Michael C. Hall is eyeing a return to Broadway in the Susan Stroman-helmed musical adaptation of Big Fish, according to Deadline.com. Featuring a score by Andrew Lippa and book by John August (based on his movie adaptation of Daniel Wallace’s novel), Big Fish is expected to open in the spring of 2012. Based on the 1998 novel of the same name, Big Fish follows the troubled relationship between Edward Bloom and his son Will. On his deathbed, Edward recounts adventurous tall tales from his life as a traveling salesmen. Hall would reportedly play the part of Edward, which was played in the 2003 Tim Burton film adaptation by Ewan McGregor and Albert Finney. The movie also starred Billy Crudup and Jessica Lange.
Michael C. Hall surprised many Emmy watchers when it was revealed that his submission to Emmy judges this year would be “Teenage Wasteland.” It was widely expected that he would submit the fifth season premiere, “My Bad,” which focuses on the immediate aftermath of his wife’s shocking murder. Hall has earned three previous nominations for Best Drama Actor for “Dexter” and he was considered a strong contender to win last year when he submitted “The Getaway,” the fourth season finale, in which Dexter had one last confrontation with the Trinity Killer, only to return home to find his wife murdered. But Hall’s hopes were dashed, once again, by Bryan Cranston, who won his third consecutive Emmy for “Breaking Bad.” In “My Bad,” Dexter, after discovering his murdered wife, expresses guilt over her death and also shame for his inability to mourn her properly, until the climax, in which he finally experiences a catharsis, killing a man who taunts him about his loss and then screaming out of grief. The hour ends with Dexter arriving late to his wife’s funeral and delivering a moving eulogy.
The episode presents a complete emotional arc and gives Hall’s murderous character an opportunity to be sympathetic, penitent about his homicidal ways. Reminding voters of the previous year’s acclaimed storyline couldn’t hurt either, especially after a season considered a disappointment to many viewers. But Hall elected to submit “Teenage Wasteland” instead. The ninth episode of the fifth season, it also gives Hall the opportunity to show a softer side of Dexter, who is surprised by the arrival of his rebellious stepdaughter while also trying to help a young woman (Emmy nominee Julia Stiles), identify the men who raped her. It’s a rare episode in which he doesn’t commit a murder, perhaps helping to endear him to voters, and he demonstrates fatherly protectiveness in dealing with his daughter, whose best friend is a victim of abuse.
The part of Lumen, a torture and rape victim rescued and protected by Dexter, went to Julia Stiles, who turned in a performance that would net her an Emmy nomination for guest star in a dramatic series. On a more serious note, it also netted her cases of depression and insomnia. “I never think of myself as an actor who takes work home with them, but I was surprised, especially toward the end of the season — around episode 10 — when some of the details of what Lumen had experienced became really harrowing, and I started to realize that it was affecting me outside of work,” Stiles told The Hollywood Reporter. “One scene in particular, in episode 10, when the detectives have found DVDs showing what has happened to the victims — it was really dark. It made it more difficult for me to sleep.” That, in many ways, came from the amount of research she did on trauma and rape victims, and the subsequent internalizing she did to make it real for herself.
“I read about torture victims and people who were abducted and rape victims, but that all felt very intellectual to me. I needed something that would make me connect emotionally, so the most helpful thing was details, specific memories, or smells or sounds,” she told NY Magazine last November, after filming the finale. “I would elaborate on those in my imagination, almost like meditating, I would sit and imagine those horrible experiences and eventually your muscles connect to your brain and it settles in. In a certain way, characters become people and you don’t want to do a disservice to them. I wanted to be as dark as I could about what the reality of that experience would be. I felt like I had to do that to do justice to anybody who had an experience even close to that.”
It may have been cathartic, then, to participate in her killing scenes, which she talked about with THR. “I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the kill scenes and the sacredness of them,” she said. “As a fan of the show, I felt very privileged to be a part of them.”
“There was also a nice moment of collaboration where the set designers had put up pictures of all the other victims on the wall, and I remember saying to the director that I felt like it was important that Lumen acknowledge the other girls and say that it was for them, too. We did a separate shot of that, and it ended up in the final edit, which I was really pleased about. It’s a great example of how collaborative the show is and what a nice environment it is to work in.”
Apocalypse wow: History channel is set to announce a six-hour miniseries that brings the Vietnam War into 2011 with a true high-definition telecast. The network collected thousands of hours of uncensored war footage for the project, much of which has never previously been seen, then restored and and converted the most compelling moments to HD. Much of the footage was from soldiers’ personal handheld cameras. Dexter star Michael C. Hall will narrate the project, with the letters and writings of more than a dozen war veterans voiced by Edward Burns, Kevin Connolly, Adrian Grenier, Zachary Levi, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Dean Cain, Dylan McDermott, and others.
The miniseries premieres this fall.