Les Misérables is still an incredibly popular stage musical, so it was little surprise back in 2012 when a theatrical version took the world by storm. It was a highly anticipated movie with an all-star cast, including Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway. The movie was nothing if not ambitious, making it the sort of film best seen on a big screen, and if you’ve never seen it that way, you’re about to have your chance.
A rerelease of Les Misérables has been announced for AMC Theaters starting February 23. It boasts a new Dolby Atmos audio mix and a Dolby Vision visual remaster, that will likely make the movie look and sound as impressive as ever. One person who is very happy to hear about the rerelease is Hugh Jackman, who took to Instagram to post a lovely message about his experience with the film and the incredible Les Misérables cast. He said…
I’m absolutely thrilled to hear about the re-release of Les Miserables. It was one of the great experiences of my movie career, something I will never forget, an incredible honor. I got to work with some of the best in the world, led by our fearless director Tom Hooper. Russell, Annie, Amanda, Samantha, Sasha, and Helena. It was just incredible, and I’m so happy that folks are getting a chance to see it on the big screen, as it was intended. I hope you all enjoy it.
As beautiful as this statement is, however, it is a bit undercut by the text version that appears in Jackman’s video. He uses a speech-to-text feature so the words that he says automatically appear on the screen as he says them, and unfortunately, the AI has absolutely no idea what to do with the words Les Misérables.
It’s not exactly surprising. If nothing else, Jackman is speaking English for the majority of his statement, and then breaks into French for two words, so even if the system understands French, its predictive nature would not have anticipated the language switch up and so it tries to turn his words into English as best it can.
In the time since its release, Les Misérables has undergone something of a re-evaluation. While Tom Hooper's decision to record the audio live on set, was certainly, as Jackman says, fearless, not everybody agrees that it works. Some opinions on Les Misérables have changed over the years. Some think Les Misérables has real problems.
Still, a rerelease of Les Misérables is potentially quite exciting. The movie was nominated for several Oscars, including the acting performances of both Jackman and Anne Hathaway, with Hathaway winning the Oscar. Another Oscar the film won was for sound mixing, so it will be interesting to see how this newly remixed Dolby Atmos version impacts the previous Academy Award-worthy work.