'Dumb Jewels': Shakespeare on the Silent Screen

Thursday, 19 Mar 20 at 13:30 PM
£6.60 incl. tea/coffee and cake
£6.60 incl. tea/coffee and cake
(doors open 12:45)
A richly illustrated talk by Pamela Hutchinson to complement our screening of Hamlet, showing how 'silence is the perfectest herald of joy'.

The idea of silent Shakespeare may sound strange to us now, but these films were crucial to the development of cinema, and were produced at studios around the world, sometimes featuring acclaimed stage actors as well as colour, special effects, animation, and even sound. Many were surprisingly faithful to the original text, while others took enjoyably bold liberties with the Bard's work. Find out why audiences loved to watch Shakespeare without dialogue and how filmmakers learned to 'suit the action to the word' when adapting his plays for the screen.

Pamela Hutchinson is a freelance writer, critic and historian, specialising in silent and classic cinema. She is the founder of SilentLondon.co.uk and the author of the BFI Classic: Pandora's Box (1929).

Performing live: John Sweeney
1h 30m incl. Q&A.

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