- Notes provided by Warner Bros. Pictures -
Under the direction of Adam Shankman (``Hairspray), New Line Cinema's feature film adaptation of the smash hit Broadway musical ``Rock of Ages comes to the big screen.
``Rock of Ages tells the story of small town girl Sherrie and city boy Drew, who meet on the Sunset Strip while pursuing their Hollywood dreams. Their rock 'n' roll romance is told through the heart-pounding hits of Def Leppard, Foreigner, Journey, Poison, REO Speedwagon, Twisted Sister and more.
The movie musical stars Julianne Hough (``Burlesque), with actor/singer Diego Boneta in his feature film debut, Russell Brand (``Arthur, ``Get Him to the Greek), Oscar(R) nominee Paul Giamatti (``Cinderella Man), Academy Award(R) winner Catherine Zeta-Jones (``Chicago), Malin Akerman (``The Proposal) and R&B queen Mary J. Blige, with Oscar(R) nominee Alec Baldwin (``The Cooler, TV's ``30 Rock), and Oscar(R) nominee Tom Cruise (``Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, ``Magnolia, ``Jerry Maguire) as Stacee Jaxx.
Shankman directs ``Rock of Ages from a screenplay by Justin Theroux and Chris D'Arienzo and Allan Loeb, based on D'Arienzo's musical of the same name. The film is being produced by Matthew Weaver, Scott Prisand, Carl Levin, Tobey Maguire, Garrett Grant and Jennifer Gibgot, with Toby Emmerich, Richard Brener, Michael Disco, Samuel J. Brown, Hillary Butorac Weaver, Janet Billig Rich, Shankman and D'Arienzo serving as executive producers.
Rounding out the ``Rock of Ages creative team are director of photography Bojan Bazelli (``Hairspray), production designer Jon Hutman (``It's Complicated), editor Emma E. Hickox (``A Walk To Remember), Oscar(R)-nominated costume designer Rita Ryack (``How the Grinch Stole Christmas, ``Hairspray), Grammy-nominated music supervisor Matt Sullivan (``Dreamgirls, ``Nine), and Emmy Award-winning choreographer Mia Michaels (``So You Think You Can Dance). The original score is by executive music producer Adam Anders and Peer Astrom (TV's ``Glee).
New Line Cinema presents, a Corner Store Entertainment production, in association with Material Pictures, in association with Offspring Entertainment, an Adam Shankman film, ``Rock of Ages. Opening in theaters and IMAX on June 15, 2012, the film will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.
This film has been rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sexual content, suggestive dancing, some heavy drinking, and language.
For downloadable general press information, please visit: http://press.warnerbros.com
ABOUT THE PRODUCTION
``I Wanna ROCK!
Hollywood's famed Sunset Strip, 1987. Rockers wail and heads bang inside the packed and pulsating walls of a rock 'n' roll institution, The Bourbon Room. Heart strings are plucked and electric guitar sparks fly to the beat of some of the greatest hits of the `80s...the ``Rock of Ages.
The Broadway hit now goes from stage to screen under the direction of Adam Shankman, who also executive produces the film. Shankman, who grew up in Los Angeles, felt right at home in the setting. ``My dad was a music business manager, and his office was on the Strip, he says. ``I knew a lot of artists. I was choreographing music videos in 1987 and it was a world that I really understood and loved, so turning back that clock was an opportunity I couldn't pass up.
At the core of the film is a boy-meets-girl love story woven into classic, only-in-Hollywood dreams of fame. Shankman's sister and producing partner, Jennifer Gibgot, elaborates, ``Like so many people in L.A., the young lovers in 'Rock of Ages' have come here hoping to make it big and thinking it's going to be easy. But it turns out to be a lot harder to stay on the path, to keep believing in the thing that led them there in the first place.
The movie also shows the other side of the coin: what it was like to have achieved the fame and fortune that `80s glam bands so thoroughly and unabashedly enjoyed. Fellow native Angelino and producer Garrett Grant, who grew up listening to that music and idolizing the artists, emphasizes, ``It was important to portray the period authentically, and hit the tone as much as we could in order to truly pay homage to the rock stars-rock gods, really-of that generation.
Julianne Hough and Diego Boneta portray the young couple with stars in their eyes at the center of the story. They are joined by an all-star cast that includes Alec Baldwin, Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Mary J. Blige, Malin Akerman and Catherine Zeta-Jones. And playing the rock god of ``Rock of Ages, Arsenal lead singer Stacee Jaxx, is Tom Cruise.
For Shankman, the journey began when he went to see ``Rock of Ages on the stage. He recalls, ``The audience was having the best time I'd ever seen at a show. Everybody knew the lyrics to all the songs and was out of their seats and singing along and having the time of their life. That enthusiasm, that sheer emotion, convinced me to make the movie.
It wasn't his only reason for revisiting the era, however. ``I thought it would be an interesting challenge to make a movie musical that guys would drag their girlfriends to for a change.
``Nothin' But A Good Time
Shankman's ``Rock of Ages is based on the Broadway smash, which earned five Tony Award nominations and is still entertaining audiences on the Great White Way as well as in touring productions around the world. The show's book was written by Chris D'Arienzo, who is also a writer and executive producer on the film.
The story, about pursuing your heart's desire, is backed by incredible songs and set on the iconic Sunset Strip, a place emblematic of the time, a place where fantasies could become reality, and did. Where a band from nowhere could perform at the Whiskey or The Roxy and wind up with a record deal.
Writer Justin Theroux enjoyed working on the screenplay for the jukebox musical, an opportunity he describes as ``a totally different experience. In a weird way, you write backwards from the point of view of the song. The song is always the emotional center for the characters in any given scene, so it's fun to try to get them to that specific destination. The song does a lot of the emotional heavy lifting for you, but you have to build ramps up and down, to and from, that centerpiece.
Though most of the songs in the film are taken from the musical, Theroux was happy to add one that was a favorite of his growing up. ``I thought 'Jukebox Hero' would be a great way to add more backstory to the character of Drew, he explains. ``It has such great narrative in the opening lines and really paints the picture of a teenage kid who wants to be a rock star.
Writer Allan Loeb also took pleasure in fiddling around with the script's musical moments. ``At times there are two songs playing off each other, going back and forth between the different storylines, with a lot of intercutting, to enable the song to serve more than one set of characters, he details. ``So the challenge was to shuffle the story and the verses, while also allowing for the choreography, until everyone explodes into a mash-up of the songs' choruses. That's how they did it on stage and how we handled it in the screenplay, and it was great fun to write.
Says Shankman, ``What's often the most difficult and compelling thing about a musical like 'Rock of Ages' is that half of a song is played as performance and the other half as dialogue or inner monologue. I think the writers did a great job of turning a terrific stage show into a real cinematic experience. I'd like to see the movie-going audiences jumping out of their seats just like the theater audience did, and I think this story and these characters and this rockin' music, performed by our unexpected and unbelievably talented cast, just might get them on their feet.
``Waiting for a Girl Like You
The opening scene of ``Rock of Ages follows a beautiful, if somewhat naïve, girl named Sherrie Christian, who has just hopped a bus from her small Midwestern hometown in pursuit of her Hollywood dream to be a singer. When she takes her first steps on the Sunset Strip, she thinks she's found paradise.
Julianne Hough was cast as the wide-eyed Sherrie, who lands at the epicenter of the rock 'n' roll scene. ``She just wants to make something of herself, even if she's not going to be the biggest rock star in the world. She wants to be around it, the excitement and the energy of a city like that. It makes her feel alive.
Prior to casting Hough in ``Rock of Ages, Shankman had an opportunity to direct her in a music video for her latest album. ``Julianne blew my mind, he says. ``She has an extraordinary rapport with the camera; her beauty and talent is right there in a really big way.
Arriving in town with hopes high, Sherrie immediately experiences a bit of a rude awakening. The disappointment doesn't last long, though, as she's rescued by a handsome young man, Drew Boley, who offers her what she needs more than anything in the world: a job.
Diego Boneta won the role of Drew after a nationwide search. ``Drew is a barback at The Bourbon Room, a legendary club like the Whiskey, where all the bands play, says Boneta. ``He's a rock star in his heart, and he's a good, honest, romantic guy.
``We saw thousands of people for Drew, Shankman relates. ``Diego's audition tape came across my casting website, and after I watched it, I just had that feeling. I called Jennifer and said, 'I think I found the guy. I'm looking at him right now.'
Gibgot recounts, ``We brought Diego in, and the moment he walked through the door, Adam and I just looked at each other and said, 'That's Drew.'
Being hardworking young performers on the rise themselves, it wasn't difficult for either Hough or Boneta to understand the hopes and dreams of their characters.
``Sherrie and Drew are both in L.A. for the same reasons, they have essentially the same goal in mind, so they click, they really connect, Boneta attests. ``At first, they help each other out at work, but there's a definite attraction; things between them just grow from there.
Hough agrees. ``Drew and Sherrie are the couple that you root for, she says. ``They're young and learning about life and being in a relationship, and excited for the future. It all seems perfect until they have...a big misunderstanding.
That misunderstanding is made even bigger by the fact that it comes in the form of one of music's biggest stars, Stacee Jaxx, the rock god that Drew wants to be and that every woman wants to bed. The lead singer of Arsenal, Stacee is at a turning point in his career, and in his life. He's about to go solo, and his final show with the band is at The Bourbon Room. It's a homecoming of sorts, as he played his first gig there back in the day. But fame and fortune may have come too easily to the front man who, after years of indulgence, has become boozed up and blasé to the point of bored, and less than reliable when it comes to showing up for his own shows.
The casting of Stacee Jaxx turned out to be somewhat serendipitous. ``I was thinking to myself, 'Wouldn't it be cool if we got one of the biggest movie stars in the world to play one of the biggest rock stars in the world?' Shankman reflects. ``And, as luck would have it, I ran into Tom Cruise, told him I was directing this movie, that it was a musical, and that I was going to offer him this part. He said, 'Are you serious?' I said I was. Then I described Stacee to him and he laughed really hard. The next thing I knew, he was in, and I was making a musical with Tom Cruise.
To play the role, Cruise underwent a complete transformation, and Shankman admired his diligence. ``From the moment he signed on, Tom started training his voice with an incredible vocal coach, Ron Anderson. I remember the first time we heard him sing. He's got this outrageous, four-octave range-turns out he has opera singers in his ancestry, so he's probably genetically predisposed to sing, but no one's ever asked him to before. I'm just the lucky recipient of this revelation, I suppose, he smiles.
With an entourage at his beck and call 24/7 and groupies professing their undying love for him at every turn, only one individual has the integrity to see Stacee Jaxx for who he really is: Rolling Stone reporter Constance Sack.
The hard-hitting journalist is played by Malin Akerman, who says, ``Constance comes to The Bourbon to interview Stacee Jaxx, who is on the road to becoming a washed-up rock star but who was a truly great rocker in his early days. She really believed in him, so she's frustrated that he's given up. And he's clearly never met a woman who has stood up to him before, which intrigues him, excites him, and confuses him all at once. But when she tries to pull the truth out of him, things don't go quite as she'd planned.
Constance may have difficulty getting Stacee to open up to her, but, Akerman says, Cruise couldn't have been easier to work with. ``Tom not only wants the scene to be great, he wants you to shine in it. He's so respectful and generous. It was an amazing experience working with him.
The rock 'n' roll life is not entirely foreign to the actress, who is married to a drummer and who was briefly in a band herself. ``I've never had to sing while acting and handling so much choreography before, but every single lyric has such meaning that it wasn't hard to find my way through, and I think I did justice to the song.
``When we met with Malin, she came in totally prepared, Garrett Grant says. ``She wore glasses, a little business suit, and she nailed it. She didn't try to be funny; it just came across in her performance. And when it came time to shoot, she played the role absolutely perfectly.
Constance's interview is arranged by Jaxx's manager, Paul Gill, who struggles to control his uncooperative client's image, but not necessarily with Stacee's best interests at heart.
Paul Giamatti, however, puts it a little more bluntly. ``He's a sleazy, manipulative jerk who's in it to squeeze as much money as he can out of the artists he manages, the actor states. ``He and Stacee have a very dysfunctional relationship. Stacee may be a monster, but Paul created the monster, and now the monster is terrifying to him. It's a pretty sick association at this point.
``Paul Giamatti was at the top of our wish list to play the manager, and we were thrilled when he said yes, Gibgot relates. ``He took what was on the page and made it even better than we'd ever imagined.
Gill is in it for the money, and he knows that Arsenal's farewell performance-which all hinges on Stacee's frame of mind-will make or break the struggling Bourbon Room. But still he only sees dollar signs, despite the desperate pleas of club owner Dennis Dupree, played by Alec Baldwin.
``Alec is a friend, and I was thrilled to have him in the movie, Shankman says. ``I got to direct him singing and dancing, and he was just awesome.
Baldwin found a unique way to look at his character. ``Dennis Dupree's whole life has been music. Rock 'n' roll is his religion and The Bourbon Room is his church, which I guess makes him the pastor. The actor, who has gone on record as being much more a fan of classical music than rock, kept an open mind. ``The `80s is about when I turned off the radio, he quips, ``but there's just as much good music from that era as from any other, and it was a lot of fun to revisit it through this character.
Dupree's best friend and sounding board at the club is his technician, Lonny, played by comedian and actor Russell Brand. Baldwin says of his on-screen partner, ``Nothing could have prepared me for what an incredibly clever, funny and alive person Russell is.
``Lonny represents the spirit of rock as the spirit of freedom and change, Brand says of his character. ``He and Dennis are true rock 'n' roll veterans, and Lonny's devoted to the music and to the club.
``Russell was basically the one person I thought of who could get away with playing this part, Shankman allows. ``He's out of his mind, and I love him. He brings so much fun to the table because he's so unpredictable, and absolutely brilliant.
The pair provides a good deal of comedy in the film, much of which was instigated by Brand on the set, who says Baldwin had no problem jumping in. ``Alec was very happy to accommodate however I was improvising in the scene, and he really encouraged me. He's charismatic, authoritative and playful; I liken him to a great British theatrical knight. Plus he's got endless anecdotes and spellbinding, twinkling eyes, he teases.
Resolved to keep the club up and rocking, Dennis and Lonny have more trouble to contend with than just Stacee Jaxx's commitment issues. Patricia Whitmore, wife of the mayor, has declared war on the Sunset Strip, and her inaugural battleground is The Bourbon Room. The character does not appear in the stage musical.
``We created the role of the mayor's wife in order to revisit the cultural censorship that was going on in that period, Shankman says.
Catherine Zeta-Jones took on the film's villainous role. ``I think Patricia Whitmore is the kind of woman who sees her role as first lady of Los Angeles as being much more important than her husband's role as mayor, and there's no question as to who wears the pants in the family, Zeta-Jones suggests. ``She's an outspoken activist who feels rock 'n' roll is satanic music, and she creates a campaign to clean up what she believes is the real filth sullying her city's streets: rock music.
The actress didn't even see a script before she agreed to play the part. ``When Adam called me up, I just said, 'When do I start?' I knew it would be a blast and I had to be a part of it.
``Patricia is a strong woman, so we needed an actress with a lot of presence. Casting Catherine was a dream for me that basically came true, Shankman says.
While Patricia Whitmore threatens to forever alter life on the Strip, Justice, owner of the Venus Gentlemen's Club, makes her living on it. A woman who has paved her own way, she literally picks Sherrie up when she's at her lowest, a place Justice has undoubtedly been herself.
Mary J. Blige, who plays her, offers, ``Justice sees herself in Sherrie. She's been down that road, she's been in that alley crying over some guy, and she understands this young girl's self-esteem is fragile. So, in the kind of place where some people would look at women as powerless, Justice's goal is to make them strong, to show them how to take their power back from the place that it was lost in their life.
``Mary J. is an unbelievable artist; there isn't anything she can't sing. She can roll out of bed and hit any note you throw at her, Grant says. ``And she's a sweet, lovely person on top of it. I think Adam would've had her in every scene if he could have.
To add a subtle touch of authenticity to the film, the filmmakers invited several recording artists-many of whose songs are featured in the movie-and stage performers to appear in cameos, including Nuno Bettencourt of Extreme; Night Ranger's Joel Hoekstra; Debbie Gibson; Skid Row's Sebastian Bach; REO Speedwagon's Kevin Cronin; from the stage version of ``Rock of Ages, Constantine Maroulis; several members of the musical's U.S. touring cast; and ``Saturday Night Live actor Will Forte.
``Top to bottom, we have a remarkable cast in this movie, Shankman declares. ``You start out with a wish list, and we were so fortunate as to get really everyone we wanted. We were truly blessed.
``I Love Rock 'n Roll
Shooting a musical can be grueling, so it helps when it's a labor of love. Adam Shankman was devoted to putting forth ``a tribute, honor and loving embrace of the music, which is not just hard rock but also `80s pop and rock anthems. The music people know and respond to and which brings back not only a feeling of nostalgia, but also a new enjoyment of that kind of music.
The director believed from the beginning that the music in ``Rock of Ages would serve as his roadmap leading him where he needed to go. The movie features such rocking anthems as Def Leppard's ``Pour Some Sugar On Me, Twisted Sister's ``We're Not Gonna Take It, Journey's ``Don't Stop Believin', and ballads like Foreigner's ``I Wanna Know What Love Is, Poison's ``Every Rose Has Its Thorn, and REO Speedwagon's ``Can't Fight This Feeling.
Shankman's conviction was shared by the film's executive music producer, Adam Anders, who also scored the film with Peer Astrom.
``Adam is the best guy doing mash-ups in the business now, Shankman says. ``He really understood how each song was going to be used, how it fit in with the characters, and how to keep it close enough to the original tracks, while at the same time make it original and fresh.
The cast spent weeks prepping-vocal training and recordings, dance rehearsals, physical conditioning-before filming began, and continued to train throughout the shoot. Though both Julianne Hough and Diego Boneta are singers, they had to learn a different style of singing for the film. Under the tutelage of vocal consultant Ron Anderson, Hough had to discard her country twang, and Boneta his pop tone, so they could embrace a harder rock sound.
``We basically went to rock star college, Boneta states. ``I've been taking vocal lessons since I was eight, but I had to retrain my voice to a higher range. I also had to develop a raspy quality, but learn to sing in that way without hurting my vocal chords.
Under the direction of music supervisor Matt Sullivan, guitar consultant Eric Jackson-dubbed ``The Mr. Miyagi of guitar by Boneta-taught both Boneta and Tom Cruise to play for the film, starting from scratch as neither had really played before. Though he was impressed by how well each man picked it up, Jackson devised a means to encourage the two actors to learn as quickly as possible: friendly competition. Briefly mentioning how ``Tom could already play this to Boneta, or vice versa, spurred the men on to practice even harder.
The prop department armed Jackson with 30 guitars for the production, including Jackson Charvel, Guild and BC Rich brands. Stacee Jaxx's Jackson Kelly guitar is a one-of-a-kind, custom-made instrument, hand-airbrushed with flames on the side.
Jackson also had his pupils study the stage presence and performance styles of some of the greats, like Jimmy Page, Slash, Eric Clapton, Hendrix, Prince and Lenny Kravitz, as well as some of the artists whose music they'd be playing, including Brett Michaels, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora, and Dee Snider.
Complex choreography was involved in all of the stage performances, as well as the dance numbers involving the entire cast, collectively and individually, and sometimes as many as 500 extras. Shankman's friend and colleague Mia Michaels made her feature film choreography debut with ``Rock of Ages. ``There is nothing in the film, down to the last knuckle, that isn't choreographed, and Mia is one of the greatest choreographers out there today; I needed Mia to put an interesting twist on things, the director says.
``Adam is a great director; he lets the art breathe, Michaels says. ``If you do that, it will show you the way, and that's what happened for me on this film. I couldn't be happier with the results.
``Mia's work is just stunning, we were so lucky to have her, Jennifer Gibgot says. ``She and Adam complement each other so well; what he wanted out of the numbers and what she brought to the table were just exciting to watch. I don't think she's had a chance to do anything this big and multi-faceted before, but Adam pushed her, and now the floodgates are open.
The style of dance in the movie is a departure for Michaels, who enjoyed combining sexuality and humor in several numbers. ``This film required a lot of exploration and breaking down walls for me, both professionally and personally, she reveals. ``I wanted to allow the experience to roll right through me, and it did. The result was very primal and raw, just like the music of the time.
Shankman recalls, ``There was a point during the shooting of 'Any Way You Want It' at the Venus Club when Mia looked at me and said, 'What have I done?' I said to her, 'You've delivered.'
That scene alone involved Mary J. Blige, Julianne Hough, 18 dancers, five ``pole specialists, and a room full of extras playing patrons of the club. Hough, herself a professional dancer and choreographer, states, ``Mia is one of the best. Even though we have very different styles-I'm more of a feminine, sexy dancer and she calls herself 'Amazon woman' and incorporates bigger, stronger moves-it was so much fun to combine the two for this film. She brought so much strength to the women's performances.
Catherine Zeta-Jones, who, as Shankman points out, is the only actor in decades to win an Oscar(R) for a performance in a movie musical, was equally thrilled to work with Michaels. ``Dancers have a special language, the actress says, ``and building a close bond with someone of her caliber is so extraordinary. She's very specific in her dance moves, and when you open yourself up and let yourself into her vibe, it's almost cathartic. I enjoyed every minute working with her.
``We Built This City
Adam Shankman and his ``Rock of Ages production designer, Jon Hutman, both grew up in Los Angeles and even attended the same high school. So they shared an innate sense of time and place of the story.
``Adam and I spoke the same language, Hutman allows. ``We lived the Sunset Strip in its heyday. He wanted the world of the movie to be real, which is exactly the opposite of what you might expect for a musical.
``Jon really understood my sensibilities and what I was going for, Shankman says.
Gibgot agrees. ``Jon is a genius. We can't sing his praises enough for what he did for this movie. When I first walked out onto the Strip he recreated, I felt like I was in a time warp. He really brought back Los Angeles in 1987.
Hutman began by focusing on three distinct set pieces: The Bourbon Room, the Venus Gentleman's Club and, of course, the renowned Sunset Strip. ``L.A. is a car city, and the way most of us experience the Sunset Strip is by driving from one end of it to the other, compressing the distance between the iconic elements, Hutman observes.
``We scouted the world for this movie, Garrett Grant notes. ``The Strip was key, but we knew we couldn't use the real thing, so we went all over the United States and even Sydney, Australia, trying to find the right layout and architecture. Then we came upon this strip in Miami which, thanks to Jon, worked perfectly.
``The Greatest Hits of the Sunset Strip is how Shankman describes Hutman's interpretation of the ultimate déjà-vu experience built in six weeks in the Overtown neighborhood of Miami, Florida. Thanks to Hutman's crew and the visual effects team, the location eventually featured such memorable Hollywood landmarks as Tower Records, Guitar Center, The Roxy, the Whiskey, Filthy McNasty's (now The Viper Room), Centerfold Newsstand, The Comedy Store, Gazzarri's (now the Key Club), The Body Shop, Ben Frank's, Duke's, The Sunset Grill, SunBee Liquors and Frederick's of Hollywood, all jam packed into a couple of city blocks. They even created a Shell Station, with the advertised price for gas: a mere $1.31 per gallon.
Hutman peppered the ``Rock of Ages Sunset Strip with additional details to add to the authenticity, including a Liberace billboard; a sign for Canter's Deli; a bus bench with an ad for a Sportster 883 motorcycle; a 90-foot banner of diva Angelyne, which graced the side of a building; a 20-foot inflatable doll placed atop Tower Records, inspired by a similar inflatable rocker-girl used to promote the Rolling Stones' `80s tour; and a Carney's-style train dining car found in a railroad museum, transported to the set by a Florida moving company. Hutman credits L.A. photographer Robert Landau with helping him find many of the visual references he needed to recreate the era.
The finishing touch to the boulevard was the addition of more than 70 period cars, including such classics as a VW Rabbit convertible, a Pontiac Fiero, a Chevy Corvette and Camaro, a Cadillac Seville, an Alpha Romeo Spider, a Chrysler LeBaron, Broncos, Jeeps, Harleys, and even vintage public buses. In one scene, Stacee Jaxx steps out of a 1985 white Cadillac Fleetwood stretch limo.
In the midst of it all, Hutman fashioned the exterior of The Bourbon Room, complete with a grand marquee. Sherrie and Drew's worlds first collide outside the ultimate rock club, designed to evoke the atmosphere of The Roxy, The Rainbow Room and the Whiskey all rolled into one. The interior set was, in reality, the renowned venue Revolution Live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
To prepare for the month they would spend shooting there, Hutman and his team made several alterations in order to take the club back in time. They built Dennis Dupree's office in the balcony of the club, with a huge window overlooking the stage. And, because the distance from the club floor to the stage floor was too high, Hutman raised the club floor so that crazed fans could jump on stage to touch their favorite idol, Stacee Jaxx.
A stage performance no one had expected, however, resulted from a surprise visit from real rock legends Def Leppard, who arrived at The Bourbon Room set one day after opening their national tour in West Palm Beach. Pulling up, rock star style, in their two tour buses, they performed a live rendition of their hit song ``Pour Some Sugar On Me with the film's fictional rocker Stacee Jaxx. The band gave Cruise and the club their seal of approval.
The walls of The Bourbon Room, including Dennis's office, were littered with memorabilia: coasters, photographs, ticket stubs, posters. ``We even hung 500 bras and 300 ties from the ceiling above the bar, Hutman says, ``which was a great touch. Our set decorator, K.C. Fox, had a lot of fun with this set. We wanted it to feel like the place where rock 'n' roll was born.
Inside the club and throughout the film, director of photography Bojan Bazelli utilized ARRI Alexa digital cameras because, he says, ``The story of 'Rock of Ages' is about living in the night. We didn't need as much lighting equipment; the digital camera package allowed us to capture a lot in low light.
One particularly interesting aspect for Hutman in reviving the `80s was color. ``That was something that Adam and I talked about very specifically. My research uncovered a lot of color, used rather indiscriminately. Let's just say he was concerned... The decade was not exactly a time that we look back on as a high point of style, he laughs.
Hutman's challenge was to ``capture that sense of vibrancy in a way that a contemporary eye can appreciate. He pulled album covers from every band featured in the film and watched documentaries about heavy metal before he was able to determine his course. ``Drew's world came out of a faded blue jeans color scheme, he recalls, ``and a backstage green room from a scene in 'The Decline of Western Civilization' inspired the muted blue-green, red-and-black palette of The Bourbon.
The production designer's color scheme for the Venus Gentlemen's Club was something he wasn't quite sure would work until he saw it fully realized on the set. ``The Venus Club is purple. I mean, Barney the Dinosaur purple, he illustrates. ``Of course, before we had the entire nightclub painted, I was skeptical. I thought, 'We've got to put this on the wall and see.' And we did, and alongside the gold trim we'd chosen, it was just fantastic.
The Venus, Hutman says, ``Isn't your average strip club, but a high-end, classed-up version of one. It was created in an old art deco supper club space at The Castle Resort in Miami. Though it is a condo/hotel high rise at present, in the 1960s it was home to one of the original Playboy Clubs in the U.S.
Coincidentally, and unbeknownst to choreographer Mia Michaels until just a year prior to filming, her mother had been a bunny at the club, dancing and waitressing. ``It was weird, but also kind of cool, to have a connection to the room, even though we found it in shambles, with only the original chandelier left.
To complete the look, the production brought in, among other things, beautiful sconces, a mirrored bar counter, elegant curved staircases, serpentine couches made from vintage round sofas, and eight gold stripper poles. By the time it was finished, Hutman jokes, ``It was the nicest strip club I've ever been in. A little Vegas, a little burlesque, but just seedy enough for the Sunset Strip.
The film also required Hutman to recreate the world famous Hollywood Sign-where Drew and Sherrie have their first date-on top of a 250-foot landfill, the highest point in South Florida.
Other key locations for the film included the Hard Rock Live arena in Broward County, used as a venue for a live concert; the ancient Spanish monastery off the Dixie Highway in North Miami Beach, which served as a church where Patricia Whitmore's supporters gather; a residence in Coral Gables; the Biltmore Hotel; Crescent Moon Studios, which housed Pau Gill's office; the Imperial Penthouse, which doubled as Stacee Jaxx's room at the Chateau Marmont; Boomers Family Fun Center in Dania Beach; and Miami's Ice Palace in Overtown, which became Stacee's dressing room, green room, and a locale for additional stage work.
Though Hutman's team set the scene, it was up to costume designer Rita Ryack to fill it with fashions from the time. ``We were going for heightened realism, she says. ``Leather pants, shoulder pads, wide belts and fringe were all hard to resist, but we wanted to stay away from the wardrobe becoming a joke, so we toned it down a bit. Adam wanted the humor to come through the characters and the story, not the clothes.
Shankman's directive was that ``things should look and feel as they were, and he knew that wardrobe was a key factor in pulling that off.
``I love working with Adam because he is so clear, decisive and honest, and gives me a lot of freedom; we inspire each other, Ryack shares.
Ryack's inspiration came from many different sources, including her own closet, where she dusted off her own Betsey Johnson and Fiorucci couture. She also had unexpected help from `80s rocker Lita Ford, who parted with some of her personal, on-stage wardrobe pieces for use in the film.
For young couple Sherrie and Drew, Ryack reflected their individual story arcs through their clothing. Diego Boneta starts in t-shirts and jeans, and later wears headbands, shiny scarves and space boots. Reflecting her metamorphosis from Midwestern girl to rocker chick, Julianne Hough went from floral dresses to denim miniskirts and cut-up Bourbon Room tees.
Her references for other characters included Van Halen's ``Hot For Teacher video's look for Malin Akerman's Constance Sack; Nikki Sixx for Russell Brand's Lonny; and her own former hippie boyfriends who wore vests and kerchiefs for Alec Baldwin's character, Dennis Dupree.
Paul Giamatti's Paul Gill is a sleazy manager, and Ryack remembers the type well. ``Every single one of them had a ponytail and an Armani jacket, no socks and an earring. It was a uniform.
The costume designer looked to conservative political women in order to dress Catherine Zeta-Jones as Patricia Whitmore. ``Neat, clean, strong colors. And, if you look closely, you can see she's always wearing a little American flag.
Scenes at the Venus Gentlemen's Club called for a wide variety of styles: strippers, barbacks, waitresses, yuppies, businessmen, dirty old men, rockers and bouncers and, of course, Mary J. Blige as Justice. ``I saw her as a cheap version of Krystle Carrington from 'Dynasty,' Ryack relates. ``Mary J. has such presence; I knew she could carry it off.
One of the most reverential and referential looks Ryack created for the film was that of rock god Stacee Jaxx. ``What we did for Stacee was very specific to Tom Cruise-his face, his physicality, and his acting style, she says. ``We experimented a lot with silhouettes, too, because so often that is what you see in concert lighting. It was a fabulous process with Tom because he was so involved, and the character was so different for him. He really evokes so many rockers of that time.
Ryack brought in authentic rock 'n' roll wardrobe specialists to help keep the character's wardrobe real: Tony Sartino, a rock stylist who has worked with many important bands, provided the inspiration for Stacee Jaxx's leather pants; a jewelry maker in Colorado made his one-of-a-kind belts; Gunner Foxx, who makes hats for many known actors, made the character's Western hats, and even made a hat for Stacee's pet baboon, Hey Man.
Hair and makeup played a critical role in the film as well, and one of the hair department's biggest challenges was to bring long hair back, especially on men. On days that involved 500 extras, there were hundreds of wigs, extensions and hair pieces used to form bangs or mullets, transforming the actors and the crowd into their period looks. Hairspray and gel were staples on set.
``We weren't very nice to our hair in the `80s, Camille Friend, hair department head, laughs. ``We permed it, bleached it, teased it and crimped it. This was a big hair movie, there's no denying it.
The makeup department, led by Whitney James, was kept busy as well, with heavy eyeliner, frosty pink lipsticks, and a lot of airbrushed tattoos. Artist Michele Burke designed and applied the rock star tattoos created for Stacee Jaxx.
Adam Shankman reflects, ``From creating the biggest rock star on the planet, to recreating the smallest detail of life on the Sunset Strip in the `80s, I had a very specific vision of how 'Rock of Ages' was all going to come together to draw audiences in.
``I think we've got a funny and heartfelt story with absolutely rockin' performances of songs we all loved so much and remembered so well, with an unbelievable cast, and I really believe audiences are gonna have the most fun they've had in...decades, he smiles.
ABOUT THE CAST
JULIANNE HOUGH (Sherrie Christian) became known to millions as the two-time professional dance champion on ABC-TV's top-rated ``Dancing with the Stars, also receiving Emmy Award nominations in both 2008 and 2009 for her choreography work on the show. Hough recently completed production on a feature written and directed by Diablo Cody, starring with Russell Brand, Octavia Spencer and Holly Hunter. Next up, she will star opposite Josh Duhamel in the film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' ``Safe Haven.
Hough made headlines when she won the coveted role of Ariel in the 2011 remake of ``Footloose and captured the hearts of critics and filmgoers alike, establishing her as a leading lady on the big screen, after making her film debut in a supporting role in the Golden Globe-nominated musical, ``Burlesque.
As a singer, Hough's self-titled debut album, released by Universal Music Group Nashville in 2008, hit the Billboard Country charts at number one and entered the Billboard 200 at number three, marking the highest debut for a country artist since 2006. Her first two singles from the album, ``That Song in My Head and ``My Hallelujah Song, earned her the 2009 Academy of Country Music Awards for Top New Female Vocalist and Top New Artist. Hough opened for superstar Brad Paisley and later toured with George Strait, playing over 100 shows in 2009. The Julianne Hough Holiday Collection was released in 2008. She is currently working on her third album.
At age 10, Hough studied performing arts in London, returning to her native Utah five years later. After graduating high school, she moved to Los Angeles, landing a job within a month as a dancer on ABC's ``Show Me the Money. Shortly thereafter, Hough toured as a company dancer in the ``Dancing with the Stars tour, joining the cast of the hit series for seasons four through eight.
DIEGO BONETA (Drew Boley) makes his feature film debut in ``Rock of Ages. He was recently honored with CinemaCon's Rising Star of 2012 Award.
Boneta has achieved success as a singer with multiple gold and platinum records in Latin America, Brazil and Spain. His multi-country tour with the musical group RBD as a solo singer/guest performer was ranked by Billboard as one of the top five worldwide tours in 2007. In addition, he earned two Latin Grammy Award nominations, in 2002 and 2004, as well as Latin MTV Award nominations for Best New Artist in 2007 and for Best Solo Artist in 2008.
Boneta previously garnered attention on the small screen for several guest roles, portraying Alex on the ABC Family hit ``Pretty Little Liars and pop star Javier on the CW's ``90210. He is currently in production starring as Miles in MTV's comedy ``Underemployed.
PAUL GIAMATTI (Paul Gill) is an award-winning actor with a diverse roster of finely etched, critically acclaimed performances.
Giamatti won his first Golden Globe Award as well as Emmy and Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards(R) for Best Actor for his portrayal of President John Adams in HBO's seven-part Emmy Award-winning 2008 miniseries ``John Adams, directed by Tom Hooper. He won his second Golden Globe Award for the portrayal of Barney Panofsky in Richard J. Lewis' ``Barney's Version, based on the best-selling novel, alongside Dustin Hoffman, Rosamund Pike and Minnie Driver. He recently received a SAG Award(R) as well as Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominations for his portrayal of Ben Bernanke in Curtis Hanson's HBO film ``Too Big to Fail, opposite William Hurt and Billy Crudup. His other critically acclaimed HBO movies include ``Winchell, opposite Stanley Tucci, and Jane Anderson's ``If These Walls Could Talk 2.
Giamatti's performance in Ron Howard's ``Cinderella Man earned him a SAG Award(R) and Broadcast Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor in 2006, as well as Oscar(R) and Golden Globe nominations in the same category. For his role in Alexander Payne's critically lauded 2004 film ``Sideways, Giamatti earned accolades for his performance, including an Independent Spirit Award and a New York Film Critics Circle Award, both for Best Actor, as well as SAG(R) Award and Golden Globe nominations in the same category.
His 2003 portrayal of Harvey Pekar in Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini's ``American Splendor, which won the prestigious Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize, received outstanding reviews and commendations, including an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Actor, and National Board of Review Breakthrough Performance Award.
Giamatti first caught the eyes of American audiences in Betty Thomas' hit comedy ``Private Parts. His extensive list of film credits also includes George Clooney's ``The Ides of March; Todd Phillips' ``The Hangover Part II; ``Ironclad; ``Win Win; ``The Last Station, opposite Christopher Plummer and Helen Mirren; Tony Gilroy's ``Duplicity; ``Cold Souls, which Giamatti also executive produced; ``Fred Claus; ``Shoot Em' Up; ``The Nanny Diaries; M. Night Shyamalan's ``Lady in the Water; ``The Illusionist; Milos Forman's ``Man on the Moon; ``The Hawk is Dying; Tim Robbins' ``The Cradle Will Rock; ``The Negotiator; Steven Spielberg's ``Saving Private Ryan; Peter Weir's ``The Truman Show; Mike Newell's ``Donnie Brasco; ``Storytelling; Tim Burton's ``Planet of the Apes; ``Duets, the animated film ``Robots; ``Big Momma's House; James Foley's ``Confidence; and John Woo's ``Paycheck.
He will be seen this summer in David Cronenberg's ``Cosmopolis, starring Robert Pattinson; and alongside Stellan Skarsgård in ``Romeo and Juliet, and ``The Congress, opposite Robin Wright; both set for release next year. He recently wrapped production on the comedy ``Lucky Dog, starring opposite Paul Rudd.
An accomplished stage actor, Giamatti received a Drama Desk nomination for Best Supporting Actor as Jimmy Tomorrow in Kevin Spacey's Broadway revival of ``The Iceman Cometh. His other Broadway credits include ``The Three Sisters, ``Racing Demon, and ``Arcadia. He was also seen off-Broadway in the ensemble cast of ``The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, with Al Pacino.
RUSSELL BRAND (Lonny) shot to fame in the U.S. in 2008 as the rocker Aldous Snow, starring with Jason Segel, in the hit comedy ``Forgetting Sarah Marshall, produced by Judd Apatow. He reunited with Apatow to reprise the role in another hit comedy, ``Get Him to the Greek, starring opposite Jonah Hill.
Brand's recent film credits include ``Arthur, opposite Helen Mirren, with whom he also starred in ``The Tempest, and ``Bedtime Stories, with Adam Sandler and Keri Russell. He also lent his voice to the Easter Bunny in ``Hop, opposite James Marsden, and to Dr. Nefario in the hit animated feature film ``Despicable Me. He is reprising the role in ``Despicable Me 2, opposite Steve Carell, Al Pacino and Kristen Wiig, which is set for release next summer, and just completed production on a drama written and directed by Diablo Cody, starring alongside Julianne Hough and Holly Hunter.
Brand will also host this year's MTV Movie Awards. He has previously hosted MTV's Video Music Awards (VMA), in 2008 and 2009.
Brand's writing debut, My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up, became a huge success in the United Kingdom. Subsequently published by Harper Collins in the U.S. in 2009, it stayed on the New York Times' bestseller list for five weeks in a row. The follow up, My Booky Wook 2: This Time it's Personal, was published by Harper Collins in October, 2010.
Brand's third live DVD, of his 2009 stand-up tour, was released in November 2009 after originally airing on Comedy Central.
In 2010, Brand received the British Comedy Award for Outstanding Contribution to Comedy and was honored in 2011 with the ShoWest Award for Comedy Star of the Year.
MARY J. BLIGE (Justice) has been an empowering presence ever since her 1992 mutli-platinum debut album, What's the 411? And, in the ensuing years, the singer/songwriter's music has attracted an intensely loyal fan base responsible for propelling worldwide sales of more than 50 million albums.
With a track record of eight multi-platinum albums, nine Grammy Awards (plus a staggering 29 nominations), a 2012 Golden Globe Award nomination, and four American Music Awards, Blige most recently returned for her tenth studio album, the aptly titled My Life II... The Journey Continues (Act 1), a sequel to her 1994 classic, My Life. My Life II... debuted at number five on the Billboard 200, and received critical acclaim. Providing the album's cornerstone, the song ``The Living Proof is also featured on the soundtrack from the award-winning film ``The Help, and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song - Motion Picture.
On Blige's current up-tempo chart-climber from the album, ``Mr. Wrong, she goes toe-to-toe with Drake; My Life II... also features guest turns from such artists as Nas, Busta Rhymes and Rick Ross, and a first-time paring with Beyoncé on the diva-licious ``Love a Woman. To help map out her Life journey, Blige collaborated with such intuitive producers as Jim Jonsin, Rico Love, Jerry ``Wonda Duplessis, Danja, Rodney ``Darkchild Jerkins, Sean Garrett, Tricky Stewart and the Underdogs.
Born in the Bronx, New York, Blige began moving people with her soulful voice when, at 18, she signed with Andrew Harrell's Uptown Records in 1989, becoming the MCA-distributed label's youngest and first female artist. Influenced at an early age by the music of Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan and Gladys Knight, Blige brought her own gritty, urban-rooted style-fusing hip-hop, soul and honest, frank lyrics-to the forefront on her 1992 debut album, What's the 411? The multi-platinum set, executive produced by Sean ``Diddy Combs, quickly spun off several hits, including two R&B number ones: ``You Remind Me and ``Real Love.
Earning the nickname the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, Blige began forging a unique niche for herself on her more personal second album, 1994's My Life. Co-writing a major portion of the album this time around, Blige reaped such hits and signature songs as ``Be Happy and a cover of Rose Royce's 1976 hit ``I'm Goin' Down. At the time, she was dealing with several serious issues in her life, including drug addiction, alcoholism and an abusive relationship.
Each subsequent album plays like a chapter from an autobiography: Share My World (1997), Mary (1999), No More Drama (2001), Love & Life (2003), the multiple Grammy-winning and hit-spewing The Breakthrough (2005), Growing Pains (2007) and Stronger with Each Tear (2009). Along the way, she's lined up a string of hit singles, including ``Not Gon' Cry, ``Love Is All We Need, ``Seven Days, ``All That I Can Say, ``Family Affair and ``Just Fine.
Music isn't the only thing keeping Blige busy. Flexing her talents as an entrepreneur, Blige launched her Melody line of sunglasses in 2009. In 2010, her ``My Life perfume became the first to sell more than 60,000 bottles in one day on the Home Shopping Network. A second perfume, ``My Life Blossom, was introduced in summer 2011.
Blige, who co-penned ``I Can See in Color for 2009's ``Precious soundtrack, is also ramping up her acting career.
MALIN AKERMAN (Constance Sack) was named one of Variety's ``10 Actors to Watch in 2007, and the Swedish-Canadian actress has since become known for her sharp comedic timing and cover-girl good looks, while also wowing audiences with her touching dramatic performances. She recently wrapped production on Simon West's actioner ``Stolen, starring alongside Nicolas Cage and Danny Huston.
At the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, Akerman shared the screen with Ryan Philippe and Taylor Kitsch in Steven Silver's film ``The Bang Bang Club. The drama premiered at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival and is based on the true-life experiences of four combat photographers capturing the final days of South African apartheid.
This past February, Akerman joined Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston in the Judd Apatow-produced comedy ``Wanderlust. The previous year, Akerman was seen in theaters nationwide in the 2010 Sundance Film Festival Audience Award Winner ``Happythankyoumoreplease. She joined Kate Mara, Zoe Kazan, and Josh Radnor in Radnor's directorial debut. Also in March of that year, she appeared in Sebastian Gutierrez's fun and sexy ``Elektra Luxx, which premiered at the 2010 SXSW Festival.
In September 2010, Akerman starred in the charming indie rom-com ``The Romantics, directed by Galt Niederhoffer. ``The Romantics also premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and co-starred Katie Holmes, Anna Paquin, Josh Duhamel, Adam Brody and Elijah Wood. In October 2009, Akerman was seen in the Peter Billingsley-directed hit comedy ``Couples Retreat, opposite Vince Vaughn, Kristen Bell, Jason Bateman and Jon Favreau. In March of that same year, she co-starred as Laurie/Silk Spectre in Zack Snyder's blockbuster ``Watchmen, which opened at number one with more than $50 million in box office sales. She was nominated for a Teen Choice Award for this role. A year prior, Akerman starred in the hit romantic comedy ``27 Dresses, with Katherine Heigl, James Marsden and Edward Burns, under the direction of Anne Fletcher. Akerman then reunited with Fletcher to join Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds in the romantic comedy ``The Proposal, which also topped the box office after its debut and has grossed more than $100 million to date.
In 2007, Akerman could be seen alongside Ben Stiller in the comedy ``The Heartbreak Kid, directed by the Farrelly brothers. She is often remembered for her delightful portrayal of wacky nut job Lila. Akerman's other credits include ``Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle and ``The Brothers Solomon.
Despite her wide-ranging experience with feature films, Akerman is also no stranger to the small screen. Her breakthrough came in 2005 on the HBO series ``The Comeback, starring Lisa Kudrow as a washed up sitcom actress. Akerman gained the attention of both critics and audiences for her role as Juna Millken, a popular model/musician who befriends Kudrow's character as she tries to resuscitate her career. Akerman also had a memorable recurring role on the third season of HBO's hit series ``Entourage. She was recently seen in a special episode of ``How I Met Your Mother, and graces TV screens while co-starring in the third season of Adult Swim's ``Children's Hospital-a hilarious medical-drama parody.
Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Akerman moved to Toronto, Canada at the age of two. By age five, she had already begun to model and act in television commercials, and at 17, she won the ``Ford Supermodel of Canada search. After attending college as a psychology major, Akerman relocated to California to focus on acting. It was here where Akerman met her drummer husband, Roberto, while performing as the lead singer of the alternative rock band The Petalstones. The two currently reside in Los Angeles.
CATHERINE ZETA-JONES (Patricia Whitmore) received an Academy Award(R), Broadcast Film Critics Association Critic's Choice Award, Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award(R) and a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her performance as the murderous Velma Kelly in the film adaptation of the Broadway musical ``Chicago. Previously, Zeta-Jones earned a Golden Globe nomination for her portrayal of the wife of a drug-runner in Steven Soderbergh's ``Traffic, also sharing a SAG Award(R) for Outstanding Performance by the Cast of a Theatrical Motion Picture.
On stage, she recently won a Tony Award for Lead Actress in a Musical for her critically acclaimed debut on Broadway, opposite Angela Lansbury, as Desirée Armfeldt in Stephen Sondheim's ``A Little Night Music.
Zeta-Jones first captured international recognition in the action adventure film ``The Mask of Zorro, alongside Antonio Banderas and Anthony Hopkins, later reprising her role as Elena de la Vega in ``The Legend of Zorro. Among her many other credits are Jon Amiel's romantic-thriller ``Entrapment, opposite screen legend Sean Connery; starring alongside Julia Roberts, Billy Crystal and John Cusack in the ensemble comedy ``America's Sweethearts; Steven Soderbergh's "Ocean's 12 ; Steven Spielberg's ``The Terminal, opposite Tom Hanks; starring with George Clooney in the Coen Brothers' comedy ``Intolerable Cruelty; with Justin Bartha; ``No Reservations, also starring Aaron Eckhart; and the romantic thriller ``Death Defying Acts, with Guy Pearce.
Born in Wales, Zeta-Jones began her career on the stage in London and was subsequently cast in the popular Yorkshire Television series ``The Darling Buds of May, based on the novels of H.E. Bates. In 2010, Zeta-Jones was awarded a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for her services to the film industry and charity.
Zeta-Jones is married to actor Michael Douglas. They have a son, Dylan, and a daughter, Carys.
ALEC BALDWIN (Dennis Dupree) currently stars with Tina Fey on the critically acclaimed series ``30 Rock. His ongoing performance has garnered two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, three Golden Globe Awards for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series, Comedy or Musical, and six Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards(R) for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a comedy Series.
Baldwin has done more than forty films, earning an Oscar(R) nomination for Best Supporting Actor for the 2003 independent film ``The Cooler. That performance also brought him the National Board of Review Award for Best Supporting Actor, as well as Golden Globe, SAG Award(R) and Critics' Choice Award nominations. For his role in Martine Scorsese's Howard Hughes biopic ``The Aviator, he shared in a SAG Award(R) nomination for Outstanding Cast Performance, receiving a nomination in the same category for the Academy Award(R)-winning film ``The Departed, his second collaboration with the director. He also shared a National Board of Review Award for Best Ensemble with the cast of David Mamet's ``State and Main, and, more recently, with the cast of Nancy Meyer's ``It's Complicated, which also garnered Baldwin a BAFTA nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
Among his many additional film credits are ``The Good Shepherd, starring and under the direction of Robert De Niro; ``The Edge; Rob Reiner's ``Ghosts of Mississippi; ``The Juror; ``Malice; the screen version of Mamet's ``Glengarry Glen Ross; ``The Hunt for Red October; Mike Nichols' ``Working Girl; Jonathan Demme's ``Married to the Mob; and Tim Burton's ``Beetlejuice.
In addition to ``30 Rock, Baldwin's previous television accolades include two consecutive Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Guest Actor on a Comedy Series for his role on ``Will & Grace; Emmy and Golden Globe Award nominations for his portrayal of Defense Secretary Robert McNamara in the HBO movie ``Path to War; and Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG(R) Award nominations for the role of Stanley Kowalski in ``A Streetcar Named Desire. He also starred in and executive produced the miniseries ``Nuremberg, gaining Emmy and SAG Award(R) nominations for his performance, and a Golden Globe Award nomination for Outstanding Miniseries for his work as a producer.
An accomplished stage actor, Baldwin earned a Tony Award nomination for his performance as Kowalski in the 1992 Broadway revival of ``A Streetcar Named Desire, and an Obie Award for his work off-Broadway in 1991's ``Prelude to a Kiss. His other stage credits include the Broadway plays ``Twentieth Century, ``Serious Money and ``Loot; the New York Shakespeare Festival production of ``Macbeth; and David Mamet's ``A Life in the Theatre, presented off-Broadway. He most recently appeared on stage in the East Hampton 2010 Guild Hall production of Peter Shaffer's ``Equus, directed by Tony Walton.
A native of Massapequa, Long Island, New York, Baldwin is a graduate of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and was presented with an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from NYU in 2010. Baldwin's book, A Promise To Ourselves, was published by St. Martin's Press in the Fall of 2009.
TOM CRUISE (Stacee Jaxx) has achieved extraordinary success as an actor, producer, and philanthropist in a career spanning over three decades. He is a three-time Academy Award(R) nominee and three-time Golden Globe Award winner whose films have earned in excess of eight billion dollars worldwide-an incomparable accomplishment. Seventeen of Cruise's films have grossed more than 100 million dollars in the United States alone, and 18 have grossed over 200 million dollars globally.
Since he first appeared on screen in the 1981 films ``Endless Love and ``Taps, Cruise's versatility has been evidenced by the varied films and roles he chooses. He has made 34 films, had a producing role on 17, and worked with a remarkable list of acclaimed film directors, including Harold Becker, Francis Ford Coppola, Paul Brickman, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Martin Scorsese, Barry Levinson, Oliver Stone, Ron Howard, Rob Reiner, Sydney Pollack, Neil Jordan, Brian de Palma, Cameron Crowe, Stanley Kubrick, Paul Thomas Anderson, John Woo, Steven Spielberg, Michael Mann, J.J. Abrams, Robert Redford, Ben Stiller, Bryan Singer, James Mangold, Brad Bird and Adam Shankman.
``Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol opened to critical acclaim in December 2011 and went on to gross close to 700 million dollars, making it the biggest box office success of Cruise's career. Combined, the ``Mission: Impossible franchise has brought in more than two billion dollars worldwide since Cruise conceived the idea for the films and began producing them, also starring in all four films as the legendary spy Ethan Hunt.
Following ``Rock of Ages, Cruise stars this December in Christopher McQuarrie's suspense thriller based on the Lee Child book One Shot, from his hugely successful series about Jack Reacher, a former military policeman-turned-drifter. Cruise is now filming Joseph Kosinski's ``Oblivion, to be released in April 2013. Later this year, he will begin work on the sci-fi thriller ``All You Need is Kill, to be directed by Doug Liman.
In 2010, Cruise starred with Cameron Diaz in the romantic action-comedy ``Knight and Day. Two years earlier, Cruise portrayed German officer Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg in the critically acclaimed worldwide hit ``Valkyrie, an historical thriller about the attempted assassination of Adolf Hitler during World War II, which grossed $200 million globally, making it one of the top five WWII-themed films of all time. Cruise also appeared in Ben Stiller's comedy smash ``Tropic Thunder, as the hip hopping, foul-mouthed Hollywood movie mogul Les Grossman. This performance, based on a character he created, earned him praise from critics and audiences, as well as his seventh Golden Globe Award nomination.
Cruise received Academy Award(R) nominations for Best Actor for ``Born on the Fourth of July and ``Jerry Maguire, in addition to a Best Supporting Actor Oscar(R) nomination for ``Magnolia. He also garnered three Golden Globe Awards, including Best Actor wins for ``Born on the Fourth of July and ``Jerry Maguire, and one for Best Supporting Actor for ``Magnolia, as well as nominations for his roles in ``Risky Business, ``A Few Good Men, and ``The Last Samurai. In addition, Cruise has earned acting nominations and awards from BAFTA, the Screen Actors Guild(R), the Chicago Film Critics Association, and the National Board of Review.
His list of memorable credits also includes such diverse films as ``Collateral, ``Minority Report, ``Interview with the Vampire, ``The Firm, ``Rain Man, ``The Color of Money and ``Top Gun.
Cruise has also been honored with tributes ranging from Harvard's Hasty Pudding Man of the Year Award, to the John Huston Award from the Artists Rights Foundation, and the American Cinematheque Award for Distinguished Achievement in Film.
While continuing to explore new artistic challenges, Cruise has used his professional success as a vehicle for positive change, becoming an international advocate, activist and philanthropist in the fields of health, education and human rights. He has been honored by the Mentor-LA organization for his work on behalf of the children of Los Angeles and around the world, and in May 2011, he received the Simon Wiesenthal Humanitarian Award. This June, he will receive the Entertainment Icon Award from the Friars Club for his outstanding accomplishments in the entertainment industry and in the humanities. He is the fourth person to receive this honor after Douglas Fairbanks, Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
ADAM SHANKMAN (Director / Executive Producer) is a multi-faceted filmmaker who has enjoyed success as a director, producer and choreographer.
Shankman and his sister, Jennifer Gibgot, are partnered as producers in Offspring Entertainment, and currently have an overall deal with New Line Cinema. Under the Offspring banner, they previously produced the original ``Step Up, directed by Anne Fletcher, as well as its successful sequels, ``Step Up 2: The Streets and ``Step Up 3D, both helmed by Jon M. Chu; ``17 Again, starring Zac Efron; and the Drew Barrymore-starrer ``Going the Distance. They will release ``Step Up Revolution this July, the fourth addition to the hugely popular franchise. Upcoming, they are set to produce ``Tink, which will star Elizabeth Banks. Shankman is also attached to direct the family dramedy ``This Is Where I Leave You, as well as ``The Nutcracker, an action adventure version of the classic fairytale The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, both under the Offspring banner.
In 2009, he served as co-producer and lead choreographer of the 2010 Academy Awards(R). The telecast earned a record 12 Emmy nominations, including two for Shankman for producing and choreographing.
In July 2007, Shankman directed and executive produced ``Hairspray, the feature film adaptation of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical. It received three Golden Globe nominations, including Best Picture - Musical or Comedy. In addition, the film's remarkable cast won a Critics' Choice Award for Best Acting Ensemble.
Shankman began his directing career in 2001 with his debut feature ``The Wedding Planner. The next year, he directed the romantic drama ``A Walk to Remember. Shankman followed with ``Bringing Down the House, ``The Pacifier, ``Cheaper by the Dozen 2 and ``Bedtime Stories.
Prior to launching his directing and producing career, Shankman was one of the entertainment industry's premier dance and physical comedy choreographers, putting his creative stamp on many well-known comedies, dramas, thrillers and animated films. His projects range from ``The Addams Family to ``Boogie Nights, ``Miami Rhapsody and ``The Flintstones, for which he was nominated for a Bob Fosse Award. In addition, he has choreographed music videos for Whitney Houston, the B-52s, Barry White, Aaron Neville, Chic and Stevie Wonder. He also serves as a judge on the hit Fox reality show ``So You Think You Can Dance.
A native of Los Angeles, Shankman developed a love for the theater at an early age. Following high school, he moved to New York and attended Juilliard. After five years as an actor and dancer on the stages of New York and in regional theater, he moved back to Los Angeles and began dancing in music videos for such artists as Paula Abdul and Janet Jackson. He also performed at the 1989 Academy Awards(R).
JUSTIN THEROUX (Screenwriter) is an accomplished film, television and stage actor who gained industry notice with his unforgettable performance as director Adam Kesher, opposite Naomi Watts and Laura Elena Harring, in David Lynch's ``Mulholland Drive. Theroux most recently starred in David Wain's ``Wanderlust, opposite Jennifer Aniston and Paul Rudd.
Theroux is also a talented film writer. In 2010, he penned the blockbuster ``Iron Man 2, which was directed by Jon Favreau and starred Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson. Prior to ``Iron Man 2, Theroux teamed up with Ben Stiller to write and executive produce the comedy hit ``Tropic Thunder, starring Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., Jack Black, Nick Nolte and Matthew McConaughey.
Theroux's acting credits include David Lynch's ``Inland Empire; Zoe Cassavetes' ``Broken English; Michael Mann's ``Miami Vice; Ben Stiller's smash hit comedy ``Zoolander; David Gordon Green's ``Your Highness; Mary Harron's ``American Psycho; David Wain's ``The Ten; ``The Baxter; ``Strangers with Candy; ``Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle; ``Duplex; ``I Shot Andy Warhol; Greg Berlanti's ``The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy; and ``Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.
Theroux made his directorial debut with ``Dedication, which premiered at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival. Developed by Theroux from the script by David Bromberg, the romantic comedy stars Billy Crudup, Mandy Moore, Tom Wilkinson and Bob Balaban.
On the small screen, he portrayed John Hancock in HBO's award-winning miniseries ``John Adams, alongside Paul Giamiatti, Laura Linney and Tom Wilkinson. He had a guest starring arc opposite Amy Poehler in ``Parks and Recreation, and was recurring character on HBO's acclaimed series ``Six Feet Under, for which he shared a Screen Actors Guild Award(R) nomination for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series. He has also had guest spots on ``Alias, ``Sex and the City, ``Spin City and ``Ally McBeal.
Theroux began his acting career in New York theater, starring opposite Philip Seymour Hoffman in ``Shopping and Fucking, followed by ``Three Sisters with Calista Flockhart, Billy Crudup, Jeanne Tripplehorn and Lily Taylor. He last starred in Frank McGuiness's ``Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme, an examination of the individual and collective desire to honor one's beliefs and country. For his performance, Theroux was honored with a Lucille Lortel Award as well as the Boston Critics Award for Best Male Actor.
CHRIS D'ARIENZO (Writer / Executive Producer) wrote the Broadway blockbuster musical ``Rock of Ages. which was nominated for five Tony(R) awards, including Best Musical.
Born in the small farming town of Paw Paw, Michigan, D'Arienzo moved out to Los Angeles to pursue a career as a sketch comedian and actor. While studying at the Groundlings Theater in L.A., he crossed paths with screenwriter Ed Solomon (``Men In Black, ``Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure) who took him under his wing, got him an agent, and sparked within him a passion for screenwriting.
A musician as well, D'Arienzo spent some years playing in different bands and touring across the U.S. It was during this adventure D'Arienzo began to develop the story and characters for ``Rock of Ages."
D'Arienzo also wrote and directed the film ``Barry Munday, starring Patrick Wilson, Judy Greer, Chloë Sevigny, Malcolm McDowell, Cybill Shepherd and Jean Smart, which garnered such film festival honors as Official Selection Edinburgh International Film Festival, Official Selection SXSW Film Festival, and Official Selection Newport Beach Film Festival, Outstanding Achievement In Filmmaking Award.
ALLAN LOEB (Screenwriter) is a screenwriter and TV producer who works with some of the biggest stars and A-list directors in the industry. He co-owns the production company DarkFire Entertainment, and doctors between five and ten scripts a year.
Loeb's most recent big screen projects include the Jennifer Aniston-starrers ``Just Go with It, also starring Adam Sandler, and ``The Switch, with Jason Bateman; director Ron Howard's ``The Dilemma, starring Vince Vaughn and Kevin James; and Oliver Stone's ``Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, with Michael Douglas and Shia LaBeouf. He also wrote Robert Luketic's crime drama ``21, starring Kevin Spacey, and wrote and executive produced ``Things We Lost in the Fire, starring Halle Berry and Benicio Del Toro.
He is currently at work as a producer on the thriller ``Last Moment of Clarity, as a writer on the supernatural thriller ``Visibility and the MMA fighting comedy ``Here Comes the Boom, and as both writer and producer on the action comedy ``So Undercover, due for release this summer.
On TV, Loeb co-created the 2008 series ``New Amsterdam; served as executive producer on the series ``The Beast and the telefilm ``The More Things Change... from director Todd Phillips, which Loeb also wrote; and produced the TV movie ``Monster of the House.
MATTHEW WEAVER (Producer) got his start in the entertainment business at age 17, when, while a senior at University High School in Los Angeles, he got a job at Walt Disney Studios, first in the mailroom and later as a gofer for studio chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg. He spent the next seven years at Disney, primarily working for Marty Katz, President of Production.
Soon after, Weaver was ready for independent producing and, with Tony Lord, he formed Lord/Weaver Productions. They hit the ground running and in their first year set up a wide range of projects with various studios. Their frenetic energy and activity caught the eye of TriStar President Stacey Snider, who gave them a two-year deal at the studio, where they continued to develop projects.
In 1999, Weaver produced his first film, ``Chain of Fools, starring Steve Zahn, Selma Hayek, Tom Wilkinson, Elijah Wood, Orlando Jones, Michael Rappaport and Jeff Goldblum. The following year, he was named Head of Production at Immortal Films, an offshoot of Immortal Records, home to acts such as Korn, Incubus and 30 Seconds to Mars.
While at Immortal, Weaver produced several films, including the hit ``My Baby's Daddy, starring Eddie Griffin and Anthony Anderson. ``Searching for Debra Winger, directed by Rosanne Arquette, was Weaver's first documentary. The film, which included interviews with Winger, Jane Fonda, Gwyneth Paltrow, Whoopi Goldberg and Sharon Stone, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, where it was acquired by Showtime. During his time at Immortal, Weaver also ventured into television, executive producing the Vh1 reality series "Rock the House."
Weaver formed Prospect Pictures in 2002, with director Marcos Siega, and together they made the film ``Pretty Persuasion, with a cast that included Evan Rachel Wood in her first starring role, James Woods, Ron Livingston and Jane Krakowski. The film premiered in dramatic competition at the Sundance Film Festival and was sold to Samuel Goldwyn and Roadside Attractions.
While at Prospect, Weaver's second documentary, ``Surfwise, was produced. The story of the legendary Paskowitz family, the film was directed by acclaimed documentarian Doug Pray, co-produced with Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter, and financed by Mark Cuban's HD Net Films. The widely praised documentary premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Weaver also produced ``The Heartbreak Kid, starring Ben Stiller and written and directed by the Farrelly brothers. During this time, Weaver was exposed to the theater world through his wife, Hillary, who was producing ``The Pussycat Dolls: Live at The Roxy.
Shortly thereafter, Weaver conceived of the idea for a rock musical and, collaborating with book writer Chris D'Arienzo and others, created the stage show ``Rock of Ages. The show opened on Broadway in 2009 to rave reviews, and later received five Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical. Now in its third year on Broadway, having grossed over $50 million, it has been touring nationally and internationally, again to great reviews.
Weaver continues to produce independent films, such as ``Sympathy for Delicious, starring Mark Ruffalo, Laura Linney and Orlando Bloom, which premiered in dramatic competition at Sundance and won a special Jury Prize; and ``Hesher, starring Natalie Portman and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, which also premiered at Sundance.
Most recently, Weaver executive produced the documentary ``Jiro Dreams of Sushi, directed by David Gelb. Widely regarded as one of the top five films at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, it was the first film sold, acquired by Mark Cuban's Magnolia Pictures and released in theaters this year.
Weaver is currently collaborating with legendary concert promoter Michael Cohl on several Broadway shows and live events.
SCOTT PRISAND (Producer) has kept busy on both the stage and the screen. He produced the Tony Award-nominated hit Broadway musical ``Rock of Ages, on which the film is based, and was also a producer of the successful Broadway show ``Legally Blonde: The Musical, based on the 2001 feature film and nominated for seven Tony Awards and ten Drama Desk Awards in 2007. He has also produced ``BKLYN The Musical, the Tony Award- and Drama Desk Award-nominated ``Bombay Dreams, and ``Chita Rivera: The Dancer's Life.
An executive of Corner Store Entertainment, Prisand's film producing credits include Mark Ruffalo's drama ``Sympathy for Delicious, which stars Ruffalo, Orlando Bloom, and Laura Linney, and the comedy/drama ``Hesher, with Natalie Portman, Rainn Wilson and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Both of these films premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. Prisand's other producing credits include the romantic comedy ``Barry Munday, starring Patrick Wilson and Judy Greer and written and directed by ``Rock of Ages scribe Chris D'Arienzo; the family film ``Nic & Tristan Go Mega Dega, and the feature film ``Lonely Street, starring Jay Mohr, Nikki Cox, Joe Mantegna and Robert Patrick.
Prisand began his career at Ladenburg, Thalmann & Co in New York City where, as an advisor to high net worth individuals and institutional trading accounts, he specialized in managing money for professional athletes. Prior to working in entertainment, he was a partner in a nationwide financial services company. Born and raised on Long Island, Prisand is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin with a BA in finance.
CARL LEVIN (Producer) is a New York-based theater and film producer who co-conceived the Tony Award-Nominated musical ``Rock of Ages with Matthew Weaver.
His introduction to the entertainment industry came in 1985, as the youngest accredited entertainment reporter in the Los Angeles market, where he appeared on-camera on a weekly news program reviewing films and concerts.
Levin attended Princeton University, where he quickly learned the difference between khaki and beige. He later went on to intern at New Line Cinema, before earning his MBA in finance from New York University. After NYU, he decided to get a ``real job and became a Vice President at Morgan Stanley in their entertainment group, where he had the opportunity to work with Martha Stewart on the initial public offering of her media company.
In 2006, Levin and Weaver's first theatrical collaboration resulted in the creation of ``Rock of Ages. Initially performed at a bar on the Sunset Strip, the show quickly grew in popularity, transferring to a 1,000-seat venue and eventually opening on Broadway in 2009. The show was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and has productions running in New York, Korea, Australia, Toronto, Japan, London, and on tour across North America.
Not content to quit while he is ahead, Levin most recently developed the musical ``Fat Camp with Dodger Theatricals (``Jersey Boys); the show is currently running off-Broadway at The American Theatre of Actors.
TOBEY MAGUIRE (Producer) continues to garner both critical and commercial success in a career renowned for the actor's ability to deliver standout performances in both big budget blockbusters as well as thought-provoking independents.
This December, Maguire stars opposite Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan in Baz Luhrmann's big screen adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel The Great Gatsby. The film brings to life Luhrmann's own distinctive visual interpretation of the classic story in a way that has never been seen before. The film will be released in 3D and IMAX on December 25th. In September, Maguire will make a comedic turn in Jacob Aaron Estes' film ``The Details, opposite Laura Linney, Ray Liotta, Kerry Washington and Elizabeth Banks. The film is a black comedy about a married couple living the average suburban life until the typical difficulties of marriage and parenthood escalate into a series of immoral behaviors.
With a career defined by notable performances, Maguire has collaborated with some of the most acclaimed filmmakers in the business. His credits include a riveting performance in Jim Sheridan's ``Brothers, opposite Jake Gyllenhaal and Natalie Portman, for which he received a Golden Globe Best Actor nomination in 2010; his memorable portrayal as jockey Red Pollard in Gary Ross's ``Seabiscuit, which received seven Academy Award(R) nominations, including Best Picture; and his stirring performance in Lasse Hallström's ``The Cider House Rules, which also received seven Academy Award(R) nominations including Best Picture.
In 2007, Maguire reunited with director Sam Raimi for ``Spider-Man 3, which then held the record for the second biggest opening weekend (domestic and worldwide) of all time as well as becoming the number one highest grossing film of 2007. In addition, the franchise is one of the most successful in film history, with a total worldwide box office of approximately 2.5 billion dollars.
Maguire's other credits include, Steven Soderbergh's period drama ``The Good German, opposite George Clooney and Cate Blanchett; Curtis Hanson's ``Wonder Boys, in which Maguire starred opposite Michael Douglas; Ang Lee's ``Ride with the Devil; ``Pleasantville, opposite Reese Witherspoon; Terry Gilliam's ``Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas; Woody Allen's literary satire ``Deconstructing Harry; Ang Lee's 1997 acclaimed film ``The Ice Storm; and his breakthrough in Griffin Dunne's 1996 Academy Award(R)-nominated short ``Duke of Groove.
In addition to producing ``Rock of Ages under his Material Pictures banner at Sony, Maguire also produced ``Country Strong, written and directed by Shana Feste and starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Tim McGraw. Among the company's many projects currently in development are David Fincher's ``Pawn Sacrifice, the life story of American chess icon Bobby Fischer leading up to his historic world championship match against Boris Spassky; ``Good People, directed by Niels Arden Oplev and written by Kelly Masterson; and ``Robotech, a sprawling sci-fi epic based on the popular television series. Maguire's first outing as a producer was the big-screen adaptation of David Benioff's novel The 25th Hour. The critically-acclaimed film was directed by Spike Lee and stars Ed Norton.
JENNIFER GIBGOT (Producer) began her producing career in 1995 running Tapestry Films. During her eight-year tenure there, she set up numerous projects and produced such successful films as ``She's All That and ``The Wedding Planner, starring Jennifer Lopez and Matthew McConaughey. Gibgot hired her brother, Adam Shankman, who was already an established choreographer, to helm ``The Wedding Planner, which launched his directing career.
Together, Gibgot and Shankman are partnered as producers in Offspring Entertainment, which currently has an overall deal with New Line Cinema. Under the Offspring banner, they previously produced the original ``Step Up, directed by Anne Fletcher, as well as its successful sequels, ``Step Up 2: The Streets and ``Step Up 3D, both helmed by Jon M. Chu; ``17 Again starring Zac Efron; ``Bedtime Stories; and the Drew Barrymore-starrer ``Going the Distance. They will release ``Step Up Revolution this July, the fourth addition to the hugely popular franchise. Upcoming, they are set to produce ``Tink, which will star Elizabeth Banks. Gibgot and Offspring are also attached to produce the family dramedy ``This Is Where I Leave You, as well as ``The Nutcracker, an action adventure version of the classic fairytale The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, both to be directed by Shankman.
After the formation of Offspring Entertainment in 2003, Gibgot went on to serve as an executive producer on the Shankman-directed films ``The Pacifier and the family comedy ``Cheaper by the Dozen 2. In July 2007, she executive produced Shankman's ``Hairspray, the feature film adaptation of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical. It received three Golden Globe Award nominations, including Best Picture - Musical or Comedy. In addition, the film's remarkable cast won a Critics' Choice Award for Best Acting Ensemble.
GARRETT GRANT (Producer / Unit Production Manager) enjoys the challenge of performing dual roles behind the scenes, having previously teamed with director Adam Shankman as executive producer and unit production manager on ``Bedtime Stories, ``Hairspray and ``The Pacifier; as executive producer on ``Cheaper by the Dozen 2; and, most recently, as a fellow producer with Shankman on ``Going the Distance.
Grant has also collaborated on nine films with directors Bobby and Peter Farrelly, including ``Stuck on You, ``Shallow Hal, ``Osmosis Jones, ``Me, Myself & Irene, ``There's Something About Mary, ``Kingpin, and ``Dumb and Dumber.
He also served as executive producer on ``Old Dogs, co-producer on ``Like Mike and ``Say It Isn't So, and as line producer for ``The Locusts.
He served as unit production manager on ``Gun Shy, as production supervisor for ``Beverly Hills Ninja, and as location manager for such films as ``Killing Zoe and ``Albino Alligator, among others.
Growing up in a movie industry family, Grant began his career as a child actor playing roles on ``Father Murphy and ``Little House on the Prairie.
BOJAN BAZELLI (Director of Photography) is one of the great image makers working at the forefront of high profile, visually progressive films today. He is reunited on ``Rock of Ages with director Adam Shankman, as the two previously collaborated on ``Hairspray.
Bazelli is currently at work on Gore Verbinski's upcoming actioner ``The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. He previously shot the Steve Antin-helmed musical ``Burlesque, starring Cher, Christina Aguilera, Stanley Tucci, Alan Cumming and Kristen Bell; the Jon Turtletaub feature ``The Sorcerer's Apprentice, a live-action adaptation of the classic Goethe poem-cum-Mickey-Mouse-cartoon starring Nicolas Cage, also produced by Bruckheimer; and Bruckheimer's live-action/animated ``G-Force, directed by Hoyt Yeatman.
Earlier films in Bazelli's repertoire include the blockbuster ``Mr. and Mrs. Smith, for director Doug Liman, starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie; the spooky, foggy atmosphere of Verbinski's thriller ``The Ring; and the acclaimed independent films ``The Rapture, ``Deep Cover, ``Dangerous Beauty, ``King of New York, which garnered him an Independent Spirit Award nomination, and ``Kalifornia, which took Best Cinematography at the Montreal Film Festival.
Bazelli approaches his work with an open, creative mind. His introduction to photography began at age seven, when his father took him into a projection room. The experience gave birth to a deep curiosity, as he wondered how a projector could create such beautiful images on the distant screen.
After high school, Bazelli trained at FAMU Film School in Prague. Impressed with one of Bazelli's student films, acclaimed director Abel Ferrara immediately offered him the job of shooting ``China Girl in New York City. Bazelli jumped at the opportunity and has lived in the United States ever since, rolling from one film to the next, challenging himself with each new project.
The world of TV commercials and music videos embraced Bazelli and became an avenue for experimentation. Acknowledged for Best Cinematography in both 1996 and 1998 at the prestigious American Independent Commercial Producers (AICP) show, Bazelli's contribution to shaping the evolution of the art and technique of the American television commercial is profound. He is one of the few cinematographers to have received the honor twice since the event's inception. Bazelli also took home a Gold Clio for Best Cinematography in 1998, for his work on Isuzu's ``Giant commerical.
With a style simultaneously sensual and atmospheric, beautiful and gritty, Bazelli keeps his creativity flowing with regular visits to galleries and by viewing as many films as possible. He loves both the art world and the entertainment industry.
JON HUTMAN (Production Designer) most recently served as production designer on Angelina Jolie's directorial debut, ``In the Land of Blood and Honey. He also worked with Jolie on ``The Tourist, under the direction of Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck and also starring Johnny Depp.
Hutman has previously collaborated with filmmaker Nancy Meyers on four features: ``It's Complicated, ``What Women Want, ``Something's Gotta Give and ``The Holiday. He has worked in different capacities on several features directed by Lawrence Kasdan: serving as production designer and co-producer on the films ``Dreamcatcher and ``Mumford; production designer on ``French Kiss; and art director on ``I Love You to Death. He has also collaborated multiple times with Robert Redford, serving as the production designer on ``The Horse Whisperer, ``Quiz Show and ``A River Runs Through It.
Hutman's other feature credits include ``The Time Traveler's Wife, directed by Robert Schwentke; Nick Cassavetes' ``My Sister's Keeper; ``The Interpreter, directed by Sydney Pollack; ``Coyote Ugly; ``Lolita, for director Adrian Lyne; Michael Apted's ``Nell; Steve Kloves' ``Flesh and Bone; ``Trespass, directed by Walter Hill; Jodie Foster's directorial debut, ``Little Man Tate; Arthur Hiller's ``Taking Care of Business; and Michael Lehmann's ``Meet the Applegates. Hutman earned his first production designer credit on Lehmann's cult favorite ``Heathers.
For television, Hutman won both an Emmy Award and an Art Directors Guild Award for his production design on the pilot episode of Aaron Sorkin's ``The West Wing. He also directed an episode of ``The West Wing, and worked as a producer and director on episodes of the series ``Gideon's Crossing.
Hutman earned a degree in architecture from Yale University, where he also studied scenic design and lighting at the university's School of Drama. Returning to his native Los Angeles, he entered the film industry as an assistant in the art department and then worked as a set dresser and an art director on a number of films before moving up to production designer.
EMMA E. HICKOX (Editor) is part of a second generation of moviemaking talent, as one of the children of film editor Anne V. Coates and film director Douglas Hickox.
Her feature credits as film editor include Richard Curtis's ``Pirate Radio, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy and Emma Thompson; Oliver Parker and Barnaby Thompson's ``St. Trinian's II: The Legend of Fritton's Gold, starring Rupert Everett and Colin Firth; Adam Shankman's ``A Walk to Remember, starring Mandy Moore opposite Shane West; Anthony Byrne's ``How About You..., starring Vanessa Redgrave; John Stockwell's ``Blue Crush, starring Kate Bosworth; Mick Davis' ``Modigliani, starring Andy Garcia; Julian Jarrold's ``Kinky Boots and ``Becoming Jane, the latter starring Anne Hathaway; and John Maybury's ``The Edge of Love and ``The Jacket, both starring Keira Knightley.
Hickox' early feature credits as assistant editor include John Badham's ``Bird on a Wire and ``The Hard Way.
RITA RYACK (Costume Designer) is an award-winning costume designer who has worked on over 30 feature films, including ``Hairspray for director Adam Shankman.
Among her other projects are ``Casino, ``Cape Fear, ``After Hours and ``Bringing Out the Dead, all for Martin Scorsese; Barry Levinson's ``Wag the Dog; and Robert De Niro's ``A Bronx Tale. She has designed costumes for six of Ron Howard's films: ``Apollo 13, ``Ransom, ``A Beautiful Mind, ``EDtv, ``The Paper and ``How the Grinch Stole Christmas, which earned her an Oscar(R) nomination. Her other notable films include Brett Ratner's ``Rush Hour 2 and ``After the Sunset; Mitchell Lichtenstein's ``Teeth; and the HBO film ``You Don't Know Jack, with Al Pacino, for which she received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Costumes for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special.
Ryack has also worked extensively on and off-Braodway, receiving Tony Award and Drama Desk Award nominations for the Broadway musical ``My One and Only, which starred Tommy Tune and Twiggy, and a Drama Desk Award nomination for ``Digby. She also designed for the productions of ``Time Stands Still and ``The Human Comedy.
Her other awards and nominations include the OBIE for Sustained Excellence in Costume Design, and the Costume Designers Guild Award and Satellite Award for ``How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
She most recently designed the NBC pilot ``Smash, executive produced by Steven Spielberg. She also designed ``The 82nd annual Academy Awards, for Adam Shankman, and Michael Jackson's ``Bad video, directed by Martin Scorsese.
Ryack is a graduate of Yale Drama School, and a former cartoon animator who has written and illustrated, and continues to write, her own graphic novels.
MIA MICHAELS' (Choreographer) vision, direction and choreography, from stage to screen, have turned her creations into raw, inspired and unique works of passion and beauty. This year will mark two highly anticipated big screen ventures that will propel this multiple Emmy Award winner to even further heights as one of our most sought after innovators.
Michaels' reunites with her ``So You Think You Can Dance (``SYTYCD) judge alumnus, Adam Shankman, in ``Rock of Ages. Following that, she makes her acting debut with a strong supporting role in the highly anticipated dance feature ``Step Up Revolution, set to hit theatres at the end of July.
On television, Michaels has served as the ever-popular judge and contributing choreographer for Fox's award-winning show and touring company of ``So You Think You Can Dance. She has been nominated for four Emmy Awards, and has won three, for outstanding choreography for her dance pieces on ``SYTYCD. Additionally, she put her original stamp on choreography as a favorite American judge and choreographer on ``SYTYCD Canada during four successful seasons. Michaels also recently choreographed and co-directed a dream sequence for the hit show ``House M.D., a quirky, dark musical episode starring Hugh Laurie and Lisa Edelstein entitled ``Get Happy. Michaels was also the choreographer for the ABC scripted dance/drama pilot ``Grace, starring Eric Roberts.
She directed and choreographed Blake McGrath's ``Relax video, which was nominated for Video of the Year at the 2011 Much Music Video Awards. She appeared in the documentary ``Move, and the Steve Karas PBS special ``See Them Dance. Her other work in film and television includes Debbie Allen's ``Cool Women for AMC, and award-winning commercials for Mike's Hard Lemonade, Bacardi, Coldwell Banker, Ziploc, the WNBA, Star TV and VISA.
On stage, Michaels' choreography has entertained and thrilled countless audience members, most notably with her work on Celine Dion's stage show ``A New Day, directed by Cirque's own Franco Dragone, which played at the Coliseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas for more than five years to sold-out audiences from around the world. The show featured a cast of 50 dancers in two hours of pure dance artistry, and Michaels' work was nominated for an Emmy for CBS's special opening night coverage. Other shows featuring Michaels' choreography include Celine Dion's world Tour ``Taking Chances and Cirque du Soleil's first touring show, ``Delirium. She has also created works for numerous recording artists, including Madonna, for her Drowned World Tour, as well as videos for Ricky Martin, Gloria Estefan, Prince, Greek superstar Anna Vissi, and many others.
Included in her diverse concert and stage work is the critically acclaimed New York-based dance company RAW, of which she was founder, artistic director, and choreographer; Les Ballet Jazz de Montreal; Jazz Dance Chicago; and also the Paper Mill Playhouse's production of ``Hello Dolly! starring Tovah Feldshuh. Recently, Michaels was honored with the prestigious Tom Adams award for her dedication to TITAS and the arts. The award was presented by the La Fete du Ballet chairs, Ambassador Ron Kirk and Matrice Ellis-Kirk.
Michaels' expertise and motivational approach in the arena of dance have made her a highly sought after guest instructor and choreographer worldwide. She has held faculty positions at prestigious institutions of dance around the world, including Alvin Ailey, the Joffrey Ballet, and the International Dance Festival of Italy, served as creative director of The PULSE On Tour, and is currently guest master teacher on JUMP's national tour.
Michaels' work is inspirational to all walks of life; she is constantly striving to break new creative ground on all levels and looks forward to her future not only as a master of movement but also a legendary film and stage creator and director.
She currently resides in Los Angeles with Rock, her French bulldog (named for ``Rock of Ages).
ADAM ANDERS (Executive Music Producer / Original Score) and his company, Anders Music, Inc, have sold more than 70 million albums and created the music for some of the most successful major motion pictures and television shows in history. His songs have broken chart records and his work as earned him two Grammy Award nominations and a Golden Globe Award nomination.
Anders has an unparalleled track record of writing and producing top-notch tunes for both established artists and up-and-comers, including the Jonas Brothers, Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, the Backstreet Boys, Clay Aiken, Sheryl Crow, Steven Curtis Chapman, Jesse McCartney, CeCe Winans, Nick Lachey, Ashley Tisdale and The McClymonts. His music can also be heard in many major motion pictures, movies made for television, and TV series, including ``Glee and ``Glee: The 3D Concert Movie, ``High School Musical 3: Senior Year, ``The Young Victoria, ``The Cheetah Girls: One World, ``Evan Almighty, ``The Wedding Planner, ``Rugrats in Paris: The Movie, ``Camp Rock and ``Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam, ``Hannah Montana and ``StarStruck, to name a few.
His current role as executive music producer of FOX's wildly popular TV show ``Glee came at a pivotal point in his career and has, thus far, resulted in two number one Billboard singles; eight number one iTunes singles and a number one ringtone; three Hot Shot Debuts on the Billboard charts within a span of two months; over 43 million singles and 12 million albums sold worldwide; a record-breaking 18 singles in the Top 100 on iTunes at the same time; and platinum certifications for ``Glee cast albums, volumes 1 and 2.
Thanks in large part to Anders, the cast of ``Glee has passed the Beatles for most appearances among non-solo acts in Billboard's more than 50-year history, and, at 123 singles, ``Glee now hold the record for the most single entries on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, exceeding Elvis's 108. Anders work on ``Glee has also earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media, and two consecutive Grammy Award nominations for Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media.
PEER ÅSTRÖM (Original Score) remains a veritable powerhouse presence in the music industry. He has written and produced music for countless Grammy Award-winning, multi-platinum artists ranging from Madonna, Cyndi Lauper and Celine Dion to Enrique Iglesias and Selena Gomez. Overall, the number of his credits is a staggering 117 albums and 510 performers, and it only keeps rising. Right now, he possesses a world record of produced Billboard chart hits.
Growing up in Sweden, Åström discovered music almost as soon as he could walk. He'd bang around pots and pans as makeshift percussion (before his mom bought him a drum kit at three-years-old), and he began professionally pursuing the art the first chance he got. He grew up listening to and playing many different genres of music, which enables him to write in numerous styles. He also tries to be versatile and emotional with every song he writes, which is evident in such songs as Madonna's ``Get Together and Celine Dion's ``Sorry for Love, which was the first song Åström wrote in his native Sweden. The song ``Get Together is part of the album Confessions on a Dance Floor, which exceeded sales of 12 million worldwide. Among his other songs are Dion's ``Have You Ever Been in Love and ``I Drove All Night, which he co-produced.
In 2009, Åström teamed up with ``Glee Executive Music Producer Adam Anders and became a co-writer and co-music producer for the show. The show instantly became a cultural phenomenon and a new audience became exposed to his work, an audience that remains crucial to him as a creator.
MATT SULLIVAN (Music Supervisor) has overseen the music on such major motion pictures as Rob Marshall's ``Nine and ``Chicago; Bill Condon's ``Dreamgirls; Adam Shankman's ``Hairspray; Chris Columbus's ``Rent; ``Footloose; and ``Idlewild.
For his work as music arranger, music supervisor and soundtrack producer on ``Dreamgirls, he received his first Grammy Award nomination, for Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media. Sullivan also served as a music producer/supervisor on three Oscar(R)-nominated songs for ``Dreamgirls: ``Listen, ``Patience, and ``Love You, I Do. His efforts on ``Dreamgirls also earned him the Broadcast Critics Award for Best Soundtrack.
The movie ``Nine was recognized with an Oscar(R) Best Song nomination for ``Take It All, which Sullivan produced, and, thanks in large part to Sullivan's contributions, the soundtrack from ``Chicago received both Oscar(R) and Grammy Awards.
Sullivan also has many other film credits as music producer, supervisor, consultant and/or engineer under his belt, including Rob Marshall's box office hit ``Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and the pilot episode of Steven Spielberg's NBC series ``Smash.