Samantha Barks to Play Eponine in 'Les Miserables'

Wed Feb 1, 2012 1:47pm EST

Samantha Barks, who starred as Eponine in the London production of "Les Miserables" in 2010, has landed the role in Universal's film adaptation of the musical, Universal said Tuesday.

The actress got the news that director Tom Hooper had cast her in the movie on Tuesday night. Producer Cameron Mackintosh told her she had the role as she finished taking a bow for her performance in "Oliver!" at the Manchester Playhouse in England (see photo below).

"I can't believe I'm going to play Eponine, a role so close to my heart, a role I played in the West End," Barks said in a statement. "It's the happiest moment of my life."

Also read: Aaron Tveit to Play Enjolras in 'Les Miserables'

Barks currently plays Nancy in a touring company of Mackintosh's "Oliver!"

"Les Miserables" is a big project: It stars Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried and Aaron Tveit.

William Nicholson, Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg wrote the script.

In addition to Mackintosh, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Debra Hayward are producing.

Shooting is scheduled to begin in March and the movie has a release date of Dec. 7.

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