Oscar Award winner Director to tackle Les Miserables

  Tom Hooper dutifully spent nearly six months promoting The King’s Speech, turning the film from a festival darling into a Best Picture winner, and nabbing his own Best Director trophy in the process. Since February’s Oscar ceremony Hooper has been keeping quiet and weighing his next move– he wasn’t attached to any new film before The King’s Speech was released, but according to Deadline he may have finally figured out what he wants to do next. As rumored back in February, around the same time he turned down the job of directing Iron Man 3, Hooper is making a deal at Universal to direct Les Miserables, an adaptation of the gigantic Broadway musical based on Victor Hugo’s novel. There’s no promise that it will definitely be his next film, but with production aiming to start before the year is over and a huge amount of pre-production required for a film »
Culture Film Tom HooperTom Hooper linked with film version of the musical Les MiserablesOscar-winning King’s Speech director reportedly in negotiations to adapt stage production of Victor Hugo’s classic Tweet this Share?39 Comments (…)? Ben Child guardian.co.uk, Friday 25 March 2011 11.32 GMT
Tom Hooper and his mother, Meredith, at the Oscars. If it comes to fruition, Hooper’s film version of Les Miserables would be the first based on the hit musical rather than Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel. Photograph: PR Photograph: Matt Sayles/APTom Hooper, the Oscar-winning director of the King’s Speech, looks set to take on a big-screen adaptation of long-running musical Les Miserables, reports Deadline.
Speculation has linked Hooper to a number of projects, including Les Mis, since his Academy Awards triumph. However, according to Deadline the British film-maker has now begun negotiations with Universal Pictures to adapt the stage hit for what could well be his next film. Bill Nicholson, the Oscar-nominated writer of Gladiator and Shadowlands, will take on script duties.
The King’s Speech has now taken $359m across the globe on a budget of just $15m (including marketing spend) since it opened in the US in November, and looks likely to continue making money for some time to come. As well as Les Miserables, Hooper was reportedly offered Tulip Fever by the Weinstein Company, which oversaw The King’s Speech, and an adaptation of Macbeth. Some websites have even claimed that he was offered the chance to direct superhero tale Iron Man 3.
Les Miserables is based on Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel of the same name, set in early 19th-century France and following the lives of an array of struggling characters including prostitutes, student revolutionaries and factory workers. The main protagonist, Jean Valjean, is an escaped convict who attempts to make a new life for himself but is constantly hunted by obsessed lawman Javert.
Previous attempts to bring Les Miserables to the cinema have utilised Hugo’s original tome, rather than the musical version. The most recent effort was 1998’s Bille August film, which starred Liam Neeson, The King’s Speech’s Geoffrey Rush and Uma Thurman and was well received by critics, though it only made $14m at the box office.

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