This film is part of Free

Introduction to Silent Shakespeare

Discover why filmmakers in the silent era turned to the works of William Shakespeare for inspiration.

Short documentary 2016 9 mins


Why did the first filmmakers turn to Shakespeare for inspiration? How can his plays exist ‘without words’ in a silent medium? What could early cinema offer that theatre couldn’t?

With the help of Professor Judith Buchanan from the University of York and Bryony Dixon, the BFI’s silent film curator, this short film explores the unique world of Silent Shakespeare: its genesis, its innovations and its fascinating relationship with the Bard’s work.