Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

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antnield
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Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#1 Post by antnield » Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:24 am

It is believed that around 500 Shakespeare films were made in the silent era and this new film is a playful compilation of scenes from the best surviving adaptations held by the BFI National Archive, including the first ever Shakespeare film King John (1899) and a rare discovery of a 20-year old John Gielgud’s earliest appearance on film in Romeo (1922). Other films from the 26 titles sampled include The Tempest (1908), The Merchant of Venice (1916) – shot on location in Venice, Julius Caesar (1909), Macbeth (1909) and Richard III (1911). The BFI has commissioned the musicians and composers of Shakespeare’s Globe to write a score for the film which will take an innovative approach, marrying a different composer for each of the film’s five acts. The film will premiere at BFI Southbank, play UK-wide in cinemas and on the international tour, and will be available in the summer on BFI DVD and BFI Player.
Link.

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tenia
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#2 Post by tenia » Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:36 am

Cue to the Ran picture which has a French BD slot for April 12th which seems fitting regarding this BFI-Shakespeare programme.

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Ashirg
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#3 Post by Ashirg » Sun Apr 17, 2016 8:28 pm

Listed on Amazon as a blu-ray for June 20 release date.

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MichaelB
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#4 Post by MichaelB » Mon Jun 20, 2016 8:24 am

Full specs announced:
Play On!
Shakespeare in Silent Film
Music by the composers and musicians of Shakespeare’s Globe


From King John in 1899, film adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays proved popular with early filmmakers and audiences. By the end of the silent era, around 300 films had been produced. This feature-length celebration draws together a delightful selection of thrilling, dramatic, iconic and humorous scenes from two dozen rare archive titles, many of which have been unseen for decades.

Accompanied by a new score, Play On! will be released on Blu-ray and DVD in a Dual Format Edition by the BFI on 18 July 2016.

See Hamlet addressing Yorick’s skull, King Lear battling a raging storm at Stonehenge, The Merchant of Venice in vibrant stencil colour, the fairy magic of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and what was probably John Gielgud’s first appearance on film, in the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet. These treasures from the BFI National Archive have been newly digitised and are brought to life by the composers and musicians of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, in this, the 400th anniversary year of Shakespeare’s death.

Special features
• Presented in both High Definition and Standard Definition
• Introduction to Silent Shakespeare (2016, 10 mins)
Play On! Making the Music (2016, 11 mins)
King Lear (1910, 13 mins, silent with commentary by Judith Buchanan)
The Winter’s Tale (1913, 43 mins, silent with commentary by Judith Buchanan)
Living Paintings (Romeo and Juliet) (1924, 1 min, silent with commentary by Judith Buchanan)
Silent Shakespeare (2004, 88 mins): programme of silent Shakespeare films, previously released on BFI DVD, with music by Laura Rossi and optional commentaries by Judith Buchanan
• Illustrated booklet with new writing by Bryony Dixon (silent film curator, BFI National Archive and Bill Barclay (director of music, Shakespeare’s Globe)

Product details
RRP: £19.99/ Cat. no. BFIB1253 / Cert U
UK / 2016 / 63 mins / black and white, tinted and colour / silent with music / original aspect ratio 1.33:1 / BD50: 1080p, 24fps, PCM 2.0 stereo (48kHz/24-bit) DVD9: PAL, 25fps, Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo (320 kbps)

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kidc85
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#5 Post by kidc85 » Mon Jun 20, 2016 12:05 pm

MichaelB wrote:Special features
Silent Shakespeare (2004, 88 mins): programme of silent Shakespeare films, previously released on BFI DVD, with music by Laura Rossi and optional commentaries by Judith Buchanan
Interesting. Do we know if this is going to be presented in proper HD?

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Ashirg
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#6 Post by Ashirg » Mon Jun 20, 2016 12:09 pm

Is there a full list of included films?

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MichaelB
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#7 Post by MichaelB » Mon Jun 20, 2016 12:11 pm

kidc85 wrote:
MichaelB wrote:Special features
Silent Shakespeare (2004, 88 mins): programme of silent Shakespeare films, previously released on BFI DVD, with music by Laura Rossi and optional commentaries by Judith Buchanan
Interesting. Do we know if this is going to be presented in proper HD?
I'm assuming they'd say if it was. My guess is that they simply took the Digibeta master of the old compilation and encoded it for the BD as a pretty generous extra.

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Ribs
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#8 Post by Ribs » Mon Jun 20, 2016 12:26 pm

Ashirg wrote:Is there a full list of included films?
If I'm reading rightly, most of these films are mostly lost, and the release is just a feature compilation of significant clips. Unless the films themselves were very short and could be reasonably included, I don't think there are any films in full aside from those within the extras.

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kidc85
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#9 Post by kidc85 » Mon Jun 20, 2016 12:33 pm

Did a bit of poking around and apparently the 'Silent Shakespeare' program originally dates from the VHS era, so I'm sure your suspicions are correct.
The complete collection, accompanied by a specially commissioned score by award-winning young composer Laura Rossi, contains:

King John (UK, 1899)
The Tempest (UK, 1908)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (USA, 1909)
King Lear (Italy, 1910)
Twelfth Night (USA, 1910)
The Merchant of Venice (Italy, 1910)
Richard III (UK, 1911)
Don't know if the King Lear (1910) in this program is the same King Lear (1910) advertised as a separate extra.

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manicsounds
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#10 Post by manicsounds » Sat Jul 02, 2016 10:37 am

kidc85 wrote:Did a bit of poking around and apparently the 'Silent Shakespeare' program originally dates from the VHS era, so I'm sure your suspicions are correct.
The complete collection, accompanied by a specially commissioned score by award-winning young composer Laura Rossi, contains:

King John (UK, 1899)
The Tempest (UK, 1908)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (USA, 1909)
King Lear (Italy, 1910)
Twelfth Night (USA, 1910)
The Merchant of Venice (Italy, 1910)
Richard III (UK, 1911)
Don't know if the King Lear (1910) in this program is the same King Lear (1910) advertised as a separate extra.
They are in fact 2 different "King Lear" adaptations.
Disc breakdown at DVDCompare


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MichaelB
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#12 Post by MichaelB » Sun Jul 17, 2016 5:35 pm

Ashirg wrote:Is there a full list of included films?
Play On! draws on extracts from the following, thematically organised into a five-act structure:

King John (1899)
Amleto (1908)
Julius Caesar (1908)
The Tempest (1908)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (1909)
Giulio Cesare (1909)
Il Mercante di Venezia (1910)
Twelfth Night (1910)
Shakespeare Land (1910)
King Lear (1910)
Cléopâtre (1910)
Re Lear (1910)
Richard III (1911)
Cardinal Wolsey (1912)
The WInter's Tale (1913)
Hamlet (1913)
The Merchant of Venice (1916)
Hamlet (1920)
Othello (1922)
Glastonbury Past and Present (1921)
The Taming of the Shrew (1923)
Living Paintings (Romeo and Juliet) (1924)
Stratford-on-Avon (1925)
England's Shakespeare (1939)
Shakespeare's Country (1940)

...and the titles highlighted in bold are presented in full (or their complete surviving form) in the extras.

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L.A.
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Re: Play On! Shakespeare in Silent Cinema

#13 Post by L.A. » Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:05 pm

The Guardian has an article regarding Shakespeare in early film.


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