical role for him.

      Thank you for loving my dragon eye! Wish I could take full credit, but it comes from a "face in hole" kind of thing, a full calendar actually. I just added Thorin and cropped it so it looks like Smaug looking at Thorin (or so I hoped).

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  2. Tough choice. I voted for My Fair Lady because it's my favorite of your choices. I've seen the movie many times and saw it onstage once. However, the musical Company has its appeal because it's never been made into a film and I always enjoy it when Richard Armitage creates new characters we've not seen before.

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    1. Hi Bccmee - good comment about Company and RA having the opportunity to create a new character. Maybe a producer out there will think it's a good idea :)

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  3. I think I'd like to see him play Higgins in MFL, but I don't want them remaking the movie because I love it as it is.

    As for Cats photo, I hadn't seen it before, but the facial shape and smirk look like him, but it's so hard to tell because the eye makeup makes it nearly impossible to be certain. haha

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    1. Thanks! I fully understand what you are saying about remaking My Fair Lady.

      I'm with you about the CATS photo....is it him???

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  4. Hi Fabo,
    I don't think that CATS closeup is RA. The chin is way too pointy.
    I love My Fair Lady. I've wanted to do a fan vid set to "I've grown accustomed to his Face"--there's a nice Debby Boone version, as well as a Diana Krall. But Angie beat me to it. Ha! Still, our takes might be different. So, I might eventualy do it. Ha!
    Cheers! Grati ;->

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    1. P.S. Angie used the Peggy Lee version of the song.

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    2. Hi Grati! Good comment about the CATS photo.
      I love that song from My Fair Lady and if you have a different idea and a different interpretation by a singer...I'm sure Angie will understand :)

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  5. This was a close competition between My Fair Lady and Kiss Me Kate. Tough One! I also had Javert in Les Miserables in mind :)

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    1. Oh yes, great suggestion, Javert would be an excellent part for him. I can actually just picture him in it. Les Miserables is such a wonderful musical.

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  6. What about the Scarlet Pimpernell? That is a fun musical. I'd like him in Kiss Me Kate. I'd like to see him smile.

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    1. Hi Beverly - you know I've never seen the Scarlet Pimpernell musical. Must see it :)
      I do think he would be a great Percy Blakeney, great idea.

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  7. I went for My Fair Lady. First of all I know it the best from the group. Second of all I think Richard would be great as a teacher ;)
    But if I'm honest I'm so starved for something new, I'll go for anything, and I mean anything! Good, bad violent or fluffy. Bring it on!

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    1. Is it December yet?
      Think we would all enjoy something fluffy for a change - LOL

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  8. What a difficult choice! I voted for Kiss Me Kate -don't want a re-make of MFL, either! :D But Company seems intriguing....Great post!

    fitzg

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    1. Thanks fitzg! Both great choices and I understand about MFL.

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  9. Hi Fabo, I love your choice of movies.
    I voted Kiss me Kate! one of my fave of all time and Howard Keel is gourgeously sexy and an excellent baritone. This would be a challenge among Keel/Armitage!

    Number two is My Fair Lady for me.

    You did not include Phantom of the Opera in the list. I know many ladies in the fandom would vote for this role.

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    1. I agree about Howard Keel. He was the Richard Armitage of his day :) For RA's version they could make the "backstage" story more contemporary.

      I will add Phantom of the Opera to the "other" list for this poll. Too early for a remake though, even for Hollywood, since the film was made in 2004.

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  10. I love My Fair Lady,Fabolaktuko!:)
    Always thought looking at that photo from Cats : Something is wrong,this is not RA!

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    1. Hi Joanna! Thank you for your thoughts on the CATS photo. It popped up when I was searching for RA CATS info on Google as being him, but I had my doubts like you.

      Thank you for voting for MFL!

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  11. http://busmovieblog.pt.la/

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