British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

Merry Wives of Windsor, The

Alternative title
The Shakespeare Plays
Synopsis
Television production of the play with Richard Griffiths as Falstaff and Prunella Scales as Mistress Page. Director David Jones regarded the play as ‘a realistic documentary about what life was like in a small town in Elizabethan England’ (op. cit.).
Series
BBC Television Shakespeare
Language
English
Country
Great Britain; United States
Medium
Television
Technical information
Colour / Sound
Recording date
1 Nov 1982
Transmission details
28 Dec 1982 at 17:55 (Channel: BBC2)
Duration
175 mins

Credits

Director
David Jones
Producer
Shaun Sutton
Writer
William Shakespeare
Music
Dominic Muldowney
Costume
Christine Rawlins
Choreographer
Geraldine Stephenson
Contributor
David Snodin
Cast
Richard GriffithsSir John Falstaff
Prunella ScalesMistress Margaret Page
Judy DavisMistress Alice Ford
Elizabeth SpriggsMistress Quickly
Ben KingsleyFrank Ford
Adam CooperFairy
Alan BennettJustice Shallow (Robert Shallow)
Bryan MarshallGeorge Page
Crispin MairWilliam Page
Gordon GostelowBardolph
Harvey BrownFairy
Helen GreyFairy
John JoyceJohn Rugby
Kerry CavalliFairy
Lee WhitlockRobin
Michael BryantDoctor Caius
Michael Graham CoxHost of the Garter Inn
Michael RobbinsNym (Nim)
Miranda FosterAnne Page
Nigel TerryPistol
Peter Gordon (2) 
Ralph BrownJohn
Richard O’CallaghanAbraham Slender
Ron CookPeter Simple
Simon ChandlerFenton
Simon KempFairy
Tenniel EvansSir Hugh Evans
Tony YoungFairy
Wayne PhelanFairy

Additional Details

Production type
Television and Radio Drama
Historical period
Elizabethan
Plays
Merry Wives of Windsor, The
Subjects
Drama
Keywords
drama in English; performances; Shakespeare, William (1564-1616)
Related items
Merry Wives of Windsor, The
Merry Wives of Windsor, The

Notes

Notes
The production is commercially available on DVD as part of the BBC TV SHAKESPEARE COLLECTION box set (see separate entry).
General
Alan Bennett noted that his face-obscuring beard and costume in the role of Justice Shallow made him resemble ‘an animated tandoori restaurant’.
History
This production is part of the fifth season (producer: Shaun Sutton). Rcording took nine days.
Textual information
Between 1978 and 1986 the BBC published individual scripts of the series. Each volume of The BBC TV Shakespeare, ed. Peter Alexander et al. (London: British Broadcasting Corporation) contains the full text of the play (the Peter Alexander edition) with accompanying notes on the scene breaks and cuts made in the production, as well as a glossary. A general introduction to the play by series literary advisor John Wilders is followed by an essay on the production of the play by Henry Fenwick. This is based on interviews with actors, directors, and designers.
Reviews
Michael Brooke, Screenonline: ‘The Merry Wives of Windsor’, http://www.screenonline.org.uk/tv/id/527599/index.html (accessed 3/2008).
Susan Willis, The BBC Shakespeare Plays: Making the Televised Canon (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1991).

Production Company

Name

BBC

Notes
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
Name

Time-Life Films Inc

Phone
0101 201 843 4545
Address
PO Box 644
NJ 07652
USA

Distributor

Name

Simply Media

Contact
Laura Smith
Email
info@simplymedia.tv
Web
http://www.simplymedia.tv/ External site opens in new window
Phone
0203 542 3722
Address
Highlight House
57 Margaret Street
London W1W 8SJ
Notes
Formerly known as DD Home Entertainment or DDHE

Online Retailer

Name

Moviemail

Web
https://www.simplyhe.com/3000-moviemail External site opens in new window
Phone
0844 848 2000
Address
Simply Home Entertainment
PO Box 7741
Ringwood
BH24 9FA
UK
Notes
As of December 2016 the Moviemail web presence is incorporated within the Simply Media website

Record Stats

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