Hugh Jackman has signed on for The Greatest Showman on Earth, in which he plays a surly lumberjack with a deadly secret… ha, just kidding, he’s the lead in a musical about PT Barnum.
An original contemporary musical to be scripted by Jenny Bicks (“Sex and the City”), the film will be produced by Laurence Mark (“Dreamgirls”), Jackman and his Seed partner John Palermo. It is an outgrowth of their work together on the 81st Academy Awards, on which Jackman was host, Mark was exec producer, and Bicks was part of the Emmy-nominated writing team.
The musical also focuses on his infatuation with singer Jenny Lind — the so-called Swedish Nightingale. It follows the old Hollywood tradition in which tuners were scripted with specific actors in mind. The Lind role is being scripted for Anne Hathaway, who teamed with Jackman in his opening Oscars number. Jackman, who won the Tony Award for “The Boy From Oz,” is determined to make several screen musicals, and the Barnum film adds another to the properties he and Palermo are putting together at Fox. [Variety]
I can’t watch musicals, because no matter how hard I try to be accepting, every time someone breaks into song, part of me always wishes Sir Lancelot would burst in and kill everyone with his sword like in Monty Python. And that hardly ever happens (possible American Idol finale?). But boy, Hugh Jackman sure likes to be the singin’ ‘n dancin’ center of attention. He’s like the male Liza Minnelli.