Complete List of Shakespeare Plays on DVD and VHS
The Globe Theatre
A Study Guide
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Original Globe
Second Globe
Featured Authors
Acting Company, Stunts
Sets: Effect on Writing
Special Effects
Music and Dancing
Memorizing Lines
Box Office and Marquee
London Theatres: 1576-1614
Opposition to Theatres
Theatre Season
Stage Directions
Pirated Plays
Shakespeare in Modern Era
By Michael J. Cummings © 2003

This page has been revised and moved to



Description of the Original Globe (1599)
.......The original Globe Theatre was a wood-framed building with plastered outside walls joining at angles to form a circle or an oval. The interior resembled that of a modern opera house, with three galleries protected from rain and sunlight by a roof. Between 2,000 and 3,000 playgoers paid two or more pennies to sit in these galleries, depositing them in a box. The stage was raised four to six feet from ground level and had a roof supported by pillars. In front of the stage was a roofless yard for up to 1,000 "groundlings" or "stinklings," who paid a "gatherer" a penny to stand through a performance under a hot sun or threatening clouds. Playgoers could also sit on the stage if their wallets were fat enough to pay the exorbitant price. It is unlikely that the uneducated groundlings who huddled in the yard understood the difficult passages in Shakespeare’s plays. Shakespeare himself belittled them in Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, calling them (through lines spoken by Hamlet) incapable of comprehending anything more than dumbshows. But because the groundlings liked the glamor and glitter of a play, they regularly attended performances at the Globe. When bored, they could buy food and drink from roving peddlers, exchange the news of the day, and boo and hiss the actors. 
.......There was no curtain that opened or closed at the beginning or end of plays. At the back of the stage, there was probably a wall with two or three doors leading to the dressing rooms of the actors. These rooms collectively were known as the "tiring house." To tire means to dress–that is, to attire oneself. Sometimes, the wall of the tiring house could stand as the wall of a fortress under siege. Props and backdrops were few. Sometimes a prop used for only one scene remained onstage for other scenes because it was too heavy or too awkward to remove. Peter Street was the carpenter/contractor hired to construct the Globe. The main rival of the Globe in the first years of  the 17th Century was the Fortune Theatre, constructed in 1600 (also by Peter Street).
........In Shakespeare's time, males played all the characters, even Juliet, Cleopatra and Ophelia. Actors playing gods, ghosts, demons and other supernatural characters could pop up from the underworld through a trap door on the stage or descend to earth from heaven on a winch line from the ceiling. Off the stage, the ripple of a sheet of metal could create thunder. Stagehands set off fireworks to create omens, meteors, comets, or the wrath of the Almighty. Instruments such as oboes and cornets sometimes provided music. If an actor suffered a fencing wound, he simply slapped his hand against the pouch (perhaps a pig's bladder) beneath his shirt to release ripe red blood signaling his demise. 
.......The gallery had a thatched roof. (Thatch consists of straw or dried stalks of plants such as reeds.) During a performance of Henry VIII on June 29, 1613, the Globe Theatre burned down after booming canon fire announcing the entrance of King Henry at Cardinal Wolsey's palace ignited the roof. 
Second Globe

.......Although the second Globe had a non-flammable tile roof, it was torn down in 1644 after a fire of another sort, Puritan zeal, closed all theatres. Puritans were strict Protestants who favored strait-laced living and opposed theatre performances. After the Globe was razed, tenements replaced it. Between September 2 and 5, 1666, the Great Fire of London–which destroyed more than 13,000 dwellings and more than 80 churches–consumed the foundations and whatever else was left of the Globe. Not a stick of wood from it was left. Modern recreations of the first and second Globe theatres are based on 17th Century descriptions and drawings. No one knows the exact dimensions or appearance of the second Globe or its predecessor. Globe Theatre recreations are based on educated guesses and on a surviving drawing of a rival theatre..
Location: Wrong Side of the Thames

.......The Globe was built west of London Bridge on the south bank of the Thames River in an area known as Bankside. It was the seedy section of town, frequented by prostitutes, pickpockets and other unsavory people. Not far from the Globe were "bear gardens," where Londoners attended entertainments in which a bear chained by the neck or a leg was attacked by dogs, including mastiffs. The sport was known as bearbaiting. More than two decades before the first Globe Theatre was built, Queen Elizabeth herself attended an entertainment involving 13 bears. Bankside residents also enjoyed bullbaiting. In this entertainment, a bull’s nose was primed with pepper to excite it. Dogs were then loosed one at a time to bite the bull’s nose. 


.......Richard Burbage and his brother, Cuthbert, inherited a playhouse called "The Theatre" from their father, James. The Theatre, which opened in 1576, stood in the Shoreditch section of London. It resembled a miniature U.S. baseball park in that it had a circular seating area surrounding an open area. Unlike a baseball park, however, the open area had a stage. In front of the stage was a yard in which playgoers unable to afford seating could stand. 
.......When the owner of the land on which The Theatre stood threatened to demolish the building after the lease expired, Richard and Cuthbert dismantled the playhouse and reassembled it, timber by timber, on the south bank of the Thames in a district where two other theatres, the Rose and the Swan, were already competing for the coins of London playgoers. The reconstruction was completed in 1599. 
.......Richard Burbage was an actor in a company called The Lord Chamberlain's Men, which Shakespeare had joined in 1594. (The name of this company changed several times. For more information 
Burbage was the first actor in history to play Hamlet, Macbeth, Othello, King Lear, Romeo, Henry V and Richard III. Cuthbert Burbage did not act, although he was interested in drama. The Lord Chamberlain's men was the most prestigious acting company at the time. However, another company known as the Admiral's Men (which featured the works of Christopher Marlowe, among others) also enjoyed wide popularity and respect. 


.......The Burbage Brothers owned a 50 percent interest in the Globe. William Shakespeare and four other investors–John Heminges, Augustine Phillips, Thomas Pope and Will Kempe–owned the remaining 50 percent in equal shares. 
Featured Authors

.......William Shakespeare was, of course, the main dramatist. But other authors also debuted plays there. They included Ben Jonson, Thomas Dekker and the writing team of Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher. Fletcher and Shakespeare teamed up to write The Two Noble Kinsmen.


.......All actors at the Globe and other theatres were males, even those who played Juliet and Cleopatra. It was forbidden for a woman to set foot on an Elizabethan stage. This proscription against females meant that Romeo probably recited his lines to a fuzzy-faced boy and that Antony may have whispered sweet nothings to a gawky adolescent male. However, because of wigs, neck-to-toe dresses and makeup artistry, it was easy for a young male to pass for a female. After an actor reached early adulthood, he could begin playing male parts. Shakespeare himself sometimes performed in his plays. It is said that he enjoyed playing the Ghost in Hamlet. All actors had to memorize their lines exactly; if they forgot their lines, they had to improvise cleverly or watch or listen for cues from an offstage prompter.
Highly skilled actors, such as Richard Burbage, earned more money–and received more praise–than Shakespeare and other playwrights. Actors who played clowns and jesters were celebrities, much as today's television and movie comedians. The main actors who performed in the plays listed in Shakespeare's First Folio were the following:

..............William Shakespeare
..............Richard Burbadge (Burbage)
..............John Hemings (Heminges)
..............Augustine Phillips
..............William Kempt (Will Kempe)
..............Thomas Poope (Pope)
..............George Bryan
..............Henry Condell
..............William Slye
..............Richard Cowly
..............John Lowine
..............Samuell Crosse
..............Alexander Cooke
..............Samuel Gilburne
..............Robert Armin
..............William Ostler
..............Nathan Field
..............John Underwood
..............Nicholas Tooley
..............William Ecclestone
..............Joseph Taylor
..............Robert Benfield
..............Robert Gouge
..............Richard Robinson
..............John Schanke
..............John Rice

Shakespeare's Acting Company

.......The acting company to which Shakespeare belonged established itself in 1590 as the Lord Chamberlain's Men, also called simply the Chamberlain's Men. Shakespeare joined the company about 1594. After the company's patron–Henry Carey, First Lord Hunsdon, a first cousin of Queen Elizabeth–died in 1596, Carey's son, George (Second Lord Hunsdon), assumed the patronage of the company. It then  adopted a new name, Hunsdon's Men. However, the company reverted back to its old name, Lord Chamberlain's Men, in 1597. It retained that name until the death of Queen Elizabeth I in March 1603 and the accession of James I as King England. At that time, James became the company's patron, and its name changed to the King's Men.

Stunts and Skills

.......Shakespearean and other Elizabethan actors had to perform their own stunts, such as falling or tumbling. They also had to wield swords and daggers with convincing skill. In addition, most actors had to know how to perform popular dances of their era and earlier eras, depending on the time and place of the play. Finally, actors had to have a voice of robust timbre. After all, there were no microphones or megaphones in Shakespeare's day. Several thousand noisy people–sometimes cheering, sometimes booing–had to hear every line. 

Spare Sets Equal Improved Writing
.......Because settings on an Elizabethan stage were spare, Shakespeare had to write descriptions of them into his dialogue. This handicap proved to be a boon, for it motivated Shakespeare to write some of his best descriptions. 

    Whenever place or time mattered [in a Shakespeare play], some references to them could be introduced into the dialogue, and if special atmospheric or dramatic effects were needed, they could be created by the poet's pen. Hence, it is to the Elizabethan stage that we are indebted in great measure for the exquisite descriptive poetry of Shakespeare. Such conditions, moreover, encouraged a greater imaginative cooperation on the part of the audience in the production of a play, and this active participation was further increased by the informality of the platform stage. With such intimacy, soliloquies, asides, and long set speeches are natural and not absurd as they are in modern theatre.–Watt, Homer A., and Karl J. Holzknecht. Outlines of Shakespeare's Plays. New York: Barnes, 1947 (Page 8).
Special Effects, Music, and Dancing

.......Before performing a bloody play such as Titus Andronicus, actors in Shakespeare's day filled vessels such as pigs' bladders with blood or a liquid resembling blood and concealed them beneath their costumes. Onstage, they had only to pound a fist against a bladder to release the blood and die a gruesome death. Stagehands in the wings simulated thunder by striking a sheet of metal or pounding a drum. They also sometimes set off fireworks during battle scenes and  lit torches during night scenes. The imagination of the audience was called upon to provide other special effects, as the prologue to Henry V suggests. 
.......Productions of Shakespeare's plays often included vocal and instrumental music, especially in plays performed on special occasions before royalty. Minor characters usually sang the vocal selections. Instruments used included the trumpet, the oboe–called an hautboy or hautbois (pronounced O bwa)–and stringed devices such as the viol and the lute. The plays also included dancing. In fact, Romeo and Juliet met at a masked dance. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the fairy king, Oberon, dances with his queen, Titania, after inviting her to “rock” with him, so to speak. Oberon says, “Sound, music! Come, my queen, take hands with me, and rock the ground whereon these sleepers be.” Shakespeare’s popular comedy As You Like It ends with a dance. Other plays with dancing include Henry V and Love’s Labour’s Lost. In The Two Noble Kinsmen, co-authored by Shakespeare and John Fletcher, the Schoolmaster and the jailer’s daughter speak of a dance called the “morris.”


.......Actors at the Globe and other London theatres generally wore clothing currently in fashion. Thus, the characters in plays set centuries before the age of Shakespeare dressed in Elizabethan or Jacobean apparel. For example, the characters in King Lear and Cymbeline, both set in ancient Britain, wore clothing popular at the time of Shakespeare. Presumably, it would have been too costly and time-consuming to research and make costumes of another era. 


.......Sound quality in the Globe Theatre was poor, and spoken lines did not carry unless actors bellowed them viva voce. Consequently, actors had to recite their lines with boom and thunder while helping to convey their meaning with exaggerated gestures. 

Memorizing Lines

.......Elizabethan actors had to know all of their lines word for word. In a day when their were no cue cards and no intermissions–and actors had to perform in many plays each year instead of the one or two that occupy modern actors in New York and London–such a task surely was Herculean for the major actors playing Hamlet, King Lear, or Macbeth. However, acting companies did post a person offstage to prompt actors who forgot their lines. 


.......In an age when royals and nobles held full sway over commoners, the Globe Theatre was a democratic institution, admitting anyone–whether a baron, a beggar, a knight, a candlemaker, an earl, a shoemaker, or a strumpet–if he or she had coin of the realm to drop in a box before entering. The viewers of a play could be noisy and rowdy, and they could deliver an instant review of an acting performance in the form or a rotten tomato colliding with the forehead of an offending actor. 

Shakespeare Study Guide in Book Form

........Shakespeare: a Guide to the Complete Works is now available in hardback and paperback. It incorporates virtually all of the information on this web site, including plot summaries of all the plays. It also gives dates and sources of each play, describes the setting and characters, discusses imagery, identifies themes, points out the climax, and provides historical background wherever necessary. In addition, it discusses and analyzes the sonnets, as well as other poems written by Shakespeare. 
........Among the many additional features of the book are essays, glossaries, explanations of versification and iambic pentameter, and a section on the Globe Theatre.
........Your purchase of this book will help maintain this web site as a free resource for teachers and students. You can order the book directly from the publisher's web site or from Amazon.com


.......The Globe had a Latin motto: Totus mundus agit histrionem. It was a translation of one of Shakespeare's most famous lines: All the World's a Stage. The line can also be translated as All the world plays the actor. 

Box Office

.......Some writers have erroneously attributed the derivation of the term box office to the use of a money box at the Globe Theatre into which theatregoers deposited coins to pay for seeing a play. In fact, the term box office did not originate until several centuries later, when it was used to refer to an office at which theatregoers could reserve an enclosed area of seating (box) for viewing stage performances.


.......There was none. But a flag flew over the theatre on play days to advertise performances. If a tragedy was scheduled, the flag was black; if a comedy was scheduled, the flag was white; if a history play was scheduled, the flag was red. 

Playhouses in or Near London Between 1576 and 1614

The Theatre
Paul's Theatre
The Curtain
Newington Butts
The Rose
The Cockpit
The Swan
The Boar's Head (Inn)
The Globe Theatre
The Fortune
The Bull (Inn)
The Red Bull (Inn)
The Hope (Inn)
Other Theatres: Courtyards, Royal Palaces, Private Residences

Why Some Londoners Opposed Theatres

.......Many Londoners opposed theatres on grounds that the crowds that they attracted would spread plague, cause riots, and increase pickpocketing. In addition, opponents believed theatre plays would lure young people and tradesmen from gainful activity and tempt Sunday churchgoers to stray their paths to the theatre door instead of the church door. 

.......Before any play could be staged in Shakespeare's time, it had to be approved by the king's (or the queen's) censor, the master of revels. The censor scrutinized each play at the expense of the production company. Plays considered morally or politically offensive could be banned under pain of imprisonment. John Russell Brown, author of Shakespeare and His Theatre (New York: Lothrop, Lee and Shepard, 1982, Page 31) discusses the circumstances under which the censor forbade the staging of one of Shakespeare's plays:

    At a time of unrest, when the Earl of Essex was challenging the Queen's [Elizabeth's] authority and armed bands terrorized the streets of London, the Chamberlain's Men [Shakespeare's company] were forbidden to perform Richard II, a play already licensed and performed, because it contains a scene in which a king is compelled to renounce his crown; in 1601, the queen's counsellors believed that this might encourage her enemies and spark off a revolution. The theatre was taken very seriously by the authorities and was allowed to deal with political issues only if they did not refer too obviously to current affairs or seditious ideas, but were set, safely, in an earlier century or, better still, in ancient Rome or foreign countries.
Theatre Season and Time of Performances

.......Because the Globe had a roofless yard, it was a warm-weather theatre. In cold weather, performances were held at the Blackfriars, a monastery converted to a theatre, or at another location. Performances at the Globe began in mid-afternoon after a trumpet sounded. Sunlight provided the lighting, although torches were sometimes lit to suggest night scenes. There were no intermissions. All performances had to end before nightfall so that playgoers could return safely home. There were no performances during lent or during outbreaks of plague. 

Stage Directions and Related Terms
Act: One of the main divisions of a play. Shakespeare's plays each have five acts. Each act is subdivided into scenes. An act generally focuses on one major aspect of the plot or theme. Between acts, stagehands may change scenery, and the setting may shift to another locale. 
Alarum: Stage direction indicating the coming of a battle; a call to arms
Arras: Tapestry hung on the stage to conceal scenery until the right moment. In Hamlet, an arras played a crucial role. Polonius hid behind one to eavesdrop on a conversation between Hamlet and his mother, Queen Gertrude. When Hamlet saw the tapestry move, he stabbed at it, thinking King Claudius was behind it, and killed Polonius.
Aside: Words an actor speaks to the audience which other actors on the stage cannot hear. Sometimes the actor cups his mouth toward the audience or turns away from the other actors. An aside serves to reveal a character's thoughts or concerns to the audience without revealing them to other characters in a play. Near the end of Hamlet, Queen Gertrude raises a cup of wine to her lips during the fencing match between Hamlet and Laertes. King Claudius had poisoned the wine and intended it for Hamlet. In an aside, Claudius–unwilling to warn Gertrude in an effort to preserve his innocence–says, "It is the poison'd cup: it is too late." 
Catchword: In published Shakespeare plays in earlier times, a single word on the bottom of the right side of every page. This word was the first word appearing on the next page.
Chorus: The chorus was a single person who recited a prologue before Act I (and sometimes a passage between acts) in Henry V, Henry VIII, Troilus and Cressida, and Romeo and Juliet. Generally, the chorus informed the audience of action offstage or outside the time frame of the play.
Dramatis Personae: List of the characters in a play. Such a list is found at the beginning of each Shakespeare play. 
Enter: Stage direction indicating the entrance onto the stage of a character or characters.
Epilogue: Short address spoken by an actor at the end of a play that comments on the meaning of the events in the play or looks ahead to expected events; an afterword in any literary work.
Excursion: Stage direction indicating that a military attack is taking place. The opening of Scene II in Act III of King John contains such a stage direction. 
Exeunt: Stage direction indicating the departure of two or more characters from the stage.
Exit: Stage direction indicating the departure of a character from the stage.
Flourish: Music usually introducing the entrance or exit of a king or another important person. The music may consist of a short trumpet passage. 
Fair Copy: Play manuscript after it has been edited. 
Foul Papers: Original manuscript of a playwright which was later edited.
Gallery: Roofed seating area of a theatre, such as the Globe, that resembled the grandstand of a baseball park. The Globe had three galleries that could accommodate 2,000 to 3,000 playgoers.
Hautboys: Stage direction indicating that entering characters are playing hautboys (OH bwah), which are Elizabethan oboes 
Induction: Preface or prelude to a play. The Taming of the Shrew contains an induction that precedes the main plot. 
Master of Revels: Government censor who examined all plays for offensive material
Prologue: Introduction of a play. In Henry V, a chorus (one person) speaks a prologue that encourages the audience members to use their imaginations to create what an Elizabethan stage cannot: battlefields, clashing swords, the might of warriors. Shakespeare writes, "Think when we talk of horses, that you see them printing their proud hoofs i' the receiving earth."
Promptbook or Prompt Copy: Edited version of a play in which an acting company inserted stage directions.
Re-Enter: Stage direction indicating the re-entrance onto the stage of a character or characters.
Scene: (1) Time and place of the action in a play; (2) part of an act in a play that usually takes place in one location.
Sennet: Trumpet flourish to introduce the entrance of a character, such as King Lear (Act 1).
Soliloquy: Long passage in which a character reveals his thoughts to the audience but not to other characters. Hamlet's famous "To be or not to be" speech is an example.
Solus: Stage direction indicating a character is alone on the stage.
Stationers' Register: Book in which the English government required printers to register the title of a play before the play was published. The full official name of the Stationers' Register was the Hall Book of the Worshipful Company of Stationers.
Tiring House: Dressing rooms of actors behind a wall at the back of the stage. To tire means to dress–that is, to attire oneself. Sometimes, the wall of the tiring house could stand as the wall of a fortress under siege.
Torches: Stage direction indicating that entering characters are carrying lit torches.
Within: Stage direction indicating that a person speaking or being spoken to is behind a door or inside a room.

Pirated Plays

Opportunists attempting to capitalize on the popularity of Shakespeare's plays sometimes printed "stolen" versions of the plays. They obtained these versions by attending a play and copying the lines.

Shakespeare in the Modern Era

......In the 19th Century, Shakespeare productions had become elaborate spectacles featuring lavish sets and costumes and bombastic recitations of dialogue. Such productions required more time to enact than the productions of Shakespeare's time because of the frequent scenery changes and the inflated delivery style of the actors. Consequently, theater companies often omitted or revised important passages to keep the plays at a tolerable length. Thus, the heart and soul of the plays, the verbal Shakespeare, became subservient to special effects. 
......However, in the early 20th Century, Harley Granville-Barker (1877-1946) restored Shakespeare productions to their original simplicity in adaptations at the Savoy Theatre in London. An actor and a play producer, Granville-Barker was also a Shakespearean scholar who well knew that elaborate productions had eviscerated the pith of Shakespeare's plays. At the Savoy between 1912 and 1914, he debuted productions of Twelfth Night, The Winter's Tale, and A Midsummer Night's Dream that emphasized spare sets and a recitation style closer to that of everyday speech. Actors not only had to memorize their lines; they also had to understand them and use intonations and gestures that elucidated their meanings and brought them to life.
......But part of the credit for Granville-Barker's welcome changes belongs to William Poel, a producer who operated the Elizabethan Stage Society between 1894 and 1905. Poel used an Elizabethan-style platform to present his productions and directed his actors to speak in natural rhythms rather than in artificial declamations. 
......After Granville-Barker acted in a 1903 Poel production, he never forgot the lessons he learned. In 1904, Granville-Barker, still in his twenties, produced his first Shakespeare play, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, for the Court Theatre in Chelsea. Eight years later came the important Savoy productions. Before performing them, he built a stage jutting into the seating area, used scripts adhering closely to Shakespeare's folio texts, and ordered the actors to speak like people having real conversations. 
......Granville-Barker eventually took Shakespeare to America for a tour, returned to England to serve in World War I, wrote a collection of highly regarded Prefaces to Shakespeare, and moved to Paris with his wife, where he died on August 31, 1946.
......Today, although Shakespeare continues to be performed in stage productions around the world, most people become familiar with his works through film productions such as those of Laurence Olivier, Franco Zeffirelli, and Kenneth Branaugh. These productions often combine the best of both Shakespearean traditions, including conversational recitation techniques and appealing visual and sound effects in castles and on battlefields. The "wooden O" in the prologue of Henry V—a reference to the oval-shaped Globe Theatre—has become the world in the modern Shakespeare film, enabling producers to set the scenes of the plays outdoors as well as indoors with all the trappings of castle life, all the panoply of battle, and all the dark magic of three witches on a heath. 
......Thanks to Granville-Barker, these films reflect life as we all act it—with fire and feeling, punctuated by an occasional slur or stutter—on a stage that is never farther away than a porch or stoop or field of clover.

Plays on DVD (or VHS) 
Play Director Actors
Antony and Cleopatra (1974) Trevor Nunn, John Schoffield Richard Johnson, Janet Suzman
Antony and Cleopatra BBC Production  Jane Lapotaire 
As You Like It (2010)  Thea Sharrock Jack Laskey, Naomi Frederick
As You Like It (1937)  Paul Czinner Henry Ainley, Felix Aylmer
The Comedy of Errors BBC Production Not Listed
Coriolanus BBC Production  Alan Howard, Irene Worth
Cymbeline Elijah Moshinsky Claire Bloom, Richard Johnson, Helen Mirren
Gift Box: The Comedies BBC Production Various
Gift Box: The Histories BBC Production Various
Gift Box: The Tragedies BBC Production Various
Hamlet (1948)  Laurence Olivier Laurence Olivier, Jean Simmons
Hamlet (1990)  Kevin Kline Kevin Kline
Hamlet(1991)  Franco Zeffirelli Mel Gibson, Glenn Close
Hamlet (1996)  Kenneth Branagh Kenneth Branagh, 
Hamlet (2009) Gregory Doran David Tennant, Patrick Stewart, Penny Downie
Hamlet (1964)  John Gielgud, Bill Colleran Richard Burton, Hume Cronyn
Hamlet (1964)  Grigori Kozintsev Innokenti Smoktunovsky
Hamlet (2000)  Cambpell Scott, Eric Simonson Campbell Scott, Blair Brown
Henry V (1989)  Kenneth Branagh Kenneth Branaugh, Derek Jacobi
Henry V( 1946)  Laurence Olivier Leslie Banks, Felix Aylmer
Henry VI Part I BBC Production Peter Benson, Trevor Peacock
Henry VI Part II BBC Production  Not Listed
Henry VI Part III BBC Production  Not Listed
Henry VIII BBC Production John Stride, Claire Bloom, Julian Glover
Julius Caesar BBC Production  Richard Pasco, Keith Michell
Julius Caesar (1950)  David Bradley Charlton Heston
Julius Caesar (1953)  Joseph L. Mankiewicz Marlon Brando, James Mason
Julius Caesar (1970)  Stuart Burge Charlton Heston, Jason Robards
King John BBC Production Not Listed
King Lear (1970) Grigori Kozintsev Yuri Yarvet
King Lear (1971) Peter Brook Cyril Cusack, Susan Engel
King Lear (1974)  Edwin Sherin James Earl Jones
King Lear (1976)  Tony Davenall Patrick Mower, Ann Lynn
King Lear (1984)  Michael Elliott Laurence Olivier, Colin Blakely
King Lear (1997)  Richard Eyre Ian Holm
Love's Labour's Lost (2000) Kenneth Branagh Kenneth Branagh, Alicia Silverstone 
Love's Labour's Lost BBC Production) Not Listed
Macbeth (1978)  Philip Casson Ian McKellen, Judy Dench
Macbeth BBC Production  Not Listed
The Merchant of Venice BBC Production Warren Mitchell, Gemma Jones
The Merchant of Venice (2001)  Christ Hunt, Trevor Nunn David Bamber, Peter De Jersey
The Merchant of Venice (1973) John Sichel Laurence Olivier, Joan Plowright
The Merry Wives of Windsor (1970)  Not Listed Leon Charles, Gloria Grahame
Midsummer Night's Dream (1996)  Adrian Noble Lindsay Duncan, Alex Jennings
A Midsummer Night's Dream  (1999) Michael Hoffman Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer
Much Ado About Nothing (1993)  Kenneth Branaugh Branaugh, Emma Thompson
Much Ado About Nothing (1973)  Nick Havinga  Sam Waterston, F. Murray Abraham
Othello (2005)  Janet Suzman Richard Haines, John Kaki
Othello (1990)  Trevor Nunn Ian McKellen, Michael Grandage
Othello (1965)  Stuart Burge Laurence Olivier, Frank Finlay
Othello (1955)  Orson Welles Orson Welles
Othello (1983)  Franklin Melton Peter MacLean, Bob Hoskins, Jenny Agutter
Ran  (1985) Japanese Version of King Lear  Akira Kurosawa Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Terao
Richard II (2001)  John Farrell  Matte Osian, Kadina de Elejalde
Richard III (1912)  André Calmettes, James Keane  Robert Gemp, Frederick Warde
Richard III - Criterion Collection (1956)  Laurence Olivier Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson
Richard III (1995)  Richard Loncraine Ian McKellen, Annette Bening
Richard III BBC Production  Ron Cook, Brian Protheroe, Michael Byrne
Romeo and Juliet (1968)  Franco Zeffirelli Leonard Whiting, Olivia Hussey
Romeo and Juliet (1996)  Baz Luhrmann Leonardo DiCaprio, Claire Danes
Romeo and Juliet (1976)  Joan Kemp-Welch Christopher Neame, Ann Hasson
Romeo and Juliet BBC Production  John Gielgud, Rebecca Saire, Patrick Ryecart
The Taming of the Shrew Franco Zeffirelli Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton
The Taming of the Shrew Kirk Browning Raye Birk, Earl Boen, Ron Boussom
The Taming of The Shrew Not Listed Franklin Seales, Karen Austin 
The Tempest Paul Mazursky John Cassavetes, Gena Rowlands
The Tempest (1998) Jack Bender Peter Fonda, John Glover, Harold Perrineau,
Throne of Blood (1961) Macbeth in Japan  Akira Kurosawa Toshirô Mifune, Isuzu Yamada
Twelfth Night (1996)  Trevor Nunn Helena Bonham Carter
Twelfth Night BBC Production  Not Listed
The Two Gentlemen of Verona BBC Production  John Hudson, Joanne Pearce
The Winter's Tale  (2005)  Greg Doran Royal Shakespeare Company
The Winter's Tale BBC Production  Not Listed