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Monday, 1 February, 1999, 14:28 GMT
Dame Judi takes the stage
Globe Theatre
The Rose Theatre was similar in construction to The Globe
Actress Dame Judi Dench has managed to hang on to a little keepsake from her latest film - a full-sized replica of Shakespeare's first theatre.

Dame Judi, who plays Queen Elizabeth I in the film Shakespeare In love which opened in the UK this weekend, said:

"I was so taken with the whole thing that they actually gave me the replica of the Rose Theatre which was built at Shepperton Studios."

Judi Dench
Dame Judi Dench: Wants to open a reconstructed Rose Theatre
"I am now paying for it to be stored. I want it to be used as a working theatre and I am in negotiation for a site," she told Total Film magazine.

In the film Queen Elizabeth I is revealed to be a keen fan of the theatre - much like Dame Judi herself.

"My husband said `You are absolutely mad.' But that is what Shakespeare In Love has done to us all," she said.

Dame Judi, who is married to actor Michael Williams, was nominated for a Golden Globe for her brief role in the film.

The Rose theatre was a half-timbered building, with an apron stage, open-air standing room and tiered galleries for the good seats, similar to the later Globe theatre now recreated on London's Bankside.

Dame Judi is among the high profile supporters 5.5m Globe replica - the only theatre in Britain staging Shakespeare's work as it would originally have been seen - in open air and natural light.

Dame Judi Dench first found fame playing Ophelia in Hamlet in 1957 and was an important member of the Royal Shakespeare Company in the 1960s.

In 1987 she played Cleopatra opposite Sir Anthony Hopkins - a role Globe artistic director Mark Rylance is taking himself in the forthcoming season.

Shakespeare In Love designers visited The Globe to get some ideas about how the Rose Theatre should look. A Globe spokeswoman said:

"I saw their replica and it is very well done, but it is a film set and I don't think it would be strong enough to take an audience."

See also:

20 Jan 99 | Entertainment
Bard blockbuster premieres
25 Jan 99 | Entertainment
Night of the Globes
27 Jan 99 | Entertainment
Meet Mr Cleopatra
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