murreyandblue

A great WordPress.com site

Archive for the tag “Benedict Cumberbatch”

NOW WE HAVE ROBERT–WHY NOT RICHARD?

Netflix will soon be showing a new medieval series, ‘OUTLAW KING’, about Scotland’s Robert the BRUCE. While I have no idea how good the script is or how close the series will stay to the historical record, the costumes and hair styles seem more appropriate to the time than many recent offerings. It’s not overtly laughable, anyway.

However, once again, I am left wondering–why not a film or series about Richard? I truly thought one would spring  up  in the aftermath of his finding. No, we have just been inundated with more Shakespeare, both on TV and in the theatre. Yes, there was the TV series,  The White Queen, which at least gave us a more sympathetic and attractive  Richard (as well as one close in age to the real man) but it really wasn’t about him but about the women of the Wars of the Roses, particularly Elizabeth Woodville.

It is time a dramatic epic about Richard’s life was filmed, instead of yet more Shakespeare complete with grotesque prosthetic humps a la the recent Benedict Cumberbatch offerings. Last I heard, the movie/TV rights to Sharon Penman’s Sunne in Splendour were still available…

 

outlaw king

 

 

outlaw

Advertisements

‘The Hollow Crown’: A Poisoned Chalice or the Ultimate Prize?

Giaconda's Blog

benedict Benedict Cumberbatch as Shakespeare’s Richard III

I am currently watching the second instalment of Shakespeare’s history plays, concerning ‘The Wars of the Roses’ as interpreted by the BBC’s condensed and somewhat, contorted adaptation.

The first part of ‘The Hollow Crown’ covered Shakespeare’s history plays: Richard II, Henry IV, Part I and II and Henry Vth.  It was, for the most part, an excellent production. A combination of strong casting, brilliant original material and interesting sets made it a joy to watch. Simon Russell Beale’s Falstaff was a triumph. He gave a mesmerizing performance which managed to capture all the facets of Falstaff’s complex character in little more than a look or a gesture.

The overwhelming sense of these plays was the great burden which kingship brought for the poor unfortunate who wore the crown. In another blog post I have written about this in detail, taking specific lines from each of…

View original post 2,891 more words

A juicy Richard….?

Benedict & Co

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/12077552/best-tv-shows-2016.html

Is Benedict Cumberbatch your notion of Shakespeare’s Richard? He isn’t mine, so this viewing prospect isn’t at all juicy. I imagine I’m in the minority!

Is this a new Richard film? Or not…..?

Benedict Cumberbatch at Wells

http://www.blackmorevale.co.uk/Extras-sought-Somerset-appear-major-Hollywood/story-26757962-detail/story.html

http://www.westerndailypress.co.uk/Long-haired-men-requested-extras-Hollywood-film/story-26744545-detail/story.html

Before you examine the above links, let me say that the following tale of woe demonstrates the hazards of taking a press article at face value. Beware of doing so, for it can lead you up the garden path. . .

Right. To the links. They require some wading through a clutter of tiresome ads, as so many sites do, but this time there is a little mystery to be found in the actual text, which is the same at both sites:-

Extras sought in Somerset to appear in ‘major Hollywood feature film’ By Blackmore Vale Magazine – posted: June 24, 2015

Men with long hair but no tattoos are needed as extras for new Hollywood film to be filmed in Wells, Somerset.

The Casting Collective has put out an appeal male and female extras to appear in what they describe as a “Major Hollywood Feature Film”.

It is unclear at this stage what the film will be called or who will be starring in it.

According to the company’s website the extras will need to be available for a costume fitting around the week commencing Monday, July 6 and one filming day around Thursday, July 16.

Men ideally need to have some length to their hair, and facial hair is sought but it is not essential. Women wishing to take part as an extra need to have natural chin length hair or longer. Extras must not have any visible tattoos, for example on the face or hands. 

Right, the next thing to point out is that the whole of this follows beneath the picture at the top of this page, i.e. of Benedict Cumberbatch as Richard III in the forthcoming “Hollow Crown” series on BBC2. The inference, it seemed to me, was that the ‘major Hollywood feature film’ being filmed in Wells was perhaps about Richard III. All bells and whistles, and Hollywood pzaz! Wow!

Well, that was my initial impression. Oh, goody, thought I. A new film about Richard. However, on reading it again, for all the inclusion of the picture of Benedict Cumberbatch as Richard, there isn’t actually a connection between the BBC production and this mysterious new, unnamed movie. Unless you count filming in Wells.

So I went to the website of Casting Collective, to see what appears there. Here is the link to: http://www.castingcollective.co.uk/become-an-artiste/urgent-casting-calls#wells 

The text there is: Costume fitting around week of 6th July and one filming day around 16th July. Men ideally need to have some length to their hair, they like facial hair but it is not essential and Ladies need to have natural chin length hair or longer. No visible tattoos ie necks or hands Good rates of pay. Interested? Apply here and we will be in touch. You must be over 16, legally allowed to work in the UK with National Insurance number

The requirements for the extras suggest a historical story of some sort, but still does not actually mention Richard at all.

Finally, after more Googling, I found this utter deflater: http://www.westerndailypress.co.uk/…/story…/story.html  It’s only a prequel to “Snow White and the Huntsman”! So, not even the Monmouth Rebellion (when Wells Cathedral was looted for ammunition and the battle of Sedgemoor took place on 6 July) What a let down to this hopeful Ricardian.

Thus fizzled out my brief but dazzling excursion into the realms of fantasy. But there will be a really good film about Richard. One day. I just know it!

Plantagenet actors….?

Dail Mail - Richard III

Yesterday there was a comment on a Facebook group by a lady named Elizabeth Borson, that Kit Harington, the actor who plays Jon Snow in “Game of Thrones”, is a descendant of William Catesby, Richard III’s advisor. Kit is apparently also descended from Charles II, but it is Richard’s era that is of interest to us on Murrey & Blue, so with all due respect to Old Rowley, he is a mere sideshow here. ‘Kit’ was certainly a very popular diminutive in Stuart times, but it’s this Kit’s Catesby connection that interests Ricardians.

So imagine my surprise this morning, to receive (via Google Alert) a link to the Leicester Mercury in which it is stated that Benedict Cumberbatch, the Sherlock Holmes actor who is soon to appear on our screen in “The Hollow Crown” series, as Shakespeare’s Richard III, is a descendant of Edward III, and therefore has a blood connection with Richard. How very appropriate!

Now I have to wonder if there are other actors who can glance back over their shoulder to someone well-known in Richard’s time? Perhaps even Richard himself?

No matter how earnestly I stare over my shoulder, it’s very doubtful that I’ll spy any Plantagenets. It would be nice though . . .

Here is the link to the Leicester Mercury article: http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/Actor-Benedict-Cumberbatch/story-25800912-detail/story.html

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: