The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0140 Thursday, 29 February 2008
Date: Wednesday, 27 Feb 2008 16:24:52 -0000
Subject: 19.0134 Shakespeare on Video
Comment: RE: SHK 19.0134 Shakespeare on Video
Yes, Frank Finlay performed very little Shakespeare to my regret. Robert
Stephens in his autobiography suggested that Olivier chose Finlay as
Iago to his Othello because he thought he wouldn't be very good and so
Olivier would be in no danger of having the limelight stolen. Finlay
played Brutus in a BBC 'Play of the Month' (13 April 1969), Robert
Stephens was Mark Antony. A copy survives in the BFI National Archive.
He played Dogberry in the famed National Theatre Zeffirelli production
of 'Much Ado About Nothing' which was directed for the BBC by Alan
Cooke. Long believed lost, a copy has recently been acquired by the
Library of Congress taped from its showing on PBS on March 11 and March
18 1971. Finlay also played First Gravedigger in Peter O'Toole's
'Hamlet' directed by Olivier, the first play to be performed by the
National Theatre Company. Happily a live studio sound recording of this
production has survived - a copy is with the British Library Sound Archive.
British Universities Film & Video Council.
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