BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Entertainment  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Thursday, 1 August, 2002, 10:01 GMT 11:01 UK
Stars 'want to direct' at RSC
Kenneth Branagh
Branagh is known for his Shakespearean roles
Kenneth Branagh and Sam Mendes have said they want to work with the Royal Shakespeare Company, according to its new artistic director.

Michael Boyd, who takes over the RSC's directorship from Adrian Noble in March 2003, told The Stage newspaper that both had indicated they would consider directing productions in the future.

Boyd said that both Branagh and Mendes had been consulted by the selection panel during the search for a replacement for Noble.

RSC chairman Bob Alexander spoke to the pair about their interest in directing productions for the company.

Michael Boyd
Michael Boyd takes over the reins in March 2003
"I know Bob had conversations with both Kenneth Branagh and Sam Mendes, and I would bite their arms off, no problem," Boyd told The Stage.

"I think it's great. I think it is sincere on both their parts and I think its is about an expression of care, although I am sure couched up in 'let's see what you get up to'."

Theatre darling

Mendes has a strong reputation for directing interesting yet popular plays and has previously directed Troilus and Cressida and Richard III for the RSC.

During his spell as artistic director at London's Donmar Warehouse he became the darling of theatreland, attracting Hollywood stars such as Nicole Kidman to appear.

Sam Mendes
Sam Mendes is dating actress Kate Winslet
Mendes also has a best director Oscar under his belt for the critically acclaimed American Beauty.

Kenneth Branagh is one of the most recognisable faces to emerge from the RSC, having joined for a short period in 1984.

During his distinguished career he has directed plays and films from diverse genres including Much Ado About Nothing and Peter's Friends.

His latest production, The Play What I Wrote, has received rave reviews during its London run.

Boyd has been an associate director of the RSC since 1996, winning an Olivier Award for his production of Henry VI.

One of his plans once he takes over is to reintroduce the idea of an ensemble cast, which he believes lies in the roots of the RSC.

Controversial reforms

He sees it as the foundation for bringing through new talent as well as attracting big names.

He is reluctant to share his views on pushing through the controversial reforms of his predecessor Noble.

Among those was quitting the RSC's London home at the Barbican in favour of touring productions.

There are also plans to demolish its Stratford-upon-Avon site to build a Shakespeare village.

Amid the changes 100 staff were made redundant and others were put on temporary contracts.

Boyd said: "In principle I am in favour of big changes as will be evident with me but I had a different view of how those changes might be brought about."

See also:

25 Jul 02 | Entertainment
25 Jul 02 | Entertainment
06 Nov 01 | Entertainment
24 Apr 02 | Entertainment
28 Mar 01 | Entertainment
25 May 01 | Entertainment
24 May 01 | Entertainment
04 Dec 01 | Entertainment
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Entertainment stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Entertainment stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes