When the Les Miserables big screen adaptation was first announced, there was both tentative excitement and trepidation about what such a beloved musical would look on the big screen. However, when Tom Hooper signed on as the director and Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, and Anne Hathaway were reported as the leads, the concerns were mostly replaced by a growing excitement. Now, the film has finally started screenings to Academy and Guild members, just one month before its wide release on Christmas Day.
The film reportedly debuted to thundering applause, with each musical number getting a great response and all the actors getting a standing ovation at the end of the film. Deadline also reports that there was immediate talk of Les Miserables gaining Oscar nominations in many categories, and could even unseat Lord of the Rings and Titanic as the most nominated film ever.
They also have an interview with Hugh Jackman right after the screening, and Jackman said, “I just saw it last night (in Sydney). I was pretty speechless I have to say. I think when I saw it in its entirety — I knew intellectually it was a big risk — but when I saw it I said ‘wow, man. This is massive, a big bone to chew on, that one’. I felt so proud to be part of it. And I think for Tom to do this as his first film after King’s Speech is just an incredible kind of testament to him.”
He also added, “It’s a big risk and I’m not surprised it has taken 27 years to take the punt on it. It’s tough to watch any movie you are in anyway, no matter what the genre, because you always put everything into it. You want it to work. With a musical all those feelings are tripled because you have a lot of elements that come together. I was a very relieved man about 6PM last night.”