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Hit Musical 'Rock of Ages' Gets Movie Makeover

  • Alan Silverman

Tom Cruise as Stacee Jaxx in New Line Cinema’s rock musical “Rock of Ages,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release. (Photo: Warner Bros/David James)

Tom Cruise as Stacee Jaxx in New Line Cinema’s rock musical “Rock of Ages,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release. (Photo: Warner Bros/David James)

HOLLYWOOD - The hit musical Rock of Ages is now a movie featuring one of Hollywood's biggest stars. The film uses a jukebox selection of rock hits from the 1980s to tell its story.



It's 1987, and the small-town girl is Sherrie. She's wide-eyed and newly arrived in Hollywood, seeking fame and fortune as a singer. Sherrie meets up with Drew, a bartender at a music club on Sunset Strip, who has his own dreams of rock stardom.



Country music singer and television dance star Julianne Hough plays Sherrie. She says she identifies with the character's stage fright.

"Every time I go on stage or do any kind of performance, there are always butterflies," Hough admits. "I'm always nervous. It always feels like the first time, so we could really let that come out."



Latin music star Diego Boneta makes his feature film debut as Drew. Although he was born in 1990, he says he knew all of the "Rock of Ages" music.

"My parents only listened to 80s bands. So growing up, my favorite bands were the Police, Queen and U2," Boneta explains. "The older I got, I started listening to other 80s bands and even before auditioning for this movie, I knew every single song."

The film's surprise is screen idol Tom Cruise who plays jaded super star Stacee Jaxx.



Malin Akerman co-stars as a music journalist whose love of rock helps Jaxx rediscover his music.

Director and choreographer Adam Shankman helped reinvigorate the movie musical with the 2007 hit "Hairspray." Shankman believes the eclectic mix in "Rock of Ages" is familiar to today's teens as well as their parents.

"It just sort of is a testament to the fact that these songs are kind of evergreen and that they are much more substantial than people gave them credit for in the period," Shankman says. " I think people thought that these songs were going to go away …and they haven't."


"Rock of Ages" also features hip-hop star Mary J. Blige along with actors Alec Baldwin, Paul Giamatti, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Russell Brand. All the actors, including Tom Cruise, sing their own roles.
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