Craig Brewer needs a hero. He’s holding out for a hero ’til the end of the night. Fortunately, according to the fancy press release from Universal I received earlier today via our Mojo Machine, his wait is over. Plus, he’ll be getting a lot more than one hero.

Frankly, there’s not much to say about the young talent that’s taking over the iconic Kevin Bacon role in the new version of Footloose or the not-as-iconic Lori Singer role. The first is Kenny Wormald who has appeared as a dancer in a few movies and on “Dancelife.” The second is Julianne Hough who was on “Dancing with the Stars” and other episodes of “Dancing with the Stars.”

What’s interesting about this is that Brewer and the casting team sought unknowns after a widely publicized look at Zac Efron. Fortunately, they’ve gone after trained dancers.

I have full faith in Craig Brewer because I love the films he’s made so far, but I’m baffled as to why you’d need to hire the best and brightest in the dance world to portray teenagers who have never been allowed to dance before. It’s moronic. It appeared moronic in the first film (which made an entire sequence teaching a guy to dance stand out) and with Brewer’s style (which I imagined would be more sweaty than saccharine) it doesn’t seem to fit at all.

I don’t want the stamp of teenage rebellion to be the cast putting on “Rent” in the cafetorium.

Just let them have a normal, high school dance, where every does the Cabbage Patch and no one went to Julliard.

Rants aside, the most interesting casting of the bunch is Dennis Quaid in the role that John Lithgow made famous. Will he be able to step up to the plate and create a religious maniac that’s quiet until he goes insane? I can see the potential there, but Lithgow could act circles around Quaid even on a bad day. Like, say, the day he was filming Leap Year for example.

Whatever I can say, it definitely looks like a modern take. I still trust Craig Brewer and hope he has something realistic in store for audiences, but the casting inspires more camp than confidence.

That’s Dance Camp, by the way.


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