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Othello (1952)
"The Tragedy of Othello: The Moor of Venice" (original title)

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The general Othello is manipulated into thinking that his new wife Desdemona has been carrying on an affair with one of his officers Michael Cassio when in reality it is all part of the scheme of a bitter lieutenant named Iago.



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Complete credited cast:
Micheál MacLiammóir ...
Robert Coote ...
Suzanne Cloutier ...
Hilton Edwards ...
Nicholas Bruce ...
Michael Laurence ...
Fay Compton ...


Desdemona, daughter of a Venetian aristocrat, elopes with Moorish military hero Othello, to the great resentment of Othello's envious underling Iago. Alas, Iago knows Othello's weakness, and with chilling malice works on him with but too good effect... Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Orson Welles' magnificent screening of Shakespeare's immortal tragedy See more »


Drama | Romance


See all certifications »



| | |


Release Date:

12 September 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Othello  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

(re-release)| (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When he made The Black Rose (1950), Orson Welles insisted that the coat his character wore be lined with mink, even though the lining would never be visible in the finished film. The producers acquiesced to this demand. When the shoot was over, the coat disappeared. In _Othello_, Orson Welles can be seen wearing the same coat, complete with mink lining. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: There was once in Venice a moor, Othello, who for his merits is the affairs of war was held in great esteem. It happened that he fell in love with a young and noble lady called Desdemona, who drawn by his virtue became equally enamoured of Othello...
See more »


Referenced in Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

Welles brings it !
4 February 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The power of Welles performance should make anyone not already an admirer stand up and take notice. The dark, brooding nature of Welles character sets the tone throughout this film. Each of the prominent characters seems to feed off this intensity, making each the better for it. The spartan sets and excellent use of lighting add to this powerful delivery making the words feel true and soul wrenching. I think this production could have been played out on a bare stage and still be regarded as a fine work, the dialogue and delivery is of such fine caliber. "The Moor of Venice" is a fine example of Orson Welles vast talents as a performer and director and should not be missed.

18 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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