Academy Award winner Russell Crowe is to star in a movie musical for the first time after being cast in the big-screen adaptation of Les Misérables. Variety magazine reports that Crowe beat several other contenders to play Inspector Javert, opposite Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean, in the film version of the musical that has been running since 1985.
There have been several failed attempts to film Les Misérables since the late 1980s, but this latest production has already attracted considerable attention as it is director Tom Hooper‘s follow-up to last year’s Oscar winner The King’s Speech.
The stage show’s original producer, Cameron Mackintosh, will be involved, along with British production company Working Title. William Nicholson, writer of Shadowlands, has been commissioned to work on the script; the musical itself was based on Victor Hugo’s 1862 classic novel.
Crowe’s role of policeman Javert pursues Jackman’s Jean Valjean throughout the story, which is set in 19th-Century France.
Russell is no stranger to banging out a tune or two. He still tours with his band 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts.