Musicals provide a magical experience, whether seen on stage or in theaters. Audiences often get to see both when hit Broadway plays make their way to the big screen. It's always fun to see these stories through a different platform, but there's something refreshing and exhilarating when an original live-action movie musical is released. La La Land danced its way through theaters in 2016 and now, one year later, we're getting The Greatest Showman. This could be the start of an amazing resurrection of the musical genre in Hollywood. If The Greatest Showman proves to be a smash hit, then more of these musicals could be on their way.
The Golden Age Of Movie Musicals
Original live-action musicals have always been a part of cinematic history, but they've faded from Hollywood's lineups. We have to go all the way back to the '30s, '40s and '50s to find them, to a time when classics such as The Wizard of Oz (1939), Meet Me in St. Louis (1944) and of course, Singin' in the Rain (1952) made their mark on the film industry. There's something magical about watching Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire waltz across the screen, or Judy Garland sing about a land somewhere over the rainbow. To this day, jaws still drop in awe at Gene Kelly's unrivaled tap dancing skills. This was a mythical era in Hollywood history that we thought was gone forever — until now. Ladies and gentlemen, introducing The Greatest Showman.
'The Greatest Showman'
Arriving on Christmas Day 2017, The Greatest Showman centers around the creation of show business by the infamous P. T. Barnum. The trailer strikes a hopeful note with the belief that we can become anything we want to be, despite our struggles. Infuse that message with a profound theme of acceptance of one another's differences and you have all the makings of an uplifting story.
The Greatest Showman features original songs written by the same geniuses who mesmerized us in La La Land — the Academy Award wining duo Ben Pasek and Justin Paul — not to mention the incredibly talented cast of Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya. The film also features Zac Efron's celebrated return to musicals after a nearly 10-year break from singing and dancing; you can bet he's developed as a performer since his High School Musical and Hairspray days.
Modern Day Musical
While there have been many wonderful musical films created over the last few decades, most are either remakes of Broadway plays (Phantom of the Opera, The Sound of Music), consist mostly of popular songs (Moulin Rouge, Mamma Mia) or are animated (anything Disney). While these productions are still marvelous, out of all these musicals, only a handful are entirely original. When The Greatest Showman arrives in theaters, viewers will be experiencing everything for the first time, just as if it were 75 years ago.
With La La Land and now The Greatest Showman, hopefully a new age of original live-action musicals is approaching, with more classics in the making. If La La Land is any indication, then the possibilities for The Greatest Showman and all the movies that come after are incredible.
(Source: 20th Century Fox)