Cameron Mackintosh appeared at the curtain call at last nights performance of Oliver! at The Palace Theatre, Manchester and surprised Samantha Barks, who plays Nancy, by announcing that Tom Hooper has chosen her for the part of Eponine in the forthcoming movie of the epic stage musical ‘Les Miserables’ .
Samantha said, “it was the most incredible moment of my life”.
Directed by Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech), Les Miserables is a Working Title/Cameron Mackintosh production produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Debra Hayward and Cameron Mackintosh. The film stars Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried and Aaron Tveit. The screenplay is by William Nicholson, Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg based on the novel by Victor Hugo and adapted from Boublil and Schönberg’s hit stage musical Les Miserables, produced by Cameron Mackintosh.
Barks was first discovered in 2008 as one of thousands of hopefuls in the BBC talent show series ‘I’d Do Anything’. She was the youngest finalist in the competition to find a new Nancy for Cameron Mackintosh’s West End revival of Oliver! starring Rowan Atkinson, and is currently playing the role of Nancy in Mackintosh’s UK tour of the musical.
No stranger to the role, Barks played Eponine in the London production of ‘Les Miserables’ in 2010 and was subsequently chosen to play the part in the spectacular 25th Anniversary celebration at London’s O2 which was screened live in cinemas across the globe and is now a best-selling DVD. The search for someone to play Eponine has been global and extensive and Samantha won the role over many established singers and actresses.
Shooting will start in March.