There's one problem I can spot offhand, however, and that is letting a hot guy play the Phantom. I noticed in the last entry, the one with the photo captions, how the Phantom fans among y'all were disconcerted by this, and I didn't really understand why until I read the book. In the book, the Phantom's hideous. I don't quite know how this works out, but he's, like, "made of death." Like, a walking living corpse or something. Smells like death, bony hands, grody face, etc. And every time Raoul gets jealous, Christine's like, Dude, you saw the guy, are you kidding me? By the end of the book, the best she can muster is abject pity for Erik, even though she's managed to pretend that she "loves him for himself" so as to regain her freedom. But faced with the prospect of marrying him so he doesn't blow Raoul, the Paris Opera, and several hundred people sky high, she tries to kill herself, while tied up, by bashing her head against the wall over and over.
Now, without having seen the musical, I can tell you just the same that I'm pretty sure the book Phantom has fuck-all to do with the show Phantom, because millions of fans wouldn't be in love with him if he were all, you know, necrotic and stuff. Book Phantom does not have the cute little half mask; Book Phantom doesn't look spiff in formal wear. If we're talking about Musical Phantom, we've basically got a guy with an underground palace and a gorgeous voice who's willing to worship this girl and make her the greatest singer in the world. Raoul? Is cute. Okay, okay--he's also nobility, but (in the book, at least) he and his brother make all these snippy comments about "giving an opera wench his name," which is so not on. So the nobility thing is both a pro and a con and therefore sort of cancels itself out. And yeah, childhood attachment, okay, that's nice. But he also acts pretty childishly throughout the book (the book is great with this, by the way, and notes at one point that he says something so asinine to Christine that he can't think of any way out of it other than "to keep being odious"), so he's not sophisticated or worldly or mature--another point for the Phantom. So, in conclusion, Raoul: cute, and won't tie you up (woe). Do you see the problem we now have if the Phantom is also hot? Raoul is basically outclassed on every level except for the whole "actually lets you walk around freely above ground now and then" thing, and I'm willing to bet you pretty much don't care about that if you're in the thrall of this guy. I mean, the musical already undermines Raoul by letting Erik be just a little disfigured instead of the walking maw of fetid death, and if you cast a hot guy, you've just thrown the entire dynamic out of whack.
I mean, not that I won't be there with bells on, but still.
And then I went and downloaded some Whitesnake (shut up, man--Kingdom of Loathing got me all nostalgic), so now I totally associate the Phantom of the Opera book with "Is This Love." (And it fits, y'all. Shut up.) Man, I totally miss Baz Luhrmann. He needs to come back and make some more movies. He would rock a Phantom of the Opera movie (from the book, not the musical) with nothing but '80s music. Man--you know, the more I think about it, the more awesome I am convinced that would have been. Come back, Baz!