Liam Neeson is to appear as a hologram in the stage version of War of the Worlds.
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The Schindler’s List actor will be shown as a full body hologram narrating the musical, which will be staged on an arena tour, including a date at the O2, across the UK next year.
The star takes over from the late Richard Burton, whose distinctive voice was used to narrate the 1978 soundtrack album of the musical – based on HG Wells’ classic science fiction tale of aliens invading earth – and has been used, along with a holographic head, in the production since 2006.
Liam said he is honoured to be taking over the role of George Herbert, the story’s narrator, for the production.
He said: “I was very flattered to be offered the role. I loved Richard Burton and I loved his voice.”
Liam – who has also voiced Aslan the Lion in the movie adaptation of the Chronicles Of Narnia books – said he worked closely with Jeff Wayne, who composed the original soundtrack, to get a new take on the role.
He added: “I had to put [Richard’s version] aside and focus on the text and listen to Jeff and the director.
“We’ve tightened up the grooves, we’ve added to it, without taking away from the main compositions, and there’s a new context for the singing and acting and some new ingredients.”
Jeff has also produced a new version of the album, which will accompany the stage production.
Liam will appear in the stage show in three guises – as a full body hologram, as a 3.5 metre tall holographic floating head and shoulders, and as part of a two hour CGI film, which accompanies the production.
War of the Worlds stage tour December 2012 – confirmed dates:
1 Liverpool Echo Arena
2 Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
4 Nottingham Capital FM Arena
6 London Wembley Arena
7 Birmingham NIA
8 Manchester Evening News Arena
9 Sheffield Motorpoint Arena
10 Newcastle Metro Radio Arena
11 Glasgow SECC
13 Bournemouth BIC
15 London O2 Arena
16 Brighton Brighton Centre