British Universities Film & Video Council

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Shake, Mr. Shakespeare

Synopsis
Musical short. Created as a tie-in for Dieterle and Reinhardt’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (1935) the film imagines a hybrid between Shakespeare and swing music. An assistant director is told to read all Shakespeare’s works in order to mine them for potential film plots. Falling asleep on the job, he dreams of various Shakespearean characters coming to life from the pages of giant books and singing and dancing in celebration of their "goin’ Hollywood." The characters appearing include Romeo, Juliet, Juliet’s Nurse, Puck, Peter Quince, Hamlet, Old Hamlet’s Ghost, Falstaff, Antony, Cleopatra, and Macbeth. Shakespeare appears toward the end of the film to object, but he is quickly convinced by his characters to join a big song and dance routine. Includes passing references to a number of familiar Shakespearean scenes including Hamlet’s "to be or not to be" soliloquy, Romeo and Juliet’s balcony scene, Hamlet with Yorick’s skull, and Enobarbus’ speech on Cleopatra’s barge.
Language
English
Country
United States
Medium
Film
Technical information
Black-and-white / Sound
Year of release
1936
Duration
c20

Credits

Director
Roy Mack
Screenplay
Cyrus Wood
Cast
Allan Mann 
Amira SessionsCleaning woman
Carolyn NashJuliet
Frank JaquetSir John Falstaff
Harry ShannonMacbeth
Richard LaneMr Smith
William HallMark Antony

Additional Details

Production type
Other
Subjects
Drama; Music
Keywords
Hollywood; jazz; Shakespeare, William (1564-1616)

Notes

Notes
The short is included in the dvd extras on Dieterle’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (1936) available from amazon.ca (region 1 only).

The film is made available only to students and faculty of the University of Wisconsin. Researchers should contact the librarian to enquire about the possibility of an on site viewing.

Production Company

Name

Vitaphone Corporation

Address
USA
Name

Warner Bros Pictures

Archive

Name

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Email
http://www.library.wisc.edu/libraries/reference/email/
Phone
(608) 265-2357
Fax
(608) 265-2754
Address
General Library
System Administration Offices
Memorial Library, Room 380
728 State Street
Madison W1
53706-1494
USA

Distributor (Sale)

Name

Retail outlets

Record Stats

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