Hopkins, Knightley and Paltrow Join King Lear

The Cast of King Lear

In the world of remakes it may very well be that Shakespeare is the champion. The plays have been around since Elizabeth I sat on the throne and have endured as crowd pleasers for centuries. How many writers can say that?

Film makers have repeatedly gone back to the Shakespeare well, sometimes updating the work, sometimes sticking to faithful adaptations.

King Lear is the latest to be revisited, this time with Anthony Hopkins as the King who learns:

“How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is
To have a thankless child”

The child Lear mistakes for thankless is of course Cordelia, who will be played by Keira Knightley. The truly thankless child Regan will be played by Oscar winner Gwenyth Paltrow. Goneril, the other thankless child is as yet uncast.

They will star with Oscar winner Hopkins, in this new adaptation which comes right on the heels of a Royal Shakespeare Company production of Lear starring Ian McKellen. McKellen apparently has a nude scene as Lear. Hopefully Hopkins won’t follow suit. We already saw enough CGI nude Hopkins in Beowulf.

The film makers announced the project at Cannes and have said the 35 million dollar film will have epic battle sequences. That could give it a boost at the box office.

So, Shakespeare fans, another King Lear. I’m curious to see who they round out the cast with. Who will play Edmund, Edgar and the Fool? How about some non traditional casting? Jack Black as the Fool, perhaps? That could be interesting. Why not reunite Paltrow with her Shallow Hal co-star. Okay, it’s a long shot.

At this time there’s no director listed, but I’d like to see what Tim Burton would do with the material.

Robin Ruinsky has been a writer since penning her autobiography in fourth grade. Along the way she's studied theater at Syracuse University, worked with Woody Allen starring most of the time on the cutting room floor. A segue into the punk rock scene followed but writing was always the main focus. She writes for various crafty, artsy magazines about people who make craftsy, artsy collectible things. But her first love is writing fiction and film criticism which some people think are the same thing.

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