James McAvoy Favourite to Play Elton John in Biopic
-Men: First Class’ James McAvoy could be swapping Cerebro for centre stage, in the musical biopic of Sir Elton John’s life and career. While nothing is confirmed at this stage, The Hollywood News reports that McAvoy is favourite to play the lead in the aptly titled Rocketman, penned by Billy Elliot writer Lee Hall.
The musician himself and his partner David Furnish will act as producers on the project alongside Steve Hamilton, who intends to portray Elton’s life as, “an artist, musician and man.”
McAvoy – who is famous for his roles in X–Men, The Last King of Scotland and Atonement – is a surprising choice for the part, having never worked on a musical movie before.
However, if the Scot is cast in Rocketman’s titular role he will join the musical biopic hall of fame, home to the likes of Hollywood actors Joaquin Phoenix, Jamie Foxx and Marion Cotillard.
No further details about filming, or confirmed release dates have been issued as yet.
Young fans get VIP treatment from Sir Eltonhttp://southshorenow.ca/archives/2011/092711/arts/index006.php
by Robert Hirtle
Danny Ross, left, and his brother David proudly display the album cover which Sir Elton John autographed for them at his September 13 concert in Sydney.
Ms Ross was one of what was probably tens of thousands who jammed phone lines and the internet when tickets for Sir Elton first went on sale in mid-July, but she knew the odds of actually getting any were slim.
"It was a fluke really," she explained. "There was a glitch in the ticket system, so for the first hour all four of us went on our electronic equipment trying to get tickets and the phones weren't being answered and we were being booted off the electronic system."
While everyone else in the family gave up trying, Ms Ross persevered for another half-hour before she eventually called a relative in Sydney who told her the system had crashed.
"I figured everybody was like me and had just stopped for awhile, so around one o'clock I decided I was going to go back on and I checked two different ways that said it was sold out," she recalls. "I just kept clicking. You could tell that things weren't working right, then all of a sudden it said, 'How many tickets would you like?' It was just a stroke of luck."
Two months later, with eight tickets in hand, the Ross family and four friends converged on Centre 200 for the concert where, out of the blue, another, even bigger surprise awaited them, all because of something Ms Ross did "just on a whim."
The day before the event, she went to a store and had special T-shirts made up for her two sons. Danny's bore his Christian name, Daniel, which is also the title of one of Sir Elton's biggest hits, on the front, while David's carried the moniker "Daniel's My Brother," prominent words from the song's chorus.
"I thought maybe they'd get a picture taken," she laughed. "I didn't know exactly. I hadn't been to a concert for many a day."
As it turned out, those T-shirts attracted a lot more attention than the family ever dreamed.
"We were just sitting down and this guy come up to us and said, 'How would you and your brother like two front-row seats, because Elton John would like your shirts,'" David said.
Before the show started, Danny and David were shuttled to the front of the stage and spent the entire two-hour concert barely six feet away from the pop superstar as he performed a selection of his greatest hits, including "Daniel," which he dedicated "to the two boys wearing the shirts in the front row."
The excitement, however, didn't end there.
Ms Ross had taken her husband's copy of Sir Elton's 1975 album "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy" in the remote hope of getting an autograph, and had given it to David before they proceeded to their front-row seats.
"When the guy came with the tickets David asked, 'Can we get autographs?' and he said, 'Probably,' and he remembered," she laughed.
Prior to doing his encore, Sir Elton came to the edge of the stage and gestured for the record, which he signed and passed back to the two young fans, an expression which someone in the audience captured on video and later posted on YouTube.
It was a fitting conclusion for a night which was truly one to remember.
"It was surreal," Danny said.
Brooklyn Decker: Andy Roddick Foundation Charity Gala!http://justjared.buzznet.com/2011/09/26/brooklyn-decker-andy-roddick-foundation-charity-gala-2/
The event, which featured a cocktail reception, dinner, live auction, and a performance by Elton (who sang at Andy and Brooklyn’s wedding), helped raise more than $1 million for children’s organizations!
Elton hit the stage to belt out some of his classics before closing the set with a tribute to The Lion King. He also praised Andy for his philanthropic efforts, even calling him a “mench” in between songs.
Brooklyn, 24, later caught a flight back to Atlanta where she wrapped up filming What to Expect When You’re Expecting.
Also pictured at the gala: NFL star Terrell Owens.
Billy Elliot: Jack Broderick plays Michaelhttp://www.newyorktheatreguide.com/news/sp11/billyelliot556824.htm
Jack Broderick joins the cast of the 10-time Tony Award winning Billy Elliot - The Musical, alternating the role of 'Michael' with current cast member Cameron Clifford. Broderick replaces Neil McCaffrey who played his final performance on 25 Sep 2011.
Broderick has previously played the role of 'Michael' in both the Chicago and Toronto productions of the musical.
Billy Elliot - The Musical's principal cast now features Emily Skinner (Mrs. Wilkinson), Daniel Jenkins (Dad), Katherine McGrath (Grandma), Patrick Mulvey (Tony), Jack Broderick and Cameron Clifford (alternate Michael), and *Giuseppe Bausilio, Tade Biesinger, Joseph Harrington and Peter Mazurowski (alternate as Billy).
*Giuseppe Bausilio plays his final performance as Billy on 9 Oct 2011, he will be replaced by Myles Erlick.
Billy Elliot - The Musical opened at the Imperial Theatre on 13 Nov 2008, following previews from 1 Oct, where it is currently selling tickets through to 31 Dec 2011.
The show opened to excellent reviews: Everything about this production is remarkable. (newyorktheatreguide.com); Enduring appeal (NY Times); Irresistible new show (NY Daily News); Head and toe-shoes above every other show this season (NY Post); As seriously thrilling as it is deeply lovable (NewsDay); Tough, intelligent, exuberant, electric, politically savvy, and fun (Back Stage).
Set in England's North East against the background of the miners' strike - Billy Elliot is the tale of a motherless boy whose father wants him to take up boxing. Instead, the boy discovers a love for ballet that leads him from secret lessons to a place at the Royal Ballet School.
Billy Elliot is created by the same team that made the multi-Oscar-nominated film: writer Lee Hall, director Stephen Daldry, and choreographer Peter Darling. The musical's score is by Elton John, who also composed the music for 'The Lion King,' 'Aida' and 'Lestat.'
Billy Elliot - The Musical was a London hit when it opened at the Victoria Palace Theatre on 11 May 2005 and has been a box office hit ever since.
The London production won Three Olivier Awards: Best New Musical, Best Actor and Choreographer. It also won the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical. A production of the show opened in sydney in Dec 2007.
The Broadway production features the same creative team as London's: Ian MacNeil (sets), Nicky Gillibrand (costumes), Rick Fisher (lighting) and Paul Arditti (sound).
The musical is produced on Broadway by Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Working Title Films and Old Vic Productions in association with Weinstein Live Entertainment.