Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper‘s big budget, musical adaptation of Les Miserables made my top ten anticipated films of 2012 because behind all the geek stereotypes, a good musical really gets to me and Les Miserables is one of my favorites. So when I say these newly leaked set videos featuring stars Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway singing are among some of the best I’ve ever seen, it comes from a place of passion.

One of the videos looks to be the grand finale of the story, the reprise of “Do You Hear The People Sing?” performed the entire company. Another is of Jackman’s character, Jean Valjean, storming out of a church singing and a third is of Russell Crowe‘s character Javier, who is hunting Valjean, riding to set on a horse.

Okay, so the videos get less exciting as they go along but they do provide a unique glimpse at the filming of such a massive musical. Check them out after the jump. Read More »

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Spy photos from the set of Tom Hooper‘s massive musical Les Miserables have already revealed stars Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe as Jean Valjean and Inspector Javier: an escaped inmate and the man who pursues him across the decades. Both photos gave a good idea of the look of the film but Jackman has now tweeted an official image offering a closer look. Literally. Check it out after the jump. Read More »

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After picking up Best Director and Best Picture at the 2010 Oscars, The King’s Speech helmer Tom Hooper mostly sat out this past awards season. But the way things are shaping up for his next film, Les Misérables, it’s more than likely he’ll be back in the spotlight again next year.

With its classic literary roots, Broadway pedigree, and a star-studded cast that includes Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Amanda Seyfried, among others, Les Mis is already looking like an early favorite to take home several statuettes come February 2013. Now, with cameras finally rolling on the project, we have the first set photos of Jackman in costume as protagonist Jean Valjean. Check them out after the jump.

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After months of speculation, rumors, and reports, Tom Hooper‘s Les Misérables has finally found its Éponine. Producer Cameron Mackintosh has just announced that 21-year-old stage vet Samantha Barks has landed the role. Barks is a newcomer when it comes to film and television, but has racked up plenty of experience in the theater — including a stint playing Éponine in a London production of Les Misérables.

Meanwhile, another fresh face, George Blagden, has also boarded the project, in the part of cynical young revolutionary Grantaire. Blagden and Barks join a high-profile cast that includes Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen, Helena Bonham Carter, and Aaron Tveit. Read more after the jump.

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[Update: Deadline now reports that Seyfried is in final negotiations for the role.]

Tom Hooper‘s already star-studded cast for Les Misérables is about to expand by two more, as news breaks that Amanda Seyfried and Taylor Swift have been offered the roles of Cosette and Éponine, respectively. If Seyfried and Swift accept, they’ll also be joining Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, Aaron Tveit, and Eddie Redmayne in the musical, which is due out next winter. Read more after the jump.

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‘Les Misérables’ Cast May Sing Live on Camera

That Tony Award-winning Broadway vet Hugh Jackman was a great pick to star as Jean Valjean Tom Hooper‘s Les Misérables was never in doubt, but it seems his theater experience may prove even more helpful to the film production than we previously expected. According to a new report, Hooper has ordered his cast to sing live while shooting their scenes, much as they would if they were performing in a stage musical.

The more usual method is to record the vocals in a studio and lip-synch during filming, so Hooper’s decision suggests that we may be seeing something more traditionally theatrical than we’re used to seeing from big-screen musicals. Read more after the jump.

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For a while there it looked like Ariel Vromen‘s The Iceman was on the verge of falling apart, as James Franco dropped out of the project. But the hitman biopic is moving along with David Schwimmer and Chris Evans added to the cast in recent weeks, and now Winona Ryder has boarded the picture as well in a role once slated for Maggie Gyllenhaal.

Ryder will play the wife of mob contract killer Richard Kuklinski, a.k.a. The Iceman (Michael Shannon), who’s unaware of the true nature of her husband’s career. Ray Liotta and Ryan O’Nan will also star.

Based on interview footage and Anthony Bruno‘s book The Iceman: The True Story of a Cold-Blooded Killer, the picture is scheduled to begin production early next year in Louisiana. [Deadline]

After the jump, a former Everybody Loves Raymond star gets fired by a former The Office star, a Broadway adaptation casts a Broadway star, and a trio of rising Brit talents sign on for an artsy romance.

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There’s still no word on who’ll be playing Éponine in Tom Hooper‘s Les Misérables, but the project has landed yet another well-known star to play her father. According to LondonNetSacha Baron Cohen is set to join Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, and Eddie Redmayne in the musical, in the role of the villainous inn owner Monsieur Thénardier. Helena Bonham Carter was said to be in talks to play Thénardier’s wife earlier this year, but it’s not clear whether she’s actually attached at this point.

Cohen did a bit of singing in his last big-screen musical, Tim Burton’s Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and is slated to do still more as the lead of that Freddie Mercury biopic from producer Graham King. In terms of non-singing roles, Cohen recently appeared in Martin Scorsese’s Hugo, and already has three more movies scheduled to open next year — The Dictator, Madagascar 3, and Django Unchained. Get used to that face, because you’ll be seeing a lot of it in 2012.

Les Misérables opens December 7, 2012. [via The Playlist]

After the jump, a Disney gal decides it’s time to break into more mature territory, and Diablo Cody’s next project finds a mom for Julianne Hough.

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