‘The Greatest Showman’s Reshoots Were Handled by ‘Logan’ Director James Mangold
Hugh Jackman’s The Greatest Showman is this year’s greatest enigma: it’s not bad enough to be one of the more truly terrible movies of this year, but it’s not good enough to actually be enjoyable if you’re not seeing it with a bunch of friends who’ve just come from a boozy brunch. It’s a passable movie-musical with a bizarre script and barely a shred of any historical accuracy that took seven years to finally get off the ground. And once it was off the ground, it needed a little bit of help.
Variety reports that first-time feature director Michael Gracey seemed to have bit off more than he could chew during production, and they had to call in a favor for some reshoots. James Mangold, frequent Jackman collaborator and director of this year’s Logan, stepped in to oversee “a week of reshoots” for the movie after 20th Century Fox became concerned that Gracey was “overwhelmed with the scope of the picture.” The report notes that Gracey “struggled to adjust to the pressure of calling the shots” on such a big film — $84 million is enough to give anyone a few restless nights — and Mangold also helped edit and was given an executive producer credit.
A source from the studio told Variety that Gracey wasn’t overwhelmed, and had “directed all of the principal photography and the reshoots,” noting that the filmmaker was on the set and in the editing bay throughout the production. Mangold’s input, though extensive, was likened to more of an advisory role.” The film tested better with audiences after the reshoots were added. I’ve seen the movie, and for the life of me could not parse which parts of it were original and which were added in. It’s just so delightfully strange.
The Greatest Showman is now playing.