From aboard the IMDboat at San Diego Comic-Con, Kevin Smith talks to the cast of "Teen Wolf" about the solemn yet celebratory panel for the upcoming season. This news and more in our Guide to Comic-Con.
Carrie Underwood was off-book by the time the final cast had gathered for the first table read. On set, she worked with an acting coach. See more »
Members of the Kriegsmarine(Navy of Nazi Germany) did not wear Swastika armbands. Only members of the Nazi party and Hitler Youth wore armbands.
Members of the regular military were prohibited from joining any party. See more »
There has been much speculation, anticipation, and even trepidation since NBC announced their plans for a live event of "The Sound of Music." These questions grew when it was announced Carrie Underwood would play the role of Maria, made iconic by the great Julie Andrews. So, does the event meet expectations? I would have to say yes.
The legendary musical is loosely based off of the real life Von Trapp family during World War II. Maria had just recently become the governess for the Von Trapp family where she falls in love with the father of the children. While helping them rebuild the family they must also deal with the Nazi occupation happening all around them.
One thing I must get straight is that this is not a remake of the movie (whoever dares messing with that gem will need many prayers indeed). This is a televised event of the Broadway version. And you can tell this version has a very theatrical feel to it. All the way from the fake set of the mountains to the (admittedly) impressive Von Trapp home. While some may be too unaware to understand how a stage musical works to enjoy the setting, I personally loved how the setting was done. This gave the event a truly theatrical feeling to it that made it more authentic to an actual Broadway show than other musical shows on TV. It was very fun to see.
However, the biggest question is concerning Carrie Underwood. Did she do a good job? Yes, she did a very good job with Maria. While Carrie is new to acting, she shows she has the chops (and potential to grow) needed for an actress. Of course, since she is new I was willing to give her some breathing room. That was my opinion going in but that changed by the time it was over. She shined with the pure innocence and even naivety that is Maria. Now she will never out-shine Julie Andrews (who can!) but she knew that so instead of trying to be something she's not, she made the role her own. That is a very important thing to do (and not many actors are smart enough to realize that) especially with iconic roles such as Maria. I believe Carrie Underwood has a bright future with acting, as long as she continues noticing her weaknesses and grows from them.
Then there is the rest of the cast, which most are very experienced in the world of Broadway and acting. Stephen Moyer was fantastic as the Captain Von Trapp. He brought a certain sadness (and even unlikeable attitude) that made him the perfect contrast to the innocence and sweetness of Maria. The children were fantastic as well, all of them relatively newcomers to the world of acting. They all brought their best selves and proved how mature they were by performing live on national television. That was impressive. However, there were some supporting work from the likes of Laura Benanti (Elsa), Christian Borle (Max), and Audra McDonald (Mother Abbess). All of them did great jobs and stole the scene every time one of them were on camera (though McDonald's version of "Climb Every Mountain" stole the entire show).
All-in-all, this was a great onetime event that we will not get again. The entire cast did great jobs, wonderful performers, great direction, and wonderfully authentic Broadway feel. I really do hope live musicals become a new tradition for Holiday seasons to come.
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