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The past fifteen years have witnessed a diverse group of experiments in 'staging' Shakespeare on film. New Wave Shakespeare on Screen introduces and applies the new analytic techniques and language that are required to make sense of this new wave. Drawing on developments in Shakespeare studies, performance studies, and media studies, the book integrates text-based and screen-based approaches in ways that will be accessible to teachers and students, as well as scholars. The study maps a critical vocabulary for interpreting Shakespeare film; addresses script-to-screen questions about authority and performativity; outlines varied approaches to adaptation such as revival, recycling, allusion, and sampling; parses sound as well as visual effects; and explores the cross-pollination between film and other media, from ancient to cutting-edge. New Wave Shakespeare on Screen emphasizes how rich the payoffs can be when Shakespeareans turn their attention to film adaptations as texts: aesthetically complex, historically situated, and as demanding in their own right as the playtexts they renovate.
Works discussed include pop culture films like Billy Morrisette's Scotland, PA; televised updatings like the ITV Othello; and art-house films such as Julie Taymor's Titus, Al Pacino's Looking for Richard, Michael Almereyda's Hamlet, and Kristian Levering's The King is Alive. These films reframe the playtexts according to a variety of extra-Shakespearean interests, inviting viewers back to them in fresh ways.
Thomas Cartelli is Professor of English and NEH Professor of Humanities, Muhlenberg College. Katherine Rowe is Professor of English at Bryn Mawr.