The play's the thing as 'Shakespeare in Love' launches in West End
Wednesday, July 23, 2014 - 01:26
There's a standing ovation and critical acclaim for the opening night of the West End theatre version of the movie 'Shakespeare in Love'. Edward Baran reports.
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It was a hugely popular Oscar-winning movie -- now Shakespeare in Love has made the transition from the big screen to the West End stage.
The early reviews are strong for the Disney-backed show -- five stars from the British Daily Telegraph and Independent newspapers -- and the actors won a standing ovation for their efforts on opening night.
The lead role of Will Shakespeare is taken by actor Tom Bateman.
SOUNDBITE, Tom Bateman, actor, saying (English):
"We knew that we had a show that people enjoyed and I think we were just wanting, just for tonight, out of tradition, we wanted it to really go down well with everyone watching it and they all got up on their feet so we can't ask for anything more so we are very happy, yes."
Tom Stoppard's screenplay was adapted by award-winning English playwright Lee Hall, who retained much of the dialogue from the movie.
He hopes success in London means producers will consider a move to Broadway.
SOUNDBITE, Lee Hall, playwright, saying (English):
"I think that the movie is really loved in America and it could go anywhere that people love theatre, you know, for anybody who loves theatre it's such a joy, so let's hope so."
The production includes 28 actors and musicians, one of the largest casts ever assembled for a West End play.
There is also an Irish wolfhound, who features as a running joke in the play and was perhaps the biggest hit with audiences.
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