Jonathan Rhys Meyers is high on some awards prognosticators’ Emmy nod lists for putting the sex and sizzle back into pompous old King Henry VIII in Showtime’s highly acclaimed series, “The Tudors.”
But I bet most Emmy voters don’t know he’s more than an actor. He’s also a rock star.
Well, he could be. The actor nailed Elvis in the 2005 TV movie and won a Golden Globe for it. And he was a charismatic glam rock star in Todd Haynes’ 1998 film, “Velvet Goldmine.” His songs were even on the film’s soundtrack, which I confess, I bought and still listen to.
Get ready for JRM’s singing in the Warner Bros film “August Rush,” due out in October. In it, he plays an Irish punk singer named Louis Rush who falls in love with a sheltered classical cellist (Keri Russell). Fate separates the lovers after one magical night. But she ends up pregnant and the child ends up in an orphanage. But the boy, played by Freddie Highmore, who broke your hearts in Marc Forster’s “Finding Neverland,” is a musical prodigy and ends up playing guitar on the New York streets (under the tutelage of a Dickinsian-like Robin Williams) and communicates with his lost parents through his music.
The story is a sweet, unbelievably tender and involving fairy tale about music, love, communication and faith. But it also shows JRM’s softer side, after TV audiences have been delighting to his cruel, power-mad and downright lusty British monarch. And trust me, the dude can really, really sing.
Photos courtesy of Warner Brothers