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The Greatest Showman

The Greatest Showman
The Greatest Showman
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This could be the biggest act in the world.

I was clueless until my buddy Jeff Laufer hipped me to it, singling out the track “This Is Me,” an empowering anthem straight out of the “Fame” playbook, why is this phenomenon getting no ink, despite hiding in plain sight for six months, the flick having been released back in December 2017.

This has been on my mind, because Jeff keeps e-mailing me and because Saturday night as I was hiking in Will Rogers Park they were screening it at Street Food Cinema ( and there were more attendees than I’ve ever seen for any screening there.

And then, today’s “Record of the Day” informed me that in the U.K. the soundtrack was number one for the nineteenth time in twenty three weeks.

But we never hear about it!

Then again, the single “This Is Me” went to number three in the U.K. and only to number fifty eight in the U.S., could this be further proof that terrestrial radio in the U.S. has lost touch, that the U.S. is no longer the greatest country in the world?

Yes, if we want to make America great again, maybe we need to start playing the world’s hits, not only “This Is Me,” but “Human.”

Now “The Greatest Showman” is bigger than “Hamilton,” that’s right, it’s got more streams on Spotify, that’s the power of film.

Five out of the eleven cuts on “Greatest Showman” have triple-digit million streams on Spotify. And the remaining tracks are deep into double digits.

Not a single cut on “Hamilton” breaks triple digits.

Although both cast albums are released by Atlantic, does Craig Kallman know something the rest of the industry does not?

As for the iTunes Store, “The Greatest Showman” is number three right now.

So what we’ve learned is despite the lauding of hip-hop, it’s not the only game in town.

But media loves a sexy story, which is why there’s a dearth of info on “Greatest Showman.”

And the barrier to entry in music is not as big as we think it is. Benj Pasek and Justin Paul wrote “The Greatest Showman” songs, ever heard of them? I didn’t think so. Then again, they’re not complete unknowns they won an Oscar for their song for “La La Land,” but mostly they’re working off the pop radar, in stage, films and TV. Are they being unjustly ignored?

Seems so.

So everything we thought was kaput, training, dues, melody, it seems the public still has a hungering for all of it. We keep reading in “The New Yorker” and other august publications about beat makers, top-liners, and I’m not saying they’re not successful, but they’re not the only action deserving attention. All the popsters going urban, they’d be better off going “Showman!”

So, you sing along with the tracks to “Greatest Showman.” You’re not going to be offended, you’re not going to want to take it off immediately, you might just get hooked.

But there’s no associated lifestyle, there are no shenanigans featured on TMZ. All the trappings of today’s success are missing, other than the LISTENING!

Response from Bob’s readers

(Please note:  these comments are not edited for grammar or content and do not necessarily reflect the views of CelebrityAccess or its staff.)

I brought Showman into Atlantic and oversaw the project for us with help from Pete Ganbarg and Brandon Davis. It’s been magical to watch how the world has responded to these songs and the film after the years of work which went into it. The album is nearing four million in worldwide sales and it has been an amazing project to be a part of.

Pasek and Paul are very special guys and incredibly talented songwriters and storytellers. We love having them as partners not only on The Greatest Showman, but also on Dear Evan Hansen, as well as our overall label deal together.

Pete Ganbarg and I are working with them on a Pop-covers version of the album, which will have new renditions of all of the songs. It will be from an eclectic line-up of artists and global superstars who have all been affected by the music. That album will be coming later in the year and will have some really fun new versions of the songs on it.

Thanks for the nice write up. I hope all is well.



Kevin Weaver
President, Atlantic Records | west coast


Sometimes we become too jaded and too artsy about our industry. The movie was great and the soundtrack even better. It’s nice to watch a film and not have to overthink it. Certainly easier to understand than The Shape of Water.

Larry Stessel


Many, many years ago – Josh Deutsch told me we’d all end up working for Craig Kallman.

So…there you go.

Hugo Burnham

P.S. In which language does “fritzdoddy” translate as misanthropic wanker?
Asking for a friend.


I was lucky to work on TGS showman as a background actor in which the scenes in the big tent was filmed in Brooklyn.
The first week we learned Come Alive and This is Me on the spot and we knew we were working on something special. As a songwriter myself when they play backed Come Alive thru the speakers and that chorus came across the Gmajor7 chord, it sent chills thru me even tho I didn’t know what chords were playing at the time.
And all knew This is Me right there and then that the Academy should recognize this for an Oscar. As it turned out the picture was completely ignored except for the song and still didn’t even win the Oscar. Little did we realize tho that some of the crew including the songwriters and Assistant Director worked on La La Land, the most overrated film to be acknowledge for awards. That’s right I said it. And I work in the business, lol.
Everyday Hugh Jackman thanked us for being there and for all of our hard work.
And yes I did get a chance to meet him on our last day and wish him good luck on Logan which was coming out at the time. Reach out his hand and said “Thank You Mate !”
Yes ladies, the will deal: tall and handsome and very down to earth. A real Class Act.
So far the best working experience I’ve had working in this business.
Thx Bob for acknowledging TGS.

Frank Ball


If you had kids, you’d have known about the 6 months ago.

Joe Pinto


My girlfriend had it on repeat for months, some classic tunes on there

Robert McTaggart


I’m sorry….I don’t get it….sounds like typical show songs….just because something goes viral doesn’t necessarily make it good….

Dan Young



How did you not hear about this, Bob? It’s the biggest thing since Frozen!

Its songs have been littered on the Spotify charts around the world for the last 6 months!

Brett Alperowitz
Senior Vice President, A&R I Republic Records General Manager I Casablanca Records


I knew nothing of the movie other than that it was about P.T. Barnum. I set the dvd up for the wife and kids intending to go watch something on another tv. I watched the first 5 minutes and rolled my eyes when they broke into song as I despise musicals, but still found myself sitting there as the movie ended. Don’t know if that makes it a good movie or not but I think it says something….

Eric Beck


Who, among the Hardest of the Hardcore, did not first come to his or her music sensibilities via the family entertainment console stacked with “West Side Story”, “The King and I”, “South Pacific”, and “Oklahoma”?

We already know the quiet history of very young, postwar, tea drinking, British laddies turning the crank on the machine and then setting the needle. She was Julia; he was John.

Bob: This: even better than the potato chips seminar—if that were possible.

Dennis Brent


The Greatest Showman is not only was a feel good flick for my fam, the songs still bring a lump to my throat. Why? The human element. These songs resonate deeply because we route for the underdog. Okay, I take that back. In light of recent news and my news feed, “we” i.e “the people”, have apparently abandoned the underdog. Especially when it comes to kids and the “familia” who is trying to better their lives.

If I ever write a song as good as half the songs from the sound track of this movie I will die well pleased.

Jeremiah Jones


I thought it was worth mentioning that Greg Wells is the wonderful producer that helped make the soundtrack into a monster hit. Despite Greg having no prior film experience, Michael Gracey hired him to come in and shape the music to the visuals and story. Greg is a top-notch producer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has worked with the likes of Adele, Pink, One Republic, Katy Perry, Celine Dion and Grace VanderWaal. His experience allowed him to bridge the classic and the contemporary, and approach the music in a way that truly helped bring the film to life. The Greatest Showman is a testament to the talents of all involved, including Greg whose recognition is well-deserved.

Carla Senft


Hi Bob, I’m a sap for musicals and ventured into a nearby theater in Redlands, Ca, where The Greatest Showman was playing last year. Jered and I were seated in the front row of an overflowing afternoon showing. Thank God The theater had recently installed ‘lazy boy’ lounge chairs so we reclined and let the show begin. We were totally engaged and became emotionally involved in all . the performances. Shockingly, Zac Ephron blew us away as well as the bearded lady and Hugh Jackman. It’s not a hip flick so when ever we talked about it our recipients lost interest. Glad you turned onto it. Delighted you dove in to discover its success. Guess there’s a lot of us saps out there longing to be touched by a great tune on the big screen

Donna Loren & Jered Cargman


You got through that without mentioning the epic centre-piece of the film ‘Never Enough’. What a class act Showman is.

Don Jenkins


Thanks Bob for giving The Greatest Showman some well deserved recognition. I work for the Feld organization and the film came out in December six months after we closed Ringling aka The Greatest Show On Earth. The film had personal resonance to a community of Circus performers, staff and management beyond the story telling and soundtrack. It was refreshing to see the genre used as a backdrop and still being appreciated. Everyone in the community acknowledges the music drives the film but the visuals and acting/singing were impressive and everything came together to make the magic work.

The sad thing is how the Hollywood elite seemed to ignore The Greatest Showman when the awards season came around. While this original work was ascending the box office, charts and playlists the elite were fixating over the usual quirky art films. Simply put The Greatest Showman was shunned, ignored and too lowbrow for the left coast film voting crowd. Oh yes they allowed This is Me to be played at the Oscars and it blew people away only to lose to Coco. Through it all the film made it on street credibility and good old fashioned word of mouth which is a testament to the creators and audience finding each other.

Bill Powell


Thanks writing about this. I have had the same experience, via my granddaughter. I think we need to appreciate the deeper message in the film. A crucial and profound message, especially in our current environment of racism, deportations, hatred for the other. This film cries out for tolerance, love of our differences, and deep empathy for all of our fellow humans. What a great message to deliver to the very young (and their elders). I think this uplifting theme resonates with the kids, and is an important reason they love the film, even if they don’t realize it.

David Rubinson


Mawkish, embarrassing movie. Not only does it waste a potentially fascinating true story, the “Frozen” style music was cheesy and typical Hollywood. Plus the bearded lady grossed me out.

Paul Christy


When a female student sang “this is me” at the fifth-grade talent show, I realized the power and impact of that song — as well as the film. I also talked to a parent who said their kids have watched the movie a dozen times. You can’t get this info from Rotten Tomatoes or film reviews.

Mary Huhn


The family friendly nature of The Greatest Showman has played a big role in its success. I took my 10 year old daughter to see the movie (after all of her friends were talking about it at school). I had zero interest in the movie but was hooked pretty much right away. I enjoyed the movie and the songs (I downloaded the soundtrack the night after seeing the movie), but it was also nice to have something to share with my daughter that I had absolutely zero issues with as a parent. Moana has a similar appeal. It’s a fun movie with very catchy and 100% family friendly songs. That combination is going to drive downloads and streams as parents are fine with their kids accessing that content online and then enjoying it themselves as well.

I enjoy rap and hip-hop, but that’s not something I can share with either of my pre-teen kids. (I’m sure they will hear it and reach their own conclusions, but it’s not like I can pop in some Pusha T while we’re driving to school.)

Thanks for the column,

Jon Humphrey


Michael Gracey had me over to a loft on hollywood Blvd a few years ago to talk me through a PT Barnum movie he was putting together with Hugh Jackman. It did not start as a musical, but had turned into one. They didn’t have a deal in place yet, the music was in demo form. They had been working on it over a few years at that point. He was working on his pitch to studios, and wanted feedback on the music.

He moved through the entire piece brick by brick over the next four hours, acting out the parts himself with key pieces of what ended up being the dialog, showing vision boards, artists renderings of sets, and video of possible choreography, and playing demos of those songs.

As good as the movie ended up, it did not compare to the presentation of the vision that was going on in Michael Gracey’s head that I saw that night. I was stunned. Even just talking it down like he did, the piece had such heart. It felt as epic as “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

He had the vision, the focus, the clarity.

He is a low profile guy, so to see his name absent from your thread does not surprise me.

But it takes someone like Michael Gracey, a bit of a genius, who has a deep understand of the soul of the story and the perseverance to follow it through, in order to end up where this ended up.

Kim Bullard


Love Love Love this song and this movie! Saw it Christmas Day! Perfect movie for us that are different and proud of it!!!

Thanks for writing!

Darlene Gorzela


Bob – my three and a half year old daughter has been HARASSING us about watching this movie with her. All her neighborhood friends ask her if she’s watched it and we keep letting her down! They sing the songs in front of her, her dance team did a performance to a song from the film. I’m totally in the dark – assumed it was another lame holiday cash grab.

I thought my “out of touch” dad phase was 10 years away – but in 2018, things move quickly.

Family movie night here we come.

Thanks as always for your words, my daughter will be happy.

Eli Chastain


Could not agree more absolutely loved this. It’s flat out amazing. Kudos to my sister Audrey for getting me turned on to it.

Peter Eichler


My girlfriend saw it alone in the theatre back in January. I production manage the canyon in Santa Clarita…she knew she had to see it on big screen….I then suspiciously heard the entire album,every morning on Alexa in the kitchen while I woke up upstairs….ending with the song From now on….I finally saw it on our oversized tv about a month ago…the last time my body buzzed like this after a film was when I saw Brave Heart.
Ps…. I never knew she had seen the movie in a theatre till 2 minutes before we watched on our Tv…explains the morning ritual now.
Chris Kissinger
imageFactory productions.


“This Is It” is this generation’s “I Am What I Am” from La Cage aux Folles — Jerry Herman’s simple, joyous, powerful anthem for us gay kids growing up during the ugly Reagan Moral Majority 1980s and the AIDS crisis. We embraced & lived that song in NYC & LA. So appropriate for nowadays.

Thanks tons for sharing all of this.



Bob I guess I missed your original post / blog about The Greatest Showman but I am sorry this sucks. And let’s be honest if tweens and 10-year-olds like it it’s sucks. Sorry but the Barney song sucks, the songs on high school musical sucks ( I should know I was a part of that ) and these songs suck. Also that singer sucks who was singing “this is me”
All of it sucks except for you of course. You’re the best Bob Cheers Johnny Vieira


Our 9 year old LOVES The Greatest Showman and the music.
Not as much as Hamilton though – she knows every line. In fact, I used Hamilton as one of our homeschool history lesson. She was hooked.
Sure – there is some swear words… BUT!! As a result, I am convinced that few 3rd graders in our circle know as much about the founding fathers as she does! (Pretty good trade off in my book) The Greatest Showman is wonderful..but Hamilton is Genius.
It will go main stream as the Broadway Tour versions hits every major city in 2019.
Perhaps the world is still playing catch up?

With Gratitude,

Sandra Charamba


Wow. Bob is really WRONG on this stupid fucking song.

Kenn Kweder


My kids – Ages 7, 6, 4 and 2 LOVE the soundtrack. The movie is historically inaccurate and overly simple, blah blah blah, but it’s about dreaming big, self-acceptance, and following your heart. The songs are dramatic – it stirs something in them, unlocks a creative channel and gives them permission to express. The dances they improvise to it are pure joy to watch as a parent.

James Van Der Beek


I love it and so do my kids.

Misha Guiffre


I can’t understand it either, but I’ll tell you this. Teenage girls LOVE IT! My two daughters are 18 and 15 and they haven’t STOPPED playing it since the movie came out and when the song was played at their PROM, the dance floor ERUPTED…with girls. The boys were clueless (as teenage boys have always been). I was even skeptical about the movie until my youngest forced me to go see it when her Mom wasn’t able to take her. And while the movie was a VERY sanitized version of the life of P.T. Barnum, it was entertaining, but the MUSIC was thrilling! As a 46 year-old man, I’m not in the target demo, but I was fully entertained and impressed. I’m glad you said something. I thought I was getting soft in my old age.

Thank You!!



I weeped liked a child listening to “Never Enough”. Uncontrollable emotion. I appreciate you.

Mike Miller


Couldn’t agree more! My kids and I LOVED the movie and it is THE ONLY album my teenagers have ever asked me if they could buy! I mean, I work in the music biz and my kids could care less about albums, they only ever want to download a song, each time they ask. This soundtrack is full of great music and the movie was so good, we bought the blu-ray and have watched it, as a family, multiple times. Every parent I ask tells me the same thing, they bought the full soundtrack, too, because their kids asked them to. And yet…no press on it! Go figure.

Melissa Dragich-Cordero


Benj and Justin wrote “Dear Evan Hansen.” FYI

Jim McCarthy


my 8 year old daughter iris loves dancing to the showman soundtrack.
the under 10s are obsessed with it.

Ed Horrox


Whatever Bob… I’ve heard both. The Greatest Showman mixes suck and Hamilton is pablum. It’s gotta survive as just music and not rely on film or theater as a crutch.

LaLa Land should be renamed “Blah Blah Bland.”

Middle school teenagers and wannabe theater folk are not the barometer by which I judge music.



I never understood why it wasn’t a bigger hit on radio here. Is it because she is not pretty enough? Not 16?

This video is pure joy. If it doesn’t move you – you are dead.

Adam Lewis


Bob, my kids (6 & 8) watch that movie at least once a week.
They know every word to every song.
So do all their friends at PS 39 in Brooklyn.

And my wife and I love it – we don’t have to listen to Jojo Siwa and “I’m a Gummy Bear” on endless repeat anymore….

Jonny Langston


Bob, I agree! That story and the sound track where as close to Rocky as anything in the last 30 years. I have watched it several times. Funny how La La Land did so well. A confused man who isn’t sure of himself luck’s into everything, versus man with a clear path and vision taking strings of opportunity and weaving a future. Is it a commentary on the loss of faith in the American dream? AF


My 5 year old may be solely responsible for over 5,000 of those listens on Spotify.

Erich Ziegler


Bob, where’ve you been?

The Greatest Showman absolutely killed it in the box office, earning almost half a billion worldwide. It was the only film my friends and I watched multiple times in the movie theater. When was the last time that occurred with a film released in recent years?

I remember the first time I watched it, I left the theater and needed to own the soundtrack immediately, but it was impossible to buy in stores. So I went online and streamed, downloaded, and played it in my car almost daily ever since. When was the last time that occurred with a soundtrack released in recent years?

Earlier this year, all the late night and day time talk shows had the film’s stars on, performing skits, and singing the songs all together. When was the last time a film brought in a group of such talented (known and unknown) people from all walks of life like that in recent years?

Oh, and the Grammy’s! Broadway veteran Keala’s performance still brings tears to people’s eyes and with five nominations but only one win, despite it outselling better than all the other nominees (as you pointed out in its statistics) and it’s still climbing. But when was the last time this industry came close to getting it right (or getting it at all for that matter) in recent years?

Sarah Friedman, Esq.
NewWorld EntLaw


You tied The Greatest Showman to Hamilton but there’s more than one common denominator besides Atlantic: Alex Lacamoire, a producer and arranger of both soundtracks. He’s the maestro behind the genius of both albums.

David Beame


In case you haven’t seen these two clips from the green-lighting run through, I’ll share them. I enjoy them as much, maybe more than the final produced movie scenes.

For the first clip, the story is that Hugh Jackman had surgery to remove cancer in his nose right before the all-cast run through of the script/songs to get the green light from the Executives at the studio. He wasn’t supposed to sing, but they couldn’t tell that to anyone or else they wouldn’t show up…

From Now On Demo

Keala Settle Demo of This is Me

It’s amazing how powerful the songs were, even in rehearsal.

These kind of moments in the run through are what it’s about.

Joel Wilson


I disagree Bob. It may be popular – and I appreciate you tracking that – but that does not make it good. Way too clever to be good. Typical Broadway anthem.

Matthew Conway Dunn


I think it might have just been those ignoring the genre that never heard of it. It was an awards season regular, there was tons of press!

Paul & Pasek also won a Tony and a Grammy for “Dear Evan Hansen” – easily the most innovative and important musical of our time, given its themes of depression, social media, teen suicide, and how easy it is to project to the world only the version of yourself you want known.

They have an amazing way of writing songs for musicals that serve the purpose of dialog and moving the story along, but also they’re just good songs you’d want to listen to regardless.

I listen to their songs over most of the throw away music out there these days.

Trish Angelo


It’s catchy tunes and family oriented. Don’t underestimate how many 4,5,6… yr olds are singing that soundtrack. I have two under 8 that have it in rotation.



Even my chihuahua loves this soundtrack!

Buffy Visick


i have been hearing this is it for months on Beats1… Zane Lowe and Ebro are the real last dj’s…

steve tipp


Hi Bob!
Proving that “Show” business is very much alive!
Michael Des Barres.


I watched it last night and it is amazing!

Ray Vaughn


exactly!!!! Finally someone (you) takes notice of this amazing movie and soundtrack.
It is a phenomenon, has me hooked, listened to the soundtrack over and over (I wouldn’t usually do that on a musical), told everyone I know to go see it — most of my LA friends said it was so so, but my friends and family outside of jaded LA loved it 😉 Thanks for shouting it out!?
Andrea Young Co-Founder & Chief Playlisting Officer Koral Young Group


They also wrote and won a Tony for Dear Evan Hansen. They’re great guys!

Stacey Sher


I feel the same way. I happened to watch this movie on Friday night, after finding out that my God daughter was going to aerial camp because of Zendaya’s character in “The Greatest Showman”.

I found myself sitting straight up overly engaged at 1:30 in the morning. If you’re wondering how, the beauty of Amazon and a jailbroken fire stick will allow you to lay your eyes on whatever you want. Please no judgement.

The songs are beautifully written, the choreography is fun and executed flawlessly. I’ve literally been talking about how fun this movie was to watch and how pleasantly surprised I was by it. I hope it’s just a late hit, by cause it definitely deserves to be seen/heard.




Get a teenager, Bob. My kid’s a theater geek and knows all the words to Greatest Showman and sing it with all her friends. Hamilton, too.

Imagine that, making music with friends for fun!

Sam Pfeifl


One of the writers – Justin Paul – is a Staples High kid. Westport roots!

Drew Angus


This flick was huge in Australia probably because our boy Hugh is in it. We love it when an Aussie kid does well on the international stage and Hugh is a real talent. What makes this show great is the music. I was instantly awe struck by the tunes and how well produced they were. It’s also a family show and my kids sing these songs over and over. They get the morality too but I never heard a show that had so many great tracks.

Owen Hogan


Greetings from West Sussex, England, UK.

Great newsletter re The Greatest Showman. I believe that ultimately, most people still want to be moved by music; to cry with joy or sorrow, with goosebumps all over.

Check out my artist Jennifer Owens – it’s an interesting one as labels here aren’t interested, but all of the TV shows want her. I know she will be able to move millions; TV people see it, labels don’t.

This is an unlisted link as we haven’t released it yet. It sounds like a love song, but it’s about the

All the best,

Guy Gyngell


Justin Paul is a Staples High School grad, and often returns to Westport to give back to the music and drama programs. He’s a treasure.

Thomas Sladek


Amen. The artist is Keala Settle.

You should see her perform.

Oscars –

Graham Norton –

Biggest record of the year. And most of radio missed it. Most weeks at #1 for an album ever in Uk. 19 weeks. Beat Adele’s record of 13.

Mark Beaven


Totally agree…Had no idea what to expect till I had movie night at my house with a bunch of friends and they all wanted to see that flick..Really glad I did.I thought the music was outstanding…

Al Marks


We saw the movie 5 times in theaters and own the DVD…which we’ve watched at least 5 more. It’s the best movie I’ve watched in a long time: Great story, well acted, wonderful music, and a total escape. It’s everything movies should be!

Welcome to the party!


Roop S. Virk BA


the under 10’s are all over this soundtrack, my 8 yo daughter and her class mates have been listening to the songs for months – its right up there with Slime videos

Alan Robertson


The music in the film was outstanding. I worked on the film a few days in L.A.
for additional photography. It had a really good vibe. Hugh Jackman is such a class act. I saw the film in Connecticut with my mom and we both loved it. Hope you are well, Cinzia Zanetti


Back at school after Xmas break, I always ask my students what movies they saw, and this was hands-down the one that everyone went to. Elementary school kids are a pretty good barometer of pop culture, I’ve found.

But Joseph and I watched this the other night… and it’s already evaporated from my memory.

John Hughes


My 6 year old daughter is obsessed.

Josh Millman


“The Greatest Showman” didn’t get great reviews, I suspect because it dissed reviewers (who are about as thin-skinned as they come). It’s a wonderful, positive movie and everyone I’ve turned on to it has thanked me for doing so. Hugh Jackman carried that film but he was not the only star in that particular firmament.

The DVD has behind-the-scenes footage and commentary that will make you like it even more.

Craig Anderton


Bob—My 12-year-old daughter turned me onto this after she saw it with some friends in the theater, shortly after its release. Amazing visuals, infectious music. I think they take liberties with the facts, but it’s an entertaining musical. Thanks, as always.

Stuart Gunter


Hey Bob,

Hope that you’re well.

The impact of this film is quite extraordinary.

My two children (10 and 14 Y.O boys) would run a million miles away from any musicals and are generally disinterested in movies unless Marvel or The Rock are involved.

They LOVE this movie and have become obsessed with the soundtrack.

When they would normally listen to Drake, Post and songs by You Tubers (that phenomenon is just bizarre – Jake Paul etc) they will now listen to these songs over and over and over.

With their favourite songs from the OST this can be up to 10 times in a row – more than they would ever listen to any other song. It is amazing!

And not just listening, but singing along at the top of their voices.

These are very sporty, self conscious (you gotta be play it cool) and non flamboyant boys belting it out with Zac Efron and Hugh Jackman with joy and abandon.

It really is so interesting to see and a completely different reaction than any other music they have loved.

I think the additional emotional context of the music, and pairing it with the visuals/storyline has enhanced the connection in the way that brilliant soundtracks do?

Maybe they’re just great songs?

Whatever is going on with this soundtrack, it is an amazing achievement that they have destroyed all kinds of demographic boundaries and made something that is usually pretty cheesy (show tunes) very cool and addictive

Also worth noting that they’re not hearing any of these songs on radio (which is still the #1 influence in Australia) – it’s all on demand streaming

Quite a phenomenon!

Jesse Flavell



Subject: Two people who truly deserve the credit for “Showman”

Thank you for your coverage of the phenomenon that none of us predicted with “The Greatest Showman”.

I produced and mixed the songs in the film and the album soundtrack along with Justin and Benj. We chased this music off the cliff for six months straight, and are humbled/overjoyed that it’s received this kind of worldwide reaction. The soundtrack just broke Adele’s record in the UK for most weeks at #1.

However, Hugh Jackman had been trying to make this movie for the past seven years. Director Michael Gracey insisted that Justin and Benj be the songwriters for the project, and this was before they had won an Oscar and had a huge hit on Broadway with “Dear Evan Hansen”. Michael was in the room with them while they wrote, and for every three songs they wrote for the project, only one made it into the film.

Hiring me in the last year of the movie was also Michael’s idea. He generously gave me carte blanche to use what had already been recorded and or to replace whatever I felt needed to change. Michael created an incredibly supportive work environment where we all had each other‘s back. Michael had the full support of Hugh, and despite never having directed a movie before, led with the greatest enthusiasm and passion which inspired all of us to bring out our best.

Everyone involved on camera and behind scenes gave it their all, but I wish Hugh and Michael got more credit for seeing their vision all the way through to such a glorious result. It was the best creative experience I’ve ever been a part of.

Greg Wells


I work in the UK music industry but I think this quote from my better half sums it up perfectly.

She came back from seeing the film with our daughter and said that she thought she had heard every song in it before.

Frozen had one song. This has loads.

Warners can’t believe their luck. Looking forward to the copycat rubbish from the other majors

Charlie Coleman


From: Roger Lee Harrison
Subject: Re: More Greatest Showman

My little brother had seen the film three times when he took me to see it on a rainy afternoon in Tulsa. The film had been out for months. About halfway through I realized the songs had a delightful sweet low echo. A little later Tommy, my brother jabbed me in the side and pointed one row behind and about ten feet down were six little girls, standing up, dressed in gowns tiaras, and tutus singing along with the songs, in tune, alto, and soprano. When the show ended, I walked over and thanked them for the concert. They had all seen the movie six times and they sang a song for us.

The film will never stop running.


From: John Robbie

The songs in Greatest Showman reminded me of the impact The Sound of Music did for popular music, from the 60’s and still to this day.
I’m pretty sure most of the songs in The Sound of Music can be easily recognized, referenced, quoted, sung, and hummed.

Went to see the movie in February, with my 14 year old daughter, she loved it, I loved it.
No opening lines, straight into song. Remember the opening of The Sound of Music ?

As per the Frozen comments, I wonder if Disney would ever capitalize on Frozen character Olaf, as The Greatest Snowman. Or is that Frosty? (another musical)

JR Toronto


From: Larry Stessel
Subject: Re: More Greatest Showman

There you have it. I said our industry is jaded. And maybe add that we are a bunch of snobs. Some of the negative comments point to The Greatest Showman songs as just average show tunes etc. The person who said that we all grew up on West Side Story and Oklahoma hit it right on the nose. Our industry is so caught up in being the person applauded for finding the “next big thing” that we have lost sight of the music that is popular and makes the masses feel good. That’s why Taylor Swift is so successful. But try telling that to an executive obsessed with having his name printed in Hits for 5 minutes while his/her one hit wonder rises and falls. When I saw Earth, Wind and Fire at Bonnaroo 3 years ago, the promoters expected 5k people at the What stage. 50,000 stood in front and sang for 75 minutes to all of their monster hits. Ask Rob Light if he’d rather be the agent for Bob Jovi or some two hit wonder from 2015. I look through the New Releases on Spotify and it’s hard to find much that is interesting not only to me, but to my twenty something kids. Look at the top 25 charts from the 70’s and &0’s and most of those artist are still selling tickets. My point is only that we need to look at what Kallman and his team did with this soundtrack and learn from it. A great song is what drove this business for the past 75 years and it needs to continue to drive this business going forward.



Here are some stats and data on The Greatest Showman Soundtrack that I thought you might find interesting.

The soundtrack is the No. 1 selling album of 2018 so far, in both the US and the UK. It’s the #2 total consumption album of 2018 in the US, behind only Post Malone’s Beer Bongs & Bentley’s. Showman is well over 1 billion streams to date. On the “Billboard” 200, it has the most consecutive weeks in the top ten (23) for a any soundtrack since “Frozen” (2013), the most consecutive weeks in the top ten for a live-action theatrical film soundtrack since “Dirty Dancing” (1987), and the most weeks in the top five for a live-action theatrical film soundtrack since “Titanic” (1997). In the UK, it has topped the charts for a 19th non-consecutive week, surpassing Adele’s “21” for the record of longest-running No. 1 album of the last 30 years. It became the first overseas No. 1 album in Japan since 2014, and in South Korea, it went to No. 1 for four weeks straight and generated more than 60M album streams. The album hit No. 1 in Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand to name a few and has hit No. 1 on the iTunes charts in over 80 counties.

I’d like to acknowledge Atlantic’s David Grant, who oversaw marketing on the project, and Torsten Luth and Nordia West, who handled the international marketing. I also want to note that Max Lousada activated this as a global marketing priority for WMG, which helped drive the album into every possible marketing and partner program available, and ultimately became a massive worldwide driver for the soundtrack and the film alike. Kudos to everyone at Atlantic and Warner Music Group for all of their efforts, from every department throughout the entire organization, contributing to the global success of the album.

Kevin Weaver
President, Atlantic Records | west coast


From: george drakoulias
Subject: Re: More Greatest Showman

it’s Weaver’s world we just live in it

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