Fans of Taylor Swift will be saddened to hear that she won’t be getting the role of Eponine in the upcoming movie adaptation of Les Miserables. The role which was sought after by such stars such as Scarlet Johansson, Evan Rachel Wood and Lea Michele will instead go to unknown actress Samantha Barks.
Though it was never officially announced, there was much speculation that Taylor Swift had been originally offered the role to
The news was announced by the movie’s producer, Cameron Mackintosh on the Les Miserables Twitter account.
“Big news: @SamanthaBarks will be Eponine in the Mis film! Mr Mackintosh knows how to pull off a coup de theatre, eh?”
Officially chosen by Director Tom Hooper, 21 year old Samantha Barks is a British stage actress who has had experiencing playing the role. Having played in the 2010 London stage production and in the 25th Anniversary concert at London’s 02 Arena alongside Nick Jonas,
Barks is reported to be delighted to have landed the role.
“I can’t believe I’m going to play Eponine, a role so close to my heart, a role I played in the West End. It’s the happiest moment of my life.” reveals Barks.
Barks also tweeted,
“Words cannot express how much I appreciate all the amazing support I have received from everyone! I haven’t stopped smiling!”
The movie Les Miserables will be an adaptation on the successful stage musical, which in turn is based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel of the same name. Set in France in the 19th century against the backdrop of a student revolution, the novel is about a paroled prisoner named Jean Valjean who seeks redemption. Eponine is a beautiful daughter of a corrupt innkeeper couple, who is originally pampered and spoiled by her parents until several years later she ends up a street urchin. In this new life she participates in her father’s crimes and schemes to obtain money. The road to redemption for Eponine is to bring her sister Cosette and Marius together, despite being in love with Marius herself. To ensure that tears are shed over the story; and show how nihilistic writers were back then even before Joss Whedon; Eponine stops a bullet meant for Marius with her body. Mortally wounded, Eponine’s final request is that she receives a kiss from Marius once she’s dead. Marius fulfills this request not out of romantic feelings, but out of pity for Eponine and the hard knock life she’s led.
Barks will join the star studded cast members already confirmed for the feature such as Anne Hathaway, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Eddie Redmayne, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen; itsa nice!
Shooting of the film is scheduled to begin in March and the film is to be in theaters by December 26, 2012.
As clean and polished a movie-musical can be, I don’t believe anything will surpass the real life theatre experience, but after listening to some clips of Barks, I think the movie adaptation will bring it close to home. Check out some of Samantha Banks as Eponine at the 25th Anniversary concert at O2 Arena in London below.