Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: April ::
Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0632  Wednesday, 7 April 1999.

[1]     From:   Michael W. Young <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Tuesday, 06 Apr 1999 18:12:37 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare

[2]     From:   Ching-Hsi Perng <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 07 Apr 1999 10:41:37 +0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael W. Young <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Tuesday, 06 Apr 1999 18:12:37 -0400
Subject: 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare

Following the recent set of messages on the HBO Animated Shakespeare
series, if I may be so bold,  I did an article on the series in
_Shakespeare and the Classroom_ (Vol. VI, Number 1, Spring 1998).  It's
entitled "Editing an Aery Nothing into a Local Animation."  Two seasons
worth of shows are critiqued and some of the classroom issues are
discussed.  I hope it will be helpful.

Michael W. Young
Robert Morris College

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ching-Hsi Perng <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 07 Apr 1999 10:41:37 +0800
Subject: 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0622 Re: HBO Animated Shakespeare

>The Animated Tales were made by the Welsh television company CS4 in
>collaboration with English and Russian animators. The scripts, by the
>distinguished writer of books for children and young people Leon
>Garfield (now dead), use Shakespeare's words almost entirely (there's a
>little narration in one or two of the films) and are I believe extremely
>skillfully and sensitively done. As Literary Adviser I vetted the
>scripts and helped in other ways so far as I could. The films were made
>in Moscow, and along with other members of the team I visited the
>studios there on two occasions. Three techniques were used: cel (i. e.
>celluloid), puppets, and a rare technique, oil painting on glass, by
>which a painting is made and then infinitesimally slowly modified with
>the fingers to give the illusion of movement. The cel films required
>around thirty thousand individual paintings for each film; we saw teams
>of Russian ladies painting them in disused Moscow churches. The puppets
>were around ten inches high, and had to have their limbs etc adjusted by
>tiny degrees; there was more than one puppet for some characters. The
>island set for The Tempest was a table top just a few feet in diameter.
>I was told that, using this method, it was possible to make about 9
>seconds of film per day. Sound recordings were made in England by
>distinguished British actors including e. g. Brian Cox as Macbeth. The
>first series consisted of six films: Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer
>Night's Dream, and Macbeth (all cel, MND and Macbeth particularly
>imaginatively animated, in very different ways), Hamlet (oil on glass -
>very beautiful), and The Tempest and Twelfth Night (puppets, both
>charmingly done. The Malvolio displays better comic timing than many
>live actors I have seen in the role). This series was released in 1992.
>It was followed by a second series of As You Like It, Julius Caesar,
>Othello, The Taming of the Shrew, The Winter's Tale, and Richard 111.
>Some, at least, of the films were also released in translation. Both
>series were shown on television in Britain and the USA and released on
>video. There is also an attractive series of accompanying books,
>designed partly for educational use, published by Heinemann Education.
>The manager of the Shakespeare Centre Bookshop tells me that the second
>series of videos only is available at present. The tales have been
>widely used in British primary schools, and have I think been very
>valuable as an introduction to Shakespeare for the very young, but the
>artistic quality of the films is so high that they can be enjoyed by
>even sophisticated Shakespearians.
>
>(I have no continuing financial interest in the project!)

I agree entirely with Professor Wells's assessment of the series, and
would recommend it highly.  Not only is it suitable as introduction to
Shakespeare for the young, but my undergraduate students who compared
the adaptations with the full plays found them both entertaining and
enlightening.  The Public TV Service in Taiwan has shown 9 of the
animated versions, with three more scheduled for the coming weeks.

Ching-Hsi Perng
Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures
National Taiwan University
 

Other Messages In This Thread

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.