Les Misérables is set to be an amazing film – but it certainly isn’t a simple one. If you have struggled to make sense of the complicated cast of characters, catch up with our easy guide before the film is released. Minor spoilers ahead.

If you have never seen the musical, it can be difficult to keep track of the huge list of characters – particularly in such a star-studded cast. As beautiful and atmospheric as the trailers have been, a non-fan could easily be lost in the distinct lack of plot, and confused as to which Hollywood star is the star of the film.

Never fear, you’ll soon be overanalysing with the rest of us – just read through our handy guide to the cast and characters, and you’ll be on your way to a true Les Misérables obsession (it’s a good thing, trust us).

Check out our visual character guide, and then scroll down for more in-depth analysis of the characters and actors.

Jean Valjean

Meet the protagonist of our story and all-round good guy – this is the man to keep your eye on. Jean Valjean is an ex-convict who has finally been released after serving 19 years in prison for stealing a loaf of bread. After realizing that in the eyes of the public, he will always be a criminal, he decides to break parole and start afresh, with a new name and a new look (and some help from a friendly Bishop). And then he has a fairly eventful life, some things happen to him as he tries to flee from his past, but we won’t spoil it for you.

Played by HUGH JACKMAN

Honestly, if you haven’t seen this man sing in a film or on stage we suggest you climb out from that rock you’ve been nesting under. A genuine triple threat (singer, dancer, actor, eye-candy…make that a quadruple threat), he won a Tony Award for his performance in The Boy from Oz, as well as having hosted the Tonys three times and the Oscars once. That said, despite his fancy footwork Jackman will still have to pull out all the stops to play this musically and emotionally challenging role. We’re looking forward to seeing what he can do.

Javert

Inspector Javert is the big bad of Les Misérables. He is the policeman who first released Valjean, and when JVJ breaks his parole Javert becomes obsessed with finding him. Really obsessed. You’d be surprised, thinking maybe he has other things to do, but nope. He has a firm belief that people are unable to change, and that Valjean will always be a criminal and therefore deserves to be brought to justice. Basically, he’s kind of like a crazy stalker, the kind that makes the object of their attention go into a witness protection program.

Played by RUSSELL CROWE

Russell Crowe began his career as a musician, and has performed both as a solo artist and in various bands, beginning in the 1980s. He has released several albums through these many projects, as well as appearing in productions of Blood Brothers, Grease and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Crowe’s distinct vocal style and lack of conventional musical theatre training indicate that this will be a slightly different interpretation of Javert, who is usually sung in a more classical style. Then again, with the live-singing approach they are taking, this may work perfectly.

Fantine

Fantine is a worker employed in a factory owned by the new-and-improved-artist-formerly-known-as-Valjean. She is also single mother to daughter Cosette, and when she is fired from her job she turns to prostitution to continue to pay the Thénardiers, who she pays to house and raise Cosette. As you may have been able to tell from Anne Hathaway’s general facial expressions in the trailer, and tell-tale V for Vendetta shaved head, she is the tragic figure of the story, and prime Oscar bait.

Played by ANNE HATHAWAY

Hathaway may not have popped up on Glee yet, but if you look closely enough she can be found on the soundtracks for Ella Enchanted, Hoodwinked and Rio. Still, these being not the most popular of films, she has slipped under the radar, and so many were surprised when she jumped up on stage to sing with co-star Hugh Jackman in the opening of the 2009 Oscars. But the girl really can sing, and based off the trailers and scenes released it looks like we will be getting a very emotional performance from her. Like we said, Oscar bait.

Cosette

Cosette is the daughter of Fantine, and was raised by the Thénardiers along with their daughter Éponine, who is her age. Instead of raising her according to her mother’s wishes, they gave her the ‘Cupboard under the stairs’ treatment, forcing her to work for them and generally being nasty and abusive. She is eventually adopted by Valjean, and blossoms under his care and protection. As these things tend to go, she grows up to be absolutely stunning, and falls in love with Marius, and sings about her love. Often.

Played by AMANDA SEYFRIED

Seyfried has taken the more obviously musical route through her star role in Mamma Mia!, so most of us have already heard her sing, and she isn’t bad at all. Further proving her musical cred, she sang on TV show Big Love, wrote and recorded songs for Dear John, and performed a cover song on the Little Red Riding soundtrack. In addition, Seyfried went all Anne Hathaway on us and performed at the Oscars. Her sweet and clear soprano voice should suit this role wonderfully.

Marius

Marius is a member of ‘Friends of ABC’, a group of students who are agitating for a revolution. He is close friends with Enjolras, the leader of the group, but is not as passionate about the cause as some of his peers. Despite his obvious wealth, he is also friends with Éponine, a girl who lives on the streets. He is blind to Éponine love for him, and instead falls in love with Cosette. As is fairly predictable, relationship drama and long-triangles ensue.

Played by EDDIE REDMAYNE

Eddie Redmayne is primarily a stage actor, and so sadly we haven’t been treated to much of his singing as yet. His theatre credentials are decidedly impressive, having won both an Olivier and a Tony for his performance in the West End and Broadway productions of Red. On the musical side, while studying at Eton College he was a soloist in the Eton College Choir. Based off those performances (you can find them on youtube), and what we have seen of his performance, we have no idea how he managed to avoid musicals so long, but he certainly won’t be able to after this.

Eponine

Éponine is daughter of the Thénardiers, she grew up with Cosette, who she treated poorly as her parents did (a bit of ‘Dudley syndrome’ here). Her family ends up on the streets, where Éponine has to fend for herself and befriends and falls in love with Marius. Éponine comprises the last point of the Les Misérables love triangle, although as both Cosette and Marius are completely ignorant to her feelings, it’s not so much a triangle and a depressed emo ‘walking around in the rain and singing ballads’ mess.

Played by SAMANTHA BARKS

Samantha Barks was a contestant on talent show I’d Do Anything, a search for a new West End leading lady, in which she came third. Since then Barks has appeared in numerous productions in the United Kingdom, including Cabaret and Oliver! Most importantly, Barks played Éponine in the West End production of Les Mis for a year, and was honoured by being asked to perform the highly coveted role in the 25th Anniversary Concert of Les Misérables. Having seen her in the West End production, this writer can attest that she is brilliant and the perfect choice.

Thenardier and Madame Thenardier

Thénardier and his wife Madame Thénardier are the reprehensible and unscrupulous villains of the musical – as well as acting as the comedic relief. The Thénardiers are out to get whatever they can, and look out for themselves and themselves alone (and we mean just the two of them, they certainly don’t look out for Éponine). For a while, Thénardier runs a small inn with his wife, where they raise their daughter Éponine and mistreat their ward Cossette. The family ends up on the streets, where they survive through thievery.

Played by SACHA BARON COHEN and HELENA BONHAM CARTER

Sacha Baron Cohen has never shied away from singing when in character, see his performances as Ali G, Borat, Bruno and Admiral General Aladeen. However his portrayal of Pirelli in the Sweeney Todd film was the first time he proved that he had a real vocal ability. Helena Bonham Carter also proved her singing skills in Sweeney Todd as Mrs Lovett. Neither role in Les Mis requires a huge vocal range, so both actors have the skills to cover it. Expect a heavily comedic performance from this duo.

Enjolras

Enjolras is a student and the leader of the student protest group ‘Friends of the ABC’. He is dedicated solely and entirely to the cause of the revolution, he believes it is his duty to fight on behalf of those living who cannot, and who live in poverty and fear. He convinces his friends to fight in the revolution, and is also a close friend to Marius, who he attempts to persuade to commit himself to the cause.

Played by AARON TVEIT

Aaron Tveit is musical theatre stalwart, having starred in numerous shows including Hairspray, Rent and Wicked. Theatre fans will know him best from his starring role in Next to Normal. He is highly regarded and has often been recognized critically – for his performance in Catch Me If You Can he was nominated for an Outer Critics Circle Award, a Drama League Award and the Fred Astaire Award for Best Male Dancer on Broadway. Needless to say, we all have nothing to worry about when it comes to Tveit’s performance.

A ‘Les Miserables’ Round-Up

With not long to go now, if you need a Les Misérables fix, make sure to re-watch the first trailer and the international trailer. If you love the inside scoop, you can also check out these behind-the-scenes interviews with Anne Hathaway and Hugh Jackman.

Did you hear that an original song has been composed for the film, specifically for Hugh Jackman? And if you’re wondering why we checked that all these people could actually sing, remember that this film is taking the bold and unprecedented step of recording all vocals live on set. If you don’t mind spoilers, see the entire cast singing the ensemble number “One Day More”, have a peak at Jackman and Crowe singing their duet, “The Confrontation”, and watch these 5 clips recently released.

Finally: Hypable Movie Review: ‘Les Miserables’

Les Misérables will be released in America on 25 December 2012, in Australia on 26 December 2012 and in the United Kingdom on 11 January 2013.

Are you excited to see this cast perform in ‘Les Miserables’?

Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events will star Neil Patrick Harris in the role of Count Olaf, and on a recent episode of Live! with Kelly, the actor shared many interesting details about the new show.

Anyone who’s looking forward to the book to film adaptation of Lemony Snicket’s wonderful series will no doubt be thrilled to hear what Harris had to say while updating Kelly Ripa on what he’s been up to.

Perhaps most notably, NPH revealed how A Series of Unfortunate Events is being cut up into episodes. So far, the first four books are two episodes each:

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Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events will star Neil Patrick Harris in the role of Count Olaf, and on a recent episode of Live! with Kelly, the actor shared many interesting details about the new show.

Anyone who’s looking forward to the book to film adaptation of Lemony Snicket’s wonderful series will no doubt be thrilled to hear what Harris had to say while updating Kelly Ripa on what he’s been up to.

Perhaps most notably, NPH revealed how A Series of Unfortunate Events is being cut up into episodes. So far, the first four books are two episodes each:

Netflix’s ‘Series of Unfortunate Events’ episode count

neil-patrick-harris-series-unfortunate-events-netflix

“They truncated all of the books into a two hour movie,” Harris said of the Unfortunate Events movie starring Jim Carrey, noting that it just wasn’t a great adaptation. “And there’s thirteen books in the series. So [Netflix’s take] is more spread out. Each book is going to be two episodes. We did the first four books, the first eight episodes of the show.”

As for the tone of the show? Great news: “It’s super dark,” he said. “It’s a much darker on the take on the material than has been seen before.”

When Kelly asked Harris if her kids could watch it, the actor dropped some interesting information about Neflix’s plans:

“I hope so!” he replied. “It’s not Rated-R dark. It’s the most expensive show that they’ve ever done. It’s the first one they call a four quadrant show, so they’re try to get four different quadrants to like it. So in addition to being for adults and for 20-somethings and teenagers, they want it to be for kids as well.”

Dark, appealing to all ages, and two episodes per book? We are so down.

Netflix has yet to share a premiere date for A Series of Unfortunate Events, but we’ll keep you posted.

Jessica Jones introduced us to Marvel’s live-action Luke Cage (Mike Colter), who has his own show debuting on Friday. Here’s everything you need to know ahead of time.

The mythology of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is rich and complicated. Not only do you have to remember what’s happened from episode to episode and season to season, it’s also important to keep in mind what’s happened in other shows and movies.

But that’s why we’re here. Looking forward to Luke Cage premiering on September 30? Us too. Having a little trouble remembering what happened in Jessica Jones and not feeling up to rewatching the show from start to finish? No problem.

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Jessica Jones introduced us to Marvel’s live-action Luke Cage (Mike Colter), who has his own show debuting on Friday. Here’s everything you need to know ahead of time.

The mythology of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is rich and complicated. Not only do you have to remember what’s happened from episode to episode and season to season, it’s also important to keep in mind what’s happened in other shows and movies.

But that’s why we’re here. Looking forward to Luke Cage premiering on September 30? Us too. Having a little trouble remembering what happened in Jessica Jones and not feeling up to rewatching the show from start to finish? No problem.

Everything you need to know about ‘Luke Cage’

The man

luke cage premiere date

We first met Luke in the series premiere of Jessica Jones and he was in the majority of the episodes for the season. He owned a bar in Hell’s Kitchen and made it a priority to stay away from complications. Too bad Jessica Jones is the definition of complicated. Sweet Christmas.

With chemistry pretty much off the charts, it didn’t take long for Luke and Jessica to start hooking up. Unfortunately, between Kilgrave’s manipulations and Jessica’s lies, the situation came to a head and Luke found out it was Jessica who was responsible for his wife’s death way back when Kilgrave was livin’ large with Jessica at his side.

Luke left after that, but not before he ran into Kilgrave with the intention of killing the man. Instead, Kilgrave used his power of mind control to plant Luke back into Jessica’s life and keep an eye on her until it was time for Kilgrave to use his trump card. He even forced Luke to blow up his own bar.

In a final confrontation, where Kilgrave once again played with Jessica’s emotions, Luke said he didn’t forgive her for killing his wife and, under Kilgrave’s power, attacked her until she was forced to put a shotgun to his head and pull the trigger.

Thanks to Luke’s powers, he survived, but that didn’t mean there wasn’t some damage. Luke was unconscious, and Jessica was forced to bring him to the hospital where Claire used her position as a nurse to sneak him back to Jessica’s apartment and keep an eye on him.

By the end of the series, once Kilgrave was killed and Jessica was arrested, Luke recovered from his injuries and left Jessica’s apartment when Claire wasn’t looking.

The myth

luke cage mike colter

Luke Cage’s powers are not unlike Jessica’s, though where they both share a similar level of strength, Luke has the added benefit of unbreakable skin. The experiments he was subjected to didn’t make him completely impervious to injury, as seen when the shotgun blast rattled his brain so much it did some internal damage. Areas like his eyes are also open to injury, if Claire sticking that needle through the socket is any indication.

Luke is also just, you know, a big guy. Is intimidation a supernatural ability? Because if so, this guy has got it in spades. He’s a good fighter and obviously used to dealing with the seedier side of the city, so even without his powers, he’d be good to have in a fight.

Luke Cage from the comics isn’t much different, though his interactions with other superheroes have given him an additional leg up. For instance, Iron Fist has taught Luke Cage additional fighting techniques, but we haven’t seen that in the MCU since Iron Fist has yet to debut on Netflix and it’s uncertain what their interactions will be like.

Apparently Luke also has a sweet jacket that’s as impervious as his skin. Given all the clothes we see him go through in the trailers for the upcoming season, perhaps we’ll see him gain a useful item like this in the upcoming freshman run.

The legend

luke cage clip

Luke Cage is already making a name for himself by the end of Jessica Jones, and it’s clear that season 1 of his own show is only going to further his story as a legendary hero. If you want to avoid spoilers at all costs, skip this section. If you’d like to get familiar with some of the show’s upcoming new characters, read on.

In Luke Cage season 1, it’s clear that Cornell Stokes/Cottonmouth will be to Luke as Wilson Fisk/The Kingpin was to Matt Murdock’s Daredevil. This is the guy who wears the crown around Harlem (where Luke has recently moved following his interactions with Jessica), and it’s pretty clear Stokes took no time in pissing off Luke.

Mariah Dillard will be an enemy of a different variety, as she’s a powerful local politician who also happens to be Stokes’ cousin. From the trailers it looks like the two are in business together, but the relationship is contentious at best. Alvarez/Shades, an associate of Cottonmouth, is also going to cause some problems for Luke.

On the other side of the line you have Misty Knight, a police detective who has Luke Cage on her radar. She might also be causing some problems for our hero, but she’s definitely one of the good guys. Her partner is Rafael Scarfe.

Claire will also be returning, this time in a starring role, so the hope is we’ll be seeing plenty of the nurse who is heroic in her own way. She might not have supernatural abilities, but she heals who she can, despite their various complications. She’s also there to light a fire up under the asses of heroes who might be losing their way — and she’s very good at her job.

Everyone’s favorite crook, Turk, will also be showing up in Luke Cage, as will Claire’s mother, Soledad. You can also expect Willis Stryker/Diamondback to play a part this season. He’s tied up with Cottonmouth and Shades and definitely has something against Luke. In the comics, they go way back, and Stryker even had a thing for Luke’s wife, Reva.

Here’s the latest trailer for ‘Luke Cage’ season 1

‘Luke Cage’ season 1 will be exclusively available to stream on Netflix come September 30

Once Upon a Time season 6 will see Sean Maguire’s Robin Hood at least one more time! Come on, is anyone ever really gone for good on this show?

Remember when Hook died, but he really didn’t? Remember when Neal died, but we got see him again in limbo between reality and the Underworld? Well, Robin Hood is following a similar Once Upon a Time narrative arc as EW confirms that the outlaw will return in season 6.

Adam Horowitz and Eddie Kitsis confirmed the news saying, “We’re thrilled to have Sean back for this story arc and are excited for the audience to see what we have planned, which in the wake of his character’s heartbreaking demise, is something we hope is unexpected and surprising.”

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Once Upon a Time season 6 will see Sean Maguire’s Robin Hood at least one more time! Come on, is anyone ever really gone for good on this show?

Remember when Hook died, but he really didn’t? Remember when Neal died, but we got see him again in limbo between reality and the Underworld? Well, Robin Hood is following a similar Once Upon a Time narrative arc as EW confirms that the outlaw will return in season 6.

Adam Horowitz and Eddie Kitsis confirmed the news saying, “We’re thrilled to have Sean back for this story arc and are excited for the audience to see what we have planned, which in the wake of his character’s heartbreaking demise, is something we hope is unexpected and surprising.”

Bringing back characters is one of the major reasons why characters on this show can never have closure. In the aftermath of season 5’s most remarkable death, Once Upon a Time took the necessary steps to give Regina closure. In Neal’s apartment (once again, reviving Neal’s presence for Emma), Regina began to process the reality of her life through a letter from Robin.

Once Upon a Time season 5 regina robin

Kitsis makes note that Regina’s course of action this season will deal with processing her grief. “I can tell you that a lot of this year is about Regina dealing with loss and moving on, because I think Regina has the most unfair luck of anybody, but that’s what makes her Regina,” says Kitsis.

We already caught some of that in the season 6 opener where Regina talks with Snow White about her character’s story and its various interpretations. If the feather floating away from Regina on the bench was a nod to her finding the strength to let go even a little bit, what will Robin’s return mean for her mentally? Regina needs all her faculties to face the most terrifying adversary this season– herself.

What will Robin’s return look like?

Maybe he will appear Jiminy Cricket style and remind her of her best qualities as she faces the Evil Queen. Or perhaps he will appear to save his daughter through some kind of intrinsic bond that exists between them? Maybe that feather actually means a bit more than we give it credit for!

Once Upon a Time season 5 episode 100 review regina robin henry

Kitsis and Horowitz note that Sean Maguire will have “an arc” meaning it is likely that he will appear in more than one episode.

What are some of your theories for Robin’s involvement in season 6? Let us know in comments!

Once Upon a Time season 6, episode 2, “A Bitter Draught,” airs Sunday, October 2 at 8:00 p.m. ET on ABC.