By Julie Miller, Vanity Fair
On Sunday night, Anne Hathaway collected yet another acting trophy -- and gave yet another polarizing acceptance speech -- for her performance in Tom Hooper's Les Misérables. Had things worked out differently in the auditioning stage of the film adaptation, though, Scarlett Johansson could have potentially been flitting through this year's awards circuit in her place. In a new interview with Broadway.com, the Tony winner confirms rumors that she did indeed audition to play Fantine and suggests one reason why she wasn't cast in the iconic role.
In an interview to promote the latest Broadway revival of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, in which Johansson stars as Maggie, the actress is asked point blank whether she tried out for the part.
We've talked about you doing a musical at some point. Is it true that you auditioned to be Fantine in the Les Miz movie?
Yes, I did. I sang my little heart out.
Was it terrifying?
No, are you kidding? The jazz hands kid inside me was just over the moon! And I auditioned with laryngitis. I did everything I could to, like, not have laryngitis. And I think looking at the film now, there's no possible way I ever could have topped that performance [by Anne Hathaway]. It was perfect and I think fateful and meant to be. But, yes, the audition itself brought back so many memories of auditioning for Les Miz for the young Cosette, and it was fun for me to revisit that.
Fortunately for her, Johansson has another dream role to which to aspire. "I just want to play Norma Desmond," she concedes, referring to Sunset Boulevard's faded silent-movie star, played by Gloria Swanson in the 1950 Billy Wilder noir classic. "In any capacity. My dream role." If the opportunity arises, hopefully Johansson's immune system will not interfere this time around.
To read more of VanityFair.com's coverage of Les Misérables, click here.
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