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The Phantom of the Opera (2004) Poster

Trivia

For the auditions, a set was built and the actors wore costume.
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The doll in the Phantom's lair that is supposed to resemble Emmy Rossum is not actually a wax mold. It is Emmy Rossum. The production produced a mask of her face to use on the mannequin but when they put in the fake eyes it didn't look like her. She suggested to stand in as the mannequin instead. This was done by her being made up like a doll with waxy makeup on, and her standing very, very still.
The Phantom speaks only fourteen of his lines and sings the rest.
In playing Christine's father in this movie, Ramin Karimloo becomes the first actor to have played all 3 of Christine's loves. Her father in the movie version, and both Raoul and the Phantom on the stage.
The lit candelabras that rise from the water were not done with special effects or CGI lights: the special wicks ignited when they reached the air. This effect was done in one take and didn't work again after that.
Both Gerard Butler and Patrick Wilson hated filming the water scenes.
Emmy Rossum (Christine Daae) is much younger than her male counterparts, both whom she kissed in the movie. At the time of shooting, Emmy was 16, Patrick Wilson (Rauol) was 30, and Gerard Butler (The Phantom) was 34.
Michael Jackson wanted to play The Phantom himself in the film version. Jackson had a strong interest in musical theater and was a fan of Andrew Lloyd Webber's stage adaptation when he saw it open in New York in 1988, in which Jackson saw it several times since and talked to Lloyd Webber backstage. However, Lloyd Webber has said that although Jackson wanted to play the film version of The Phantom, Lloyd Webber felt that it was too early for "Phantom" to become a film because the stage musical had just opened at that time.
Hugh Jackman was considered for the role of the Phantom, but was occupied by his filming of X-Men.
Neither Gerard Butler nor Emmy Rossum had seen the musical prior to receiving their roles.
Charlotte Church and Anne Hathaway were considered for the role of Christine Daaé.
The chandelier weighed 2.2 tons, cost $1.3 million, and was provided by Swarovski. It had a stunt double for riskier scenes. There was also a third chandelier made, that was equipped with electricity and lighting for the opening scene.
Emmy Rossum almost didn't get the part because her mother didn't want her to miss her family reunion. Luckily, director Joel Schumacher was able to convince her to leave early in order to sing for Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Gerard Butler's first days of filming were five weeks into production, where he and Emmy Rossum did "Past the Point of No Return" which took three days to film.
The theatre fire was an actual fire. Joel Schumacher wanted realism, so they destroyed the theatre for the scene.
To add to his deformity, Gerard Butler had a string tied just below his eye to cause it to appear more deformed when pulled down. Cast members would often tug on it as a joke between takes.
In the transition where Christine is contemplating and moving towards engaging the coach to take her to her father's grave, the melody playing is "Beneath a Moonless Sky," a duet between Christine and the Phantom from Andrew Lloyd Weber's sequel to Phantom entitled "Love Never Dies."
At the end of the Masquerade scene, Raoul briefly enters a circular chamber full of mirrors. This is a reference to the original Phantom of the Opera novel, in which the Phantom used the mirrored chamber as a torture chamber to drive victims insane.
The instruction to "Keep your hand at the level of your eyes" is another reference from the book, in which the Phantom was adept at disposing of victims with the "Punjab lasso." Keeping one's hand at the level of one's eyes kept the Punjab lasso away from the victim's neck and was the only defense.
The casting process began in New York; only singer-actresses under age 25 were even screen-tested. To complicate matters, Andrew Lloyd Webber was happy to go along with Joel Schumacher's insistence on youth but had a demand of his own: "He said, 'Make them unknowns, by all means, Joel, but they must be able to sing," Schumacher recalls.
The film project was confirmed in 1989. Terry Semel and Bob Daly, then studio bosses at Warner Bros., were "Phantom" fans and wanted it filmed. The project was ready to begin filming in 1990 and be released in November 1991; it was set to star Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman (the original stars of the stage version). Just before filming began, Andrew Lloyd Webber divorced Brightman and the project was put on hold.
It took four hours for Gerard Butler to be fitted with full makeup and prosthetics.
Andrew Lloyd Webber composed 15 minutes of new music for the film.
The Phantom's white half-mask prop that Gerard Butler wore for the film sold for £6,450 on eBay.
The "Why So Silent" scene is a reference to Edgar Allan Poe's "The Masque of the Red Death."
The sweeping camera angles during "All I Ask of You" made it necessary to shoot multiple takes of the kiss between Emmy Rossum and Patrick Wilson. Emmy Rossum had to ice her lips between takes to prevent them from swelling.
John Travolta and Antonio Banderas were both considered for the role of the Phantom. Banderas actually spent several years in vocal preparation, and sang the role of the Phantom in Great Performances: Andrew Lloyd Webber: The Royal Albert Hall Celebration (1998).
When the Phantom is taking Christine to his lair, he places her on a black horse for a while. This is not part of the show, but is a nod to the original book, where the Phantom uses a horse named Cesar to transport Christine part of the way.
Since the crew didn't want to have to actually build an Opera House, the exterior is actually a doll house type model that was filmed in a studio. In "All I Ask of You (Reprise)", when the Phantom is on the balcony, he is not really there. He was edited in. The footprints in the snow were made on the model where they filmed the camera zooming out and then put in the Phantom.
Patrick Wilson did his own stunts.
Gerard Butler was not the only actor to go through hours of prosthetics: for the look of an older Raoul, Patrick Wilson also went through hours of makeup to look much older than he was for the scenes with Raoul as an old man.
In the "Masquerade" scene, there is a pan up the stairs. When it reaches the top of the stairs, opera patrons dressed in cat masks strike the pose that the cats on the show "Cats" pose in any promotional material. "Cats" is also an Andrew Lloyd Webber show.
Even though in the Andrew Lloyd Webber version the Phantom doesn't have a name, in the original book he's called Erik.
The music is played by a 105-piece orchestra.
In Christine's debut performance as the star of the Opera House, she wears a costume that is an exact replica of the outfit Empress Elizabeth (aka "Sisi") of Austria wears in her most famous portrait. This includes the white diaphanous dress with full, billowing skirt, as well as the diamond star-bursts in her hair and earrings. This is not surprising when one considers the fact that Andrew Lloyd Webber is one of the most important collectors of artwork from this period, and would be familiar with the portrait in question.
All of the principal actors sang in the film except for Minnie Driver. Most of the actors have a background in musicals or opera, but Driver (a skilled singer) had no experience in opera and was dubbed by Margaret Preece, a singing teacher from Solihull, UK. However, Driver did contribute the film's end title song, "Learn To Be Lonely," written specifically for the film by Andrew Lloyd Webber.
During the Final Lair scene, after the Phantom says "You try my patience, make your choice," Christine mouths the words "I love you" to Raoul.
At the beginning of the movie, the cast is rehearsing for an opera called "Hannibal" and they are singing "Hannibal Comes!" This is not an actual opera; Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote this for the beginning and wanted to help the actors warm up to the part with a laugh, hence the silly make up and costumes.
In April 2004 an audience of the stage version of "The Phantom of the Opera" in London were asked to stay behind at the end and record the sound effects for the chandelier crash in the movie.
In very early stages of production, Kevin Spacey was considered for the role of The Phantom.
Filming of the final lair scene took a week to complete.
In an interview on The View (1997), Minnie Driver (Carlotta) says that to master her diva-like Italian accent, she channeled an old neighbor she had when she lived in Venice as a child.
According to Jennifer Ellison, Joel Schumacher did not understand much of what she was saying because of of her Liverpool accent.
A former top-ranking soprano in New York, Anne Hathaway was reportedly the front-runner for the role of "Christine". However, due to scheduling conflicts with The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement (2004), she couldn't take the role, which later went to newcomer Emmy Rossum.
Because the chandelier scene is at the end of the film, as opposed to ending the first act as it does in the play, one of the lines in the song "Masquerade" had to be altered so that instead of referring to a "new chandelier" they talk of "friends that are here".
Patrick Wilson (Raoul) was the first to be signed, then Gerard Butler (The Phantom), then Emmy Rossum (Christine).
While others have been mentioned through the years, Joel Schumacher was Andrew Lloyd Webber's choice for director since the movie project was conceived in the early '90s. He chose Schumacher after being impressed by the use of music in The Lost Boys (1987).
The character Raoul wears a cross under his clothing which can be seen during the fight scene in the cemetery and in the final lair scene.
In the beginning of the movie, the retiring owner, Lefevre, says that the only way to please Carlotta is, "Grovel, grovel". This is part of a song from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, another one of Andrew Lloyd Webber's shows.
The part where Raoul nearly drowns is also a nod to the original novel, where Erik (The Phantom) floods the torture chamber with water from the lake after Christine agrees to marry him.
Catherine Zeta-Jones turned down the role of Christine as, having done Chicago, she didn't want to do two singing roles in a row.
Keira Knightley auditioned for the role of Christine Daaé.
In the opening auction, the restored chandelier is lot 666 (the "number of the beast").
In the original stage production the chandelier is dropped at the end of the first act (just after the reprise of "All I Ask of You"), but it was decided to have it at the end of the film. This change has been incorporated into the new Vegas production of the show.
The screenplay was written in the south of France in 1989 by Joel Schumacher and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
The chandelier used was 17 feet high and 13.2 feet wide, and was hung with more than 20,000 full cut Swarovski crystal pendants. It was produced by Tisserant in Paris, and it took four months to construct and five days to assemble at the studio.
La Carlotta's deep purple outfit is comprised of over twenty-seven meters of silk.
The Broadway production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's 'The Phantom of the Opera' opened at the Majestic Theater on January 26, 1988 and has run for 9125 performances, making this production the longest running show on Broadway (January 2010). Phantom was nominated for ten 1988 Tony Awards, won seven Tony Awards (Best Musical, Best Actor (Michael Crawford), Best Actress (Judy Kaye), Best Scenic Design, Best Costume Design, Best Lighting Design and Best Direction of a Musical (Harold Prince).
The score has been translated and recorded in French, Italian, Spanish and German, and the soundtrack has been released internationally in those languages.
Katie Holmes was almost cast as Christine but the director said she was too old for the part.
Keira Knightley auditioned for the role of Christine.
Meat Loaf was another actor considered for the role of the Phantom.
The movie was dubbed into Spanish by the actors and singers from the Madrid stage version. The main roles are played by Juan Carlos Barona (The Phantom), Julia Möller (Christine), Paco Arrojo (Raoul), Yolanda Pérez Segoviano (Mme. Giry), Belén Marcos (Carlotta), Tony Cruz (Firmin), David Venancio Muro (André), Enrique Ferrer (Piangi) and Ana Esther Alborg (Meg Giry). The Spanish lyrics, however, are different from the Madrid version because of the need of lyrics that can be lip-synced with the screen actors.
The same lead sculptors were used for the making of the film sets and for the original stage show in London.
Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1986 musical "Phantom of the Opera" was inspired by Ken Hill's 1976 musical version of the same name. Hill's version is credited as the first Phantom musical and was a success. Sarah Brightman, who later created the role of Christine in Webber's version, was famously asked to play the role of Christine in Hill's 1984 revival but turned down the offer. Webber, who was then married to Brightman, had actually seen Hill's show and asked Hill to collaborate Phantom on a larger scale for the Victoria Palace Theatre in the West End; eventually Webber pursued the musical without Hill. Hill and Webber had previously worked together on a revival of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat".
Ciaran Hinds and Simon Callow later acted in the series "Rome" together,though not in the same scene. Hinds played Julius Caesar and Callow played Publius Servilius.
Michael Crawford won the 1988 Tony Award (New York City) for Actor in a Musical for "Phantom of the Opera" for the title role.
Shekhar Kapur was set to direct at one point.

Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

At the end of the film, Christine's gravestone gives her date of birth as 1854. The main story takes place in 1870, which means Christine is 16 during the events at the Opera House. Emmy Rossum, the actress who played her, was 16 when filming started.
The main story takes place in 1870, and the auction takes place in 1919. In the final scene, the year of Christine's death is marked as 1917 on her tombstone. In the stage play, the main story takes place in 1881, the auction in 1910, and Christine is said to have died in 1907.

See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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