Shake, Mr. Shakespeare

Poster for Shake, Mr. Shakespeare

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Comedic short featuring Shakespeare's notable characters; many performing musical numbers. An assistant director is told to read all Shakespeare’s works in order to mine them for potential film plots. Falling asleep on the job, he dreams of various Shakespearean characters coming to life from the pages of giant books and singing and dancing in celebration of their "goin’ Hollywood." The characters appearing include Romeo, Juliet, Juliet’s Nurse, Puck, Peter Quince, Hamlet, Old Hamlet’s Ghost, Falstaff, Antony, Cleopatra, and Macbeth. Shakespeare appears toward the end of the film to object, but he is quickly convinced by his characters to join a big song and dance routine. Includes passing references to a number of familiar Shakespearean scenes including Hamlet’s "to be or not to be" soliloquy, Romeo and Juliet’s balcony scene, Hamlet with Yorick’s skull, and Enobarbus’ speech on Cleopatra’s barge.

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English / 20 min / 1936

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