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Richard III (1912 film)

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Country  FranceUnited States
5.6/10 IMDb

Language  English
Richard III (1912 film) movie poster

Director  Andre CalmettesJames Keane
Release date  October 15, 1912
Writer  James Keane, William Shakespeare (play)

Richard iii 1911 extract bfi national archive

Richard III is a 55-minute film adaptation of Shakespeare's play, starring Frederick Warde as the title character. The 1912 film, a French/U.S. international co-production, was produced by Film d'Art and released through the independent states rights film distribution system. The film was co-directed by French film director André Calmettes, who had previously directed the films The Assassination of the Duke of Guise (1908), La Tosca (1909 – based on the play by Victorien Sardou), and La Dame aux Camélias (1910) with Sarah Bernhardt. Richard III was adapted from Shakespeare's original and Colley Cibber's 1699 adaptation by playwright James Keane, who also served as co-director and actor (playing Richmond). The film was shot around Westchester, New York and City Island Long Island Sound.


Richard III (1912 film) Silent Era Progressive Silent Film List

Richard iii 1912

Release and rediscovery

Richard III (1912 film) Silent Era Home Video Reviews

When the film was released in the U.S., actor Frederick Warde would often appear at screenings, giving a short lecture, and then reading extracts from the play during the changing of the reels that were then titled as 'acts'. The film itself begins with Warde, in modern dress, emerging from behind a theatrical curtain and bowing, and concludes with him bowing again, and returning behind the curtain. A traveling actor, Warde discovered it was more economical to single-handedly tour with the film rather than perform the play with an entire theatrical company. The film also features two scenes from 3 Henry VI (the murder of Prince Edward and Richard's murder of Henry VI).

Richard III (1912 film) Richard III 1912 Century Film Project

It is the oldest surviving American feature-length film, and is also thought to be the first feature-length Shakespearean adaptation ever made. As early as 1922, the film was thought lost. It was not until 1996 that a print was discovered, when William Buffum, former projectionist at the Bluebird Theatre in Portland, Oregon, donated his copy to the American Film Institute. The AFI restored the print, transferring it from its nitrate film stock and retouching the hand tinting effect used in the original 1912 release.

Richard III (1912 film) Silent Volume Richard III 1912

On June 26, 2001, Kino International released the film on DVD, with a newly composed score by Ennio Morricone, and a 17-minute documentary film "Rediscovering Richard: Looking Back on a Forgotten Classic".


Richard III (1912 film) Richard III 1912 Century Film Project

  • Robert Gemp ... King Edward IV
  • Frederick Warde ... Richard, Duke of Gloucester
  • Albert Gardner ... Prince Edward of Lancaster
  • James Keane ... Earl of Richmond
  • George Moss ... Tressel
  • Howard Stuart ... Edward
  • Virginia Rankin ... York
  • Violet Stuart ... Lady Anne Plantagenet
  • Carey Lee ... Queen Elizabeth
  • Carlotta De Felice ... Princess Elizabeth

  • Richard III (1912 film) Tactical Popcorn Richard III 1912


    Richard III (1912 film) Wikipedia
    Richard III (1912 film) IMDb Richard III (1912 film)