News Release — March 15, 2016
"Shakespeare Film Series" Complements "Shakespeare in Print and Performance" Exhibition
Event: The Harry Ransom Center and Austin Film Society (AFS) present the "Shakespeare Film Series" in conjunction with the Ransom Center's current exhibition "Shakespeare in Print and Performance."
When: Selected dates beginning March 24 through May 26.
Where: Austin Film Society at the Marchesa Hall and Theatre, 6226 Middle Fiskville Road, for screenings through April and the Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin, 21st and Guadalupe Streets, for screenings in May.
Background: From the stage to the silver screen, the works of William Shakespeare have captivated audiences since the earliest days of his playwriting. Reimagining the Bard's famed productions, Hollywood has produced countless creations both adapted from and inspired by the works of Shakespeare. In conjunction with "Shakespeare in Print and Performance," the Ransom Center and Austin Film Society screen Shakespeare-related films to complement the exhibition.
Tickets are required for Austin Film Society screenings at Marchesa Hall and Theatre and are $10 for the general public, with discounted pricing for AFS members; screenings at the Ransom Center are free. Marchesa Hall seats 278 and the Ransom Center's Charles Nelson Prothro Theater seats 125. For screenings at the Ransom Center, line forms upon arrival of the first person, and doors open 30 minutes in advance.
Images: High-resolution press images are available.
"A Midsummer Night's Dream" (1935)
Thursday, March 24, 7:30 p.m.
The ultimate old Hollywood take on Shakespeare, lavishly produced and co-directed by Austrian stage impresario Max Reinhardt and starring many of Warner Brothers' best stars, including Olivia de Havilland, James Cagney, Dick Powell and Mickey Rooney. Runtime 133 minutes, not rated.
"Henry V" (1944)
Thursday, March 31, 7:30 p.m.
Winston Churchill gave Laurence Olivier the assignment: make a film that will rouse Britain to a fighting pitch for the effort against Hitler. This was Olivier's response. Filmed in majestic Technicolor with some of the most ingenious staging and best battle scenes ever, a Shakespearean triumph as well as successful war propaganda. Runtime 137 minutes, not rated.
"Romeo & Juliet" (1968)
Thursday, April 7, 7:30 p.m.
This is the Shakespeare adaptation favored by the love generation. Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey are heartbreakingly beautiful together in Franco Zeffirelli's international smash hit adaptation of the tale of two star-crossed lovers. Runtime 138 minutes, rated PG.
Thursday, April 14, 7:30 p.m.
Roman Polanski's "Macbeth" is the Altamont of Shakespeare movies, a cinematic repository of deep, dark, bad vibrations, brilliantly brought to the screen by one of the most talented and troubled directors of them all. Runtime 140 minutes, rated R.
Thursday, April 21, 7:30 p.m.
Michael Almereyda's modernization of Hamlet makes the title character a film student (Ethan Hawke) armed with a camera and has Claudius (Kyle MacLachlan) ascend to the mantle of CEO of the Denmark Corporation. "Hamlet" becomes a splintered and multifaceted narrative for its times. Runtime 112 minutes, rated R.
"The Tempest" (2010)
Tuesday, April 26, 7:30 p.m.
Julie Taymor's lush and beautiful adaptation of Shakespeare's deeply philosophical final play features a gender transposition at its heart. Helen Mirren stars as Prospera, who rules an isolated island queendom that is disrupted when a party of shipwreck survivors makes its way ashore. Runtime 110 minutes, rated PG-13.
Thursday, May 5, 7 p.m.
Sir Laurence Olivier directed and starred in "Hamlet." The first non-American film to win an Academy Award for Best Picture, its stark black and white designs reflect the desire to present the stories of Shakespeare as epics existing outside of time — an approach that mirrors the designs of Edward Gordon Craig and Norman Bel Geddes featured in the exhibition. Cline Curator of Theater and Performing Arts Eric Colleary introduces the film. Runtime 155 minutes, not rated.
"The Dresser" (1983)
Thursday, May 12, 7 p.m.
Ronald Harwood's "The Dresser" is a World War II story of a deteriorating veteran Shakespeare actor (played by Albert Finney) whose personal assistant (Tom Courtenay) must rally the old man before each of his demanding performances. Harwood was the dresser to Donald Wolfit, whose repertory company performed across the U.K. during the Blitz and whose papers reside at the Ransom Center. Cline Curator of Theater and Performing Arts Eric Colleary introduces the film. Ransom Center members are invited to a reception at 6 p.m. prior to the film. Runtime 118 minutes, rated PG.
Thursday, May 19, 7 p.m.
Director Julie Taymor's "Titus" is a stunningly designed film adaptation of one of Shakespeare's lesser-known works, with Anthony Hopkins starring as Titus Andronicus. Jessica Lange, Alan Cumming and Jonathan Rhys Meyers co-star. Cline Curator of Theater and Performing Arts Eric Colleary introduces the film. Runtime 162 minutes, rated R.
"Theatre of Blood" (1973)
Thursday, May 26, 7 p.m.
Vincent Price stars in "Theatre of Blood," a cult classic about a maligned actor who invites all of his worst critics to an abandoned theater and kills them off one by one in the manner of Shakespearean tragedies. Cline Curator of Theater and Performing Arts Eric Colleary introduces the film. Runtime 104 minutes, rated R.