Question: With the recent success of TV's Dancing with the Stars and cult movies like Shall We Dance? (the Japanese version, not the bland American remake) and Chicago, what are the chances Hollywood will stop remaking old TV shows into movies and start making musicals again? Christopher Walken, Richard Gere and John Travolta consider themselves dancers, and there are lots of actors with theater backgrounds who can dance and sing. What are your thoughts?
Answer: My thoughts, in a nutshell, are that the blockbuster mentality guiding the major studio filmmaking process favors known quantities, like popular old TV shows, and shies away from anything that smacks of a gamble. Musicals are a gamble: Chicago (2002) did $171 million in domestic box office, but it took it eight months to do it and was no doubt helped b
Richard Gere razzle-dazzled us all with his elaborate tap dance number in Chicago. So it'd seem like a piece of cake for him to master the waltz for his latest flick, Shall We Dance? (opening tomorrow). Actually, the 55-year-old star says learning ballroom-style hoofin' wasn't quite that easy.
"Two or three hours of dancing was like a boxing workout," Gere recalls. "I was soaked. I would drink gallons of water or whatever else I could find. It's a real workout. It is ironic because it looks so serene.
"The biggest workout for me was the waltz," he continues. "It is so gliding, [yet] you are using every muscle in your body in a controlled way. The other [dances] that were quicker I found much easier. Once you get the steps down, you just go, and then it is over."
In Dance, Gere plays a lawyer who secretly takes up dancing in hopes of jazzing up his humdrum daily grind. While he enjoyed acting opposite his comely costars, Sus