Friday, March 06, 2009

Hamlet on DVD?

The item in the Telegraph earlier this week gave life to hopes that last year's triumphant RSC production of Hamlet with Patrick Stewart, Penny Downie, and some bloke called David Tennant, would be released on DVD. the hope is that it would be filmed summer 2009.

If it happens - and I'll believe it when the RSC itself confirms it - I can well imagine sales will be significant.

But what is annoying me right now is that everywhere the Telegraph's story is being picked up, they keep saying things like 'Tennant's performances in the role were short-lived'.

NO.

His appearances in the London run of the show were curtailed by his back injury, but the man had managed to put in a constant run of 24 July to 15 November 2008 (not forgetting he also took on Love's Labour' Lost for the latter 6 weeks).

In what way exactly could his FOUR MONTHS of appearances in Hamlet be deemed to be 'short-lived'?

Oh, I forgot: the majority of the performances weren't in London, so they don't count!!

I know that the Laurence Olivier Awards are a key marker for performances on the stage, and that Tennant's limited appearances in London scuppered any (well-deserved) nomination for that prestigious award, but even so... *sigh*...

10 comments:

JoeinVegas said...

Come on, he didn't last there as long as he did as the good Doctor. For a good stage actor he should be able to handle at least a three year run. (don't you want to go see him again?)

Persephone said...

This had better be true, else I'll be forced to hunt down Oliver Ford Davies and kill him for raising my hopes in vain. My cherished dreams must not be trifled with...

Jane Henry said...

Lisa as a Londoner (albeit southernly transported one) who's also spent time in the north I find it appalling that the parochial attitudes of London meeja are still as rampant as when I lived up north twenty years ago. Deeply pathetic.

However, can't understand why on earth the RSC didn't film Hamlet at Stratford anyway. Seems an obvious winner to me. Have already stated this has to be my birthday present this year (mind you,if they film in June, it might be a bit tight for July...) I thought it was definitely happening. I do hope so...

Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Joe: oh I would and DO want to see him again!

Persephone: I know what you mean about OFD. Does he realise what hopes he is raising?!

JH: the thing is that the RSC WOULD have filmed the show in Stratford for their own archival records. Pretty much all productions have at least some audio-visual record done these days.

And yes, the London-centricity of things deeply distresses me. I adore visiting London but the embedded idea that stage elsewhere doesn't really count for one of the most prestigious awards: barf, what a bad taste that leaves.

Reidski said...

What have the Olivier Awards got to do with the media either in London or anywhere else? I thought the Olivier Awards were about plays, theatres and acting in London, so recognising performances elsewhere is not in their remit. The point being made here is a bit like saying the Yorkshire theatre awards (should such a thing exist) always ignore the south.

Anyway, unless I'm visiting some place, I have no interest in anything which takes place outside London!

Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Ah Reidski, thou art a true maker of mischief!

Okay, I accept that the Olivier awards were set up to be for the London stage productions (specifically those in 'theatreland'): but there is an element of me that still thinks it is a shame that the most prestigious of theatre awards IS only thinking about London productions. because, also, it isn't as if regional awards get much coverage even IN their own regions is it?

Reidski said...

Yes Lisa, but, come on, who cares about anything which happens outside London, artistic or otherwise ;-)

Reidski said...

On a more serious note, the awards are the child of the Society of West End Theatres to recognise the achievements of the plays, writers, actors etc in their own theatres, so I don't see why they would want to recognise the achievements of other theatres!

Marie said...

I had a nightmare that DT refused to do the RSC DVD of Hamlet so they had to get Ed Bennett in again. Seriously, my subconscious really threw me that curveball.

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