Richard Linklater Calls Paul Mescal 'Transcendent' in MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG Film

The movie is being shot every couple of years over the course of 20 years.

By: May. 23, 2024
Richard Linklater Calls Paul Mescal 'Transcendent' in MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG Film
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In a new interview with The Times, director Richard Linklater has praised Paul Mescal, who is playing Franklin Shephard in the film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's Merrily We Roll Along. 

Linklater said that Mescal is "just a transcendent talent...and he can really sing…I’m just so happy we connected right before he went supernova.”

Mescal was nominated for an Academy Award for the film Aftersun and has also appeared in Normal People, Carmel, and All of Us Strangers. His theatre credits include A Streetcar Named Desire (for which he won a Laurence Olivier Award), The Plough and the Stars, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, and more. 

Merrily We Roll Along also stars Beanie Feldstein and Ben Platt as Mary Flynn and Charley Kringas, respectively. Mescal replaced Blake Jenner in the film, resulting in a reshooting of the final number "Our Time." The movie, based on the Sondheim musical that is currently on Broadway, is being shot every couple of years over the course of 20 years.

Merrily We Roll Along is the musical adaptation of George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart's play of the same name. The show centers around a trio of friends: Franklin Shepard, Charley Kringas, and Mary Flynn. The show begins in 1976 with Frank, who, having once been a talented composer of Broadway musicals, has now abandoned his friends and his songwriting career to become a producer of Hollywood movies.

The show's narrative then shows the events of the trio's lives in reverse chronological order, ending in 1957. The musical has a score by Stephen Sondheim and a book by George Furth, and the original production was directed by Harold Prince.

The current Broadway production stars Jonathan Groff, Daniel Radcliffe, and Lindsey Mendez, who were all nominated for Tony Awards for their performances. The production was nominated for 7 Tonys overall. It is playing at the Hudson Theatre through July 7, 2024.

Photo Credit: Pamela Raith




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