The cast of Jesus Christ Superstar during
it's 4+-year tour.
Photo courtesy of Debbie Spykerman (email@example.com)
A FEW THINGS OF INTEREST:
This GORGEOUS shot was sent to me by Silvia Toselli (firstname.lastname@example.org). It is the book cover of "Joshua", written by Joseph F. Girzone. Glorious, isn't it? Enjoy!
Courtesy of Linda (email@example.com) we have three terrific finds on JCS info.
1. An ENTIRE DIRECTORY of
32 articles on Charm.net. Most of these articles are about JCS, and are
that Ted did during the four-year tour, or show reviews. Also in the directory is an article about Rasputin and one about
Tommy. Take a look. This is a REALLY FABULOUS find! Thanks SOOOOOO MUCH, Linda!:
NOTE: Recently, the directory link has been taken offline. If the directory does not return, I do have all the links printed
out, so I may scan them and put them here at a future date.
2. Here's another article, courtesy of Linda (from #1),
which should have been in
the sky directory, but somehow wasn't. Enjoy!
3. Yet another find by Linda (from #1), which may or may not settle the argument as to whether the 1973 film, or
the new video provides the definitive version of JCS. As Linda puts it (and at the risk of upsetting the Glenn
"...the writer has got the point about who can act, hasn't he?"
"Carter is tall and classically
distinctive looking and has a great singing voice. Lacking the beard that is
commonly associated with Jesus, he also doesn’t possess the sort of charisma
you might expect, given who he’s playing. This might be a case of the
intrusive camera noticing what isn’t usually an issue onstage, as it’s Ted
Neeley’s eyes in the 1973 version that tell the biggest story, and one’s
eyes just don’t have the same impact onstage. ... There’s nothing awful
about this play, er… movie. It’s just that there’s nothing new either.
For the life of me, I can’t think why someone would choose to watch this one
over the 1973 version."
Here's a very funny, well-written article I found on Salon.com by Julene Snyder called "Masterpiece" follows her experiences with
JCS, Ted and Carl from age 12 up:
Here's a WONDERFUL article by Mark
Goodacre about JCS, which has quite a few complimentary mentions of Ted, entitled:
Do You Think You're What They Say You Are?
Reflections on Jesus Christ Superstar :
Playbill Online November 22, 1996
article entitled: "Ted Neeley's Jesus Holds Off
A link to a super JCS review by Sue Goñi
(one of our Spanish Tedheads):
Here's what the
reviewer (John Nesbit) says about Ted in the movie:
I was concerned about Ted Neeley as Jesus. No way was his voice up to Gillan’s (Ian - from Concept album), and his
vocal abilities seemed relatively wimpy. I still feel a bit uncomfortable with the thinness of his voice on a few of the
early songs, but I forgive any initial shortcomings for his magnificent rendition on one of the film's key songs,
“Gethsemene (I Only Want to Say).”
This is the song in which Christ wrestles with himself. He asks God to take “the cup of poison” away, and wonders
why he must die. It plays fairly straightforward on the album, but with Jewison’s staging and Neeley’s
interpretation, there comes a turning point so profound it brings pause every time I see it.
And Neeley does this near-imperceptibly. Watch him closely when he’s talking about being scared to finish what he started:
Neeley does a quick doubletake and states “What you started—I didn’t start it!” His whole attitude changes here, and
he ends with a moving resolution.
A link to a very interesting fiction
of a Starsky and Hutch story, entitled: "God's Gift To The World",
featuring Ted and Carl and the Superstar tour, found by our newest Spanish Tedhead: Sue Dospalitos:
Mianne Tripp (firstname.lastname@example.org), one of our newest Tedheads, has found a VERY INTERESTING interview here:
done with Lynn Neary on the Highbeam show "Talk of the Nation" on 2/12/04. The interviewees include, among
others, Norman Jewison. The interview is VERY LENGTHY, and I will not post it all here. There are a few parts
mentioning Ted, which I have posted below. You can buy the entire interview at the link above:
We've been talking about the fact that the various images of Jesus have emerged
over time as sort of both products and reflections of the times that these
images are created in. What do you think the Jesus of "Jesus Christ
Superstar" said about the time in which that film was being made? How did
it reflect that time? What did it say about that time?
Mr. JEWISON: Well, I think it captured the imagination of millions of people all
over the world. I think of all the films I've made it probably had the most--the
strongest reaction, especially in Latin America and certain strongly Catholic
countries. I think the film, because it was a musical and because it was a very
strong, strong score and extremely popular throughout the world--I think it
carried with it a kind of a modern identification for Jesus, for the character.
I think Christ, the character played by--Ted Neeley was the actor, and for the
rest of his life, Ted Neeley has played this role, in a way. He has literally
become that character and has, I think, performed in the stage version of
"Jesus Christ Superstar" almost continually for the past 30 years or
very strange. I think it was young--I think Ted Neeley was very attractive and
very--he was a rock star. And this kind of interpretation of the young, dynamic,
angry at times character--because, you know, he was anti-weapons, he was
anti-guns, he was anti-money. He was--there was enormous scenes where he was
smashing everything from American Express cards to travel posters simply because
of the materialism of the secular world, almost.
NEARY: He was very much a product of the '70s.
Mr. JEWISON: Yeah.
JEWISON: And it's such a young person's--you know, you must remember Tim Rice
was only 25, 26 years old when he wrote this.
Mr. JEWISON: I mean, they were young men. And they defended it brilliantly. I went to many debates. The archbishop of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, he had a tremendous debate with a representative from the Anti-Defamation League in New York. And it was really astounding, the amount of controversy that eventually started to rise up in such a way that the film was not nominated for an Academy Award and all of those things. And it won awards all over the world.
Producer, director and writer Norman Jewison is a veteran of many films,
including the 1973 film "Jesus Christ Superstar." His latest movie is
called "The Statement." He joined us from his home in Los Angeles.
FOX: I think I would've told Norman Jewison this if I'd had a chance. I just
think his film is magnificent in this particular way, that it does a new job on
celebrity itself. It helps us as Americans understand what celebrity is because
he gives us in Ted Neeley's Jesus a Christ who is actually destroyed by his own
celebrity. So we get, in a sense, a depiction of the downside of fame. This
Jesus is destroyed by his own followers in a sense. The crowd more or less
consumes this Jesus and he's driven to a kind of despair by the very popularity
he engenders. And the Gethsemane scene in "Jesus Christ Superstar" is,
in my mind, the greatest Gethsemane scene we've ever had on film because it's
this wrenching anguish on the part of Ted Neeley trying to understand how he can
possibly take another step forward in life, given the forces that have
Courtesy again of Linda, just to give everyone something great to look at, here are two interesting finds: the new UK cover of the VHS JCS:
PRETTY NICE, ISN'T IT?
These last 2 masterpieces that Maribel sent have got to rank as my all-time favorite shots of Ted from the JCS film. I've tried to get this image on film for years, unsuccessfully, I might add. I've asked Maribel to see if she can get this shot off the regular VHS, as widescreen cuts off a lot of heads (my one pet peeve with that particular version of JCS - or any other film, for that matter), but here are the gorgeous shots she did send me now: