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TOPIC: Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet

Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 3 weeks ago #4669

It's all over the press:

"Emile Hirsch Channels Kurt Cobain for Catherine Hardwicke's Hamlet."

"We want to lower the ages of everyone in the cast, make it much younger and see how that affects the story. Most of the 'Hamlet' [interpretations] onscreen are with much older casts, so we wanted to make everybody in college, set it at a college, make it really dark and gear it more towards young adults and young people and teenagers."

Emile Hirsch claims he's "going to give Shakespeare scholars cardiac arrest" with is plans for a modern day, club-going, indie-rock drummer Hamlet.

Are you excited about this production? Does it make sense? Could it be the next greatest adaptation, or is it all a big sea of troubles waiting to happen?
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 3 weeks ago #4673

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no problems with adaptations - but to hold true the director needs to understand the play as it was written and for whom it was written and then adapt. Been to too many plays that were adapted before they were understood and the result was .... well, predicable. I worry when I see statements bagging the academics up-front. I hate to see the adaptation drive the text rather than structuring a production that lets the text be on an assessible display to the public. But with no risks there is no learnings so fingers crossed for the production
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 2 weeks ago #4683

I used to be incredibly anti modern adaptations that veered too far from the text; then I came to accept their existence and from there dissect the positives. For instance, Baz Luhrmann's Romeo and Juliet with DiCaprio and Danes. Hated it, but then came to realize that it opened the door to a different audience who may not have previously considered Shakespeare at all. Can say the same about Shakespeare in Love. Hated it, but there are the same positives there, as well. Viewers just need to realize the Hollywood fiction that permeates throughout. Hopefully they pick or go see a play as a result.

But I'm terribly skeptical about Hardwicke's up and coming and about Hirsch's involvement at all, especially considering some of the interviews he's given about the project. It could very well be a train wreck, but I agree Rusty, with an open mind and fingers crossed, I hope it's not a total abomination.
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 2 weeks ago #4695

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fingers crossed in-good faith and hope. Ill look forward to seeing a review on it - I'm based in Australia so won't see it myself. To round out the topic though, and reflecting on the last production I was in, adaption can be a great tool to change the performance of will's plays from art to entertainment for the wider audience. I am in pre-production on a version of R&J and whilst the Baz version doesn't do wonders for me - If I can capture the pace and energy he brought to aid assessibility that would be magic.
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 2 weeks ago #4696

Rusty, please keep us posted on your production of Romeo and Juliet. Let us know your take, angle, interpretation, etc... and since we don't yet have someone reviewing Shakespeare in Australia (know anyone?), we'd love to hear about whatever you'd like to share regarding your vision and the staging of this classic play.
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 5 years 2 weeks ago #4698

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Thanks for the interest. I am busy tying everything together for a presentation to the theatre board later this month and will be happy to post what I present as it should paint a clear picture about what I plan to achieve. There are some work-in-progress notes under R&J index between myself & Julian which helped my gather my early vision - re-reading these, all ideas have evolved, many changed and most importantly, ideas become much clearer and stronger. I'm located in South Australia which has a poor record for Shakespeare performances I'm afraid to admit. I will turn my mind to suitable reviewed - ideally based in Sydney (NSW) or Melbourne (Victoria). Australia is blest with a wonderful, dedicated Shakespeare company - The Bell Shakespeare Company - which includes 3 main productions each year, 3 second-tier, experimental productions and a wonderful schools program. The majority of their productions are heavily interpreted and modern but comes from a very solid base of understanding of the works. I'll post R&J overview in couple of weeks and will see what I can dig up with reviews.

Rus
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Catherine Hardwicke's Musical Hamlet 4 years 7 months ago #4917

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Hi Denise,

Hope all is well. I've finally posted a short piece on my upcoming Romeo & Juliet - Sorry it's taken a while. When I complete the media release I'll post that as well as this will expand on more themes - but if any points interest you let me know and I'll explain how I'm approaching them. Everything with me is from a performance point-of-view so nothing to weighty!! The Lamentable Tragedy of Romeo & Juliet is the first work of the bard to be performed in this region of South Australia for recent memory (we are the wine capital of Australia so really the culture should be there!). I've somehow become chair of the local community theatre group so keen to push william's work each year. This production will feature a schools program as R&J is the school text for 2010.

I liked your last review on Othello - interesting as this is a play I'm considering directing in 2011.

rus
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