The next original movie musical following La La Land looks like a bit less of an homage to corny movie musicals and more of a straightforward…corny movie musical. Though Barnum, a biographical work of musical theater about circus founder P.T. Barnum and his quirky tours of America, already exists, this new movie musical seems to be another thing entirely — yet somehow still a musical about the life of circus founder P.T. Barnum and his quirky tours of America. It also has a very #inspiring first trailer.
The movie stars Hugh Jackman as The Greatest Showman, which, yes, is its title. (It also stars Michelle Williams, Zendaya, Zach Effron, and Rebecca Ferguson.) The story is your usual narrative of a man who gets laid off from his normal job and ends up founding the world’s most successful circus in order to support his family. In the trailer, we see Jackman dejectedly blowing out a candle after his professional crisis starts to sink in, and then suddenly, voila! he’s empowering bearded ladies and little people to sing motivational songs about finding your place in the world, and dancing occasionally with his wife Charity (Michelle Williams), who seems to only be able to smile approvingly throughout the trailer. The cherry on top of it all is Jackman’s earnestly spoken aphorism, “No one ever made a difference by being life everyone else.”
The music is by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, who recently did the lyrics for La La Land, and also did the music for the many-Tony-winning Dear Evan Hansen. The film will be out on Christmas.