PETER PAN's Christopher Walken Talks Pesky Crocodiles & Live Musical Theater
In an all-new interview in today's The Hollywood Reporter, Christopher Walken talks about portraying the villainous Captain Hook in NBC's PETER PAN LIVE!, airing this Thursday, December 4th."I don't know how [I got typecast to play so many villains] but I think it's like anything else, in the movies in particular, if you establish yourself as something and you're lucky enough to keep getting hired." He continues, "I would love to play, it would be interesting ... [something] like, Father Knows Best. I'd love to play a part like that - nobody asks me!"
The actor believes his sinister character often gets a bad rap and is possibly misunderstood. "There's something about him that's sort of sweet. Peter Pan CHOPPED his hand off and fed it to a crocodile, and now he's got a crocodile following him, and he wants vengeance; his pirates just keep saying to him, 'Look, you've got all this money, you've done everything, why don't you just take it easy?' And he says, 'I can't, I have to settle a score.' So there's something a little bit sad about him. It's almost a little bit like, 'Poor old Hook.' "
Walken, who starred in big-screen adaptations of Pennies From Heaven, Hairspray and Jersey Boys, feels right at home in the realm of musical theater, yet admits that a live television broadcast is something he's never experienced before. "Doing it this way, getting ready and then having one moment, it's really more like sports than theater," he explains. "It's like a football game or something - you get ready, and then you go play. This is different - we've got the whole cast around."
As Peter Pan aficionados know, Hook is constantly taunted by a pesky crocodile, a creature that will be featured during the live broadcast. "I haven't seen it, but I've seen sketches and it looks good," says Walken of the menacing reptile. "I asked them, 'Is the crocodile going be able to stand up? Because that's essential.' They said, 'Yes.' There's something about the crocodile walking around like Frankenstein that I think is very funny."
Read the interview in full here
Allison Williams will portray Peter Pan in the highly anticipated PETER PAN LIVE on NBC.The 'Girls' star takes on the role of the boy who refuses to grow up and who is forced to confront the villainous Captain Hook, played by Oscar winner Christopher Walken when the J.M. Barrie's classic musical comes to NBC on Thursday, Dec. 4 at 8 p.m. (ET/PT).
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron will executive produce the broadcast. The duo are accomplished in both television and film, having earned 103 Emmy nominations. They were the driving force behind several stage-to-screen musicals, including the film version of "Hairspray" and TV adaptation of "Cinderella," as well as executive producing the NBCdrama "Smash," which earned a Golden Globe nomination. They were also nominated for a Tony Award in 2011 for "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" and also produced the revival of "Promises, Promises" to the Broadway stage in 2010. In addition, the duo executive produced the 2002 Oscar-winning film "Chicago."
Emmy nominated for "The Sound of Music Live!," director Rob Ashford won an Emmy as a choreographer for the "81st Annual Academy Awards" and earned a Directors Guild of America nomination for "The Sound of Music Live!" He won a Tony for "Thoroughly Modern Millie" in 2002 and has received nominations for seven other productions, including "Cry-Baby," "The Wedding Singer" and "Evita."
Glenn Weiss, who will serve as director for live television, has won 10 Emmys as both a director and executive producer on the TONY AWARDS telecasts. He has also won five DGA Awards for his work on the Tonys.
Musical director David Chase was Emmy nominated for "The Sound of Music Live!" and is one of the busiest music directors working on Broadway today. He was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2013 for the cast album of the show "Nice Work If You Can Get It." He has an extensive Broadway resume, collaborating on such productions as "Damn Yankees," "Billy Elliot: The Musical" and "The Music Man." His current projects include "Rogers and Hammerstein's Cinderella" and he will serve as music supervisor for "Finding Neverland," which is inspired by the Johnny Depp film and will arrive on Broadway in March.
Always sought after on Broadway for his incredible sets, production designer Derek McLane is an Emmy winner for his work on the 2014 Oscar telecast and was nominated for the 2013 Oscars broadcast. He also won a Tony in 2009 for the play "33 Variations" and has three other nominations. His vast array of credits include the revivals of "Grease," "Barefoot in the Park" and "Ragtime," and original productions of "Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo," "Nice Work If You Can Get It" and "Beautiful: The Carole King Musical."
Costume designer Catherine Zuber is a seven-time Tony winner for her efforts on such productions as "The Light in the Piazza," "The Coast of Utopia" and "The Royal Family." Her voluminous credits include the revivals of "The Rose Tattoo," "The Twelfth Night" and "South Pacific," as well as original productions of "Doubt," "Cry-Baby" and "The Bridges of Madison County." She will also serve as costume designer for the upcoming revival of "The King and I."
Lighting designer Robert A. Dickinson has won 19 Emmys for his work on such projects as the Olympic Games, and several telecasts of both THE GRAMMYS and Oscars.
Photo courtesy of NBC