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Taylor Swift joins Les Miserables – Casting coup or mistake?

News of a 'Les Miserables' movie fill me with excitement and dread ... particularly after the latest bit of casting news.

Taylor Swift joins Les Miserables   Casting coup or mistake? [Les Miz] (IMAGE)

I love movie musicals. I love Broadway musicals. My favorite Broadway musical is Les Miserables because it’s such an epic show with great music and an amazing set. I jump at any chance to see the show when it comes to town. I’ve been alternately hoping for/dreading a movie version of the show because I know they’ll “open” it up to include actual sets and locations and I’m just not sure how a show that has zero spoken dialogue and a stage with a large turntable will translate to film.

But my dreams/fears are coming true as a film version is set to happen now. I was able to put my fears aside once I heard the names of the lead cast — Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean, Russell Crowe as Inspector Javert (replacing original star Paul Bettany), Anne Hathaway as Fantine, Amanda Seyfried as Cosette, Sasha Baron Cohen and (possibly) Helena Bonham Carter as the Thenardiers … and then dread set in once again with the latest casting news: Taylor Swift as Eponine. Taylor Swift! Who has been in one movie, Valentine’s Day, for all of ten minutes. And she reportedly beat out Lea Michele, Scarlett Johannson and Evan Rachel Wood (although I don’t know if the latter two can sing, and Michele has done Broadway).

Now, I don’t mean to have a Kanye moment here and throw cold water all over young Miss Swift’s good news, but I don’t know if this was the best choice. Yes, Swift has a devoted following and casting her is certainly a calculated move to bring in younger audience members (what, the Gleeks aren’t good enough?), she’s won many awards for her albums, but I’ve heard her sing live on TV a few times and she’s … just not that good live. Sorry. Just have a peek at her performance with Stevie Nicks at the Grammys. I don’t mean to hate on her for this one bad performance, but I’ve seen her sing elsewhere and there’s obviously a lot of tweaking going on in the studio.

I know you’re saying to yourself, “Why should that matter since they pre-record the singing for movies anyway?” Well, it matters because it’s been revealed that all of the singing in the movie will be done live. No pre-recorded tracks by the stars. Maybe Taylor can pull off the singing, but then there’s the acting. Can director Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) pull a great performance out of her? If they wanted someone to draw kids to the movie, why not just cast Nick Jonas as Marius? He’s already done the role in the 25th anniversary concert performance. I really have nothing against Taylor Swift personally, but I do love Les Miserables and I just don’t know if this casting decision was the right one. What do you think?

Taylor Swift joins Les Miserables   Casting coup or mistake? [61Ke2w4k1SL. SL160 ] (IMAGE)   Taylor Swift joins Les Miserables   Casting coup or mistake? [5181I5CXhVL. SL160 ] (IMAGE)

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59 Responses to “Taylor Swift joins Les Miserables – Casting coup or mistake?”

January 9, 2012 at 5:52 PM

Taylor Swift is an outstanding choice for Eponine; I think she will surprise a lot of her skeptics. If you actually go see and hear her live you would change your mind.

January 10, 2012 at 2:17 AM

I agree. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw her in concert and she actually hit those notes.

January 15, 2012 at 3:48 PM

I’m not saying she’s not talented, this just isn’t a part that I feel she can play. Maybe, possibly, there’s a slight chance that with some vocal coaching she can hit the notes, but the acting is what truly scares me. I saw her in Valentine’s Day, and it was the most agonizing ten minutes of my life. I’m sorry, but this was a huge mistake. Eponine is my FAVORITE character, and frankly, I’m terrified that she’s going to ruin it.

January 9, 2012 at 5:53 PM

Taylor Swift is a name, she’s a trend, she has a massive following. So of course this was some calculating stunt casting. In terms of singing voice and acting skills, the woman is extremely mediocre.

January 9, 2012 at 7:20 PM

I think we’re in the minority on this one.

January 9, 2012 at 6:18 PM

I’ve never been a fan of Les Mis, but I think Swift will probably surprise.

But, Evan Rachel Wood can sing:

http://www.last.fm/music/Evan+Rachel+Wood

As can ScarJo:

http://www.last.fm/music/Scarlett+Johansson

January 9, 2012 at 7:23 PM

I figured they could sing or they wouldn’t have been in the running for the role (although I think ScarJo is a little too old to play Eponine). I’ve just never heard them, that I can think of.

January 9, 2012 at 6:24 PM

This clearly is not a mistake as Taylor Swift was not hired for her vocal ability rather her acting and audience. The performance you posted of her at the Grammys was a poor performance. Most artists have a single poor performance. Other than that Taylor Swift usually is amazing live.

January 9, 2012 at 7:21 PM

Yes, the Grammys was the worst performance of hers, but I’ve seen others and she’s had pitch problems in pretty much every live performance I’ve seen on TV.

January 9, 2012 at 6:42 PM

Taylor swift is the best singer in the moyhr vie by far. Taylor is incredibly talented and will give the role her all. It’s very foolish of this writer to judge her vocals off of the worst performance Taylor has ever done. If you knew anything about Taylor or have actually seen her sing in the past two years you would know her vocals have improved greatly and that she certainly does not have her voice altered in studio…this role is perfect for Taylor she will do great.

January 9, 2012 at 7:19 PM

As I said in the post, I have seen her sing live on TV (Saturday Night Live) and found she had pitch problems there as well. Yes, the Grammy performance was worse than anything else I’ve seen and heard, but what I have heard of her live has shocked me compared to what I’ve heard from her recorded. And I’ve not seen Valentine’s Day, but I don’t know if that small role could really be used to consider her a great actress. As far as being the best singer of the bunch … I think Jackman, who has just completed a one-man musical show on Broadway, trumps Miss Swift. And Anne Hathaway has a lovely voice which she showed off to great advantage during her hosting gig on SNL.

January 9, 2012 at 9:31 PM

Yea…and Taylor Swift just finished the 2nd largest tour in the world consisting of over 100 shows in 4 continents..Think that trumps Jackmans broadway play.

January 9, 2012 at 11:21 PM

Apples and oranges.

But if you want to average it all out, Jackman’s show sold out every night for its ten week run and broke Broadway box office records, making over $14,000,000 and claiming 10 of the 11 top grossing weeks in Broadway history. So, comparatively speaking, that would put them pretty much on equal footing as far as star power and box office earnings.

January 10, 2012 at 12:14 AM

I think I see what your trying to say with how well Jackman’s play did with it’s time showing that he is a big star. But it is very hard to take that point seriously exp when money is brought up. Sure Hough jackman made 14,000,000 in his ten weeks…But Taylor Swift made 126,000,000 on her tour, that is a HUGE difference and even plays well into your point on why she maybe was cast for starpower. But still all that money was made straight from singing and from almost 2 million people going to her concerts. You cant do that if your a shaby singer…The only thing I’m worried about is how strong an acting job Taylor can do as this is her first “real” role in a big movie. But with Tom Hooper im confident this was a good choice. Lets all just hope everything turns out great so we can all be happy.

January 19, 2012 at 12:17 PM

You can’t possibly compare Broadway to pop concerts. Broadway is live every single night, and lets face it, it isn’t uncommon for singers to lip sync for at least some of their concerts. I am actually a big Taylor Swift fan for her music and her good example, but I definitely cannot support her in this role. I can’t believe that there was even any question of Lea Michele not getting Eponine, she would perform that role so incredibly well. I have serious doubts about Taylor’s singing and acting abilities (this is no ordinary role or film), and if she does poorly the movie as a whole will suffer.

As far as Broadway vs concert performances, that’s like saying because Britney Spears has sold out concerts she can perform a role like Cosette, which we all know is a joke. There is a huge differnce between popularity and talent.

January 10, 2012 at 4:20 PM

Mr. Chuck, are we gonna have a problem? Apparently you are just some crazy musical fan because if you had paid attention to Taylor on SNL and cared, you would know she has a great voice. Have you physically ever been to one of her shows? She spends the whole show running around, singing and loving what she does for her fans. She has a exceptional voice and she will kill this role. I am so proud of her and happy. If this is your favorite playwright, I’m glad it is because, Taylor is and will be Eponine, get over it. Bye the way, in the words of Taylor, “Why you gotta be so mean?”

January 9, 2012 at 6:57 PM

Bettany was never officially in. He evidently lost out to Crowe after Crowe (through a source close to production) got more auditions after he messed up the first one and Bettany nailed his only ONE audition chance.

January 9, 2012 at 7:24 PM

I agree. No. No. No. No. NO. Taylor Swift is not a great singer, or a great actress. Putting her in this movie is the worst decision the producers made. Hopefully, they’re reading the feedback and they’ll withdraw their offer. I for one will no longer pay to see this movie. I’ll wait for Netflix.

January 11, 2012 at 8:04 AM

to all of you saying that Taylor Swift is rubbish at singing you do not have a clue! I’ve in fact seen her live and she was amazing. Maybe she wasn’t the typical choice for a musical like Les Mis, but why pick the obvious choice when you can have some like Swift who will bring a large fan base aswell as star quality to the movie as a whole.
As far as her acting skills go, there’s no knowing until the film comes out due to her small role in Valentines Day.
All i’m saying is just wait and see what she brings when the movie is released, stop putting an exceptionally talented performer down before you can see what she actually does with Eponine role.
I’m sure all of you saying that she was “not the right choice” and that she can’t sing, will be proven wrong when the film is released.

January 9, 2012 at 7:29 PM

Casting Taylor Swift over Lea Michele as Eponine is a HUGE mistake, and total disappointment for what this movie musical could have been. Whether she sings live or pre-recorded, Taylor Swift just doesn’t have the vocals needed for this part. period. Fans have always favored Eponine over Cosette, with her storyline, and powerful songs (“On My Own”) that she sings. This will be the one time I will favor Cosette (As Amanda Seyfried is perfectly cast.) Such a massive disappointment that the director chose greed over quality…This coulda been the best movie musical ever.

January 9, 2012 at 7:50 PM

Hugh Jackman is so overexposed that i can never see the character he plays. I just see Hugh Jackman. I wonder if Crowe and Jackman will lock horns behind the camera. One is a nice guy and the other…..you know, isn’t.

January 9, 2012 at 7:52 PM

I agree. I’ve been to Taylor’s concerts. Her strong point is her song writing talent, not her voice. I am a big Taylor Swift fan, but she isn’t that great of a singer. Plus, I don’t think Taylor “looks” the part. She looks more like a Cosette than Epinone. But maybe she will surprise us all. She is a very talented young woman. Perhaps Lea Michele wasn’t chosen for the part cause she has already sang “On My Own” on Glee.

January 9, 2012 at 7:52 PM

I completely agree with you on Taylor. She is a charming pop-country star but she’s out of her league here.

She has too much trouble with intonation to be able to successfully sing Eponine’s part. Two points that stick our for me as too difficult for her are:

1.) Eponine’s long note in “One Day More” at the end of “But he never saw me there …” Listen to how long that note is held and how it goes up again in pitch at the end. Taylor Swift can’t seem to hold her notes very long and when she does, she tends not to use vibrato. Her voice ends up sounding forced (example: her version of “Tonight, Tonight” from “West Side Story”). Similarly, Taylor would have difficulty with the long fade at the end of “To love another person is to see the face of God …”

2.) “A Little Fall of Rain”: It takes huge amounts of vocal control to sing this song. It’s so quiet and yet it needs to sound so smooth in all its long notes.

Also the film will not be sung through, there will be some spoken dialogue. Tom Hooper discussed it in a recent interview here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b018xwt7 (listen from about 7:00 to 13:30)

I really think Hooper has a great vision for the film and I suspect the studio is to blame for some of the poor casting.

January 9, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Taylor has acted in CSI as well, yeah I know it isn’t big screen but still. She has also done some small acting in her videos as well. Beating out Scarlett and Evan Rachel, why is this a big deal? Neither of them sing periond. Don’t know much about Michele but I believe Taylor will silence many of her critics. She’s an amazing person, heard live many times, in concerts and such. Oh yeah, I saw the infamous Stevie Nicks duet live, and I agree it was a debacle. But, having heard her manager Scott explain that her headset was malfuncting I tend to agree with him, why? because I’ve seen her live several times and her performance has been great every time. Just ask those who’ve seen her or check out some of her live performances, they’re on dvd now so you can see for yourself.

January 9, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Well take it from someone who has seen her live a few times in the past couple years that she kills it and always impresses. You should check it out I think it would go a long way into changing your mind. All of Eponine’s songs sound like they could have been written by Taylor and included on her albums. A pretty love-struck girl who dies for her love is exactly the kind of role Taylor should be playing. They will die her hair black and she will “look” the part just as much as Jackman, Hathaway, and Seyfried will. This movie is in good hands with Taylor Swift and Tom Hooper, and if the casting was a coup then it worked cause I wasnt going to see it but now I will be buying a ticket and dragging anyone I can along with me.

January 9, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Taylor Swift was an amazing choice for Eponine. I have no doubts that she will be a beast at this. She is a great actress and her performance in Valentines Day was amazing.

January 9, 2012 at 9:49 PM

I admit to being a fan of Taylor Swift. I think she is a very promising young songwriter. That said, if Evan Rachel Wood can sing she is a talented actress. I would much rather see Wood or Johansen in the role. However, Swift being cast isn’t the turnoff for me. I do not picture Hugh Jackman making a good Jean Valjean. Yes, he can sing…but not a very good actor.

January 9, 2012 at 10:29 PM

I am fan of Miss Swift I adore her music and her with that being said I think this is odd choice to play Eponine. I have seen Les Miserables live a few times and it is my favorite musical and Eponine being my favorite performance of the show.

I have seen Lea Salonga and Lea Michele play the part of Eponine. I can say without a doubt I am worried if Miss Swift will be able to pull off this role. If I could cast one person could play the role it would be Lea Salonga but with her being a bit out of the age range my second choice would be Lea Michele.

Lea Michele was incredible as Eponine so like everyone when she went out for the role I thought well she’s got this in the bag since with the whole live thing Lea Michele is amazing live. So it shocked me when Taylor Swift got it.

I guess the director saw something we don’t. So we have to trust his judgement. And pray that he can pull a performance out of her.

I really do hope she hits it out of the park. Because Eponine is one of my favorite performance of Les Miserables.

January 9, 2012 at 10:37 PM

Seeing someone sing “live” on TV does not equate to hearing them LIVE in person. If you had ever heard/seen Taylor live — in concert, you would not be so snarky about this. Ask the 1 MILLION people who saw her Speak Now Tour — it was epic, and she sounded phenomenal. Live TV never translates well — especially award shows. And, I notice how you picked the Grammy debacle — where there were obviously technical issues — as your “proof”. I myself, plan on seeing the movie.

January 9, 2012 at 11:09 PM

I don’t know what the difference is between “live” on TV and “live” in an arena. Are you suggesting something happens with the video transmission to make someone sound pitchy? If she was performing on, say, Saturday Night Live for a studio audience as well as for TV viewers, she shouldn’t give it her all just as she would in a large concert venue? I’m not trying to be snarky, I’m offering my honest opinion based on what I’ve heard. I don’t picture Taylor Swift in this role, at all. That’s not to say she won’t be good, despite the fact that she has very little acting experience under her belt. A good director can get a good performance out of someone who needs and is willing to take direction. But as was pointed out in another comment, the songs in this show are very different from her style and it may take a lot of work to pull this off. I’m not wishing failure on her. I want the movie to succeed and be everything I, and the rest of the fans of the show, hope it will be. I just worry when a casting decision seems to be based more on box office than what’s best for the film (and this certainly isn’t the first time this has happened). My thoughts here are just concern, questioning if this is the right decision, and hoping that Swift will surprise us all. I’m sure many people had the same thoughts about Jennifer Hudson when she was cast in Dreamgirls and look how that turned out. This is just my opinion, and my opinion can certainly change once we see the results. It’s certainly not going to keep me from seeing the movie.

January 10, 2012 at 12:23 AM

I also just want to quickly say thank you to “Chuck Duncan” for actually reading and commenting on his own article. It shows that he cares what he writes and is willing to debate his opinions with the readers. I have not seen that much. Nice job!

January 10, 2012 at 12:42 AM

Thank you, Scott. I appreciate the compliment. That’s really the point of our site — to present an opinion and allow our readers to engage each other and the writers in conversation. As long as it doesn’t degenerate into name calling or vicious personal attacks, I’m more than happy to read and reply to the comments. This one has certainly been a hot topic!

January 10, 2012 at 12:26 AM

how about we wait for her performance until we actually judge her? lol maybe she’ll surprise us, maybe she won’t. this speculation won’t change any of that.

January 10, 2012 at 12:42 AM

People love to speculate and share their opinions. That’s what we do here!

January 10, 2012 at 12:49 AM

And Scott, I wasn’t really trying to compare the amount of money each show grossed, I was putting it out there that you can’t really compare a Broadway show in an 1100 seat theater to an arena show with 40,000 seats … but you can kind of figure out the average and see that they both have definite star power. It’s kind of like looking at the grosses today for Avatar and the grosses in 1939 for Gone With the Wind, but if you average it out and do all the proper adjustments, GWTW would surpass Avatar in grosses today. It’s all relative, as is comparing Jackman’s show to Swift’s concert tour. It all works out in the end! ;-) If Jackman’s show had been a massive failure, then I’d have to give Swift the upper hand here, but relatively speaking, they’re both superstars. But, I still can’t see Swift in the role — and that’s my problem, true — but I am willing to give her a shot once the movie comes out. Who knows, she could be another Jennifer Hudson in the making!

January 10, 2012 at 1:35 AM

What I’m really questioning is whether or not people have SEEN Les Miserables. I absolutely adore Taylor Swift (although the singing has been on and off, but definitely much better now), but Eponine is light years away from remotely sounding like Taylor Swift. Taylor did not pull off Broadway when she sang Tonight for the VMA’s commercial. I know Maria from West Side Story and Eponine don’t have the same sound, but given the fact Taylor belted the whole song she might as well have been doing her best Eponine impression. I’ve also not seen a lot of acting from Taylor. I saw Valentines Day and Taylor swift had practically the world’s smallest role, and it was not performed well (although given the writing, it was rather hard to perform well).

All that being said, if she can surprise me that will be amazing, but I fear Miss Swift was miscast

January 10, 2012 at 11:49 AM

Quiet already about Taylor Swift. She is perfect for the part.

January 10, 2012 at 11:56 AM

I hope that the people weighing in on how wonderful Taylor Swift (might) be in the role of Eponine are familiar with the musical and the role before offering an opinion. Eponine is a strong and savvy young woman for the time and IMO I don’t believe Ms. Swift is up to it. I’m actually a fan of Taylor Swift, but a lot of imperfections can be corrected in the studio that are going to just glare on stage. She will not have the benefit of backup singers and musicians to balance little pitch flaws. I don’t see her as being right for the role at all.

January 10, 2012 at 12:38 PM

I’m wondering the same thing. It’s one thing to be devoted to an artist and support their albums and concerts, but you have to be able to stand back and think if this person is right for that material. I don’t know if Swift auditioned or if the studio just decided they wanted her cast for wider box office appeal, but hopefully Hooper will be able to get a performance from her that surprises the naysayers.

January 10, 2012 at 2:38 PM

I like taylor swift and i think she is a good singer on her albums and she’s ok live. But were talking about a role that is very difficult to sing. I’m a musical theatre major and i know that there are very few people who can pull off the role of Eponine and I’m sure taylor can probably sing it decently but the acting is going to be the deciding factor. Les Miserables has lasted through the years because of the epic music and the beautiful lyrics which require top notch actors to make the music come alive. I’m not going to judge the performance until i’ve seen but i too am also a little skeptical and worried along with my entire class most of which are already saying she’ll fail at the role. But i am not going to jump to conclusions until i have seen the movie because who knows maybe she will be able to pull it off.

January 10, 2012 at 3:41 PM

Here is a link to Taylor singing tonight tonight. Listen to it and know she can sing On my own.

January 10, 2012 at 4:50 PM

And that is a pre-recorded, studio enhanced track. Here’s the SNL clip and I don’t think she has that strong of a voice.

January 10, 2012 at 6:20 PM

This is what the movie will be regardless of what the studio says.

January 10, 2012 at 4:50 PM

How are people supposed to believe she’s French when she sings with a country accent?

January 10, 2012 at 5:52 PM

Her voice is too weak

January 10, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Worst. Casting. Decision. Ever. Taylor Swift has obvious pitch problems adn the fact that Tom Hooper is talking about having the cast sing live, rather than prerecorded concerns me greatly. She just doesn’t have the vocal power that it takes to perform in a musical. Not only that, but what about her acting skills? what experience does she have in acting? Other than little bit parts? A quick scene in Valentine’s Day and an episode of CSI does not equal an Oscar-worthy performance. Swift will have to act her little heart out, b/c she couldn’t be more different from Eponine.She’s a half-crazed,bitter, street urchin with a serious attitude. The fact is that Swift is too girly and cutesy for the role of Eponine. I honestly don’t know what to expect from this performance. I pray that they give her A LOT of voice training before she starst filming, just like Madonna in ‘Evita’. I hope that I’m wrong and the Tom Hooper and Cameron Mackintosh are able to convince me that Swift was the right choice.

January 10, 2012 at 5:00 PM

I believe Taylor did have to audition for the role, and who are we to doubt Tom Hooper? I am looking forward to seeing the film version of Les Mis, actually, since I’ve been a fan of the play since high school.

The thing is, one critic in particular said Ms. Swift’s career would be “over” after her Grammys duet with Stevie Nicks, but in fact she went on to release a song about that critic (“Mean”), which, ironically, is nominated for 2 Grammys this year, and to perform a sold-out world tour on 3 continents grossing over 100 million dollars, where she sang beautifully and on-pitch (I’ve seen her in concert two times). I think Ms. Swift manages to surprise people some of the time.

I read your comment above about how this casting choice would not affect your decision to see the movie. I appreciate you saying that, because I’ve come across dozens of people on the Internet who claim they refuse to even give Ms. Swift a chance as Eponine, which is unreasonable. Her character is not even a major one, but people do not seem to understand that, or the fact that she BEAT OUT Lea Michele, ScarJo, and Evan Rachel Wood.

January 10, 2012 at 5:41 PM

Evan Rachel Wood CAN sing, I believe you haven’t watched Across The Universe. Thank God Lea Michele didn’t get the part, I find her so annoying

January 10, 2012 at 8:22 PM

When I first heard about this I was very concerned because even as a Taylor Swift fan (and therefore willing to give her more slack) I found myself really unable to imagine her playing Eponine well.

However the more I think about it, the more I am calmed. Hooper must have seen many ladies (including Michele and Wood) audition for the part, and he still chose Swift. People may say ‘oh it’s to bring in a bigger audience’ but anybody who thinks that’s on the mind of the director of an already extremely star-studded cast of possible THE most famous musical of all time is kidding themselves. Hooper doesn’t need any more star power, so I’m inclined to believe that he must have seen Swift pull off something in her auditions. He’s not going to give such a crucial role to somebody who will obviously tank.

I don’t know, right now I’m unconvinced, but logically the director MUST have chosen Swift because he thought she’d do well. I hope she surprises us.

January 10, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Whoever plays any of the roles, if you’ve seen Les Mis on stage and loved it (there are those who think it long, dull and boring…surprising I know!)No actor, however good they are will live up to your expectations. Michael Ball, Francis Ruffelle, Colm Wilkinson were the first actors I saw perform this back at The Barbican when it was first performed and I don’t think anyone I have seen since has compared to any of them (although Lindsey Hateley playing Eponine in the early 90′s may be an exception.)
Lets wait till we see the finished product before we start putting it down. When Les Mis first opened at The Barbican (please note Les Mis is NOT a Broadway show as you state, it is a Royal Shakespeare Company show and just happens to be performed on Broadway…as well as 37 other countries around the world, don’t try and make out it’s from Broadway please. 42nd Street and A Chorus Line ARE Broadway shows.)it was panned by people who had never even seen it and judged it on hearsay. It came very close to closing before it’s six month run was up and now it’s the worlds best loved musical. Let’s judge those who are in it and how they perform AFTER we’ve seen it.
Thanks.
Ashley (A Londoner…Can you guess? lol)

January 12, 2012 at 1:23 AM

I feel like most Taylor fans who are supporting her in this role have never seen or heard of Les Mis before. The fact is Taylor is just not right for this role (notice how I said not right, I’m not saying she’s bad or terrible). Taylor has a very soft, thin, voice which is fine when she’s singing her own songs but the songs in Les Mis weren’t written with her voice in mind. With Eponine you need to be able to belt, have a strong, clear voice, not to mention Les Mis is a classic Broadway musical. Every singer has a different voice and a different range, not everyone can sing certain songs but that doesn’t mean you’re bad, it just means it’s not right for you.

As for the acting, Taylor is just simply to “green” of an actor to play the part. People need to realize what Les Mis is all about, it’s not a fun musical like Hairspray or Grease, it actually deals with a lot of heavy emotions and Eponine is a very emotion filled role. Les Mis is a serious film, that’s pretty somber and dark and is not meant for just anyone with hardly any acting experience to play.

I wish the movie would have cast unknown actors who can actually sing and act instead of trying to have an A-list cast. So far the only casting choices I like are Hugh Jackman and Aaron Tveit.

January 12, 2012 at 3:19 AM

Went fom YAY! to STAY AWAY! with one miserable casting choice – very disappointed.

January 13, 2012 at 1:35 AM

I think the point is that Taylor Swift had a pop/country voice, not a broadway voice. Just like I believe nick jonas’ voice was too weak and poppy for the anniversary concert, I believe Taylor Swift will be even more so.

January 13, 2012 at 2:57 AM

Let me start of by saying this, Les Miserable has been my favorite musical of all time since I was 5 and Eponine is by far my favorite character of ANY musical. With that being said, I was crushed when I found out Taylor Swift was offered this role. While I have to admit she is a very talented songwriter, she is just not a good fit at all for this role. Yes, she may sound awesome live, but that’s because she writes her own music and fits it to her own vocal range. Eponine has much more depth than just vocal capabilities. I haven’t seen Valentine’s Day, but just because you landed a small role in a movie doesn’t mean you can act, especially as a character as complex as Eponine. I would have been fine if Lea Michele got the part. However, I wish they would have just found an unknown actor that could have blown me away. Looks like Broadway has sold its soul to country pop stars.

January 20, 2012 at 3:33 PM

Taylor Swift is the Reason I have decided not to see this movie. The director wants to capitalize on her 12 year old fans!!!! Lea Michele was perfect for this role!!! And for all of you saying she is great live I have seen her live and would go to a show again maybe If it were free. But she does not have the vocal range to pull off this roll the most iconic character in the movie! The director wanted to make money and now he will but he has lost respect from a lot of true broadway fans!!! Most of you who are saying she’s perfect I’m guess know nothing about the show and are just fans of hers do some research she does not even fit the description of the character. The girl is a great role model for little girl and I respect her for staying true to her self but this is the WORST casting choice I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Someone slap the director!!!!!

January 22, 2012 at 6:28 PM

As far as pop culture goes, I actually like Taylor Swift more than Lea Michele (I hate her voice in Glee), but that doesn’t mean that she’s a good choice for Eponine. Lea has an amazing, powerful voice, and Taylor Swift’s, while not bad, doesn’t have the power needed for the part. And imagining “On My Own” in her southern twang makes me physically ill.

January 29, 2012 at 10:58 PM

When I first heard about Taylor Swift being cast as this role, I only thought of one explanation: PUBLICITY.
Don’t get me wrong, Taylor Swift is an amazing songwriter. She DOES have a classic pop/country sound, which is great within her own songs. I also personally think it is a little unfair to judge her by her absolute worst performance.
However, I’m just not sure if that country voice will survive Eponine’s songs, such as “On My Own” and “A Little Fall of Rain”. Her voice is undeniably a pretty one, but that is just about all it is. Taylor just doesn’t have the qualities needed for Eponine. I’m especially worried about the emotion that needs to be conveyed in the part of Eponine. Taylor Swift is just so…peppy. Her songs sometimes feel saccharine to the point of being painful. I think Lea Michele would have been better in this role, but Taylor Swift was the winner in the end. There must have been something seen in her, even if it was just the tween fan base. I’m still going to see Les Miserables, because despite the fact that she doesn’t look/sound/have the acting talent for the part, it can’t be worse than “Alvin & the Chipmunks”. Good luck Taylor! I really hope you prove us all wrong.

February 2, 2012 at 1:34 PM

I guess all of the arguments/discussions/naysaying re the supposed casting of Taylor Swift in the iconic role of Eponine in the Les Miz movie can finally be put to rest as the producers have decided to cast a relatively unknown (but hugely talented) stage actress – Samantha Barks, who played Eponine in the 25th Anniversary Concert. I had actually been rooting for Lea Michele to land the part as I felt she would have been perfect, but with Barks being cast I couldn’t have been happier! Thank God the producers ultimately decided to go with real musical stage calibre talent rather than commercial appeal in the end. Now I can’t wait to see the movie – it’s going to be a long 11 months of waiting :)

February 2, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Yep, I made a separate post about that yesterday, including a video showing Barks performing the iconic song at the 25th anniversary concert!