(Note: I'm working on adapting Shakespeare's THE WINTER'S TALE for film, and will occasionally throw an entry up about it.)
Has anyone done research on the audience for Shakespeare FILMS? Have smaller budget Shakespeare films found an audience or made money?
Film adaptations of MACBETH don't count (every kid with a camera tries a MACBETH adaptation and they're all terrible); neither do large budget films by Al Pacino or Orson Welles.
My favorite big-budget filmed Shakespeare are CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT, TITUS, and Branaugh's MUCHO ADO ABOUT NOTHING, though Pacino's MERCHANT OF VENICE has a lot to recommend it. Branaugh's HAMLET hasn't aged well. Tenant's HAMLET has aged better. I also like the opening of Olivier's HENRY V and there's a lot to like in his OTHELLO, though the blackface is cringe-worthy. Whedon's MUCH ADO is interesting but falls flat for me.
Almereyda's CYMBELINE and HAMLET interest me but I want to better match visual interest--or 'spectacle'--to the heightened language. I have some ideas about how to achieve that while staying mainly inside a naturalistic approach.