Steven Spielberg’s Hook was originally a musical

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Steven Spielberg just revealed that his 1991 film Hook, was originally planned as a musical. The director regretted inserting multiple songs into the film within a week of filming, resulting in an entirely different film. In some alternate line of existence Spielberg’s first musical would be one based on the characters from Neverland and starring Robin Williams.

Of course now history tells us something else. With the recent release of Love without barriers, this stands as the director’s first musical film after a little more than five decades of career behind the cameras. The good Steven has thus achieved one of his greatest dreams as a filmmaker: commanding a production of the musical genre. It is curious to think that just thirty years ago he was one step away from fulfilling the wish.

While chatting with The Guardian, the filmmaker commented on that great step that he was doubtful about taking there in the early nineties. Hook originally it contained a large handful of musical numbers, which practically made it a musical. However, Spielberg was overcome by uncertainty, and just a week after filming began, he removed the songs and completely changed the concept of the film.

“I freaked out after the first week of shooting and took out all the songs,” he said. “It was the biggest paradigm shift I’ve had while directing a movie. It just didn’t seem right for some strange reason. Maybe I didn’t feel ready to do a musical.

On Hook a sort of sequel to the classic Peter Pan story is told. The plot is centered on an adult Peter who finally left the magical island to live a normal life in London. Having completely forgotten his past, suddenly the kidnapping of his children forces him to return to Neverland to put aside his amnesia and face once again the evil Captain Hook.

During its premiere, the film was harshly received by critics and the public. It then became one of the director’s most divisive films. Perhaps what did not quite fit within the film, was that missing element that is now known, it was nothing less than a good accumulation of musical numbers and a totally different concept.

However things have happened, the film today is a classic of the fantasy genre and has one of the best scores that John Williams has composed for the director. Musical or not the movie was perhaps the stepping stone (one of several) that led to Spielberg finally directing one of the most famous musicals of all time: Love without barriers.

West Side Story, as it is its original title in English, it has been widely applauded by critics and is already emerging as one of the favorites to the golden statuette of Hollywood. The film has been in Mexican theaters since Thursday, December 9.

Steven Spielberg’s Hook entry was originally a musical that was first published on Cinema PREMIERE.

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