King Henry VIII of England discards one wife, Catharine of Aragon, who has failed to produce a male heir, in favor of the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn.King Henry VIII of England discards one wife, Catharine of Aragon, who has failed to produce a male heir, in favor of the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn.King Henry VIII of England discards one wife, Catharine of Aragon, who has failed to produce a male heir, in favor of the young and beautiful Anne Boleyn.
Interesting screenplay based on the source stage play "Anne of the Thousand Days" by Maxwell Anderson that was originally produced on Broadway in New York at the Shubert Theatre, it describes "England between the years 1526 and 1536" . Dynamic performance by Richard Burton , though he hated both the film and his interpretation and was amazed when he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor . Burton had been the second actor to do so for playing Henry VIII, and the first to win for playing a role that someone else had already nominated an Oscar for playing the same character was actor Charles Laughton , he first played the monarch in 1933 for The private life of Henry VIII (1933) and won the Best Actor Academy Award for his performance . Burton and Genevieve Bujold make an extraordinary battle of wits , they were two of the foremost talents of the time . Actresses Olivia Hussey, Julie Christie , and Faye Dunaway all turned down the role of Anne Boleyn , Hussey was the first choice for the part but she declined due to personal problems she was dealing with at the time , as the leading female part in the end was cast with French actress Geneviève Bujold who gives a marvelous acting . Understanding and charismatic acting by large secondary cast as John Colicos as the ambitious Thomas Cromwell , Irene Papas as suffering Catherine of Spain , Michael Hordern as Thomas Boleyn , Peter Jeffreys as Duke of Norfork , among others . It appears uncredited Elizabeth Taylor as masked courtesan in a lush ball , in fact she wanted to play Anne Boleyn, but was rejected as too old at age 37 .
Sumptuous cinematography by Arthur Ibbetson , reflecting glamorously the spectacular sets and luxurious gowns which won an Academy Award . Evocative and emotive musical score by Georges Delerue . Lavishly produced by Hal B Wallis, fitting accurately to Renaissance time , though the film received mixed reviews, it was a financial flop on release . This engrossing motion picture was brilliantly directed by Charles Jarrot who continued in similar style with ¨Mary queen of Scots¨, about Henry's great-niece, he directed two years later and again a wills duel , this time starred by Glenda Jackson as Queen Elizabeth and Vanessa Redgrave as Mary Stuart .
- May 15, 2009