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Shakespeare-Wallah (1965)

The story of a family troupe of English actors in India. They travel around the towns and villages giving performances of Shakespearean plays. Through their travels we see the changing face... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(story and screenplay) (as R. Prawer Jhabvala), (story and screenplay)
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Sanju
...
Geoffrey Kendal ...
Mr. Tony Buckingham
Laura Liddell ...
Mrs. Carla Buckingham
...
Manjula
...
Maharaja
Praveen Paul ...
Didi
Prayag Raj ...
Sharmaji (as Prayag Raaj)
Pinchoo Kapoor ...
Guptaji
Jim D. Tytler ...
Bobby (as Jim Tytler)
Hamid Sayani ...
Headmaster's Brother
Marcus Murch ...
Dandy in 'The Critic'
Partap Sharma ...
Aslam
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Storyline

The story of a family troupe of English actors in India. They travel around the towns and villages giving performances of Shakespearean plays. Through their travels we see the changing face of India as the old is replaced by the new, Maharajas become hotel owners, sports become more important than culture and the theater is replaced by Bolliwood movies. Based on the travels of Geoffrey Kendal with his daughter Felicity Kendal. Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

December 1965 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Shakespeare Wallah  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Felicity Kendal receives an "introducing" credit. See more »

Quotes

Bobby: [Speaking to Lizzie] And when you're young, you never think. And when you're old... you're too tired to think.
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Connections

Referenced in The Darjeeling Limited (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Symphony No. 9
(uncredited)
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
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User Reviews

 
Early Merchant-Ivory is Diamond in the Rough
24 April 2000 | by (Madison, Wisconsin) – See all my reviews

This early (if not first) Merchant-Ivory collaboration anticipates what the team was later able to do with larger budgets and color cinematography. Set in post-independence India, it tells the story of a small, though thoroughly professional traveling Shakespeare company fallen on hard times. The troop, built on the talents of the three Buckingham family members, including the young and fetching daughter Lizzie, is slowly dissolving in a culture increasingly hostile to their art and readier to worship the queens of the silly Indian pop cinema.

The main thread of the plot concerns a rather thin romance between Lizzie and a young Indian playboy quite under the thumb of a local movie vixen named Manula. Meanwhile we are given snippets from various Shakespeare plays: Hamlet, Othello, Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, Antony and Cleopatra.

Fine B&W photography, though much in this film seems dated now.


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