William Shakespeare was born four hundred and fifty years ago on April 23, 2014. His works have stood the test of time precisely because they are still relevant today. Be it the young and innocent love in Romeo And Juliet, to the struggle over what constitutes justice in Measure For Measure, to classic mistaken identity in Twelfth Night, William Shakespeare’s work is still revered and often adapted both my Hollywood as well as Bollywood.
Incidentally William Shakespeare‘s official date of birth is unknown but many have taken it to be April 23, 1564. In fact, April 23, 1616 was also the date of his death at the relatively young age of fifty two.
William Shakespeare has a vast collection of plays that he has written. Some one the more famous ones are Measure For Measure, The Comedy Of Errors, Much Ado About Nothing, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It, The Taming Of the Shrew, Twelfth Night, The Winter’s Tale, Henry V, Richard III, Troilus And Cressida, Coriolanus, Titus Andronicus, Romeo And Juliet, Macbeth, The Tempest, Othello, Hamlet and last but not the least King Lear.
The Lion King, a Disney animated feature is basically Hamlet, but set in the animal kingdom: Simba’s uncle Scar kills his dad Mufasa, and Simba seeks revenge on Scar after seeing a vision of his father’s ghost. Plus, there’s a farting warthog, which is ironic because we think that’s the only thing missing from the original Hamlet.
10 Things I Hate About You, one of our favourite movies of the ’90s is actually an adaptation of The Taming Of The Shrew. The late, great Heath Ledger plays the high school outcast version of Petruchio (Patrick), while Julia Stiles is the stubborn Katherina (Kat) that Petruchio is dead-set on courting.
West Side Story, This one is probably obvious to most of you, but some might not know that the Oscar-winning musical is based on one of the greatest love stories of all time: Romeo And Juliet. In fact, every movie and TV show that features a couple that can’t help but be together despite.
So here wishing this great writer a very happy 450th Birthday!