I saw Les Miserables, and can report that Anne Hathaway should start rehearsing her acceptance…
No, wait, I’m not allowed to critique the film just yet.
Too soon! Too soon!
So I’ll just say she plays Fantine, the abandoned-mother-turned-unwell-prostitute who sings the plaintive “I Dreamed a Dream.”
And I’ll add that Hathaway’s version is raw, teary, sung live, and (oh, hell, let me say it) really powerful.
At a Q&A after the premiere the other night, Hathaway was told by a moderator that her take on the song is certainly different from Susan Boyle‘s.
“I can’t sing like Susan Boyle,” said Hathaway, graciously.
“I didn’t listen to Patti LuPone‘s version until I was finished,” she added.
“The bar has been set so high by so many incredible vocalists, there’s no way I could match it.”
So director Tom Hooper told her to simply do it differently and to think of it not as a song, but as “a howl from the center of your soul.”
Also memorable is the scene where Hathaway’s character gets her hair cut so she can sell it to help clothe her child–a traumatic moment for the actress, who had music piped into her earphones to soothe her during it.
Hooper explained that he had a wonderful male hairdresser dress up like a crone, so he could perform the task in the film.
“Anne wasn’t the least bit distracted by a man in drag cutting her hair,” Hooper mused.
“It wasn’t the first time, sweetie,” replied the smiling Anne, who concluded, “I looked like my gay brother!”