The other day I mentioned British actor James Corden, who has a small role in Begin Again. I wanted to delve off a bit about the good fellow, for those who might not know his work. (Though some may recognize him, even if not his name.)
Among other things, he starred last year in a wonderfully charming film, One Chance, based on a true story about an awkward, bullied, shop assistant selling mobile phones, Paul Potts, who appeared on Britain’s Got Talent”singing opera and won, becoming a recording star. He first came to attention here as one of the students on stage and in the film of The History Boys. And then two years ago, Corden won the Tony Award as Best Actor for One Man, Two Guvnors.
He also starred in a popular British series, Gavin and Stacy, which he co-wrote, and I've never seen but have been waiting for it to move up in my Netflix queue. And it's worth noting that a couple months again, it was announced that he is in talks with producers to star in a Broadway revival of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum as 'Pseudolus. He generally has played more put-upon characters than the aggressive con man, but he tends to have an impish way about him, and I have the feeling that's its wonderful casting, and he’ll be great.)
Anyway, all this is really to lead into a clip of him in One Man, Two Guvnors. I’d heard of the play, but a few months ago they showed an excerpt of the PBS special about the 50th anniversary of the National Theatre, which I wrote about here. The whole program was great, but his sequence blew me away. It also annoyed me to find out recently that they’d shown the entire show on Great Performances, and I missed it -- and they’ve never released a DVD. And as far as I know, have no plans to. The play is based on an old Italian farce. The main character is working for two bosses and can’t let either of them know. Whether he has a split personality himself as a result of this, or just that it’s making his life hellish, I don’t know. But this is the clip, which is tour de force and shows pretty clearly why he won the Tony. And will be great in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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