Wow – this business about a Jade Goody musical has really had me reeling. She really did have a surreal life, from her explosive television debut in Big Brother to her finding out about her fatal cancer on the Indian version of the show. It does seem a little soon to be talking about such a commercial venture but at the same time, if the West End musical is well-written, has catchy songs and is well executed, I don’t see anything wrong with it.
However, I am hearing conflicting reports on who’s going to play Jade if this musical extravaganza goes ahead. Apparently, one betting outfit is offerings odds of 3/1 on Scottish actress Ashley Jensen (from Extras and Ugly Betty) to land the role. Close behind are Eastenders stars Michelle Ryan (4/1) and Lacey Turner (6/1), as well as my favourite Doctor Who sidekick Billie Piper (6/1).
Of the four, I get the impression that Lacey would be the best. She’s got that scrappy but admirable spirit down pat in her Eastenders character Stacey and I can totally see her embodying Jade on stage. She even looks a little bit like her! Having said that I have no idea if she can sing… but if she does, I think my money’s on her.
At the same time, it seems that the BBC is reporting that Jade’s former business partner Danny Hayward is talking about doing a TV talent show to find a regular girl to play the reality TV star. Although no deal has yet been determined, MTV and ITV2 have been rumoured and some are suggesting that Max Clifford – Jade’s former publicist – could be a judge on the show.
I actually think this might be a better way to go about casting the role. After all, Jade made her career out of being a reality TV star – creating a new reality show to find someone to play her seems apt, and could give someone a much-needed big break. I really like the idea of Max Clifford being a talent show judge as well – I can totally see him occupying a Simon Cowell/Piers Morgan type role on TV!
I’m sure we’ll find out more about the project soon. I think it’s an interesting one and I’d like to see it become a fully-fledged London hit – hopefully, I’m not the only one.