IMDb > Discovering Hamlet (1990) (TV)

Discovering Hamlet (1990) (TV) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 4 | slideshow) Videos
Discovering Hamlet -- A unique, behind-the-scenes look at Shakespeare's great play. In 1988, rising star Kenneth Branagh played the Prince of Denmark for the first time. His guide through four weeks of rehearsals at England's Birmingham Repertory Theatre: famed actor Derek Jacobi, "the best Hamlet of his generation" (New York Times). Watch what happens from the first dress rehearsal to the tension-filled opening night. Narrated by Patrick Stewart.


User Rating:
7.9/10   56 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Up 4% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
View company contact information for Discovering Hamlet on IMDbPro.
A unique, behind-the-scenes look at Shakespeare's great play. In 1988, rising star Kenneth Branagh played the Prince of Denmark for the first time... See more » | Add synopsis »
(3 articles)
[DVD Review] Discovering Hamlet
 (From JustPressPlay. 10 March 2011, 6:00 AM, PST)

DVD Review - Discovering Hamlet
 (From 19 January 2011, 12:00 PM, PST)

DVD Playhouse: December 2010
 (From The Hollywood Interview. 19 December 2010, 5:17 PM, PST)

User Reviews:
A dry run for Branagh's Hamlet See more (4 total) »



Kenneth Branagh ... Himself / Hamlet

Richard Clifford ... Himself / Horatio
Richard Easton ... Himself / Claudius

Derek Jacobi ... Himself
Edward Jewesbury ... Himself / Polonius

David Parfitt ... Himself / Rosencrantz

Patrick Stewart ... Narrator (voice)

Sophie Thompson ... Herself / Ophelia
Jay Villiers ... Himself / Laertes
Jimmy Yuill ... Himself / Guildenstern

Dearbhla Molloy ... Gertrude (uncredited)

Directed by
Mark Olshaker 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Mark Olshaker 
William Shakespeare  play "Hamlet"

Produced by
Larry Klein .... producer

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

53 min

Did You Know?

[first lines]
Narrator:In the history of dramatic literature, there is one name that will always be remembered.
See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
A dry run for Branagh's Hamlet, 1 March 1999
Author: Varlaam from Toronto, Canada

For those who have seen Kenneth Branagh's film version of "Hamlet" from 1996, this documentary will be of interest since it shows the development of the stage production in which Branagh first learned the part, under the direction of (Sir) Derek Jacobi, in Birmingham in 1990.

The actors learn their parts from scratch in four weeks for this production, which was staged in Edwardian costume. Although the fact is never stated explicitly, the performers are learning their lines from the green Arden Shakespeare paperback edition of the play (Routledge, London, 1989).

Director Jacobi has some novel ideas for his staging, including having Hamlet deliver his soliloquy TO OPHELIA.

Several of the faces in this production are familiar from other Kenneth Branagh films. David Parfitt, who only fills the unenviable role of Rosencrantz here, went on to become a producer and numbers last year's "Shakespeare in Love" among his credits.

This one-hour film works well enough as a document, but it is unfortunately light on penetration and insight. We are not even informed of the ultimate success or failure of this staging in the eyes of critics at the time.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (4 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Discovering Hamlet (1990)


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Hamlet Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead Hamlet Hamlet Hamlet
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Drama section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.