Exclusive: Frankie Valli On What He Really Thought Of The ‘Jersey Boys’ Movie

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Photo By Britt Bickel

Photo By Britt Bickel

kearthevents Britt Bickel
Web Producer |
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From the stage to the big screen, the Jersey Boys movie from Oscar-winning director Clint Eastwood was anticipated to make a big splash at the box office after opening in June. However, the lackluster adaptation failed to live up to the buzz, only making about $46 million domestically.

The movie’s central figure, Frankie Valli himself has kept quite since the film’s release, but he called in to The K-EARTH 101 Morning Show Wednesday to open up for the first time on what he thought of the movie. However, we found out he’s kept mum for a reason; surprisingly, Frankie he hasn’t even seen the movie yet.

“I haven’t seen the movie yet, I haven’t had a moment. I just felt a little strange walking into a theater, so I missed the previews,” he said.

Fans and critics alike felt that the movie adaptation of the vivacious musical lacked that special oomph onscreen. Actor John Lloyd Young, who also portrays Frankie in the musical, didn’t bring quite the same energy of Frankie in the movie as he has in the musical.  Though he hasn’t seen the movie, Frankie knows it can be hard to perfectly capture and translate the spirit a real character on film.

“I’ve seen lots of movies where people play a real, live character and it’s not quite the same. It’s got nothing to do with the person’s performance,” he said. “I think when you are going to play someone, you should really study that person for I say at least a year…he should have hung out with me.”

One example, as Gary Bryan notes, was a scene in which Frankie and the Four Seasons were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Young played Frankie much older than he actually was at the time with his shoulders hunched over.

“When we were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, we weren’t that old,” Frankie chuckled.

Rather than focusing on the sensational music Frankie and the Four Seasons put out during their incredible rocket to fame, the film took a darker route and told the story of the group’s mob ties before they scored a record deal.

“I wasn’t privy to making the movie, I certainly think Clint Eastwood is a terrific director, but maybe I would have done it a little differently,” he said.

He goes on to say that movie started out focusing more on the music than making a adaption of the hit Broadway play, but when the script went into rewriting before production, “Clint decided he wanted to do the play.”

So if were up to him, how would he have done the movie?

“From what I understand, some of the music was taken out of the movie,” he said. “Certainly, if I would have made the movie, or had any say at how the movie was being made, I would have even put more music than was in the play…whether they were driving in a car or walking down the street, you would be hearing this music all the way through this movie.”

“But I’m in the music business, not in the film business,” he added.

For fans who want to see and hear the real deal live on stage, Frankie Valli will be performing Saturday, Aug. 16th at Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Tickets start at $49 and can be purchased at www.scfta.org.

Listen to our complete interview with Frankie Valli in the clip below.

Frankie Valli

K-EARTH 101
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