Shakespeare Gets an Automatic Weapon with ‘Coriolanus’

by Robin Ruinsky


I knew Ralph Fiennes was directing a modern dress version of Shakespeare’s “Coriolanus”, but didn’t expect to see Fiennes decked out ready for full on modern warfare. Shooting has begun in Serbia and has the look of a war movie.

The film stars Fiennes as Shakespeare’s Roman general who makes the fateful decision to march on his own city with the aide of his sworn enemy Tullus Aufidius. Aufidius is going to be played by Gerard Butler, saved from romcom hell and cast in a role where he can show off some acting chops. Opposite Fiennes and directed by Fiennes the Scottish actor who hit it big in 300, could be a force on film.

There’s a lot of action that comes before the misguided decision by Coriolanus to turn on his own people. He’s just not well liked and he’s not crazy about the little people. But when he performs heroically they take him to heart; for a while. has been covering the progress of the film. There’s some cool concept art there as well. Now there some photos of Fiennes in action. We’ve got a few of them above and below.


All of this material makes me believe that this could be an adaptation of a Shakespeare play that can pull in an audience. Coriolanus has been given a modern, tough look. This has more in common with look of The Hurt Locker than The Globe Theater.

Fiennes and Butler could play very well off each other. The cerebral Coriolanus versus the brawn of Aufidius is well embodied by the two actors. I’m looking forward to seeing these two clash on screen.

The fact that Fiennes made the decision to go with modern warfare and not swords and sandals could be a brilliant one that could pay off artistically and at the box office.

What do you think? Are you interested in seeing Shakespeare given a totally new look?

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