Newsies musical: Jeremy Jordan on returning to play Jack
Newsies fans got treated to an exciting headline Wednesday, when it was announced that Jeremy Jordan and other members of the original Broadway cast would return to tape a special performance that will be shown in movie theaters next year.
For Jordan — who earned a Tony nomination for his role as Jack Kelly in the 2012 production — returning to the role brings a whirlwind few years of his life full circle.
“I’m very excited about it,” Jordan tells EW. “It’s gonna be awesome. I never thought I’d really have the chance to [come back], so it’s definitely a nice little last hurrah for me.”
Carrying the banner as Jack helped launch Jordan’s career beyond the stage and onto the screen. Post-Newsies, he’s appeared on Smash, sang alongside Anna Kendrick in The Last Five Years, and currently stars as Winn on Supergirl, which he’s currently filming in Vancouver. Production on The CW series means he’ll have to juggle that show’s filming obligations with Newsies rehearsals.
“I’m gonna try and come in on the weekends or when I can,” Jordan said. “I’m having them send me footage of the tour and the script in advance and trying to get an audio recording or something of when I did it so just to get as much of that stuff back into my head before I step back into rehearsals, because I’m gonna have a very limited amount of time to do it.”
Jordan’s return as the newsboy leader in the show — based on the 1992 Disney movie musical of the same name that starred Christian Bale as Jack — will reunite him with fellow original cast members Kara Lindsay (as Katherine), Ben Fankhauser (as Davey), and Andrew Keenan-Bolger (as Crutchie). Their one-night-only performance will be filmed on Sept. 11 at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood and is expected to arrive in theaters worldwide in early 2017.
“I grew up loving the movie, and opening the show was something I didn’t think I was going to do because I was doing Bonnie & Clyde [on Broadway], and then that closed and then I got the opportunity to do Newsies,” he said. “So it was this weird, bittersweet thing, and then it became this amazing phenomenon and to bring it full circle will be really exciting.”
Asked what moments from the show he’s most looking forward to revisiting, he named the emotional capper to the show’s first half. “To end Act 1 on ‘Santa Fe’ is one of the best moments I’ve ever experienced in theater,” Jordan replied. “And I’m just really excited to get through the show with Kara again, and Andrew and Ben, so that’ll be really fun.”
Fans of the original film and stage adaptation might be wondering if this is could be a chance for Disney to seize the day (pun intended) and set plans for a movie version of the musical. If it ever happens, Jordan thinks it would be too far down the road for him to play Jack.
“I don’t know, you know?” he laughed when asked about the prospect of a new Newsies movie. “I feel like [the filmed performance] is gonna be in theaters, this is gonna be it for now. I feel like if something like that happens it’ll be too far along for me to jump in on, I hate to say.”
But count him in for a cameo. “Naturally,” he joked. “Me and Christian Bale.” Just call them the kings of New York.