The Many Faces of ‘Chicago’s Roxie Hart, From Pamela Anderson to Christie Brinkley


Lily James could have given the razzle-dazzle to viewers in Hulu’s fashionable miniseries Pam and Tommy, but it surely’s the actual Pamela who will take glitz and glam to a complete new degree as she assumes the function of Roxie Hart within the long-running Broadway revival of Chicago. “Enjoying Roxie Hart is a dream fulfilled,” Anderson tells Variety. With a Netflix documentary within the works to instantly reply to the Hulu sequence, Anderson is as busy as ever. The favored star of Baywatch and House Enchancment has been a logo of intercourse and sweetness since she was Playmate of the Month in 1990. With a controversial private life, Anderson is an thrilling option to play Roxie.

The Kander and Ebb musical, which opened in 1996, has change into well-known for its stunt casting. And whereas Pamela Anderson could appear to be an unlikely choose to go a Broadway musical, let’s look again at six spectacular girls who’ve crammed the identical sneakers, a couple of of them would possibly even shock you.

Mel B

Mel B
Courtesy of Hollyscoop

December 28, 2016 – February 19, 2017

Scary Spice electrified followers and scandalized the Broadway neighborhood when she injected somewhat spice into the present, speak-singing among the lyrics from “Wannabe” throughout her last efficiency. It’s the kind of stunt which makes followers go loopy, ushers shake their heads, and Broadway purists fume with rage, but it surely definitely left a memorable impression. The outrage from Broadway didn’t hassle the singer. In actual fact, she posted the clip on Instagram, and whereas some individuals would possibly name it a cheesy inventive alternative, one thing tells me it’s precisely what Roxie Hart would have accomplished.

Erika Jayne

erika jayne
Courtesy of Joseph Marzullo/WENN

January 6, 2020 – March 12, 2020

Her run within the present was reduce brief as a result of pandemic, however the actuality TV mainstay had the excellence of being marketed throughout Instances Sq. lengthy after she left the theater. She’s starred on The Actual Housewives of Beverly Hills since season 6, however her profession started as a singer. Her debut album Fairly Mess was launched in 2009. Its title alone appears to foretell her future as a fixture of actuality TV and public scandals, and with different Housewives taking their flip in Chicago, it was solely a matter of time earlier than Erika Jayne obtained her likelihood. Jayne took to Instagram to say, “I go away NYC feeling like my mission is incomplete however I’ll treasure this time at all times.” Perhaps we’ll get a return engagement sooner or later.

Ashlee Simpson

ashlee simpson
Courtesy of The Hollywood Bowl

November 30, 2009 – February 8, 2010

With MTV news declaring, “Tragedy! Ashlee Simpson doesn’t suck in Chicago” after her West Finish debut, it was no shock that Simpson traveled throughout the pond to carry Roxie Hart to life on Broadway. Since making her appearing debut on seventh Heaven, Simpson has launched three studio albums and accomplished her greatest to maneuver previous that fateful SNL efficiency in 2004. Roxie Hart is a lady who began from the underside in her quest for fame and glory and having Ashlee Simpson tackle the function solely provides an additional layer of reality to every part we expect we find out about fame, celeb, and scandal.

Lisa Rinna

lisa rinna
Courtesy of Chicago: The Musical

June 19, 2007 – July 29, 2007

The place hasn’t Lisa Rinna been? A formidable actress who can boast each Days of Our Lives and Melrose Place amongst her credit, Lisa Rinna knew her model potential lengthy earlier than Actual Housewives, a extremely by-product present that may by no means have existed with out Melrose Place. Is Rinna a meta-actress hybrid? I feel so. Her expertise goes nicely past her notoriety, along with her stint as Roxie predating her ascension to the Cult of Housewives by seven years.

Christie Brinkley

christie brinkley
Courtesy of Paybill

April 4, 2011 – June 20, 2011

April 6, 2012 – April 27, 2012

April 18, 2019 – Might 12, 2019

Removed from being only a fairly face, Christie Brinkley is a powerhouse performer, an extra indication that you need to by no means decide a mannequin by their cowl concern. Brinkley has danced her means by way of three Broadway engagements as the favored murderess along with a couple of appearances on the Nationwide Tour. I doubt we’ve seen the final of her on this iconic function. Brinkley’s star flip in Chicago proves that her cowl mannequin days for Sports activities Illustrated had been only a stepping stone for her immense expertise.

Melora Hardin

melora hardin
Courtesy of Playbill

December 29, 2008 – February 12, 2009

On a hiatus from her iconic and insane function as Jan Levinson on The Workplace, Melora Hardin stepped into the function of Roxie Hart for a seven-week engagement. Most not too long ago, Hardin positioned sixth on Dancing with the Stars and carried out as Fantine in a Hollywood Bowl manufacturing of Les Miserables in Live performance. “For me to stand up eight instances per week and do these three issues I like a lot – singing, appearing, dancing – I used to be simply fully in heaven. I actually was. I used to be unhappy to be accomplished,” Hardin instructed Playbill. And people of us who missed the efficiency are unhappy too, but when her latest stint on Dancing with the Stars tells us something, Melora Hardin would possibly make a return to the theater before we expect.

Broadway’s “certain factor” has held court docket on the Ambassador Theatre since 1996. The present has run for over 9,000 performances and gained the Tony Award for Finest Revival of a Musical in 1997. Since its debut, Chicago has grossed near $700 million. The present, which confronts fame and celeb head-on, is the right vacation spot for stars whose private lives have distorted their public picture. Pamela Anderson’s casting tells us that robust girls who’ve been dragged mercilessly by the media will get their time on stage, which makes me hope that in the future quickly Britney Spears takes over the function as nicely.

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This submit was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.

Picture Credit score: Miramax. 

Justin McDevitt

Justin McDevitt is a playwright and essayist from New York Metropolis. His newest play HAUNT ME had its first public studying at Theater for the New Metropolis in September. He’s a contributor for RUE MORGUE the place he lends a queer eye to horror cinema in his column STAB ME GENTLY.

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