Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Last Five Years Film Adaptation: I Really Want to Believe in You

Jason Robert Brown's The Last Five Years is one of my favorite musicals.  Its original Off-Broadway run starred Norbert Leo Butz and Sherie Rene Scott, two of theater's biggest stars.  I discovered L5Y when I was in college, and I have been obsessed with it every since.

I accept your proposal Norbert.  Sherie...get outta're ruining our moment!!!

The Last Five Years (for those of you who are unfamiliar, you don't lead a fulfilled life) follows the five year marriage (and destruction) of Jamie and Cathy.  We first meet Cathy (a failed actress) after her marriage to Jamie has dissolved and she follows their love story in reverse, while Jamie (an up-and-coming author) begins at the beginning of their relationship and works his way forward.  In the stage show, the two only meet in the middle when they get married.  By the end of the show, Jamie has left Cathy and she is hopeful as a new relationship dawns.  I actually remember crying my eyes out by the end of the show like a blubbering fool.

A few weeks back, it was announced that Anna Kendrick (Oscar-nominated from Up in the Air and cup-flipping from Pitch Perfect) has been cast in the role of Cathy in a film adaptation of Jason Robert Brown's musical.  I LOOOOOOOOVE Anna Kendrick.  I discovered her when she played Fritzi in Camp, so for all those people who know her from Pitch Perfect need to watch her psychotic turn as a shy, conniving bitch in the summer-camp musical extravaganza.

Jamie and Cathy are a young couple, but I feel like Kendrick comes across too young.  She looks like a sophomore in high school.  Eh, what do I know.  Then, it was announced that Jeremy Jordan would be playing Jamie.  Jeremy Jordan is drop dead sexy.  I mean, come oonnnn.

That's just not fair.  

The guy can sing, I know, but he has to be the hunkiest Jamie on record.  I've never seen a Jamie with that sexy of a chin cleft.  

So, even if I look past Kendick's lack of living and Jordan's super studliness, there is one thing I can't get out of my head.  The Last Five Years will be adapted and directed by none other than Richard LaGravenese.  My opinion on LaGravenese's last film, Beautiful Creatures, is far from positive, and his entire filmography makes me nervous.

One this is for sure.  They make a damn fine couple.

LaGravenese has two major credits to his name.  P. S. I Love You is one of the shittiest romantic dramas ever made (if Gerard Butler was trying to communicate to me from the dead, I'd kill myself) and Freedom Writers is tepid at best.  Not only did he direct these two pieces of garbage (both coincidentally starred Hilary Swank), he adapted both from books.  God only knows what he will do to a small musical.  Can someone make sure that Jason Robert Brown has creative control?  Anyone?  

Since the show only features two actors, I am curious if they are going to flesh it out, or if they are going to just let it be.  I am incredibly skeptical, and it will be an uphill climb for me to convinced.


  1. "I've never seen a Jew with that sexy of a chin cleft. "

    Jeremy Jordan's mother is Jewish, which makes him Jewish. I'm sure he gets the chin cleft from his father, though, no question. (isn't Kirk Douglas the actor with the most famous chin cleft in movie history? Gee what could that man's ethnicity be...).

    The original actor, Norbert Leo Butz, is definitely not Jewish, and with such a last name I am grateful.

  2. For future reference:
    Actors of fully Jewish background: -Logan Lerman, Natalie Portman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Mila Kunis, Bar Refaeli, James Wolk, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Julian Morris, Adam Brody, Esti Ginzburg, Kat Dennings, Gabriel Macht, Erin Heatherton, Odeya Rush, Anton Yelchin, Paul Rudd, Scott Mechlowicz, Lisa Kudrow, Lizzy Caplan, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Gal Gadot, Debra Messing, Robert Kazinsky, Melanie Laurent, Shiri Appleby, Justin Bartha, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Margarita Levieva, Elizabeth Berkley, Halston Sage, Seth Gabel, Skylar Astin, Mia Kirshner, Alden Ehrenreich, Eric Balfour, Jason Isaacs, Jon Bernthal.

    Actors with Jewish mothers and non-Jewish fathers -Jake Gyllenhaal, Dave Franco, James Franco, Scarlett Johansson, Daniel Day-Lewis, Daniel Radcliffe, Alison Brie, Eva Green, Emmy Rossum, Rashida Jones, Jennifer Connelly, Nora Arnezeder, Goldie Hawn, Ginnifer Goodwin, Amanda Peet, Eric Dane, Jeremy Jordan, Joel Kinnaman, Ben Barnes, Patricia Arquette, Kyra Sedgwick, Dave Annable.

    Actors with Jewish fathers and non-Jewish mothers, who themselves were either raised as Jews and/or identify as Jews: -Andrew Garfield, Ezra Miller, Gwyneth Paltrow, Alexa Davalos, Nat Wolff, Nicola Peltz, James Maslow, Josh Bowman, Winona Ryder, Ben Foster, Nikki Reed, Zac Efron, Jonathan Keltz.

    Oh, and Ansel Elgort’s father is Jewish, though I don’t know how Ansel was raised.

    Actors with one Jewish-born parent and one parent who converted to Judaism -Dianna Agron, Sara Paxton (whose father converted, not her mother), Alicia Silverstone, Jamie-Lynn Sigler.

  3. I simply meant that Jordan's good looks are a bit distracting for the character. I've always felt that Cathy fell in love with Jamie's writing/words and his charisma (which Jordan exudes), but any time I've talk about his association with the adaptation, friends have made the comment, "he's so hot!" I feel the same way about his casting as I did about Gerard Butler being cast as the Phantom in the Phantom of the Opera. I didn't mean to offend anyone with my unclear phrasing!