CELEBRITY CASTING : IS IT EVER A GOOD DECISION?


This week saw the announcement of yet another actor taking over the role of Billy Flynn in the West End production of 'Chicago'. Duncan James, who initially originated the role back in 2008. He will star alongside another 'Celebrity' name in the form of Alexandra Burke as Roxie Hart. Duncan will be best known from his rise to fame in band Blue. Unlike many uproars we see regularly within the Theatre community when Celebrity casting is used, Duncan was let off lightly as this isn't his debut. His other theatre appearances include Warner Huntington III in the West End production of Legally Blonde and Anthony “Tick” Belrose in the UK tour of Priscilla. 

I believe in this casting decision, along with many others that celebrity casting can be a good thing when it's done correctly. And in reality household names sell tickets, with ticket sales comes a successful run of a production and in tern a successful show keeps a whole company of actors and technicians employed. Celebrities have also already built their careers and have a name for themselves, casting decisions get the media talking which is one of the best marketing ploys a show could wish for.

That being said there has been some awful decisions made in recent years, some of which you can't help but take a step back and try to understand the thought process of the producers. The wrong decision can damage a reputation so when taking in to consideration casting it needs to be done right. Decisions made such as these are when people start to question why the hundreds of professionally trained performers are not being given the chance. 

Although I do believe the Theatre community can be quick to judge a casting decision especially when celebrities are involved. I am a firm believer in having every faith in a producers decision and awaiting the opening night of a production before judgement is made.

I believe Duncan James will be an credit to the production, but lets reserve judgement until opening night. 

Let me know your thoughts below or you can find me through Instagram 

No comments