WEIRDLAND: Promises, Promises

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Promises, Promises

"Jake Gyllenhaal has shown he can belt a tune on a number of public occasions, although usually with a campy falsetto that lets you know he's not giving up his day job any time to soon. He's chirped a castrati cover of the Bee Gees "Night Fever" at both the Cannes and Palm Springs Film Festivals, warbled with Zooey Deschanel at the Sundance Awards and incited major traffic jams on You Tube with his full-throttle drag version of "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" on Saturday Night Live.

While "Dreamgirls" may not send Gyllenhaal to Broadway, "Promises, Promises" might be the ticket. Next month, the 26-year-old actor is slated to do an invitational New York reading of the 1968 musical hit with a score by Burt Bacharach and Hal David and book by Neil Simon. With newly minted shows, such informal readings are intended to give playwrights a chance to hear how their material plays. With proven vehicles such as "Promises, Promises," it indicates that producers are looking to stir up backer interest for a major production.

"Promises, Promises", based on Billy Wilder's Oscar-winning dramedy "The Apartment" has yet to have a fully-staged revival on Broadway. In 1997, it received staged readings at New York's Encores series and L.A.s corresponding Reprise series. Martin Short and Jason Alexander, respectively, filled the Jerry Orbach role (originated in the film by Jack Lemmon) of C.C. Baxter, a corporate drone who gets ahead by lending out his apartment to philandering executives. It is not to be confused with the 1963movie "Promises, Promises", in which Jayne Mansfield sheds her protective covering and has a close encounter with a male Mansfield impersonator." - Jan Stuart.


Xenia said...

I'd really LOVE to see Jake playing a character that has been played by Jack Lemmon!!

Lemmon is one of gratest actor ever IMO, drama and lightness in the same actor, he could move audience to laugh and to weep as well...

Kendra said...

Welcomed to Weirdland, Xenia! Undoubtly "The Apartament" is one Wilder's masterpiece, with a subtle approach to a flawed but tender relationship between Lemmon's character (unforgettable performance) and a vulnerable Shirley MacLaine.

gr77 said...

The "Apartment" is such a great movie.I agree with Xenia, Jack Lemmon was perfect in comedy and in drama.

This part sounds great for Jake and he would get to sing too