Tom Hooper's risky move

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Les Misérables is an adaptation of the popular stage musical based on Victor Hugo's classic novel. It is set in 19th-century France and revolves around a paroled prisoner named Jean Valjean who seeks redemption.
January 2nd, 2013

Tom Hooper admits directing 'Les Miserables' was a very risky career move.

The filmmaker won the Best Director Oscar for 2010 film 'The King's Speech' and he knew his next high-profile project would be under intense scrutiny, especially because he was making a big screen adaptation of the much-loved musical.

He said: ''I think I felt like when I was fortunate enough for the industry to give 'King's Speech' that kind of recognition I should use it to take a risk or be bold or stretch myself and not retrench into some kind of conservative next choice. And I think a movie-musical, one can safely say, is about the riskiest next choice you could do.''

Tom admits there were lots of potential pitfalls for him in the movie - which stars Hugh Jackman as reformed convict Jean Valjean - but wanted a big challenge.

He told collider.com: ''Hugh Jackman calls it the Mount Everest of filmmaking.

''I kind of know what he means in the sense that even when I see the film now I can still see all the pitfalls that I could have fallen into. I think it's a very demanding form of filmmaking because you're taking on a mode of communication that's not our mode of communication. You're creating a world in which people communicate through song. You're not taking advantage of the naturalism of spoken dialogue so you're taking a step into unknown territory or into a different style and success is so dependent upon whether you can make the idea of a world where people communicate through song natural, vital and visceral so that you just enter into the story, accept it and go on the journey as you would in a normal movie.''