– . – Emmerich Takes On The Bard
Emmerich Takes On The Bard
Although he’s best known for destroying the world in movies like Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow and 2012, German director Roland Emmerich has chosen a surprising target for his next project – William Shakespeare.
Entitled Anonymous, the film – which begins shooting in April – deals with the long-standing rumours that Shakespeare did not actually write his acclaimed works. First put forward by Thomas Looney in 1918, the suggestion is that Shakespeare’s plays were actually written by Edward De Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford. The story goes that De Vere did not put his own name to the plays lest his peers think that such a pursuit was not a suitable pastime for a man of his aristocratic standing.
The Boat That Rocked star Rhys Ifans is on board to play De Vere, while Harry Potter’s David Thewlis is to take the role of William Cecil, De Vere’s father-in-law and chief adviser to Queen Elizabeth I (who will be portrayed by Vanessa Redgrave)
Speaking about the film, Emmerich explains it as “…a mix of a lot of things: it’s an historical thriller because it’s about who will succeed Queen Elizabeth and the struggle of the people who want to have a hand in it. It’s the Tudors on one side and the Cecils on the other, and in between [the two] is the Queen. Through that story we tell how the plays written by the Earl of Oxford ended up labelled ‘William Shakespeare’.”