Friday, September 9, 2011

Joyrich called it!

Oxford and the queen from Roland Emmerich's Anonymous

Mark Anderson, author of "Shakespeare" by Another Name, reported today on his ShakesVere Facebook page that media notice of Roland Emmerich's Anonymous (Was Shakespeare a Fraud?) is heating up with the film's debut at the Toronto International Film Festival this week.

Like Oberon's Richard Joyrich in yesterday's review here, film critic Bill Goodykoontz touted Anonymous as one of ten potential Oscar candidates at the Toronto International Film Festival this week.

"And if you want to get a jump on the Oscars race, obviously that's an option. Here are 10 movies that seem to have a pretty good chance at securing Oscar nominations in major categories," Goodykoontz said at AZ Central and other media outlets Wednesday. "Anonymous -- 'Who really wrote Shakespeare's plays?' is a popular parlor-game question for English majors from way back (I know, as I was one, and I'm plenty old). Roland Emmerich's film suggests it was the Earl of Oxford (Rhys Ifans) wielding the quill. Excellent advance buzz for this."

Rhys Ifans as Oxford joins an impressive list of leading men in new films at the festival, including including George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Viggo Mortensen. And Stephen Rea on asks, "Is Anonymous this year's The King's Speech?

Roland Emmerich was interviewed today on MTV where he commented on his film making process:
I never claimed to be a big Shakespeare scholar or anything. I've watched every movie that was made about his plays, which is a good way to get into William Shakespeare's plays, because most of the time, the plays themselves — you get the highest grade of talent and I did that. I said to myself, "I'm not a theater director." What we did was we looked for a theater director, and found one in Tamara Harvey, who's very young but has worked under Mark Rylance at [Shakespeare's Globe in London]. We had long discussions with Mark and some Shakespeare actors in London, and we tried to approach it like that. For me, it was very important to get the plays right and the work right. I wanted to glorify William Shakespeare; I didn't want to destroy him.
Anonymous will also appear at the British Film Institute London Film Festival where it will be shown October 25, 26, 27. The festival's artistic director Sandra Hebron said:
The story is a cinematic gift, replete with suspicion, snobbery, duplicity and self-advancement, and Emmerich tackles it with gusto. London is recreated as a city of extremes, from vermin-infested backstreets and dubious taverns to the splendour of the royal court, where back-stabbing, vanity and corruption span the class divide. Involved in the intrigue is an epic cast of characters, including Ben Jonson and other notable theatre figures of the period, as well as the Queen of England (Vanessa Redgrave, outstanding), her ambitious advisers and the Earl himself (Rhys Ifans, all creative yearning and camp sensibility). Whether you fall into the Oxfordian camp or don't much care, the whole is rollicking good fun, and the recreated performances at the Rose Theatre are a delight, reminding us that whoever they came from, Shakespeare's writings are a gift to us all.

Update 09/10/11:
Hollywood Reporter "Anonymous: Toronto Review" 
Movieline "Letter from Toronto: Even killer elite can't quite rival Emmerich's Anonymous"
Guardian "Anonymous review: The shock in this expose of the Bard is that it's rather good"
Boise Weekly "Thumbs up for Anonymous . . . "
Oregonian "Concordia University becomes hub of conflict over who wrote the plays of William Shakespeare" 

Update 09/12/11:
National Post (Canada) "TIFF Press Conference Diaries: Anonymous . . ." 

Update 09/13/11:
Reuters Canada "Roland Emmerich wins over critics with new film"
Sydney Morning Harold "Shakespeare fans will hate Anonymous"
Toronto Star "The young man who would be king"

Update 09/14/11:
Metro US "Joely Richardson talks Anonymous"
RealScreen "Atlantis Films, ZDF probe 'The Shakespeare Enigma'" authorship (Marlowe) documentary directed by Eike Schmitz
ReelZ ". . . new Anonymous preview clips"
The Hindu "The Real William Shakespeare" interview w/Stanley Wells
CBC "Anonymous: A must see . . ."

Update 09/16/11:
Collider "Anonymous review" Matt Goldberg
Time Out Chicago "TIFF 2011: Anonymous . . ."
Variety Reviews "Anonymous"

Update 09/19/11:
Daily Star "Roland Emmerich wins over critics with Shakespeare film"

Update 09/25/11:
London Daily Mail "Shakespeare in love (again) . . . "

Update 09/26/11:
WhatCulture! "TIFF 2011: Emmerich's Anonymous"

Update 09/30/11:
Unseen Films "Anonymous (2011) The New Yorker Film Festival 2011"

Update 10/01/11:
American Cinematographer "Anonymous shot by Anna J. Foerster . . ."

Update 10/2011
Brooklyn Rail "A Binary Star with Anonymous"

Update 10/05/11
ABC News "Annual New Yorker Fest Had a Shakespearean Twist"
USA Today "Roland Emmerich admits award is 'gutsy call'"
Wall Street Journal "Shakespeare Center Celebrates Anonymous director Roland Emmerich"
Los Angeles Times "Anonymous: Hollywood Takes on the Shakespeare Debate"
Examiner: Baltimore "Anonymous divides Shakespeare devotees"

Update 10/09/11
The Telegraph/London "Was William Shakespeare a fraud?"

Update 10/10/11
Michigan Times "Emmerich film sparks debate"

Update 10/13/11
On The Box "London Film Festival Interview: Artistic Director Sandra Hebron"

Update 10/14/11
ABC News "Anonymous: New Hollywood Film Shows William Shakespeare as Someone Else"

Update 10/16/11
Daily Beast/Newsweek "The Shakespeare Shakedown"

Update 10/17/11
Moviefone "Was Shakespeare a fraud? 'Anonymous' screenwriter John Orloff sure thinks so"
New York Times "Hollywood dishonors the Bard" 

Update 10/18/11
The Australian "Film casts fresh doubt on Shakespeare's authenticity"

Update 10/20/11
Chicago Sun Times "Film asks: Was Shakespeare a Fraud?"
Santa Monica Daily Press "Movie review: the case for Edward de Vere"

Update 10/21/11
ConsortiumNews "Intriguing Shakespeare Author Mystery"

Update 10/22&23/11
New York Times "Wouldn't It Be Cool if Shakespeare Wasn't Shakespeare?"
New York Times "Roland Emmerich's Anonymous seeks to unmask Shakespeare/Brush up your Shakespeare, or Whoever"
The Atlantic "The Anonymous question: Did Shakespeare write Shakespeare?"
Orlando Sentinel "Where Rhys Ifans stands on the whole 'Who wrote Shakespeare's plays thing'"
BBC News "Vanessa Redgrave on 'Fakespeare' theory" 

Update 10/24/11
BBC America "Did Shakespeare really write his plays? A few theories examined"
IndieWIRE/The Playlist "Roland Emmerich's Anonymous still manages to destroy something -- its own authenticity"
New York Magazine "Anonymous Director Roland Emmerich on doubting Shakespeare . . . "
PRI/Studio 360 "Shakespeare by Anonymous"
Digital Spy "Anonymous -- London Film Festival 2011"

Update 10/25/11
The Guardian "Shakespeare film Anonymous has lost plot Stratford says . . ."
Huffington Post "Marshal Fine movie review: Anonymous" full text at
New York Observer "Anonymous gives the mystery of who wrote Shakespeare's plays a very good name"

Update 10/26/11
Movie Fanatic "Anonymous exclusive: Rafe Spall spills Shakespeare's secrets"
Crave Online "Roland Emmerich on Anonymous"

Ongoing: Rotten Tomatoes "Anonymous" (2011)