Made in 1978 the original Musical Version Of The War Of The Worlds is one of the best selling albums of all time.
On Friday the 18th of November, following a much anticipated build up it was announced that after the success of Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of War Of The Worlds for many decades, a new project Jeff Waynes Musical Version Of The War Of The Worlds The New Generation would premier in 2012.
The event hosted by Simon Mayo was webcast to Facebook, Mayo announced that the new album would be available to purchase in June 2012, with a series of worldwide shows going out from the Autumn. The event will be shown on a giant screen with CGI effects, and 3D holographic performers. A 35 foot high giant Walking Machine will be on the stage, firing out “real” heat ray blasts into the audience.
After years of playing the character of Herbert it is felt that Richard Burton (who died in the 1984) should step down as the main character, and has been replaced for the new performances by Liam Neeson.
Taking to the stage after the announcement, Liam Neeson and Jeff Wayne took to the stage to talk about the project. Wayne discussed how because things in the story, and in the music have moved on so much it was important to find a new Herbert.
The filming took four days to complete, all of which was done on Green screen so as to create the massive holograms. Neeson explained that the filming was not much different to filming Star Wars or Clash Of The Titans.
For the new show, the music has changed, with a move away from punk and disco, and bringing a more contemporary sound. Wayne said the sound would be a tight modern sound, while still holding the classical stringed roots of the original.
The new performers are remaining anonymous at present, with an announcement to follow early next year, as the release of the album drawers closer. In questioning Neeson revealed he would not be one of the singing performers.
Jeff Wayne told Ben Hall of the times that the holographic performance will interact with real performers, and that the effects will be as good as technology will allow.
Neeson talked about Ellis Island which he filmed with the late Richard Burton, although he never spoke to Burton, he said he was amazed how this fit looking man he met of set, had died just two weeks after the shooting. Neeson stated he was not worried about comparisons to Burton, and stated that he was very flattered.
Wayne told a Camden journalist that when a War Of The Worlds album was re-released it fought of a battle against James Blunt. And in a comparison the same age group bought this time, as last time. So the story is being passed down to a young audience, and not simply a nostalgic audience that buys the re-releases/remixes.
The show will only be seen at arenas due to the size of screens, audience size, and the effects.
The show will air across the globe from November 2012.