By Erik Pederson
“Alice Cooper, whose theatricality is the stuff of legend, is the perfect rock star to play Herod in our live production,” said Robert Greenblatt, Chairman of NBC Entertainment. “Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice wrote a showstopping musical number for Herod, and we all look forward to the ‘King of Shock Rock’ taking on the King of Judea.”
As the polarizing King Herod might have said 2,000 years ago: No more Mr. Nice Guy. Or, perhaps, welcome to my nightmare. NBC said today that Alice Cooper — yes, that Alice Cooper — will play the ruler of Judea in its Easter Sunday production of Jesus Christ Superstar Live!
Cooper has fronted his eponymous band for five decades and is known for wild, twisted concerts that include snakes, mock beheadings and lots of blood. The group has released more than two dozen studios albums, several of which went platinum including the 1973 chart-topper Billion Dollar Babies and its 1972 predecessor School’s Out.
As an actor, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Cooper has appeared in numerous films and TV series including a brief but memorable role in Wayne’s World (“We’re not worthy!”) and playing the Sun King in Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band — in which the band played a decidedly warped take on the Beatles’ “Because.” He also played himself in the 2012 Johnny Depp starrer Dark Shadows.
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