×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

James Mangold Helped Oversee ‘Greatest Showman’ Reshoots, Post-Production (EXCLUSIVE)

James Mangold came to the aid of his old pal Hugh Jackman at a critical moment during the making of “The Greatest Showman.” The “Logan” director was enlisted to help oversee a week of reshoots on the lavish movie musical last fall after 20th Century Fox, the studio behind the film, became concerned that Michael Gracey was overwhelmed with the scope of the picture.

Gracey, who is making his feature film directorial debut with “The Greatest Showman,” had an extensive resume of commercials work, but struggled to adjust to the pressure of calling the shots on an $84 million film. It was also determined that he could use a veteran’s assistance with the post-production process.

To that end, Mangold helped edit the picture. He was given an executive producer credit for his work and was paid a seven-figure salary for his contributions.

A source close to the studio disputed any notion that Gracey had lost control of the picture. The source said that Gracey directed all of the principal photography and the re-shoots, noting that the filmmaker was on the set and in the editing bay throughout the production. Mangold’s input, though extensive, was likened to more of an advisory role.

Mangold’s selection made sense on several levels. He had handled musical numbers in 2005’s “Walk the Line” and enjoys a long association with Jackman. The two men have worked together on three films — “Logan,” “The Wolverine,” and “Kate & Leopold.”

The film’s testing improved after reshoots were incorporated.

“The Greatest Showman” opened Wednesday and is one of Fox’s big holiday season offerings. It centers on P.T. Barnum, the legendary circus promoter, and his rise from street urchin to society fixture. Along with Jackman, the cast includes Zac Efron, Zendaya, and Michelle Williams. Reviews for the film have been mixed, with some critics dinging the picture for its plotting and pacing, but it did pick up three Golden Globe nominations, including a nod for best musical or comedy. Audiences also seem to like the movie better than reviewers, having handed it an A CinemaScore.

Gracey worked on the picture for seven years, as “Greatest Showman” struggled to get a greenlight. He first met Jackman on the set of a 2010 Lipton Iced Tea commercial.

Mangold and Fox both declined to comment on this article.

Ramin Setoodeh contributed to this article. 

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Amanda

    ‘Amanda’ Takes Home Best Int’l Film at 15th Sanfic

    SANTIAGO, Chile    French director Mikhael Hers’ “Amanda” scooped up the Best Int’l Film award Saturday (Aug. 24) at the 15th Santiago Int’l Film Fest (Sanfic), which reported a 20% audience uptick in the past two years and continues to grow its reputation as the most vibrant and prominent film festival in Latin America’s Southern [...]

  • disney d23

    Cruella, Kit Harington and Black Panther's Return: Everything We Learned at D23 Day Two

    Not to be outdone by the avalanche of series orders and casting announcements bolstering the new streaming series Disney Plus, Walt Disney Studios showed off its film wares in a marathon presentation at D23 on Saturday. The Anaheim, Calif. expo brought star power, if perhaps fewer surprises than Friday’s presentation, as fans in princess and [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein, Katie Holmes, Taylor Swift'The

    Taylor Swift Downplays Association With Harvey Weinstein

    Taylor Swift’s association with disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was among the topics the singer addressed in a revealing new interview with The Guardian. Weinstein held producer credits for the movies “One Chance” and “The Giver,” both of which featured Swift — in the former, a song, and in the latter, a supporting role. She [...]

  • Breaking Bad Movie

    'Breaking Bad' Movie: Watch the First Teaser for 'El Camino'

    In case you hadn’t heard, Emmy-winning drama “Breaking Bad” is cooking up a movie sequel. On Saturday, after details of Netflix’s project quietly leaked online, the streaming giant issued the first teaser for “El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie,” which will be released on October 11. Starring Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman, the “Breaking Bad” [...]

  • Samara Weaving and Adam Brody Big

    'Ready or Not': That Time Samara Weaving Hit Andie MacDowell in the Face

    Samara Weaving didn’t mean to hurt Andie MacDowell, but she did just that while they were rehearsing for their new horror dark comedy “Ready or Not.” “I hit Andie MacDowell in the face by accident,” Weaving says on this week’s episode of “The Big Ticket,” Variety and iHeart’s movie podcast. “It was horrible. It was [...]

  • Aracne

    Chile’s Sanfic, Mexico’s Morbido Fest Pact to Promote Latino Horror (EXCLUSIVE)

    Mexican horror festival Morbido and Chile’s Santiago Intl. Film Festival (Sanfic) have agreed on a long-term collaboration intended to strengthen the genre film industry in Chile and across Latin America. This partnership will see Morbido representatives attend the Sanfic industry section each year to aid in the promotion of horror projects and advise those projects [...]

  • Tom Holland'Spider-Man: Homecoming' film premiere, Arrivals,

    Tom Holland Addresses Spider-Man’s Studio Divorce at D23: ‘I Love You 3000’

    British actor Tom Holland showed face on the main stage at D23 on Saturday, in the thick of an ugly studio battle over the rights to his iconic Marvel character Spider-Man. Headlines have been rolling in for days about the contentious battle for the cinematic future of the hero, after Sony Pictures became unwilling to [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content