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Amanda Seyfried Regrets ‘Les Misérables’: I Was ‘Very Unhappy’ with My ‘Weak’ Singing

The actress says she "still has nightmares" about having to sing live on set while filming "Les Misérables."

Amanda Seyfried as Cosette in "Les Miserables"

Amanda Seyfried as Cosette in “Les Miserables”

Everett Collection/Universal

It’s not often an actor openly criticizes a past performance, but Amanda Seyfried made it clear on a recent episode of Variety’s “Actors on Actors” series that she regrets her performance in Tom Hooper’s 2012 “Les Misérables” musical adaptation. Seyfried starred in the film as Cosette, the illegitimate daughter of Fantine (played by Anne Hathaway in an Oscar-winning performance). According to Seyfried, her voice was not strong enough to successfully pull off the role. Hooper did not rely on backtracks for the music performances and instead had his cast sing live on set, which terrified Seyfried.

“In my career I have had a lot of moments where I just felt complete regret,” Seyfried said. “I wish I could redo ‘Les Misérables’ completely because the live singing aspect, I still have nightmares about it. Singing is more indulgent than acting in some ways. I feel like when I have emotional scenes, where I get to really cry and feel what I’m actually feeling and be present in that, it feels really good and cathartic because crying is really cathartic. Singing is the same way. Just like, emoting through music and melody is so magical. When you feel like you’ve gotten there, where your voice is where it needs to be and your voice is as strong as it needs to be. And it wasn’t on [‘Les Misérables’].”

Seyfried continued, “I was very weak. I feel like I could definitely play Cosette now. I’ve been working diligently ever since ‘Les Misérables’ to strengthen my voice and to have some stamina. Plus working on my vibrato, which was completely lost. From a very technical standpoint, I was very unhappy with my singing.”

In addition to “Les Misérables,” Seyfried has also lent her singing voice to musical films “Mamma Mia!” and “Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again.” The actress is currently a frontrunner to land her first Oscar nomination for her role in David Fincher’s “Mank.” Seyfriend is campaigning for Best Supporting Actress. “Mank” is now streaming on Netflix.

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