The first trailer for Les Miserables, the lavish new six-part BBC and PBS Masterpiece adaptation of Victor Hugo’s classic novel, has arrived.
(And, spoiler alert: It looks incredible.)
This new take on an old story features an all-star cast that includes Dominic West as Jean Valjean, David Oyelowo as Inspector Javert, Lily Collins as Fantine, Josh O’Connor as Marius, Olivia Colman as Madame Thenardier, Ellie Bamber as Cosette and lots more.
Watch for yourselves below.
I’m not the only one who got kind of misty-eyed over this, right? That “where there’s love, there’s hope” tagline is just killer.
Though the trailer includes a lot of imagery that will doubtless be instantly familiar to fans of the mega-popular Cameron Mackintosh musical, this adaptation of Les Miserables will much more closely follow the action of Hugo’s novel.
The original story focuses much more heavily on the struggles of the French underclass and the reasons behind their revolution, well beyond what it means for Marius and his friends. The characters may feel a bit different too, particularly if you’re only familiar with their musical counterparts. As you can probably guess from the trailer, Fantine’s backstory in the book is much longer, more complicated and somehow even more heartbreaking. The Thernadiers are much more openly frightening and terrible in the novel, largely because they don’t get the hilarious slapstick coating that their big “Master of the House” number provides. And the novel’s version of Cosette is generally much more interesting than her stage interpretation.
In case you’re wondering why there isn’t much sign of Eponine here – the performer of what is probably Les Miserables most beloved song – well, the musical offers a much broader and more sympathetic depiction of the character than the novel does. Don’t be surprised if the character isn’t that much of a factor here.
Les Miserables will air in the U.K. over the holiday season this December, before coming to America at some point in early 2019. Are you looking forward to giving it a try? Let’s discuss!