December 19, 2014

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More Highlights From Disney's "Into the Woods" Starring Chris Pine, Anna Kendrick and Johnny Depp

The film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods features Meryl Streep as The Witch, James Corden as The Baker, Emily Blunt as The Baker's Wife, Daniel Huttlestone as Jack, Tracey Ullman as Jack's Mother, Johnny Depp as The Wolf, Anna Kendrick as Cinderella, Chris Pine as Cinderella's Prince as Lilla Crawford as Red Riding Hood. Directed by Rob Marshall, the film hits cinemas Dec. 25. Here, Kendrick, Pine, Corden, Blunt, Kendrick, Huttlestone, Crawford and Ullman preview tunes and scenes from the long-awaited movie. Watch more highlights.

The Shows
Highlights From "Annie," Opening in Cinemas Dec. 19

Based on the 1977 Broadway production Annie (which was inspired by the classic comic strip), Will Gluck's (producer/director and co-writer) film of the same name updates the story (it takes place in present day NYC) and songs (there is new music from singer/songwriter Sia) for modern sensibilities. The cast features Academy Award nominee Quvenzhané Wallis as Annie, Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx as Will Stacks, Emmy Award winner Bobby Cannavale as Guy and Cameron Diaz as Hannigan. This preview video features the orphans performing "It's a Hard Knock Life," Hannigan causing trouble, and Will Stacks showing his softer side. Read The Verdict on the film.

The Shows
Jim Parsons Leads the Cast of Stop-Motion Animated "Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas"

"Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas" is a stop-motion animated special based on the 2003 "Elf" film and Broadway's Elf: The Musical. Four-time Emmy Award winner Jim Parsons lends his voice to the starring role of Buddy the Elf and leads a cast that includes Mark Hamill, Ed Asner, Fred Armisen, Jay Leno, Matt Lauer, Gilbert Gottfried, Kate Micucci and Rachael MacFarlane. The special features nine tunes from Elf: The Musical — in this clip, Buddy teaches the importance of being "Sparklejollytwinklejingley." The show will be rebroadcast Christmas day at 9 PM and is now available for streaming at NBC.com.

The Shows
Highlights From Elf at New Jersey's Paper Mill Playhouse

Based on the 2003 film starring Will Ferrell, Elf is the tale of Buddy, a human orphan raised by Santa's elves. As a grownup, he leaves the North Pole on a journey to discover his true identity. Book is by Thomas Meehan and Bob Martin. Music is by Matthew Sklar and lyrics are by Chad Beguelin. James Moye plays Buddy, Kate Fahrner is Jovie, Paul C. Vogt is Santa, Heidi Blickenstaff is Emily and Robert Cuccioli plays Walter. See show details.

Playbill Presents
"Carols for a Cure 16": Pippin, Gent's Guide, Kinky Boots Ring in the Holidays for a Worthy Cause

Since 1999, producer Lynn Pinto and her crew have put together the holiday CD set "Carols for a Cure" to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. The compilation album features casts from Broadway and Off-Broadway shows performing traditional or original holiday tunes — and sometimes a bit of both! Here, the casts of Pippin, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder and Kinky Boots join Pinto and engineer Andros Rodriguez in the studio to record their respective festive tracks. Visit the Playbill Store for more info.

The Shows
Meryl Streep, James Corden, Emily Blunt and Anna Kendrick Preview the Film Adaptation of Sondheim and Lapine's Into the Woods

The film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods features Meryl Streep as The Witch, James Corden as The Baker, Emily Blunt as The Baker's Wife, MacKenzie Mauzy as Rapunzel, Daniel Huttlestone as Jack, Johnny Depp as The Wolf, and Anna Kendrick as Cinderella. Directed by Rob Marshall, the film is slated to open on Dec. 25. Here, Kendrick, Streep, Corden and Blunt preview tunes and scenes from the long-awaited movie. Read about the film's Golden Globe nomination.

Playbill Presents
Idina Menzel Previews Top 10 Christmas Album "Holiday Wishes"

Idina Menzel gave a special performance outside of Bloomingdale's to help usher in the holiday season. Along with the unveiling of Bloomies' holiday windows, Menzel previewed tracks from her brand new Christmas album "Holiday Wishes" which features a bevy of classic tunes. Here, she performs "White Christmas" and "Do You Hear What I Hear?" and chats about what holiday time means to her. Read the Playbill story.

Playbill Presents
December's "On Stage Across America": All Disney All the Time With Aladdin, Newsies Tour and The Hunchback of Notre Dame In December, "On Stage Across America" swings by the New Amsterdam Theatre to meet up with the gang at Disney's Aladdin.
Playbill Presents
New Album "Have Faith" Finds Mary Testa and Michael Starobin Asking the Big Questions

Mary Testa was joined in studio by Michael Starobin to preview their new album "Have Faith" which is now out on Ghostlight Records. For this album that "addresses issues of faith and doubt from a variety of perspectives," the duo have taken well known tunes and interpreted them in a way that sheds new light on them without cloaking any familiarity. Here, the two run through the standard "Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries" and Alanis Morissette's "Thank U." They play CD release concerts at the Laurie Beechman Theatre January 4, 5, 11 and 12. Read the Playbill story.

The Shows
Highlights From Disenchanted!, a Comedic Look at the Trials and Tribulations of Fairytale Princesses

Life as a fairytale princess isn’t always as wonderful as it’s made out to be and Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and the rest of the crew are ready to set the record straight in Disenchanted!. Dennis T. Giacino's new musical features Michelle Knight as Snow White, Becky Gulsvig as Cinderella, Jen Bechter as Sleeping Beauty, Lulu Picart as Hua Mulan, Soara-Joye Ross as The Princess Who Kissed the Frog and Alison Burns as The Little Mermaid in this comedic take on the trials and tribulations of the world of make believe. The production plays the Theatre at St. Clement's through Jan. 25. Read the Playbill story.

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