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Much Ado About Nothing (I) (2012)

 -  Comedy | Drama | Romance  -  14 June 2013 (UK)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 11,260 users   Metascore: 78/100
Reviews: 80 user | 210 critic | 37 from

A modern retelling of Shakespeare's classic comedy about two pairs of lovers with different takes on romance and a way with words.



(written for the screen by), (play)
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3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
First Watchman
Second Watchman


Leonato (Clark Gregg), the governor of Messina, is visited by his friend Don Pedro (Reed Diamond) who is returning from a victorious campaign against his rebellious brother Don John (Sean Maher). Accompanying Don Pedro are two of his officers: Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and Claudio (Fran Kranz). While in Messina, Claudio falls for Leonato's daughter Hero (Jillian Morgese), while Benedick verbally spars with Beatrice (Amy Acker), the governor's niece. The budding love between Claudio and Hero prompts Don Pedro to arrange with Leonato for a marriage. In the days leading up to the ceremony, Don Pedro, with the help of Leonato, Claudio and Hero, attempts to sport with Benedick and Beatrice in an effort to trick the two into falling in love. Meanwhile, the villainous Don John, with the help of his allies Conrade (Riki Lindhome) and Borachio (Spencer Treat Clark), plots against the happy couple, using his own form of trickery to try to destroy the marriage before it begins. A series of comic... Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Shakespeare knows how to throw a party.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

14 June 2013 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Mucho ruido y pocas nueces  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$171,941 (USA) (7 June 2013)


$4,327,763 (USA) (4 October 2013)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joss Whedon wanted to incorporate Steadicams for filming, but was unable to due to timing and budget constraints. See more »


Version of Much Ado About Nothing (1987) See more »


Sigh No More
Lyrics by William Shakespeare
Music by Joss Whedon
Performed by Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Thou art not a good moving picture
16 October 2013 | by (Ecuador) – See all my reviews

"Shakespeare knows how to throw a party."

While Joss Whedon was working on his big budget film, The Avengers, he was working on this much smaller but personal passion project. He only needed 12 days to shoot this black and white movie which consisted mostly of actors he had worked with in the past from his TV productions. He filmed this entirely from his home so fans of Whedon might appreciate how passionate he was about the adaptation of William Shakespeare's play. I am a huge fan of Shakespeare's plays, but I usually have a hard time enjoying the films that try to modernize his 16th century plays. That is exactly what happened here, I just can't conceive these characters speaking this way living at the present. It kind of throws me off as I would rather watch a version of this play centered around the 16th century. Much Ado About Nothing isn't considered as one of Shakespeare's best plays either. I didn't care too much for most of the characters and the comedy didn't work too well either. The main themes of the play still come through in this film however. We can see how easy it is to build love out of nowhere or destroy it with words. This is a very different film coming from Josh Whedon, but I guess one of the advantages he has for having so much success is getting to do films he is passionate about. Fans of this play might enjoy this more than I did.

The governor of Messina, Leonato (Clark Gregg), is getting prepared for a much awaited visit from his good friend Don Pedro (Reed Diamond). Pedro who has recently come out victorious from a Civil War is returning with two of his officers: Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and Claudio (Fran Kranz). Along with his brother Don John (Sean Maher) who was on the losing side of the War, they are all going to stay at Leonato's home. Love soon is in the air when Claudio falls for Leonato's only daughter, Hero (Jillian Morgese). Leonato and Don Pedro make plans for their wedding, while at the same time they decide to try to get Benedick and Hero's cousin, Beatrice (Amy Acker), to fall in love with each other despite how much they hate each other. Meanwhile, Don John, who is still bitter about his defeat will try to do what it takes to make others miserable and therefor tries to break up the relationship between Hero and Claudio. Will love prevail or will Don John be able to destroy their love? If you've read the play than you know the answer.

Some of the same basic complaints about Shakespeare's play can be heard here as well, such as how underdeveloped the villain (Don John) is here. He is perhaps one of the weakest villains from his plays. The love story between these two pair of lovers isn't something out of the ordinary either, but the actors give strong performances nonetheless. Fans of Firefly and Serenity will be pleased to see Nathan Fillion in the comedic supporting role here and he stands out from the rest. This is one of Shakespeare's lighter comedies, considering it doesn't end in tragedy, and it has some funny moments, but I just didn't like the way the play was modernized. I never got engaged with the story and I never felt the wit coming from Whedon's other works.

8 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Rather awful. Ephisus
GENRE? britbmw
Maybe something strange about the user reviews... Balthazar-5
Do I need to read the play? thomas-chndl
Extreme disappointation just from trailer mcmason1503
It just doesn't work nychicacharm
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