In celebration of National Coming Out Day, AMC had the opportunity to interview the creative team of writer Tom MacRae, director Jonathan Butterell and songwriter Dan Sells about their upcoming movie, EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE. This is the same creative team that has worked for the past seven years on the stage production based in London and now have the opportunity for a greater audience to experience the universal story of community and kindness when it opens at AMC Theatres in 2021. Tom MacRae, the writer, described the film, “It’s a story about community and coming together. And the power of joy and kindness. I would say kindness is Jamie's superpower. And at the moment, it is the story we need.”
The three men have collaborated for seven years on the stage and now the cinema production of EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE, but they never lost their vision. Tom defined their working relationship as a single commonality of a universal story, “There is a line in the stage show, ‘we have all known who you are’. It is a simple thing to say but very important and powerful thing to me. And with JAMIE, if strip away everything else, at the heart of it, me, Dan and Johnny have always known what it is".
This creative team all identifies with the story of Jamie, but after thousands of auditions they discovered their new Jaime, Max Hardwood. They are extremely excited for audiences to see Max embrace the character in his own amazing way. Dan Sells believes Max is up for the task on and off camera, “Jamie is the voice of a generation and the weight of all of that lies on Max's shoulders because he is going to be the role model for millions of young people.”
In addition to the fresh face of Jamie, the creative team realized they had advantages turning the stage production into a big screen musical. From the beginning of the stage production, Tom and Dan had written portions of the production for film, so when it was announced that the stage performance was going to be produced for the big screen they were overjoyed, “and suddenly we were making the movie, and we got to have all these ideas that we had in the back of our heads for a long time and actually go put them out there and make them real.”
One of the advantages of the cinematic experience was to create a greater scope for the story, “We have the beautiful vistas of Sheffield and the great winding streets and rolling hills. And we get to tell the story on a great big stage, but at the heart it’s still that same simple story of a boy and his mum and their unconditional love for each other.” You can feel the passion the three creative personalities have for the story of Jamie and want to insure that even though the production is larger, that the vision has not changed, “This is our movie, just as much as JAMIE was our stage show, this is made with the same spirit. And I think our fans of the stage show will love the movie just as much!”
Get ready for the powerful and heartfelt film, EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE when it opens at AMC Theatres in February.