Everybody's Talking About Jamie

Jamie Campbell may have had to fight to wear a dress to his high school prom, but he certainly didn’t have to struggle for affection during a recent visit to Chelsea. On Monday, October 22nd, Cinepolis Theaters proudly welcomed the British native and his mother, Margaret to Screenvisions’s special VIP screening of the London musical based on their lives.

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie is the contagiously fun and inspiring new musical that has already won the hearts of West End theatergoers. Soon, American audiences will be buzzing about it too. On November 7, 11, and  14 movie theaters around the country will be screening the stage version.  It was filmed in front of a live audience at London’s Apollo Theatre.

From L – Jonathan Butterell, Tom MacRae, Jamie Campbell, Margaret Campbell. Photo by Jeremy Daniel

Several luminaries were on hand at Cinepolis to greet the “boy in the dress who was born to impress.” They included Jane Krakowski (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) and Jose Llana (The King and I).   Jamie‘s Director Jonathan Butterell, Book write/lyricist Tom MacCrae, producer Nica Burns, Jamie Campbell, and Margaret Campell were also at the event to talk to the press and field questions from a curious and excited audience. 

The coming of age piece tells the story of a young man, Jamie New (John McCrea), who hails from an ex-mining county in England. New dreams of being a drag queen but is met with resistance when his teachers find out how far he wants to take it. With the ever unconditional support of his mother, Margaret, her friend Ray (Shobna Gulati), and his dear friend Pritti (Lucy Shorthouse) the team rise up to help Jamie claim his authenticity.

From L – Jamie Campbell, Nica Burns. Photo by Jeremy Daniel

Dan Gillespie Sells, who wrote the dynamic score to the show was not in attendance. He is currently on tour with his Brit-based band, The Feeling.

Although American audiences will have the chance to see the screening, there are no definitive plans to open in the United States.

“We would love to bring Jamie to Broadway,” Burns told Manhattan Digest. “But Broadway-for musicals- still has a huge bar in terms of all the great musicals that have been created here that have gone on to become part of the worldwide culture. These screenings will give us the opportunity to get feedback from an American audience. We’ve already looked to our American colleagues on Broadway who have given us some really really good notes which we will put in the show.” Burns went on to describe her affinity for the material. “It’s really for any parent who has unconditional love for their child. Isn’t that something that every child wants?  A lot of acceptance right now is what will make the world a happier place.” 

From L – Paige Turner, Jamie Campbell, Alexis Michelle. Photo by Jeremy Daniel

Having seen the live version in London and sitting through the screening, this writer is confident that Broadway would embrace the show. With its multi-ethnic cast, a heart that dwarfs the Chrysler building and the best musical score in ages, it drives home a  desperately needed message of acceptance and compassion. 

At forty-two, I might be too old to “fan-girl” over a musical, but I could care less what people think. I learned that by watching Jamie Campbell.

For tickets and showtimes, visit https://www.jamieincinemas.com/