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ROMEO AND JULIET – Nino Rota

February 15, 2021 Leave a comment

GREATEST SCORES OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY

Original Review by Craig Lysy

Director Franco Zeffirelli’s first film was The Taming of the Shrew in 1967, which was adapted from the original Shakespearean play. It was a commercial success, and for his next project he conceived a new adaptation of another of Shakespeare’s famous plays, “Romeo and Juliet”. A lack of funding however drove him to pursue a television production. Yet his fortunes changed when Paramount Pictures agreed to join in partnership with BHE Films, Verona Produzione and Dino de Laurentis Cinematografia to finance a big screen release. A budget of $850,000 was provided and the British team of Anthony Havelock-Allan and John Brabourne would produce the film. For the screen play Zeffirelli collaborated with Masolino d’Amico and Franco Brusati. In an audacious casting move Zeffirelli decided to cast the lead roles as minors, assuring fidelity to Shakespeare’s original conception. Leonard Whiting, a 17-year-old, was cast as Romeo, and Olivia Hussey, a 15 year old, as Juliet. Joining them would be Milo O’Shea as Friar Laurence, Michael York as Tybalt, John McEnery as Mercutio, Natasha Parry as Lady Capulet, and Robert Stephens as the Prince of Verona. Read more…

ROMEO & JULIET – Abel Korzeniowski

October 14, 2013 9 comments

romeoandjulietOriginal Review by Jonathan Broxton

Since the very first years of cinema Romeo & Juliet, William Shakespeare’s timeless story of passionate doomed love, has been a well of inspiration for filmmakers, ranging from George Cukor’s 1936 film starring Norma Shearer, the classic Franco Zeffirelli version from 1968, and Baz Luhrmann’s revisionist interpretation from 1996, as well as the popular musical West Side Story, which replaces Montagues and Capulets with Sharks and Jets, and moves the story from Verona to New York City. Director Carlo Carlei’s new version was written by Oscar-winning screenwriter Julian Fellowes and is a comparatively straightforward re-telling of the story, with Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth in the lead roles as the star cross’d lovers, and a supporting cast that includes Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti, Stellan Skarsgård, Ed Westwick and Kodi Smit-McPhee. The film is visually sumptuous, with opulent production design and costumes, and features an equally sumptuous and opulent score by Polish composer Abel Korzeniowski. Read more…