The Moor of Hollywood: An analysis of Oliver Parker’s Othello

Laurence Fishburne (left) as Othello, with Kenneth Branagh (right) as Iago

Theatrical, Filmic and Realist Approaches

Stuart Burge’s 1965 film was based on the National Theatre Company’s staging of the play
Orson Welles’ expressionist 1951 version underwent a tumultuous production and was filmed over three years
Parker’s Othello settled on a more realistic staging of the play for the screen

“I am not what I am” — Iago as Director

Branagh’s voyeuristic Iago becomes something of a director himself within the film

Othello and O.J

Fishburne was the first African-American to play Othello in a major studio production
Willard White was the first black actor to play Othello in Trevor Nunn’s 1989 production for the RSC

Shakespeare meets Fatal Attraction

Paul Robeson and Uta Hagen in the 1943 Broadway production
Parker’s film presented another first for the play — screen sex between Othello and Desdemona (Irene Jacob)
An erotic thriller to “attract people who would not normally go to see a Shakespeare film”
  1. Howe, Desson; Washington Post, December 29, 1995
  2. Screen International, n.1049.15 Mar 1996, p.12–16
  3. Screen International, n.1049.15 Mar 1196, p.12–16
  4. Jackson, R. The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare on Film, p.8
  5. Jorgens J. Shakespeare on Film, p.18–9
  6. Jorgens, J. Shakespeare on Film, p.20
  7. Boose, E. Lynda & Richard Burt, Shakespeare the Movie, p.67
  8. Sight and Sound, v6, n2, February 1996, p51–52
  9. Shakespeare Bulletin, v20, n3. Summer 2002, p37–39
  10. Bunchan, Judith, Shakespeare, Film & Film de Secile, p.186
  11. Starks, Lisa S. “The Veiled [Hot] Bed of Race and Desire”, Post Script, p.64–78
  12. Starks, Lisa. “The Veiled [Hot] Bed of Race and Desire”, Post Script, p.64–78
  13. Independent on Sunday, January 1996
  14. Hunter, G.K “Othello and Colour Prejudice”, p.31–59
  15. Hunter, G.K “Othello and Colour Prejudice”, p.31–59
  16. Newman, K. “And wash the Ethiop white”: Feminity and the Monstrous in Othello”, p151–3
  17. A.J Walker, review from Evening Standard, referenced from Cartnell, D. Interpreting Shakespeare on Screen, p.77
  18. Vanity Fair, n424. December 1995, p76–81
  19. Vanity Fair, n424. December 1995, p.76–81
  20. Screen International, n.1049.15 Mar 1996, p.12–16
  21. Premiere, v9, n5. January 1996, p.52–53
  22. Potter, L. Othello: Shakespeare in Performance
  23. Virginia Mason Vaughan, Othello: A Contextual History, p.181–2
  24. Bunchan, J. Shakespeare, Film & Fin de Secile
  25. Bunchan, J. Shakespeare, Film & Fin de Secile
  26. Bunchan, J. Shakespeare, Film & Fin de Secile
  27. Cartnell, D. Interpreting Shakespeare on Screen, p76/7
  28. Screen International, n.1049.15 Mar 1996, p.12–16
  29. Bunchan, J. Shakespeare, Film & Fin de Secile

--

--

--

Teacher & Theatre tour guide. Interested in Arts & Culture, Film, History, Psychology, and the odd mystery!

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Chapter 21: Delegate or Die

There is something in the rain

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

THE YELLOW WALLPAPER: A Flawed Reimagining of a Feminist Classic

“La casa de papel” — Money heist: Something must be wrong with us!

OSCARS TIME

GOD EXISTS, HER NAME IS PETRUNYA: Drown the Patriarchy

Comm 3490 Week 9

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Lawrence Bennie

Lawrence Bennie

Teacher & Theatre tour guide. Interested in Arts & Culture, Film, History, Psychology, and the odd mystery!

More from Medium

G ballade’s favourite spot

Arduino on the Portenta H7

New Reports Highlight Gaps in Nation’s Response to Addiction

How to Choose the Right Book for Kids (and for Tigers, Too!)