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Zewadski, William K.
Greek theater in the cinema and television /
h [electronic resource]
William K. Zewadski.
48 p. (formated in PDF)
Includes bibliographic references.
Appendix I: Greek plays in the cinema and television, 1897-2002 -- Appendix II: Cinematic and video versions of Greek plays in opera and dance -- Appendix III: Films or videos substantially influenced by Greek plays -- Bibliography.
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
System requirements: Adobe Acrobat Reader.
x In motion pictures.
t Holocaust and Genocide Studies Center Collection
Greek Theater in the Cinema and Television William K. Zewadski, Tampa, Florida, March 2005
Greek Theater in the Cinema and Television 1. Introduction Of the four dozen or so complete Greek plays that have come down to us, only a handful have made it to the movie screen in the one hundred five years since movies have been made or to television in the last five decades. A striking fact is that so few plays have been given cinematic treatment in light of the centrality of the Greek dramatic tradition in Western culture. Indeed, Margarete BieberÂ’s 1961 revised edition of her exhaustive History of th e Greek and Roman Theater cited scores of contemporary stage productions of Greek plays, but she commented on only one such film and called it a Â“deserved failure.Â” Had she written somewhat later, as we shall see, Bieber might have included comments on some re markable later cinematic productions, although they are still re latively few in number. It is the purpose of this paper to pres ent a list of those relatively few Greek plays that have been filmed, televise d, or preserved on video thus far. 2. The sparse incidence of Greek plays in the cinema and on television and their chronology This review of the material singles out the medium of film or television productions of Greek plays as a category wo rthy of special attention, because of the presumed difference in those media of the dire ctorÂ’s ability to pres ent a story, often with a larger budget, perh aps with a difference in percepti on because of camera angles or special effects, a more realis tic physical setting, or a differe nce in the size of the audience reached. Where the video or television play is no more than a static, one point taping of a stage performance, as a few of these seem to be, there is little difference from the experience of a stage performance, except perhaps in an occasional close-up or an outreach to a larger audience. Many producti ons on the list under discussion, however, have gone beyond the stage play presentation in interpreting the script in cinematic terms, with outdoor sets, close-ups, and a moving ci nematic point of view. Some go beyond, and reinterpret the Greek play in psychological or political terms, far removed in time or place. Unfortunately the exact data that would tell us the budgets, the box office receipts or audience figures and extent of distribution of these films and television productions, is largely unobtainable. We may justly surmis e that a BBC-TV or PBS-TV showing may reach far more people than will ever experi ence a particular stage production, and that,
over time, an Oscar nominated film like Iphigenia or a DVD release of a film with famous actresses, like CacoyannisÂ’ Electra may reach an even larger number. As MacKinnon points out, the filming or videotaping of a play creates a more permanent record of the performance than the stage performance. This permanence may be limited by the vagaries of time, as shown by the fact that many of the films on the list compiled here are unavailable from any source today. The silents on this list have no w vanished, and even the video tapes from later on are now largely unobtainable. In all, less than a half of the list can now be found through the usual commercial s ources or in academic libraries. As MacKinnon notes, the experience even of the fixed record of a filmed play may be perceived differently in diffe rent places and times. MacKinnon also distinguishes between the filmed stage performance (the theatrical mode), the adaptation of the play into a different setting or time pe riod (the realistic mode), and the film inspired but greatly change d from the Greek original (the filmic mode). These are palpable distinctions, showing the range of adaptation and change by the director, set designer or sc reenwriter, but the categorization of each film is often arbitrary along the contin uum these categories suggest. Suffice it to point out that the creative responses to the Greek play are enormously varied among the films listed. The seemingly e ssential conventions of Greek theater: masks, a chorus, a limited cast of three, and the like, are discarded in all but a few of the films, and so the study sh ould focus on the many changes each film brings to the play and their effect, for good or bad, on the audience. The presentation here is concerned with the Greek play presented in more or less a pure form in a movie or on te levision, although the setting and costumes may be changed and the text adapted, as the dramatic requirements of the film may have dictated to the director. Appe ndix II lists 27 of the many examples of modern dance, opera or ballet that have been made into film or video from these Kenneth MacKinnon, Greek Tragedy Into Film 1986, p. 16. This survey includes certain videos not generally released but available at re search libraries or archives as a permanent record of a stage production. These references are not exhaustive, but may nevertheless be useful for the scholar to revisit an earl ier production for study or for a director to consult for inspiration. Id., Chapters 4-6. Id., pp. 25-28. MacKinnon also mentions th e stock character of the Messenger, stichomythia (exchanges in dialog between two characters, reciting a line of poetry each), acting, etc. These films have an occasional se lf-conscious nod to the tradition, such as the response to OedipusÂ’ inquiry about the wa y to the Sphinx in Pasolini=s Edipo Re : AOf course I know, I am the Messenger@!
plays, and Appendix III lists 48 of thos e many films with substantial influence from these plays in th at they have plots based on Gree k plays, or where a director or reviewer has claimed a strong influenc e from the Greek plays. They range from the careful recreation of the plot elemen ts of the play, as in DassinÂ’s Phaedra to obscure references to these theatrical themes in films as varied as Citizen Kane Scream 2 and Hercules Unchained with Steve Reeves. Th ese 75 films on the two supplemental lists are not in cluded in the data below of the incidence of the Greek plays in film and video. Thus limited, the list of Greek plays in feature films and television productions contains only about 25 of the forty nine surviving Greek plays, including productions of 18 tragedies and 7 comedies, with a third of the 25 being filmed only once or twice. In total, a mere 167 movies and television features have been made of all the Gr eek plays over the course of one hundred five years of movie-making and some fifty ye ars of television production. Historical epics, adaptations of Gree k myth, and the multitude of classical references in movies abound among the list of over one thousand Greek, Roman, and Biblical films created in the last cen tury or so. The cinematic opus has been caught up with classical sp ectacle, scantily clad gods, goddesses, gladiators, slaves, concubines, and fire and brimstone According to Professor Jon Solomon, "since the popularization of theatrical film in the first decade of the 20th century, no genres, geographical localities, or hist orical eras have been more recurrent, significant, or innovative than the genre of films set in the ancient Greco-Roman The present lists owe much to the st udies of Jon Solomon=s newly revised treatise, The Ancient World in the Cinema (2001) and Martin Winkler=s recent revision of his Classical Myth an d Culture in the Cinema Oxford University Press (2001), and the essential IMDb movie and tele vision database on the web, http://us.imdb.com among other sources listed in the bi bliography. These show a grow ing list of scholars on the ancient subject matter and ancient literary in fluences on modern film. The lists are under continuing revision since many of the referenc es have not been available for viewing. The Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama, Oxford University, has a summary list of videos and films dated as of December 17, 2001, of some 79 films and 41 television productions of Greek plays, many of which overlap the present lists. These include entries of foreign films in Finnish, German, Chinese and Greek not heretofore available to the author. Four pl ays not found elsewhere on film or tape appear at least once on that list: Philoktet (Sophocles, date uncertain), Der Zyklop (Euripides, 1981), Wealth (Aristophanes, 1999), and Peace (Aristophanes, 2001). Perhaps thirty or more additional entries will be found when there is more information discovered about the Oxford entries.
and biblical worlds." To be sure, there is this la rger influence of Greek myth and history, as distinguished from the Greek plays, among the more than one thousand movies that I have compiled having anci ent references to Greece, Rome or the Bible. Films of the plays are joined by hundreds of ot her films centered on Greek and Roman myth more generally, and mo re than one hundred fifty sword and sandal adaptations of the Hercules genre. These many classical films in large part do not depict the Greek plays directly. Instead, the anci ent Greek theatrical tradition has been generally ig nored in the headlong pursu it of the box office. In contrast to the efflorescence of the Gree k stage performance in modern culture of the last two centuries, the cellu loid record of Greek plays is largely a blank screen. Cinema scholars have taken insufficient note of the extensive body of filmed or televised productio ns of Greek drama. Greek tragedy in film is dealt with by Derek Elley in just two sentence s of his 223 pages in his 1984 book, The Epic Film and he mentions only eight films in those two sentences: It should, however, be noted that the cinema has produced some exceptional versions of Greek trage dy: from the charged, oppressive, monochrome world of Michael CacoyannisÂ’ Electra (1962; with Irene Papas) and the same directorÂ’s techni cally more accomplished if somewhat less Greek The Trojan Women (1971; in English, w ith Katharine Hepburn, Vanessa Redgrave and Genevieve Bujold ), through the equally theatrical and disciplined yet less stylized Oedipus the King (Philip Saville, 1968) and Giorgos TsavellasÂ’ Antigone (1961), to Pier Paol o PasoliniÂ’s Madonnadominated forays into ethnic myth Oedipus Rex (Edipo re 1967) and Medea (1970). Others have adapted, m odernized and sponged with varying success: Miklos JanscoÂ’s Elektreia (1975) easily absorbs a story as precise as the Atreid myth within a proven flair for ritu al; Liliana CavaniÂ’s The Cannibals (1970), however, is a pretentious obsessive bore, all inherited kudos from SophoclesÂ’ Antigone with none of its art. (Elley, p. 63). Before this present listing, a full vi ew of the number of Greek plays included in film or television to date had not been compiled. Marianne McDonald analyzes only six films by three directors in her 1986 volume, The important IMDb database lists ove r 115,000 films, by way of perspective, see www.IMDb.com These scholars focus on those productions appearing in commercially released films that are considered notable, but for a more comprehensive perception of the subject, the longer lists appended here offer much mo re variety and difference in their varied approaches to the plays.
Euripides in the Cinema Oliver Taplin, who was in volved in presentations of Greek theater in London, mentions only 6 films in three pages in his 1989 book, Greek Fire: The Influence of Anci ent Greece on the Modern World Kenneth MacKinnonÂ’s excellent book on the prec ise subject, Greek Tragedy into Film discusses only 21 films to its 1986 date of publication. Even the exhaustive study of ancient themes in cinema by Jon Solo mon's recently revised and essential book, The Ancient World in the Cinema (rev. ed. 2001), the most comprehensive I have found, discusses only 30 films of ten different plays Solomon devotes his shortest chapter to the performance of Greek trag edy on film, giving but sixteen pages of his 364 to the subject. He observes (at p. 260) that, by his count, only seven of thirty three existing Greek tragedies have been made into film and he reviews only 23 feature films of tragedy. He gives little more than a single page to the use of Greek comedy in film, including only three Greek comedies notably Lysistrata as appearing in seven film treatments. The list presented here, with 167 entries for 25 plays, includes television performances, and is considerably long er than any other list I have found. Nevertheless, it reflects the same reality that movie or tele vision productions of only a very small number of such Greek pl ays have been realized in a permanent form in the last century, in contrast to the tens of thousands of other films and countless television dramas. 3. The limited count of performances of Greek drama on fi lm and television Of the 32 or 33 Greek tragedies remaining to us, only little more than half, that is, 18 ( with Oresteia counting as one instead of three) or 19 if we count a missing film listed as Orestes have made it to the screen or video: AeschylusÂ’ Oresteia trilogy, The Persians and Prometheus Bound SophoclesÂ’ Ajax Antigone, Electra Oedipus Rex, and Oedipus at Colonus and EuripidesÂ’ Alcestis Bacchae Electra Herakles, Ion Medea Iphigenia at Aulis, Suppliant Women and The Trojan Women. EuripidesÂ’ Hippolytus is This quadrupling of the previous listings results largely from the following factors: a later closing date than earlier lists, inclus ion of foreign and television productions from the IMDb, extensive use of the web search engines to investigate university library and other ar chive holdings for videos of productions not commercially released, and use of Lexis/Ne xis especially for the delight fully arcane cinema reviews and news accounts cited in Appendix III. Validation of the many references so discovered is difficult for the foreign entries in particular, and I have erred on the side of inclusion when in doubt. Since there is an en try listed according to each reference to a play, some multiple entries are made for a si ngle film, such as The Theban Plays; these add a little to the totals listed here, but do not materially distort th e numerical count. Also and importantly, see footnote comments above regarding additional entries available from the Archive=s December 17, 2001 lists.
adapted into a modern Phaedra. Only 6 of the eleven comedies of Aristophanes, the Acharnians Birds Frogs Lysistrata Wasps and Women in Power have been made into films or video, and of these 6, only Lysistrata has been filmed more than once or twice. MacKinnon would add the Greek playwright of New Comedy, Menander, whose only surviving complete play, Dyskolos, may have been the inspiration for one Greek film, The Virgin . By frequency of being filmed or televised, the most popular are Oedipus Rex and Oedipus at Colonus considered together, with 29, Antigone with 27, Medea with 15, Electra with 14 associated with Eu ripides and 3 with Sophocles, Lysistrata with 15, Prometheus with 13, Hippolytus with 11, and the Oresteia with 9. 4. Episodic recurrence of the plays 1900-1957 From the beginning, about 1900, through 1957, there were only 22 films made from the plays, and none of those stands out as cinematically important. Fifteen of these films were made as silents in the three decades from 1900 to 1928, and, there is next a silent film of only eleven minutes of Prometheus Bound from 1927. Astonishingly, that is the only film in two decades until Mourning Becomes Electra and Lysistrata in 1948, and then none for another decade until a stage play with masks is filmed of Oedipus Rex in 1957. Margarete BieberÂ’s 1961 revised treatise on the history of the ancient theater, mentions only one film, the Aust rian version of Lysistrata, released in New York in 1948 as The Battle of the Sexes and she called it a Deserved failure. She felt that Aristophanes Â“does not lend hi mself to modern adaptations and cannot be understood without a thorough study of the political, cultural, and l iterary circumstances under which he wrote.Â” From this first six decades of film-m aking, I illustrate the civil war setting of Eugene OÂ’NeillÂ’s 1947 adap tation of his stage play entitled Mourning Becomes Electra and the Austrian production of Lysistrata dating from the next year. In the ensuing ten years, while the cinema became enamored with the Roman and biblical epic films, from Quo Vadis to Ben Hur the Greek theater was again ignored on film. In 1957, the Stratford Ontario Shakes pearean Festival Players directed by Tyrone Guthrie, filmed its stage productio n with masks, using a translation into MacKinnon, pp. 172-173. Bieber, id., pp. 260-1.
English by William Butler Yeats. It remains a useful, if visually static, reminder of how the Greeks themselves perceived drama. 5. The period of 1958-1969 the movies begin to roll: In 1958, the film world rushed into a feeding frenzy of the ancient pseudo-epic with casts of thousands, led by the muscles of the late Steve Reeves in Hercules and his compatriots, Reg Park and Gordon Scott. (Illust rations) In the next ten years in the wake of the surprising, undeserved, but remarkable success of Hercules over one hundred fifty ancient fantasies were cranked out in Italy and other places. These pseudo-epic films are fondly called muscle macaroni, sword and sandals or tits and togas. Like the Western gunslinger, the Herculean muscleman served an acute public thirst for a hero that saved the day, or the maiden in distress, as the case may be, while overcoming great adversities to do so. Few of these attempt a reference to a Greek play. Although Hercules visits Oedipus in Hercules Unchained 1959, the relevance of the film to the play Oedipus at Colonus is tenuous. In the dozen years between 1959 and 1969 in the era of the Hercules hysteria, some 30 serious cinematic perfo rmances of Greek plays were filmed, often for the first time, with memorabl e and important film productions of SophoclesÂ’ Antigone and Oedipus Rex, and EuripidesÂ’ Bacchae and Electra by the notable directors Michael Cacoyannis, Jean Cocteau, and Jules Dassin. Three notable modern adaptations of Gr eek plays also occurred in this time period, led by references to Oedipus Rex in Testament of Orpheus 1960, directed by Jean Cocteau, and the Hippolytus story in two versions of Phaedra, including Phaedra 1962, with Jules Dassin, directo r, set in modern Greece, which was followed by yet another Phedre in 1968, with Pierre Jourdan, director (French, after RacineÂ’s 1677 version). 6. The 1970-1982 era the revival continues. The largest spurt of Greek th eatrical movies (some three dozen films) is clustered in the dozen years from 1970 to 1982, witnessing especially important films being made, with the tragedies, Antigone Medea Iphigenia at Aulis Lysistrata and The Trojan Women finding film makers again in the genius of directors Michae l Cacoyannis, Jules Dassin and Pier Paolo Pasolini. This was al so the period of the gr eat television success See, e.g., Stephen Flacassier, Muscles, Myths, and Movies 1993, 1994; Gary A. Smith, Epic Films: Cast, Credits and Commentary on over 250 Historical Spectacle Movies 1991.
of the Roman saga, I, Claudius (BBC 1976), and the revival on TV and re-release in the early and mid 1970Â’s of many of the sword a nd sandal films from a dozen years before. 7. 1982 to the present film presentations fizzle in English, but foreign language films, educational films, and a score of television productions revive the Greek theater for a modern audience. There is a notable absence of films of Greek plays in the following twenty years after 1982 until the present, with foreign la nguage and educational video exceptions. While films made in English over the last twenty years have generally ignored Greek plays. Even the mania for Greek myth in th e Hercules and Xena series on television and in cartoons from 1994 until recently, and the grow ing number of costumed historical and mythological plays and televised Biblical epics over the last decade, have not engendered films of Greek plays by contemporary movie directors. Nevertheless, it is hard to reconcile the extensive re surgence of Greek plays on the modern stage with the scarcity of these plays on the movie screen and on television. In the last twenty years, counting foreign language f ilms, educational films and television, only some three score largely obs cure productions of th e Greek plays have come forth, or less than th ree a year, on average. Foreign films. Foreign films from various place s, including Antigone performed in YupÂ’ik Eskimo, and others in East Germany, Mexico, and Japan, have given new settings and contexts for these plays. Lately, examples include Oedipus Mayor released in Columbia (in 1996), and what was called a Â“dreary contemporary retelling of the Electra mythÂ” in the 1999 French movie, Secret Defense Educational films. A few other Greek plays have been filmed in English in the 1990Â’s, but do not seem to have been made for general theatrical release, including especially videotaped stage plays made chiefl y by educational institu tions and excerpts of them, for teaching purposes. Television. Moreover, it was not the movie scre en but the small screen that has presented ancient Greek theater for the mode rn audience, as more than a score of performances on television picked up the ch allenge and gave new voice to the ancient Greek playwrights, most importantly on the BBC. Contemporary adaptations such as Tony HarrisonÂ’s Prometheus (1998) transform and update our perception of the ancient play. Films influenced by the Greek theater. In recent years, a growing number of films have been made of dance and opera performances (Appendi x II), and there are other films showing in plot and story line a strong borrowing from the plays (Appendix III), as well, ranging from a Phedre influence in Citizen Kane to Agamemnon in Scream 2 to Prometheus in TVÂ’s Xena, Princess Warrior These productions are not strictly a
recreation of the Greek play, but evidence th e strong and persistent influence of the Greek theatrical legacy. 8. The future Perhaps more films caused by the Â“Gladiator EffectÂ”? What will the wake of the unprecedented success in the last two years of Gladiator (2000) bring ancient Greek drama to a popular audience on film and television? The so-called Â“Gladiator effectÂ” in books and films based on ancient Rome may spill over to the making of films on Greek th emes and Greek play s, much like the plethora of sword and sandal epics that followed Hercules in the years after its release in 1958?  Planned film productions and new releases involving ancient Greece and Rome. In the arena of ancient subjects fo r film, we are beginning to see the Â“Gladiator effect.Â” In August 2002, we learned there were initially three, and perhaps four, announced remakes of Rich ard BurtonÂ’s forgettable 1956 film, Alexander the Great including one scheduled with Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead The AGladiator effect@ in book publishing has been recognized recently in Martin Arnold, ABook Parties with Togas,@ The New York Times, July 11, 2002, and he speculates: AThis farrago of heroism and betrayal and lust could become such a hot genre they might soon start making movies of the books,@ referring to numerous recent Roman novels and other books inspired by the film, Gladiator Likewise, Peter Stanford, ABooks: Calling all Latin lovers; Prepare yourse lf for a new breed of literary hero: Butch, brave, and looks good in a short skir t. Peter Stanford on the Rebirth of the Classics,@ The Independent [London], Februa ry 18, 2001, also pointing to some of the speculation about plans for new films.  The sparse cinematic progeny of Gladiator to date includes only that visual oxymoron, the porn films of the Acostumed nude ,@ with one of the most inept soft porn videos ever made, the 2001 Gladiator Eroticus with lesbian scenes and another 2001 gay gladiator porn film named Conquered The history of the "classi cal alibi" of the gladiator as hero and sex object, ranges from the redi scovery in America of the classical nude in the chaste purity of Hiram Powers= "Greek Slave" in 1851 (it became the most popular sculpture in America at mid-19th century), to the wildly popular late nineteenth century stage tradition of the play Ben Hur to the fin-de-siecle Physical Culture Movement epitomized by Eugen Sandow's Polyclitan muscle s with fig leaf, on to the films of Ben Hur among others, and Richard Fontaine's soft porn gladiator-type films of the 1950's, such as Days of Greek Gods 1956, and The Captive 1959, along with Steve Reeves Hercules (1958) and the profusion of over 150 late r movies that it begat. See Thomas Waugh, Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Photogra phy and Film from their Beginnings to Stonewall 1996, pp. 176-269.
role (hopefully without Bu rtonÂ’s terrible blond wig). Recent speculation in other reports listed new movies planned about the warrior queen Boadicea, Hannibal, the battle of Thermopylae, and Julius Caesar. In September 2002, Brad Pitt was announced to be cast as Achilles in Troy . And on September 23, 2002, it was an nounced that a Gladiator II may appear by 2005, set in a Rome some 15 years after Russell Crowe died. Thus the cycle has come Alexander the Great remakes are proposed by directors Baz Luhrmann, Martin Scorsese, and Oliver Stone (with Coli n Farrell and 1500 Moroccan soldiers), Time August 5, 2002, p. 73; ADiCaprio in lead to star as Alexander the Great,@ St. Petersburg Times August 18, 2002. The Aclassical alibi@ seems to be abandoned in these new films with huge budgets, where prudence seems to control in the inte rests of a broad box office. In 1998, the Greek government reported ly threatened to w ithhold its support of Oliver Stone=s version if Alexander=s bisexua l nature were included in the film; having begun to plan the film seven years ago, Stone is to begin filming in Morocco and Spain before year-end 2002. Mike Goodridge, AAlexander the Gay,@ Advocate September 17, 2002, pp. 48-49. Goodridge also reports that a Martin Scorsese directed biopic of Alexander with a male rape scene is now shelved, along with a 10part miniseries of Alexander=s life with Mel Gibson=s Icon Productions. Norman Hammond, AColchester cashes in on Roman ruins,@ The Times [London], August 26, 2002. Sarah Ebner, ARome, Sweet Rome: How Hollywood fell in love with the ancient world,@ The Guardian [London], September 5, 2002 (with Vin Diesel and Denzel Washington Aboth said to be keen to portray him.@). Id. Jason Burke and Vanessa Thorpe, AStand Aside Gladiator, the real Classics are coming,@ The Observer November 19, 2000. The article mentions the film based on the battle of Thermopylae may star Geroge Clooney, and another about Julius Caesar may star Tom Hanks. It notes that talk about a film based on the recent 10-hour stage epic Tantalus is also occurring. Id., and as E!Online reported Se ptember 13, 2002, director Wolfgang Petersen's big-screen versi on of The Illiad, entitled Troy will begin filming in 2003, with Brad Pitt as Achilles. As it reported, AThe film, written by novelist-turned-screenwriter David Benioff and co-produced by Warner Bros and Regency Enterprises, is a retelling of the Trojan War and will feature such timel ess themes as destiny, loyalty and who gets the extremely hot babe.@ Variety September 13, 2002, headlined: ABrad Pitt Hits Homer@! Josh Grossberg, AUnleashing Hell? Glad iator II Coming,@ Entertainment E! On-Line Movies, September 24, 2002 quoting the Hollywood Reporter September 23, 2002, ALogan Signs as Scribe for Gladiator II,@ which mentions Gladiator=s A12 Oscar nominations and five wins.@
around again, and the epic focused on Greek and Roman history is about to emerge as it did in th e 1950Â’s and the 1960Â’s. Will the Â“Gladiator EffectÂ” prod uce films of Greek plays? Certainly there has been a growing presence of the Greek theatrical tradition on the stage in recent years, but will there be a similar resurg ence of Greek plays in film and television? Notably, one production of a Greek play already has been announced: the new film, a Â“very adultÂ” Bacchae is scheduled for a December 2002 release. Moreover, as the long list in Appe ndix III of films influenced by Greek plays attests, the Greek theat rical tradition and its influe nces remain an important part of cinematic culture. Renewed life of earlier performances of Greek plays in new DVD releases: One bright spot does in fact appear: in the last three years, we find in 2002 that at least six of the previous ly filmed performances of Greek plays, together with three more of dance and opera based on them have been released as DVDÂ’s, with the earliest film be ing GuthrieÂ’s 1957 Oedipus Rex being released summer 2002, 45 years after its initial perfo rmance. (These DVDs are noted on the film lists in Appendices I and II.) These DVD releases are a good indication of an expected public response justifying this investment of transfer to DVD and  Pantelis Michelakis in AOff the Wall: Posters of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama,@ Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama, a lecture at Wolfson College, Oxford, May 2000, http://users.ox.ac.uk/~apgrd/texts/pmposters.htm states that approximately four thousand modern performances of anci ent plays have been documented so far at the Archive of Performa nces of Greek and Roman Drama, Oxford. See generally, the forthcoming, Un iversity of Oxford's Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama, Dionysus Since 69: Greek Tr agedy and the Public Imagination at the End of the Second Millennium Oxford U. Press, includi ng Pantelis Michelakis, AGreek Tragedy in Cinema, 1989-2001@ (u navailable as this paper was being written). In his essay in the recent book, Felix Budelmann, Pant elis Michelakis, editors, Homer, Tragedy and Beyond. Essays in Honour of P.E. Easterling London: Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies, 2001, Michelak is also points to films by the Greek directors Yiorgos Stamboulopoulos and Demos [Demosthenis] Theo s, unavailable to this writer, which may also need to be added to the lists that follow. In Oc tober 2002, Amanda Wrigley of Archive reports that over 5,000 performances since the Renaissance have been documented of the plays. Jason Burke and Vanessa Thorpe, AStand Aside Gladiator, the real Classics are coming,@ The Observer November 19, 2000.See planned release of Bacchae at www.Comingsoon.net The cost of producing a DVD will drop from the estimated $20,000 cost per title as equipment becomes less expensive a nd as DVDs supplant the video tape market.
provide an assurance that these older pe rformances will not be lost and will be available at a reasonable cost. But so far since 1982 in En glish, there is little to poi nt to in the way of new cinematic productions of the Greek play, with every indication that the pure Greek play has yet to find a contemporary film or television producer. Who is to be the new Cacoyannis, Dassin, or Pasolini? Who is to be the first to film or televise the many remaining Greek plays that have not yet been filmed? Time may tell. 9. Illustrative examples of successful film productions or adaptations in English of Greek plays First, let me offer some observations regarding some sixteen of the diverse examples of these Greek plays in the cinema (noting of course that no person alive has likely seen even most of the full list) (video clips, with times no ted; titles in bold also will have movie stills) : Mighty Aphrodite 1995, Woody Allen, dir., Mira Sorvino, Woody Allen, F. Murray Abraham, as Chorus Leader, Olympia Dukakis as Jocasta, David Ogde n Stires as Laius, Jeffrey Kurland as Oedipus, Danielle Ferland as Cassandra, Claire Bloom, Jack Warden as blind Tiresias (a masked Greek chorus in the Greek theater at Taormina, Sicily, comments on and interacts with the actors and sings Cole Porter songs, Zeus has an answering machine, anachronisms abound, Ca ssandra, as usual, issues unheeded warnings, Oedipus, Laius and Jocasta appear, Ti resias Â“seesÂ” AllenÂ’s wifeÂ’s infidelities, and the required Messenger summarizes the off stage action; the happy ending is assured by a deus ex machina right from a helicopter). 1:15, opening. By June 21, 2002, some thirty two million video tape players had been sold in the United States since their introduction in March 1997, a nd sales continue at a pace of more than one million per month. See Jim Taylor, DVD Demystified, at http://dvddemystified.com/dvdfaq.html at 1.9, 5.1; and The Digital Bits, at http://www.thedigitalbits.c om/articles/cemadvdsales.html For scholars, directors, and students alik e, it would be wort hwhile to have a readily available archive of as many of the listed productions as possible. Technology exists to permit complete downloads of th ese films or, alternatively, a DVD copy could be available by overnight courier. Less that three dozen of the films are available on Dr. J=s list, with its handy hyperlinks. For others licensing and copyri ght hurdles should be overcome to permit the scattered video reco rd of these performances to be made available. Those only on video tape need to be preserved by digiti zing and transfer to DVD, or they will disappear over time. The DVD format can also include many extras, such as quick access menus, or the trailer fo r Electra shown with this lecture, or a director=s voice over commentary for a film or stage production.
Electra, 1962, Cacoyannis, dir., the theatrical tr ailer from the DVD, showing action to draw in an audience; a spare but realistic Greek setting; film in Greek with subtitles. 2:15 trailer in English. Oedipus Rex 1957 (King Oedipus), Tyrone Gu thrie Dir., Stratford Ontario Shakespearean Festival Players of Canada, Douglas Campbell as Oedipus, Eleanor Stuart as Jocasta, Douglas Rain as Creon, transla tion in English by William Butler Yeats (stage play filmed, with masks), 1:40, Oedipus's story (animal image). Medea, 1987, Danish TV, Lars von Trier, dir ., Kirsten Olesen as Medea, Udo Kier as Jason, Henning Jensen as Kreon, Solbjrg Hjfeldt as Ammen 1:40 Medea, Jason, in Danish. YupÂ’ik Antigone, 1985, set in Alaska, performed by native YupÂ’ik Eskimos from Toksook Bay in native costume (with English voice over YupÂ’ik) 1:15 Antigone, Ismene, Creon. The Greek Trilogy, 1974, Andrei Serban, excerpt s of Electra, Medea, and The Trojan Women, off-Broadway experimental productions 2:10 ending of Seneca, Medea (in Latin). Trojan Women 1971, Cacoyannis, dir. 2:40, Andromache, and herald (pity and fear). Iphigenia 1977, Cacoyannis, dir. 1:30, Iphigenia's farewell (ending, foreshadowing doom). Antigone 1962, Tsavellas, dir. 2:00, Antigone, Creon. Antigone, Rites of Passion, 1990, Amy Green field as Antigone, Bertram Ross (experimental dance and music by Ellio t Sharp, Glenn Branca and Diamanda Galas)(based on SophoclesÂ’ Antigon e and Oedipus at Colonus) 2:20 Creon, architecture of power (state buildings at Albany, New York). Oedipus Rex, (Edipo Re) 1967, Pasolini, dir., an almo st wordless impression of the play with the central story filmed in Moro cco, set between segments in Italy in the 1930Â’s; a pre-historic story driven by fateful coin cidence and ineluctable de stiny. The moments when Oedipus can change his life namely the killing of his father, King Laius, and the confrontation with the S phinx/Shaman, but these are unconvincing. One wishes for the impassioned struggle of a Luke Skywalker fighting his father, Darth Vader (of course, then unknown to Passolini) in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi but the viewer is given only a flaccid fight, almost unmotivat ed except by the Delphic pronouncement, culminating in a flash of the sun in the cameraÂ’s eye 1:10 Oedipus and sphinx (Nietzschean: Â“abyssÂ”). Medea, 1970, Pasolini, dir., with Maria Callas, with the first half being a poetic, symbolic of the idea of ritual sacrifice for fer tility of the crops and th e cycle of nature not
included in the playÂ’s text, as a precursor to the sacrifice/murder of the two children by Medea; use of symbol, little dialog, decisi ve action on film and not off stage as customarily required for Greek plays, little presence of chorus, mask or messenger. 2:15 final scene ("nothing is possible any more"). Phaedra, 1962, Jules Dassin, dir., Melina Mercouri as Phaedra, Anthony Perkins as Alexis (Hippolytus), Raf Vallone as Thanos (Theseus) (Greek), showing a translation to another time and place 1:45 (Phaedra and widows grieving af ter the loss of the freighter Phaedra ). A Dream of Passion 1978, Jules Dassin, dir., Melina Me rcouri, Ellen Burstyn (story includes "Medea" performed by a film star returning to Greece, who is a parallel to the modern mother who kills her children)(Greek) 1:25 last murder (fusion of levels; theater at Delphi). Scream 2, 1997, Wes Craven, dir., Neve Campbe ll as Sidney Prescott, who in turn, plays Cassandra in the production of the play Agamemnon within the film (Several reviewers of the movie noticed the Greek play motif, w ith its traditional use of masks in a horror flick about masks, and that SidneyÂ’s warni ngs, like CassandraÂ’s, are ignored as in the myth, but they missed the connection between the Greek plays of the Oresteia, as the only Greek play with a sequel, in a movie that has much self-reflexive commentary about cinematic sequels; a poster of the schoolÂ’s production of Oedipus Rex hangs in the background of the theater scene). 2:20 theater scene, with the AScream@ mask appearing amidst the masks of the Greek chorus. Lysistrata, 1987, George Zervoulakos dir., Jenny Karezi, Costas Kazakos (Greek, with English subtitles), adaptati on by Yiannis Negrepontis, filmed at the Acropolis, strong language and nudity) 1:40 street scene (peace symbols), 1:30 (ending with nude revelry). Total time = 32 minutes. 10. Possible reasons why Greek theater has been largely ignored by contemporary film and television Here are some thoughts generally about these films and why there are so few cinematic adaptations or presentation s of Greek plays in this format: 1. The generalized view of why th ere are so few movies of Greek theater. One view of why more Greek dramas are not filmed is represented by An analysis of the reasons for the use and revival of classical subjects in films and a social critique and cultural anal ysis is needed from social historians, and that study has not yet appeared, accord ing to Kirk Ormand in his review of Jon Solomon=s recently revised edition of The Ancient World in the Cinema 1978, rev. ed. 2001, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 2002.01.08, at http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/b mcr/2002/2002-01-08.html
Derek Elley who makes sweeping generalizations about the reasons for the absence of the Greek inspiration in film, including its distance from modern day culture of the language and culture of the Greeks, as contrasted to the Roman traditions, the lack of an imperial age and persecution in Greek history, the lack of any contemporary religious connection to t oday, and a lack of a sudden rise and fall of its civilization and of military co nquests. In his book, The Epic Film Elley devotes a single summary paragraph to ou tline why Greek culture does not find its way to epic film: Â“The relationship between Ancient Greece and the cinema has been problematical at best. There exists a huge body of works dealing with its mythological age and...a mere handful concerned with anything else. This is a complete inversion of the cinema Â’s relationship with Ancient Rome.... The reasons cast much light on what the cinema has required of epic subject-matter. First, and foremost, Greece lacks any immediate rapport with present-day life, its language a nd manners being not as far-reaching as those of Roman civilization. Second, Greek history lacks the unity, vastness and ambition of other civilizationsÂ’, with no imperial age, no absolute autocrats and no tradition of persecuti on with which to appeal to twentiethcentury imaginations. Third, it is th e only historical period which is incapable of accepting Christian or Zionist messages, and which must therefore be accepted as Â‘idolatr ousÂ’ on its own terms. Fourth, the flowering of Greek civilisation was a diffuse and complex affair, a story neither of military conquest nor of a sudden cultural rise and fall; it is rather, a tale of perpetual adaptation.Â” These perfunctory generalizations a bout Greek culture and history do not encompass what I regard as the primar y reasons Greek plays are not used as cinematic subjects. 2. Episodic productions may correlate with uncertain times. The cinematic mania for such adaptations of ancient history, myth and plays is markedly episodic with 15 silent films of Greek plays occurring between 1900 and 1928, where early film production drew on the then broadly fam iliar cultural background of the classics, (much as the ea rly subjects of opera had been chosen from the classics in earlier eras), then again the tr adition was revived some forty Derek Elley, The Epic Film, Myth and History: Cinema and Society 1984 p. 62.
years later, perhaps as a response to the need for constancy or the search for a hero amid the uncertainties of the Cold War. The instance of unsettled times seems to generate a need for ancient verities and superhuman heroes, whether it be Wo rld War I, the Cold War threats of the 1950Â’s, or more recent global insecurities. Professor Valerio Massimo Manfredi, University of Milan, said recently: Â“People feel as if they have b een taken up in a whirlwind, with globalisation and the fast rate of cha nge in our world. Th e future can seem terrifying, whereas the past is certain. By going back to th e classics, they are rediscovering the youth of ma nkind, finding what has be come a lost identity that we all share.Â” Following the September 11, 2001 terrori st attacks in the United States and elsewhere, it is suggested by Tony Sloman that: Â“America has to show that dictator s like Hannibal and Alexander should be stopped. Those men were maniac s, and the aim of these films is to teach a lesson to the world. It cannot be coincidence that they are about despots, empire-builders in the true sense,Â” Having said this, there are a vast numbe r of ancient mythological themes and historical stories that are tapped for cinema tic treatment in pref erence to the tough going of the ancient Greek theatrical text s themselves. Accordingly, television and educational videos account for most of the film production based on the Greek plays in the last thirty years. 3. Action drama has distracted the audience for ancient theater. Costumed epics and Biblical stories have a far broader appeal than the more challenging agonies of the Greek tragic th eater or the ribald stories of classic Solomon, id., p. 102.  Peter Stanford, ABooks: Calling all La tin lovers; Prepare yourself for a new breed of literary hero: Butch, brave, and looks good in a shor t skirt. Peter Stanford on the Rebirth of the Classics,@ The I ndependent [London], February 18, 2001. Sarah Ebner, ARome, Sweet Rome: How Hollywood fell in love with the ancient world,@ The Guardian [London], September 5, 2002, indicating that films based on Greek myths may also make a come-bac k, including a remake of the 1981 Clash of the Titans and Odyssey-inspired, Cold Mountain by Anthony Minghella.
Aristophanic comedy. After a spate of films and television involving Greek drama in the 60Â’s and 70Â’s, few were produc ed in English thereafter, as flashy distractions predominated. The fantastic epics of the Star Wars trilogy (19771983), followed in 1999 with Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace and this yearÂ’s Star Wars: Epis ode II Attack of the Clones along with Asian martial arts films, the continued vi ability of the Western, and police and spy dramas, have seemed to preempt the field of action drama. In a more traditional subject matter, the revival of costumed historical and Bi blical epics has blossomed on television since the late 1970Â’s, and they have pe rhaps inspired the Hercules and Xenia television successes, beginning in 1994, and this trend carried on through the popular animated Disney Hercules in 1997. The recent phenomenal combination of the financial and Oscar-winning success of Gladiator suggests there will be other costumed epics to come. Their gr and spectacle seems to preempt the field and leaves only the margins for Greek tragedy for the occasional low budget TV special or educational film. 4. Production costs inhibit filming unless there is a broad popular interest. The enormous cost of a major film production by Hollywood may have shunted the Greek play to the sidelines, where only a European art film with subtitles or a television special intending to present only a taping of a stage play may seem economically feasible. Logica lly speaking, the cost of mounting a Roman costume spectacle should make the Greek theater, with its simple peplum and chiton costuming, financia lly more attractive, but the lack of a box office draw for the primarily intellectual narrative prev ents this from occurri ng in major films, given the inherent expenses of the mediumÂ’s production, advertising and distribution. Again, however, lower bu dget television specials and educational films and videos have provided a limited fo rum for these plays in recent years. 5. The mythological context of Greek drama is remote from concerns of free will needed for the action hero. Films cannot convey the full scope of the myth that may precede the narrative in that the role of the gods is absent or diminished in order that the role of the hero may be enhanced through the cinematic demonstration (usually with an intense, visually appealing struggle) of his exercise of free will and phys ical stamina, deus ex machina aside. Only in the myth based Jason and the Argonauts (1963), The Clash of the Titans (1981) and the Lou Ferrigno Hercules (1983) do we see a convoca tion of the gods intervening in the lives of mortals. (Illustrations) Greek plays emerge from a setting requiring a belief in divine will or prophetic pred estination to some greater degree than customary in modern film or television. Thus, for a successful contemporary film, the golden chariot of At hena is often omitted fro m performances of Medea and we may forget that Orestes and Oedipu s have their fates sealed by Delphic prophecies, long before their journe ys of personal di scovery began.
6. Inherently, Greek theater is cinema tically boring to an uneducated audience. The virtual absence of Greek plays in the movies in the last twenty years seems at variance with an upsurge in the teaching of the classics generally and the growth in the stag e performance of the Greek plays, as well as a growing emphasis on the classics as a focus of womenÂ’s studies and feminist theory, comparative anthropolo gy, Marxist ideology, queer theory, and even black studies, and the increased misuse and abuse of the classics in popular culture for parody, humor, or spectacle, in contrast to the re flective or psychological focus of the ancient Greek stage. Is this absence of Greek plays in f ilm, a recognition of the limits of the cinema and the importance of the imme diacy of the theater for the proper presentation of the introspective Greek dram a? Is it not instead that in its essence Greek tragedy is cinematically dull to an uneducated audience? The National Board of Review prizewinner for 1971, The Trojan Women (the award was for Irene Papas as best actress) draws a view erÂ’s comment in 2002 that may reflect one generally-held view of these films and includes the following quote (from the IMDb site for the film): Â“Could have been worse, ...but it was pretty ba d. Anyone who isn't a diehard fan of the classics will have so me trouble enjoying this film. First of all, there isn't much of a story. Th e women just sort of wander around on the same beach the entire time, with different characters appearing, speaking their piece, and then leaving. Also, Hepburn is her traditionally awful self, insulting the audience and anyone else who was considered to play the role with her ridiculous over-acting. Her screaming about Troy wore thin about 90 seco nds into it, but it unfortunately went on much longer than that. Everyone else trie s their respective bests, or at least something close to it, and the viewer leaves feeling only significantly disappointed, instead of heavily depre ssed. Avoid this one like the Trojan Horse.Â” Even a good review of the same video highlights the problem (also from the IMDb site): Â“A Greek tragedy is very hard to be ma de into a movie. In my opinion it is really almost impossible as there ar e often long monologues that can't be cut or improved in any way. Neverthe less Michael Cacoyannis tried, and succeeded in filming the best anti-war wo rk ever written. The film is a bit stagy but that is how it should be.Â”
Is it not because Greek theater is in essence a verbal battle of internal mental or ethical struggle instead of a visua lly presented heroÂ’s fight to victory? Is Greek theater inherently antiheroic and therefore counter to the Roman epicÂ’s noble fight for victory, or, as with Spartacus or Gladiator at least the valiant fight to a noble defeat? What is it that limits the appeal of a film of Greek drama to the Â“die hard fans of the classics,Â” beside s the long monologues and stagnant stage blocking? Ian Christie highlights a significant problem with films of Greek plays their necessary lack of on-stage action : Â“The most basic reason w hy we find virtually no Medeas in cinema until the permissive and experimental [ninet een] sixties is, of course, the taboo of what cannot be shown and seen [tha t is, the killing of her children]. The convention in Greek dram a that violent action occurs offstage and is narrated runs directly counter to cinema Â’s imperative to show rather than to tell.Â” What the modern audience wants in film may be exemplified by the reviews of the record-setting opening we ekend (with an estimated $114,000,000 three day box office) of Spider-Man The New York Times review of it, headlined, Â“Muscles Ripple, Webs Unfurl, Hormones Race,Â” characterizes the new summer blockbuster as Â“stratospherical ly expensive, loaded with the latest special effects, and stuffed with ear-s plitting and eye-straining action sequences designed to leave you glutted with se nsation, if not always satisfied.Â” Films of Ian Christie, Â“Between Magic and Re alism: Medea on Film,Â” Medea in Performance 2000, p. 145. A.O. Scott, Â“Muscles Ripple, Webs Unfurl, Hormones Race,Â” New York Times May 3, 2002. Spider-Man and Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones each grossed over $200 million in th e United States alone in th eir first twelve days of release in May 2002. Spider-Man grossed $700 million worldwide by July 17, 2002, and a total of $800 million worldwid e by September 2, 2002, well before its television and DVD releas e. The New York Times September 2, 2002, p. C4 (national edition). Spider-Man set opening weekend reco rds not only in the United States, but also in countries ranging from Thailand to Lebanon, as it opened in 17 countries at once. Th e Roman extravaganza e quivalent, Gladiator had a box office gross exceeding one half billion dollars worldwide.
Greek drama have to compete in this ar ena, and their complex subtleties face tough competition indeed fo r the producerÂ’s money. 7. The best of the films of Greek plays arise from a particular directorÂ’s need to validate his polit ical or artistic perspective. A directorÂ’s personal or political motivations for choos ing a Greek tragedy as a source may account for the few modern films which have been made. Thus, Trojan Women was revived on film by Cacoyannis in op position to the Vietnam War, as described at length by Peter Burian, Marianthe Co lakis, Lorna Hardwick, and others. Cacoyannis himself denied a modern political motivation in the filming of Iphigenia although he indicates it re flects his views about war. Lysistrata of course, may appear for feminist as well as anti-war purposes. Political motivation. In film, Christie points to PasoliniÂ’s use of the tragedy of Medea in 1967 as a subject as re sulting from a deeply personal objective, namely, to find a Â“new basis on which to develop a radical critique of bourgeois society and all its taboos a nd at the same time to explore his own psyche.Â” Likewise, PasoliniÂ’s Note s for an African Orestes (1970), makes mention of racism, class conflict and capitalism. Von TrierÂ’s Medea of 1988 is said by Christie to be likewise pers onal: a Â“meditation on the theme of post-war Europe.Â” DassinÂ’s A Dream of Passion incorporating Medea in 1978 is said to emerge from his homecoming to Greece, fo llowing the fall of the junta which had ruled Greece between 1967 an d 1975, and represents fo r him a Â“personal political allegory.Â” Greek ethnic identity. Likewise, ethnic identity may prompt a Greek director or writer (or one with Greek her itage) to draw on th emes from ancient Interview, 1988, between Michael C acoyannis and Marianne McDonald, Â“Michael Cacoyannis and Irene Papas on Greek Tragedy,Â” in Martin M. Winkler (ed.), Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema rev. ed. 2001, p.74. Dassin, an American by nationality, has adopted Greece as his home in many ways. The complexities of reception of stage perf ormances of Lysistrata over time may be well illustrated by the recent book, G onda A. H. Van Steen, Venom in Verse. Aristophanes in Modern Greece Princeton, 2000, see review by E.J.M. Greenwood, Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2001.08.05, http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/bmcr/2001/2001-0805.html Ian Christie, Â“Between Magic and Realism: Medea on Film,Â” Medea in Performance 2000, p. 146. Christie, id., pp. 146-7.
Greek plays for inspiration. Thus my lists are replete with su ch names as Costas Demetrios Gaziadis, Giorgos Tsavellas, Algae Meletoupolos, Ted Zarpas, Mimis Kouyioumtzis, George Zervoulakos, Ni kos Koundrouros, Constantin CostaGravas, Costas Ferris, Theo Angelop oulos, Gregory Markopoulos, and Dimis Dadiras, as well as Michael Cacoyannis. Historical validation and the Â“classical alibi.Â” By using an ancient theme, the director is certain his stor y line is time-honored and his political or artistic agenda is validated by its classica l association. The astonishing range of films with classical references in Append ix III is evidence e nough of the Greek plays being mined for inspiration and hist oric validation. One film critic, Mark Cousins, of BBC2, believes the emerging tr end towards historical epics represents a search for a Â“new kind of masculinity on the screen.Â’ As Schwarzenegger and Stallone age, there is the need for a new m acho hero. It was something that started with Russell Crowe in Gladiator and I think it is a reaction to the effeminate or gay characters in some of the recent successful romantic comedies. It is a reaction to Rupert Everett, in many ways.Â’Â” Likewise, a thematic validation for wh at is otherwise an impropriety may also be provided by antiqu ity thus the stage, and later film, nudity of Brian De PalmaÂ’s 1970 Dionysus in Â‘69 is said to be inspired by EuripidesÂ’ Bacchae The Greek production of Lysistrata in 1987 with th e Â“full MontyÂ” is cloaked with the same Â“classical alibi,Â” updated, fr om the titillating nudes of Lysistrata from the Moulon Rouge that I showed at the beginni ng of this presentation. In a sense, the ancient text proves that violence a nd sex have always been with us. Conclusion. In conclusion, the history of Greek dr ama in the cinema and television thus far is a limited one, and the growing, but still lim ited, use of the theatrical tradition in television has not ignited the popular mind as classical myth generally and Roman history has done. A new resurgen ce of Greek stage production, the recurrent need for a hero in unsettled tim es, and a new appreciation for classical traditions may now augur for a greater incidence of these films. The great Jason Burke and Vanessa Thorpe, AStand Aside Gladiator, the real Classics are coming,@ The Observer November 19, 2000. Id., again citing Mark Cousins.
production of the future of these plays awa its the confluence of all of these factors along with an inspired and ta lented directorÂ’s need to tell a story or point of view by revisiting an ancient and time-honored cultural platform. The box office draw alone is not likely to support the filmi ng of a stage production of a Greek play. Whether such a director will emerge to produce the next masterpiece of a cinematic Greek tragedy or comedy, as with history in general, time will tell. Thank you.
Appendix I Greek Plays in the Cinema and Television, 1897-2002 AESCHYLUS: Oresteia: Agamemnon, Cheophori (The Libation Bearers), Eumenides (The Furies) Agamemnon, 1973, TV, Lode Hendrickx, dir. (Belgian). Traveling Players, 1975, Theodor Ange lopulos, dir., (Orest eia subplot, set in WW II and the Greek civil war; also known as O Thiasos). Oresteia, undated, BBC TV, Bill Hayes, dir. (cited by Burian at p.281)(probably the same as the IMDbÂ’s listing for Oresteia, 1979, miniseries, with Diana Rigg.) Oresteia, Agamemnon, Choe phori (The Libation Bear ers), Eumenides (The Furies), 1983, Peter Hall, dir., National Theatre of Great Britain ( videos )(Dr. JÂ’s list). L'Orestie. Agamemnon, 1991, Bernard Sobl e (French). L'Orestie. Les Chophores, 1991, Be rnard Soble (French). L'Orestie. Les Eum nides, 1991, Bernard Soble (French) Agamemnon, 1992, Aquila Productions, London Small Theater Co., Peter Meineck, dir. (Dr. JÂ’s list). Oresteia, undated, William Whallon, including the lost satyr play (Dr. JÂ’s list). Prometheus Bound Promethee, 1908, Louis Feuillade (French). Prometheus in Chains, 1927, Costas Demetrios Gaziadis, with Georges Bourlos as Prometheus (silent film, eleven minutes of the play as performed at Delphi). Prometheus, 1962, Pal Gabor, dir. (Hungarian). The Illiac Passion, 1967 Gregory Markopoulos, di r., Richard Beauvais as Prometheus, David Beauvais as Promet heusÂ’ conscience, Robert Alvarez as Narcissus, Andy Warhol as Poseidon among many others, and music by Bela Bartok. Some cast details are incl uded for identification, bu t full cast listings are usually to be found in an IMDb entry or in MacKinnon=s treatise.
Naissance et mort de Promethee, 1974, Jacques Rivette, dir. (French short). Prometheus, Second Person Singu lar, 1975, Costas Ferris, dir., Yiannis Canoupakis (Greek). PrometheusÂ’Garden, 1988, Bruce Bickford, short subject clay animation, (cited at Seattle Times, Jan. 12, 1990, Â“H e fits the mold with feats of clay.Â” Prometheus, undated, sh ort subject film, produced by Jonathan Rome, cited in his obituary, Daily Variety Oct. 6, 1993. Prometheus Bound, 1997, Wic Coleman, dir., Jon Jacobs, J.C. Brandy, Daniel Tisman. Prometheus, 1998, Tony Harrison dir., Walter Sparrow, Michael Feast, Fern Smith (Â“Poet Tony Sm ithÂ’s ambitious reworking of the Prometheus myth in terms of contemporary Eur opean history and left-wi ng politics,Â” according to Alexander Walter, The [Lon don] Evening Standard)( video ). Prometheus, 1999, Peter Dodd (ten minute short). Blessing of Prometheus, 2000, Christopher Young, dir., Damion Kendrick as Prometheus, James E. Smith as Admetu s, Jennifer Gutauckas as Alcestis (a 20 minute short). Seize the Fire, 2002 (unda ted, but listed as Â“newÂ” in the current 2002 catalog), a version of Ae schylusÂ’ Prometheus Bound (Films for the Humanities and Sciences, website www.films.com ), written by Tom Paulin, with John Franklyn-R obbins (30 minutes)(Â“Seize the FiresÂ” was produced on both television and radio, according to Jenny Lee, Â“Proud Irish Roots,Â” Irish News Limited, March 16, 2002)(unclear if this is the same as a 1989 BBC Open University production of the sa me name, producer Tony Coe). The Persians The Persians, 1961, TV, Jean Pr at, dir., Francois Chaumette as Chorus Leader, Rene Arrieu as Darius (French)(with masks). Die Perser, 1963, Hans Lietzau (after Aeschylus by Matthias Braun)(German). Die Perser, 1966, Helmut Schiem ann (screenplay after Aeschylus by Mattias Braun) (German). SOPHOCLES: Ajax Ajax, 1992, Aquila Productions, Lond on Small Theater Co., Peter Meineck, dir., Yasmin Sidhwa, James Moriarty, Donald T. Allen, Tony Langhurst, and Andrew Tansey (Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone
Antigone, 1911, Mario Caserini, dir.(Italian). La Nouvelle Antigone, 1916, Ja cques de Baroncelli, dir., Emmy Lynn (French). Die Stunde der Antigone, 1960, TV (German). Antigone, 1960, TV, Hans Dahlin, di r., Ulla Sjoblom as Antigone, Olof Widgren as Kreon, Georg Ar lin as Teiresias (Swedish). Antigone 1962, Giorgos Tsavellas, dir., Irene Papas as Antigone, Manos Katrakis as Creon, Maro Kodou as Isme ne, Nikos Kazis as Haemon, Illia Livykou as Eurydice (Greek)(b & w video with English sub titles)(Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone, 1962, Louis-Georges Carrie r, dir., Louise Marleau (Canadian). Antigone, 1964, Ula Stockl (short, West German). Berliner Antigone, 1968, TV (West Ge rman)(stage play by Rolf Hochhuth). Antigone 1969 (modern dress)(Â“with het aerae from Lesbos and music that is!!Â”)(movie stills; otherwise th is film is not traceable). Year of the Cannibals, 1970, Liliana Cavani, dir., Britt Ekland (modern adaptation of a futuristic Sopho cles' Antigone)(I Cannibali)(Italian). Antigone, 1970, TV, Pe r Bronken (Norwegian). Antigone, 1973, TV, Piet Drescher, Ma rgot Thyret dirs. (East Germany). Antigone, 1974, TV, Gerald Freedma n, dir., Genevieve Bujold, Stacy Keach, Leah Chandler, Fritz Weaver, Betty Miller, play by Jean Anouilh ( DVD )(Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone, 1974, TV, Stellio Lorenzi dir., Jean Topart as Creon, Alain Cuny as Le Coryphee, Marie-Helene Breillat as Antigone. Germany in Autumn, 1978, Alf Brustellin, Hans Peter Cloos Ra iner Werner Fassbinder, and others, dirs.(Deutschland im Herbst, German). Theban Plays, The Oedipus the King, and Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone, 1984-7, BBC TV, Don Taylor, dir., Michael Pennington as young Oedipus, Anthony Quayle as old Oedipus, Claire Bloo m as Jocasta, Sir John Gielgud as Teiresias, Juliet Stevenson as Antigone, John Shrapnel as Creon, and Kenneth Haig as Polynices (Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone, 1985, Bruce Williams, Insigh t Media (readings of three scenes conducted at LaTrobe Un iversity and discussions of them, 50 minutes). YupÂ’ik Antigone, 1985, set in Alaska performed by native YupÂ’ik Eskimos from Toksook Bay in native costume (with English commentary or YupÂ’ik) ( video )(Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone, 1990, Gary Popovich (Canadian, 8 minute short). Antigone, 1991, Arlena Nys, dir., Carrie OÂ’Brien, Chris Bearne (Dr. JÂ’s list). Antigone, 1992, Danielle Huillet, Jean -Marie Straub dirs., Astrid Ofner as Antigone, Ursula Ofner as Ismene, Werner Rehm as Creon (German, French). Play Antigone, 1992, Stepha n Settele, dir., (German).
Antigone, 1993, American Conser vatory Theater (San Francisco Performing Arts Library video). Antigone, 1994, Univer sity of Newcastle Antigone, 1998, University of Otago, Miriam Sharpe as Antigone, Harry Love as Creon (Dr. JÂ’s list). Greek Drama: From Ritual to Thea ter, 2001, key scen es from Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Medea a nd Lysistrata, commentary by Helene Foley, Jeffrey Henderson, Robert Fa gles, Peter Meineck. Electra Aspects of the Classic Greek Theate r, 1960, Demitrios Rondiris, dir., scenes from Electra by the National Theater of Greece. (Dr. JÂ’s list). Electre, 1972, Jean-Louis Ughetto, di r., with Evelyne Istria as Electra (filmed stage production). Electra, 1987, Arlena Nys, dir., Luxemb urg Dionysus Thea tricals, Insight Media. Oedipus Rex: Oedipus Rex, 1908, Andre Calmettes. Oedipus Rex, 1909, Giuseppe de Liguoro, dir. (Italian.: Edipo Re). Oedipus Rex, 1911, Theo Frenkel, di r. and as Oedipus, Suzanne de Beare as Iocasta. Oedipus Rex, 1912, Hecla Films, Theo Bouwmeester. Oedipus Rex 1957 (King Oedipus), Tyrone Guthrie Dir., Stratford Ontario Shakespearean Festival Players of Cana da, Douglas Campbell as Oedipus, Eleanor Stuart as Jocasta, Douglas Rain as Creo n, translation in English by William Butler Yeats (stage play filmed with masks)(Canadian)( video) (available June 2002 on DVD)(Dr. JÂ’s list). Testament of Orpheus 1959, Jean Cocteau, director and as the Poet, JeanPierre Leaud, Nicole Courcel, Francois e Christophe, Yul Brynner as the Court Usher, Jacqueline and Pablo Picasso, Catherin e Oger as Minerva, Jean Marais as Oedipus, Brigitte Mosissan as Antigone, Ch arles Aznavour, Serge Leflar (Oedipus and the Sphinx, included)( DVD, b & w, French with English subtitles). Oedipus Rex: Man and God, 1959, Insight Media, excerpts (Dr. JÂ’s list, the one of four videos by Insight Media on the play to show scenes from it). Oedipus the King (Oedipus Rex) 1967, Pier Paolo Pasolini, dir., Franco Citti as Oedipus, Silvana Mangano as Jo casta, Alida Valli, Carmelo Bene, Julian Beck, Pier Paolo Pasolini as High Priest (It .: Edipo Re; Sp.: Ed ipo el Hijo de la Fortuna)( video with English subtitles). Oedipus Rex 1968, Philip Saville, dir., Chri stopher Plummer as Oedipus, Lilli Palmer as Jocasta, Richard Johnson as Creon, Orson Welles as Teiresias, Donald Sutherland as Chorus Leader.
King Oedipus, 1972, TV, Ian Ho lm (Play of the Month, UK). Das Geheimnis des Oedipus, 1974 TV, Kurt Jung-Alsen, dir.(East German). The Rise of Greek Tragedy: Sophocles Â’ Oedipus the King, 1975, filmed in the theater of Amphiarion, Harold Mante ll, dir., James Mason, Claire Bloom, Ian Richardson, narrator Anthony Quayle, Film s for Humanities and Sciences (Dr. JÂ’s list; excerpts, with masks). Oedipus Orca, 1976, Eriprando Visconti, dir. (Italian) (reference uncertain). Oedipus Tyrannus, 1978, Miami [Florida] Dade Community College (with masks). Theban Plays, The Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus and Antigone, BBC TV, 1984, TV, Don Taylor, dir. (as above under Antigone) (Dr. JÂ’s list). Oedipus no yaiba, 1986, Toichuro Naru shima, dir., Yuki Kitazume, Masaki Kyomoko. Oedipus Rex, c. 1986, Italian TV, Coline Serreau, dir., cited at Canby review, NY Times, April 25, 1986. Oedipus Rising, 1993, Mark Santora, editor. Oedipus the King, 1995, Univer sity of Otago (Dr. JÂ’s list). Oedipus Mayor, 1996, Jorge Triana, dir., Jorge Perrugor ia as Edipo, Angela Molina as Yocasta, Francisco Rabal as Tiresi as (a retelling of SophoclesÂ’ tragedy set in modern Columbia)(also Edipo Alcalde) (Colombia, Spain, Mexico). Oedipus, 1997, Fernando de Filipe (short, Spanish). Greek Drama: From Ritual to Thea ter, 2001, key scen es from Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Medea a nd Lysistrata, commentary by Helene Foley, Jeffrey Henderson, Robert Fagles Peter Meineck, as above. LÂ’Origine du monde, 2001 Jerome Enrico, dir., Roschdy Zem, Angela Molina, Alain Bashung (French). Oedipus at Colonus: Hercules Unchained, 1959, Pietro Francisci, dir., Steve Reeves, Sylva Koscina, Primo Carnera, Sylvia Lopez (als o Hercules and the Queen of Lydia; It.: Ercole e la regina di Lidia)(the sequel to Hercules, 1958, w ith Hercules briefly visiting Oedipus in a cave on the way to Thebes)( video ). Theban Plays, The Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus and Antigone, BBC TV, 1984, Don Taylor, dir. (as a bove under Antigone) (Dr. JÂ’s list). Gospel at Colonus, The 1985, Lee Breuer dir., Morgan Freeman as Oedipus, all black cast (vid eo of stage performance). Oedipus at Colonus, 2000, Insight Media (August 2002 catalog; 85 minutes, other details of th e production unavailable from its customer service, August 2002). EURIPIDES:
Alcestis Alkestis, 1989, Robert Wilson (German). Bacchae Trois Bacchantes, 1900, Georges Melies (French). Bacchantes, The, 1961, Georgio Ferr oni, dir., Taina Elg, Pierre Brice, Alessandra Panero, Alberto Lupo, Ak im Tamiroff (modern adaptation of Euripides' Bacchae) (Le B accanti)(Italian, French, dub bed in English)(b&w)(Dr. JÂ’s list)( video ). Dionysus in Â‘69, 1970, Brian De Pa lma, Bruce Joel Rubin, Richard Schechner, dirs., (16 mm documentary of the Performance Group's 1969 staging of Euripides' The Bacchae, inspired by Polish director Jerzy GrotowskiÂ’s, Dionysus in '69Â”). The Bacchae, 1987, University of Te xas at Austin, Stephan Gerald, dir., Department of Drama production, April 16 1987, (video on depo sit at University of Texas Libraries, no. VIDCASS 717, PT.1, Fine Arts Library). The Bacchae, 1997, University of Ot ago, Colin Kitchingman as Dionysus, Glenn Moodie as Pentheus, Brian Beresford as Cadmus.(Dr. JÂ’s list). The Bacchae, 2001, (December 2002 release), Brad Mays, dir., Jonathan Klein as Pentheus, Rich Werner as Dion ysus, William Dennis as Teiresias, Will Shepherd as Cadmus, Lynn Odell as Agave, and Lynn Dickson as Semele (Â“Everybody Must Get Stoned@Â”(billed as an Â“action comedy tale set in Rome,Â”(sic), www.Comingsoon.net ) Electra Electra, 1938, Aglae Mele toupolos, dir., National Theater of Greece, Katina Paxinou as Electra (a few minutes of sile nt film of a production at Epidauros, MacKinnon, at p. 48, citing Taplin). Mourning Becomes Electra 1947, Dudley Nichols, dir., of Eugene O'Neill's play, Raymond Massey as Gene ral Ezra Mannon, Rosalind Russell as Lavinia Mannon (Electra), Michael Re dgrave, Katina Paxinou as Christine Mannon, and Kirk Douglas, and Henry Hull as Seth (a modern adaptation)(movie stills). Electra 1962, Michael Cacoyannis, dir., Ire ne Papas as Electra, Theodore Demetriou as Agamemnon, Yann is Fertis as Orestes ( DVD )(Greek). Electra, 1962, Ted Zarpas, dir., Taki s Mouzenidis, play dir., National Theater of Greece, with A nna Synodinou as Electra, Thanos Cotsopoulos as Orestes (filmed at Epidauros)(Greek). Notes for an African Oresteia, 1970, (Appunti per una Orestiade africana), Pier Paolo Pasolini (Italian)( video ).
Electra, 1966, Alfonso Balcazar, dir., Vi vi Bach, George Martin (Spanish) (aka Operation Taifun ques tionable and not verified). Electra, 1974, BBC TV. The Greek Trilogy, 1974, Andrei Serban excerpts of Electra, Medea, and The Trojan Women, off-Broadwa y experimental productions ( video) Elektreia, 1975, Miklos Jancso, with Mari Torocsik (Mon Amour, Electre)(Hungarian). Mourning Becomes Electra, 1979, Nick Havinga, dir., Bruce Davison, Joan Hackett, Roberta Maxwell (miniseries)( DVD) Electre, 1987, Hugo Santiago, dir. Electra, 1990, Jay Rask in, dir., Robin OÂ’Dell. O Luto de Electra, 1991, Carlos Mendes. Secret Defense, 1999, Jacques Rivette, dir., Sandrine Bonnaire, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Laure Marsac, Gregoire Colin, Franco ise Fabian (Stephen Holden, New York Times review, Nov. 19, 1999: Â“dreary contemporary retelling of the Electra myth Â”; French with subtitles). Herakles Heracles, undated, perhaps 1997, Bernard-Columbia Ancient Drama Group, NYC (in ancient Greek)(Dr. JÂ’s list) Hippolytus Phedre, 1910. Fedra, 1919 (Italian). Fedra, 1956, Manuel Mur Oti (Spanish). Phaedra 1962, Jules Dassin, dir., Melin a Mercouri as Phaedra, Anthony Perkins as Alexis (Hippolytus), Raf Va llone as Thanos (Theseus) (Greek)( video ). Phedre, 1963, TV, Jean -Paul Fugere, dir., Charlotte Boisjoli, Andree Lachapelle, Albert Millaire (French). Phedre 1968, Pierre Jourdan, dir., Marie Bell as Phedre, Claude Giraud as Hippolyte (French, after RacineÂ’s 1677 version)( video, French with English subtitles)(possibly the same as the 1983 Phedre below). Phedre, Aspects of Neo-Classic Theater: RacineÂ’s Phedre 1972, PaulEmile Deiber, dir., Comedie Francaise, (English, scenes showing the French neoclassical style of theater; Insight Media, 13 minutes). Phedre, 1980, Jean Kerc hbron, dir., Racine, Project for International Communication Studies. Phedre, 1983, Pierre Jourdan, di r., Racine, Video Yesteryear: Video Images. The Phedre by Racine is said to follow the Seneca version more than Euripides= play, but is nevertheless included here for completeness.
Phedre, 1988, TV, Pierre Cardinal, di r., Christian Brendel as Hyppolyte, Maud Rayer as Phedre (RacineÂ’s version, French). Hippolytus, 1995, University of Otag o, Robert van de r Vyver, video dir., Andrew Connolly as Hippolytus, Anna Sutherland as Phaedra (Dr. JÂ’s list) Ion Ion, 1998, Nancy Cole, dir., Univer sity of South Florida Theater Department (video to be deposited in Special Collections, USF Library, Tampa, Florida; performances November 5-14, 1998). Iphigenia at Aulis Iphigenia 1977, Michael Cacoyannis, di r., Tatiana Papamoskou as Iphigenia, Irene Papas as Clytemnestra Costas Kazakos as Agamemnon, music by Mikis Theodorakis ( video) Iphigenia auf Aulis, 1978, TV, Adolf Dresen, dir., Wolfgang Hubsch, Fritz Morak, Elisabeth Orth Heinrich Schweiger. Iphigenia at Aulis, undated, Oxford Un iversity Classical Drama Society (in ancient Greek with English subtitles). Iphigenia at the Bay of Aulis, 1991, presented by the Thick Description, video (San Francisco Pe rforming Arts Library). Iphigenia at Aulis, 1999, Insight Media (Dr. JÂ’s list). Medea Medea, 1911, Dora von Warburg, Os car Messter, dir., Be rnhard Wenkhaus (German) (Christie, p. 164, n.4) Medea, 1920, (Austrian)(Christie, p. 164, n.4) Medea, 1959, TV, Wes Kinney, Jose Quinte ro, dirs., Judith Anderson as Medea, Henry Brandon as Jason, Alin e MacMahon as Nurse, Colleen Dewhurst (b& w) (video ) Medea, 1963, TV, Heve Hjelm dir., Margaretha Krook as Medea, Holger Lowenadler as Kreon, Ove Tj ernberg as Jason (Swedish) Medea 1970, Pier Paolo Pasolini, dir., Maria Callas as Medea, Giuseppi Gentili as Jason, Massimo Girotti as Ki ng Creon, Laurent Terzieff as Centaur, Margereth Clementi as Glauce (Italian, French, German)( video with English subtitles). Medea, 1972, Italian TV, Paolo Benvenuti, dir. (Â“choral peasant theater near Pisa,Â” Christie, p. 165, n. 28). The Greek Trilogy, 1974, Andrei Serban excerpts of Electra, Medea, and The Trojan Women, off-Broadway experi mental productions, listed above under Electra (video)
A Dream of Passion 1978, Jules Dassin, dir., Melina Mercouri, Ellen Burstyn (story includes "Medea" perfo rmed by a film st ar returning to Greece)(Greek)( video ). Medea, 1983, TV, Mark Cullingham, dir.,(Robert Whith ead, original stage dir.), Zoe Caldwell as Medea, Dame Judith An derson as nurse, Mitchell Ryan as Jason, text by Ro binson Jeffers, Kennedy Center production (Christie, p. 165., n. 28)(Dr. JÂ’s list). Medea, 1986, New York Greek Drama Company, Peter Steadman, dir., (in ancient Greek with English su btitles, commentary by William Arrowsmith)( video )(listed as running only 5 minutes in the University of Texas Library catalog). Medea, 1987, Danish TV, Lars von Trier, dir., Kirsten Olesen as Medea, Udo Kier as Jason, Henning Jensen as Kreon, Solbjrg Hjfeldt as Ammen ( video ). The Bologna Medea: an an cient Greek travesty, 1 992, Fratelli Bologna and Albert Takazauckas, writers (San Fr ancisco Performing Arts Library). Mama Medea, 1997, Dennis Neal Va ughn, dir., Sandra Kay Zielinski as Mama, Jonathan Goldman as Jason, Mark Habert as Creon, Susan arie McNabb as Psychiatrist. Medea, 1998, Roland Collections. Greek Drama: From Ritual to Thea ter, 2001, key scen es from Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Medea a nd Lysistrata, commentary by Helene Foley, Jeffrey Henderson, Robert Fagles Peter Meineck, as above. Orestes Orestes, 1971, Vassilis Fotopoulos (unt raceable; ref. by Schuster, cited by MacKinnon, p. 3). The Suppliant Women Suppliant Women, 1993, video with th e Lively Arts at Stanford and its Department of Drama (San Fran cisco Performing Arts Library). The Trojan Women Die Troerinnen, 1959, Paul Verhoe ven (Matthias Braun) (German). Die Troerinnen, 1966, TV, Hilde Kiehl (German). Trojan Women, The, 1971, Michael Cacoyannis, dir., Katharine Hepburn as Queen Hecuba, Vanessa Redgrave as Andromache, Genevieve Bujold as Cassandra, Irene Papas as Helen, Patric k Magee as Menelaus, Brian Blessed as Talthybius, Edith Hamilton translation ( video ). The Greek Trilogy, 1974, Andrei Serban excerpts of Electra, Medea, and The Trojan Women, off-Broadway experi mental productions listed above under Electra (video).
EuripidesÂ’ Life and Times, 1986, Insi ght Media, excerpts from the Trojan Women (short)(Dr. JÂ’s list). Trojan Women, 2001, Fanni Green, dir., University of South Florida Theater Department (video to be deposite d in Special Collec tions, USF Library, Tampa, Florida; performances Nove mber 2001). ARISTOPHANES: Acharnians Acharnians, 1976, Mimis Kouyioumtzis, with Yorgos Lazanis (filmed presentation of play at Epidaurus, Greece). Birds Birds, 1991, Insight Media, Bob Morris, dir., Neil Pepe, Ed Porter, Todd Weeks, Phil Reilly, Clare Tattersull, Terry Hardcastle, excerpts (with masks, 43 minutes)(Dr. JÂ’s list). Birds, 1997, Aquila Productions, London Small Comedy Company, Insight Media, Peter Meineck, Robert Richmond, dirs., Anthony Cochrane, Andrew Price, Tony Dunn, and Daniel York (Dr. JÂ’s list). Ecclesiazusai Ecclesiazusae, 1976, Films for th e Humanities, narrated by George Rose. Women in Power, 1988, Philip Hedley, dir. Frogs Frogs, 1991, Aquila Productions, London Small Comedy Company, Insight Media, Fiona Laird, dir. (Dr. JÂ’s list). Lysistrata Lysistrata, 1914, Holger-Madsen, dir.(Enough of It) (Danish)(Et Huskors). Heiratsfieber, 1928, Rudolf Walther-Fein (Austrian). Lysistrata 1948, Alfred Stoger, Judith Holzmeister as Lysistrata, Hilde Berndt, Inge Konradi, Marie Kr amer, Grandolf Buschbeck (Triumph der Liebe, Austrian)(released as Â“Ba ttle of the SexesÂ” in New York). Destines, 1953, Marcello Paglie ro; Jean Delannoy (French, Italian). The Second Greate st Sex, 1955, George Marshall, dir., Jeanne Crain, Two German TV productions of the same name, with Maxmillian Vitus, writer, for both, appeared in 1983 and 1992, (the latter with Bernhard Helf rich, director), and have not been confirmed as mode rn adaptations of Lysistrata.
George Nader, Kitty Kallen, Tommy Rall (a Western set in Osawkie, Kansas, 1880). Die Sendung der Lysistrata, 1961, TV, Fritz Kortner, dir. (German). Escuela de Seductoras, 1962, Leon Klimovsky, dir. (Spanish). Flickorna, 1968, Mai Zetterling, di r., Bibi Anderson,( Les Filles), (Swedish). Lysistrata, 1968, Jon Matt, dir. Lysistrata, 1976, Ludo Mich, di r., Denis Denys as Lysistrata (Belgian). Lysistrata, 1981, University of Te xas at Austin, Laura Drake, dir., University of Texas Drama Department production, Octobe r 5-10, 1981 (on deposit at University of Texas Library, at VIDCASS 70, Fine Arts Library). Lysistrata, 1986, TV, Jarvefelt, dir., NY Times, Dec. 20, 1986 (Swedish). Lysistrata, 1987, George Zervou lakos dir., Jenny Karezi, Costas Kazakos (Greek, with English subtitle s), adaptation by Yi annis Negrepontis, filmed at the Acropolis and other loca tions in Athens, strong language and nudity)( video )(Dr. JÂ’s list). Lysistrata, 1989, Valeri Rubinc hik, dir., Yelena Koreneva as Lysistrata (Komediya o Lisistrate)(Russian). Greek Drama: From Ritual to Theater, 2001, key scenes from Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Medea a nd Lysistrata, commentary by Helene Foley, Jeffrey Henderson, Robert Fagles, Peter Meineck, as above. Wasps Wasps, 1995, Aquila Productions, Peter Meineck, Robert Richmond, dirs. MENANDER: Dyskolos The Virgin, 1966, Dimis Dadira s, dir., Alkis Yannakas, Sapfo Notara (free adaptation of the only comple te comedy of Menander, ancient text discovered only in 1957)(Greek, O Parthe nos)(discussed, MacK innon, pp. 172-3). This listing began with the thirty films listed by Jon Solomon, with additions from Burian, Christie, Lowe, MacKinnon, Stefan Altekamp of the Winckelmann Institute, and numerous pr ess and web references. Most of the silents are not extant, and most of the re st are difficult to find in video or DVD. The Â“filmographyÂ” for Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes, with hyperlinks, cast data, and the like, can be searched at the important source,
http://us.imdb.com and commercial and educational links at Dr. JÂ’s updated lists (including video and audio recordings of live perform ances), published in 95 Classical World Spring 2002, at pp. 265-343, listing about 35 vi deos and other additional lectures about ancient Greek dram a, especially at pp. 290-294, and more broadly listed at http://lilt.ilstu.edu/drjclassics2/Files/greeklitdrama.shtm
Appendix II Cinematic and video versions of Greek plays in opera and dance The Greek plays have also appeared in a film or video of the opera or ballet version of the stories, such as the followi ng (and this list is not exhaustive, but is derived largely from the IMDb databa se and DVD and video offerings of Amazon.com and Half.com ): Prometheus Bound, Ted Shawn, Jacob Pillow Dance Festival Archives, Lee, Massachusetts, has Ted Shawn dancin g his Â“Prometheus BoundÂ” (two filmed performances: Reel19.3; Reel 33) the la tter performance in 1930, filmed by Eva and Angelos Sikilianou in the ancient theater in Delphi. The Persians, Ted Shawn, Jacob Pillow Dance Fe stival Archives, Lee, Massachusetts, ballet, unda ted, has preserved film (Reel 23.2), with music by Sikilianou; first chorus from Aeschylus choreographe d by Shawn for 28 men. Performed with a capella voices, Greek modal music composed by Eva Sikilianou and sung by the men as they danced. Phedre 1972, PBS-TV, Milko Sparemblek, choreographer and as Theseus, Claire Motte (publicity still). Phaedra undated, PBS-TV, Â“Performance at Wolf Trap,Â” Â‘The Martha Graham Dance Company,Â” ballet by Martha Graham, Diane Gray as Aphrodite, Bonnie Oda Homsey as Phaedra, Mario De lamo as Hippolytus, (publicity still). Medea, 1976, Martha Graham Dan ce Company, including MedeaÂ’s Dance of Vengeance (Dr. JÂ’s list). Medea, 1979, Marina Goderdzi szhvilli, Vladimir Julukhadze (dance)(Russian). Elektra, 1980, Richard Strauss opera, Metropolitan Opera, Brian Large, dir., Birgit Nilsson as Elektra, Mignon Dunn as Klytemnestra, Donald McIntyre as Orest, Robert Nagy as Aegisth, Leonie Rysanek as Chrysoth emis, with James Levine, Conductor (Dr. JÂ’s list). Elektra, 1982, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Karl Bohm, conductor, Leonie Rysanek, Dietrich Fi scher-Dieskau, Astrid Varnay. Oedipus Rex [and the Flo od], 1984, TV, Hans Hulscher, dir., Jean Cocteau, Igor Stravinsky opera), Neil Rosenhein as Oedipus, Felicity Palmer as Jocaste, Claudio Desderi as Cron/Messager, An ton Scharinger as Tirsias, Justin Lavender as Berger, Jean Rochefort as Narrateur, Bernard Haitink, conductor (sung in Latin, libretto adapte d by Cocteau from Sophocles).
Â“Night Journey,Â” 1988, Martha Graham, included in Â“Martha Graham: An American Original in Perfo rmance,Â” video (Â“Night JourneyÂ” is Martha GrahamÂ’s retelling of the legend of Oedipus. Danced by Martha Graham as Jocasta, with Paul Taylor as Tiresa is and Bertram Ross as Oedipus, a score by William Schuman and setting by Isamu Noguchi, the internationally reno wned sculptor and designer. Said Clive Barnes: Â“This film c ontains the essence of Graham and is among the two or three successful dance films ever made.Â” Elektra, 1989, Brian Large, dir., Rich ard Strauss opera, Vienna State Opera with conductor Claudio Abbado, Eva Mart on as Elektra, Brigitte Fassbaender as Klytemnestra, Cheryl Studer as Chryso themis, Frans Grundh eber, Harry Kupfer, dir., (SophoclesÂ’ versi on)(available on DVD) Medea, 1989, TV, Luigi Cherubini opera, Jose Pavon, dir., Montserrat Caball as Medea, Jos Carreras as Jason, Antoni Ros Marba, conductor (Spanish television). Antigone, Rites of Passion, 1990, Am y Greenfield as Antigone, Bertram Ross (experimental dance and music by Ellio t Sharp, Glenn Bran ca and Diamanda Galas)(based on SophoclesÂ’ An tigone and Oedipus at Colonus)( DVD) (Dr. JÂ’s list). Greek, 1990, Peter Maniura, Jonathan Moore, dirs., Quentin Hayes as Oedipus, Fiona Kimm as I okaste, opera (set in present day London). Medea, 1991, ballet (news cli pping reporting its filming). Phedre, 1991, Jean Racine, Princeton, N.J., Films for the Humanities, Maud Rayer, Alice Sapritch, Christian Brendel, Martin Mongerment, Claude Giraud, Denis Manuel. Alceste, 1992, TV, Jacques Rozier, di r., music by Jean-Bap tiste Lully from his opera of the same name. Oedipus Rex, 1992, TV, Julie Taymor, dir., at Saito Kenen Festival, Japan, Stravinsky oratorio, Philip Langridge as Oedipe, Jessye Norman as Jocaste, Bryn Terfel as Creon, Harry Peters as Tiresias Seiji Ozawa, conduc ting, libretto by Jean Cocteau, sung in Latin, spok en in Japanese by e. e. cummings), Min Tanaka, Butoh dancer, etc. Backanterna, 1993, TV, Ingmar Berg man, dir., Sylvia Lindenstrand as Dionysos, Sten Wahlund as Kadmos, An ita Soldh as Agaue; Daniel Bortz, composer (Swedish), opera. Â“Night Journey,Â” included in Martha Graham: The Dancer Revealed, 1994, video. Oedipus Rex [and the Flood], 1997,( I gor Stravinsky opera), Oratorio in two acts, NOS TV MenÂ’s Choi r, Bernard Haitink, conductor. Alceste, 1998, TV, Monk, Gluck opera. Alceste, 1999, TV, Gluck opera, Brian Large, dir., John Eliot Gardner, Anne-Sofie Von Otter, Paul Groves, th e Monteverde Choir (available in DVD). Alceste, 2000, Gluck opera, Robert Wilson, dir., Theatre Musicale de Paris, Monteverde Choir, Sir E lliot Gardiner, conductor.
Jean George NoverreÂ’s Medea, 2001, dance (1780 ballet d'action, based on the classical drama, in a performance stag ed and choreographed by Judith ChazinBennahum; University of New Mexico Department of Theatre and Dance). Pour Antigone, 2001, Mathilde Monnie r, dir., dance film (with European and African dancers). Clytemnestra, Oedipus Rex, and Nigh t Journey, three Martha Graham ballets, undated, in three videos, ( 90 minutes, 93 minutes and 29 minutes, respectively), cited as being in Bo bst Library, New York University. It is to be expected that the many ot her classical ballets based on ancient Greek plays will be filmed or televised in the future, including, Ted ShawnÂ’s Â“The PersiansÂ” and Â“Prometheus BoundÂ”; Martha GrahamÂ’s Â“AlcestisÂ” (1960), Â“Clytemnestra,Â”(1958), Â“Medea,Â” Â“Night J ourneyÂ” (1947, focusing on OedipusÂ’ mother, Jocasta), Â“Phaedra,Â” (1962), and Â“PhaedraÂ’s DreamÂ” (1983); another Â“ClytemnestraÂ” by Millicent Hodson and Kenn eth Archer (1997); four different Â“MedeasÂ” by John Butler, Jose Granero, Dimitris Papaioannou, and Micheal Smuin; as well as Jean George NoverreÂ’s Â“Jason and Medea.Â” EuripidesÂ’ Bacchae has inspired both Bill T. Jones/Arnie Za ne Dance CompanyÂ’s Â“The Loud Boy/The Bacchae Project,Â” (2001), and Twyla Thar pÂ’s Â“Surfer at the River StyxÂ” (2000), which is said to be a loose e xploration of EuripidesÂ’ Bacchae. Videos of different performances of the ballets and operas listed above should be expected too. Sandra Kurtz, Â“Leaping in Twylight ,Â” Seattle Weekly, November 1, 2000, and Interview, Â“Twyla Tharp Looks to Brooklyn and Beyond,Â” New York Times, February 11, 2001: Â“Surfer at the Ri ver Styx,Â” for example, is in fact Â“The BacchaeÂ” by Euripides. I am referring to the spine of Â“The BacchaeÂ” and not its story or text. IÂ’m portraying hubris...[and th e dance] comes to the conclusion, in fact, that the meek will i nherit the earth,Â” said Tharp.Â”
Appendix III: Films or Videos Substantially Influenced by Greek Plays Many films and television dramatic pr oductions are influenced by Greek plays to an obvious degree, such as names and costumes being imported into the presentation, or sometimes in more sub tle ways, known only because the director claims the reference. Listed here are t hose productions where the influence on the plot is obvious, is claimed expressly by the director, or is pointed out by a specific reviewer. The reviews were located larg ely from the Lexis/Nexis database, but many others likely exist. There is a risk in a list of this type that every infant death will be claimed as a Medea reference, so what to include in the list becomes subjective to a degree. Nevertheless, the list may be useful to call attention to the widespread influence of the Greek dram atic tradition on film and television. In his book, Greek Tragedy into Film Chapter 6, MacKinnon calls this his Â“filmic modeÂ” category, observing th at Â“none of [these] purport to be the original in transposed form,Â”p. 97. MacKinnon cites only four films, DassinÂ’s Phaedra The Cannibals Prometheus, Seco nd Person Singular and Elektreia by Miklos Jancso, but many others deserv e listing here in various degrees. Also included here are those listed in MacKinnonÂ’s category of Â“Meta-Tr agedyÂ” where the movieÂ’s theme is Greek tragedy in a br oad sense, such as PasoliniÂ’s Medea Oedipus Rex and Notes for an African Orestes and DassinÂ’s Dream of Passion (Although a few entries are duplicates from the primary list, Appendix I, above, the entries on this lis t are not included in the c ounts of the incidence of Greek plays in film and television di scussed in the text of the paper.) Alien, 1979, Ridley Scott, dir., Sigo urney Weaver as Ellen Ripley (Â“Ms. Weaver says she always thought of Ri pley as a part of a strong heroic tradition for women. Â“There are parts of her that reminded me of Antigone and Lysistrata,Â”she says...,Â” Bruce Weber, Â“Sigourney Weaver in Alien Terrain...Yet Again,Â” New Yo rk Times, May 17, 1992. Antigone in New Yo rk, 2000, TV, a television play by Janusz Glowacki, listed, PAP Polish Press Agency News Wire, Oct. 5, 2000. The Photographers, 1998, Nikos Koundou ros, dir., Katerina Pavlaki, Manos Vakoussis, Michalis Komninos, (Â“Ba sed on SophoclesÂ’ tragedy Antigone,
film deals with the eternal questions of human conscience and the right to freedom of choice,Â” Variety, Sept. 7, 1998). Citizen Kane, 1941, Orson Welles, dir. (Â“Sa lammbo, the opera sung in the film by Dorothy Comingore as KaneÂ’s second wife, Susan Alexander, is a fake one (with lyrics borrowed from RacineÂ’s Phed re,Â” as noted in Â“The Re-Release of Citizen Kane,Â” The Indepe ndent [London], J une 7, 1991. Das Gleiche Wollen und Das Gleiche Nicht Wollen, 1990, Ingo Kratisch and Jutta Sartory, dirs., (The film Â“opens by invoking Prometheus who was punished by Zeus because of his l ove of human beings.Â” Desire Under the Elms, 1958, Delbert Mann, dir., Eugene OÂ’Neill, playwright, Sophia Loren, Anthony Perkins, Burl Ives (Â“inspired by two Greek myths, Â‘HippolytusÂ’and Â‘MedeaÂ’,Â” Orange County Register, April 2, 1987). A Dream of Passion, 1978, Jules Dassin, dir., Melina Mercouri, Ellen Burstyn (story includes "Medea" performed by a film star returning to Greece)(Greek). Educating Oedipus, 2001, Ge orge Marshall, dir.,Gary S hore (a professor teaching Oedipus Rex). Electra tries to speak, 1982 Doris Chase, producer, Sondra Segal as Electra, published Women Make Movies 1982 (Experimental video of 28 minutes; interpretation of Electra, Â“the eternal daughter, struggling for selfexpression and seeking to resolve he r confusion.Â” (at University of Texas Library, VIDCASS 3629, Fine Arts Library). Elektreia, 1975, Miklos Jancso, with Mari Torocsik (Mon Amour, Electre, Beloved Electra, Szerelme m, Elektra)(Hungarian). Enigma, 2001, Dennis Neal Vaughn, di r. (Â“based on Oedipus Rex,Â” according to The Pantograph, Bloomington, Ill., Oct. 12, 2000)(a twelve minute short). Exploding Oedipus, 20 01, Mark Lafia, dir., Bruce Ramsay, Charlotte Chatton (Ken Eisner, Film Reviews, mentions Â“the basic Freudian shtick insisted upon by the title,Â” Variety, August 20-26, 2001). The Girl in Black, 1955, Mi chael Cacoyannis, dir., (Â“anticipates CacoyannisÂ’ later Electra ,Â” National Gallery of Art, Wash ington D.C., brochure, Fall 1992).
Gospel at Colonus, The, 1985, Lee Breu er dir., Morgan Freeman as Oedipus, allBlack cast (merging SophoclesÂ’ Oedipu s at Colonus with Oedipus Rex and the gospel tradition)(video of stage production). Hercules Unchained, 1959, Pietro Francisci, dir., Stev e Reeves, Sylvia Koscina, Primo Carnera, Sylvia Lopez (also Herc ules and the Queen of Lydia; It.: Ercole e la regina di Lidia)(the se quel to Hercules, 1958, with Hercules briefly visiting Oedipus in a cave on the way to Thebes). In the Border Country, 1991, Thaddeus Sullivan di r., Daniel Mornin, writer (Â“transposed the Oresteia story to pr esent-day Northern Ireland,Â” as written in Jennifer Selway, Â“Television: The la st imaginative strokes of A4-Play,Â” The Observer, Feb. 10, 1991). Mandala, 1988, Brazilian TV soap opera, (Â“a modern day version of the Greek tragedy...Oedipus and his mother, Jo casta, looked longi ngly at each other and kissed,Â” reports the Associated Press, Jan 5, 1988, in Susana Hayward, Â“Brazil Allows Oedipus to Kiss his Mother on TV.Â” Manfast, 2001, Tara Judelle, dir., Lala Sloatman, Jeremy Si sto (Â“a modern day Lysistrata,Â” publisher Larry Flynt offe rs $500,000 to the first man to break the Â“fast,Â” Dorothy Gifford, Â“She is a Tallahassee Movie Maker,Â” Tallahassee Democrat, June 11, 2000.). Medea di Porta Medina, 1980, TV (Italian). Mighty Aphrodite, 1995, Woody Allen, dir., Mira Sorvino, Woody Allen, F. Murray Abraham, as Chorus Leader, Olympia Dukakis as Jocasta, David Ogden Stires as Laius, Jeffrey Kurla nd as Oedipus, Danielle Ferland as Cassandra, Claire Bloom, Jack Warden as blind Tiresias (a masked Greek chorus in the Greek theater at Taor mina, Sicily, comments on and interacts with the actors and sings Cole Porter songs, Zeus has an answering machine, anachronisms abound, Cassandr a, as usual, issues unheeded warnings, Oedipus, Laius and Jocasta app ear, Tiresias Â“seesÂ” AllenÂ’s wifeÂ’s infidelities, and the required Messenge r summarizes the off stage action, and the happy ending is a ssured by a deus ex machina right from a helicopter). Music Box, 1990, Constantin Costa-Gravas, dir., (Â“The ma in subject,Â” said CostaGravas, Â“is the relationship between fa ther and daughter, which becomes a deep love story between a parent and child.Â” He sees it as a little Greek
tragedy, Â“Antigone leading Oedipus, her blind father.Â” quoted in The Sunday Times, May 6, 1990). Never on Sunday, 1960, Jules Dassin, di r., Melina Mercouri (references to Medea and Oedipus Rex). New York Stories, 1989, segment, Â“Oed ipus Wrecks,Â” Woody Allen, writer and dir., Mae Questel as the Mother, Mia Farrow as Lisa, a nd Woody Allen as Sheldon Mills. Noces rouges, Les, 1973 (opening quotation from Aeschylus)(also entitled Wedding in Blood, Italian: Amico di famiglia). Oedipus Hex, undated, Â“A free, updated, tongue-in-cheek retelling of the Oedipus story, set in present day New York. The title role is played by Ed (Richard Schmonsees), a neurotic young man who is portraying Oedipus the King in a version of the play written by his ga y lover. Mayhem ensues as Ed's real father turns out to be his psychiatrist .Â” listed at Bobst Library, New York University, at VCA 2327, (26 minutes). Oedipus Mayor, 1996, Jorge Triana, dir., Jorge Perrugor ia as Edipo, Angela Molina as Yocasta, Francisco Rabal as Tiresias (a retelling of SophoclesÂ’ tragedy set in modern Columbia)(also entitled Edip o Alcalde) (Columbia, Spain, Mexico). Pecong 1993, video of a play by St eve Carter; the American Conservatory Theater presents (San Francisco Perfo rming Arts Library), Â“Pecong is set on two mystical Carribean islands. The play establishes a tragic, fatalistic world dominated not by capricious Olympians of Fate s, but by angry ancestral spirits who become their e ffective equivalent. It combines the famous Medea story of a furious, scor ned mother's infanticide with the ritual contest of the 'pecong' a rhyming duel whose co ntemporary street version is commonly known as 'playi ng the dozens'." Oakland Tribune, November 22, 1993. Phaedra, 1962, Jules Dassin, dir., Melina Mercouri as Phaedra, Anthony Perkins as Alexis (Hippolytus), Raf Vallone as Thanos (Theseus)(Greek)(set in modern Greece). Phaedra West, 1968 Joaquin Luis Rome ro Marchent, dir., James Philbrook, Norma Bengell, Simon Andreu (Weste rn drama)(also entitled Â“Ballad of a Bounty Hunter, I Do Not Fo rgive...I Kill,Â” and Â“I non perdono...uccidoÂ”(Spanish).
The Power of No, 1994 (in production, pe rhaps never released), Dawn Steel, dir. (Â“Her next film, Â‘The Power of No,Â’ is based on Lysistra ta by Aristophanes and deals with women in the urban ghe tto who refuse to have sex with men until they stop violence,Â” Bernard Wein traub, Â“Dawn Steel Muses from the top of the Hollywood Heap,Â” Ne w York Times, Au gust 30, 1993). Prometheus, 1998, Tony Harri son dir., Walter Sparrow, Mi chael Feast, Fern Smith (Â“Poet Tony SmithÂ’s amb itious reworking of the Prometheus myth in terms of contemporary European history and left-wing politics,Â” according to Walter Alexander, The [Lon don] Evening Standard). An extensive visual album, combining the closing of a coal mine, minersÂ’ coal dust disease, anti-smoking propaganda, and the trans port through Europe of the golden statue of Prometheus. The rape of Io is thrown in for good measure. Prometheus, Second Pers on Singular, 1975, Costas Ferris, dir., Yiannis Canoupakis (Greek). Red Moon, 2001, (Luna Rossa), Antonio Ca puano, dir., (Â“Pic parallel between the legend of Agamemnon and his childre n Orestes and Electra and the Neapolitan Camorra may prove too much of a stretch for many viewers.... ScriptÂ’s continual nods to Greek dram a work surprisingly well...even an over-the-top dream sequence with Ores te wandering nake d around a Greek temple fits into picÂ’s ba roque philosophy,Â” says De borah Young in Variety, Sept. 24, 2001). Regret to Inform, 1998, Ba rbara Sonneborn, dir., docum entary about the Vietnam War (Â“I thought of Lysistrata as I made the film,Â” Sonneborn says, Â“referring to the character in the ancient Greek play about women who abstained from sex as a way of forci ng their husbands to end war,Â” Joan Ryan, Â“Shedding Light on Darkness of War,Â” San Francisco Chronicle, January 9, 2000. Scream 2, 1997, Wes Craven, dir., Neve Ca mpbell as Sidney Pres cott, who in turn, plays Cassandra in the production of th e play Agamemnon within the film (Several reviewers of the movie noti ced the Greek play motif, with its traditional use of masks in a horror f lick about masks, and that SidneyÂ’s warnings, like CassandraÂ’s, are ignored as in the myth, but they missed the connection between the Greek plays of th e Oresteia, as the only Greek play with a sequel, in a movie that has much self-reflexive commentary about
cinematic sequels; a poster of the schoolÂ’s production of Oedipus Rex hangs in the background of the theater scene). The Second Greatest Sex, 1955, George Marshall, dir., Jeanne Crain, George Nader, Kitty Kallen, Tommy Rall (a Western set in Osawkie, Kansas, 1880). Secret Defense, 1999, Jacques Rivette, dir., Sandrine Bonnaire, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Laure Marsac, Gregoire Colin, Francoise Fabian (Stephen Holden, New York Times review, Nov. 19, 1999: Â“dreary contemporary retelling of the Electra myth Â”; French with subtitles). Strike, 1998, Sarah Ker nochan dir., Kirsten Dunst, Gaby Hoffmann, Lynn Redgrave, Rachael Leigh Cook (Â“a cont emporary high-school version of Â‘LysistrataÂ’,Â” John Hartl, Seattle Ti mes, October 13, 1997; Â“Waters is currently working on a film version of the ancient Greek classic Lysistrata, set in an American high school inhabited by white and black gangs, for Steven SpielbergÂ’s DreamWorks studi o,Â” Judy Gerstel, Toronto Star, February 14, 1998. Such is Life, 2000, Arturo Ripstein, dir., Arcelia Ramirez, Luis Felipe Tovar, Patricia Reyes Spindola and Erne sto Yanez (Mexican: Â“Asi es la vidaÂ”)(Â“updates the Medea legend to the slums of modern Mexico,Â” Variety, May 29, 2000). Testament of Orpheus, 1959 Jean Cocteau, director a nd as the Poet, Jean-Pierre Leaud, Nicole Courcel, Francoise Ch ristophe, Yul Brenner as the Court Usher, Jacqueline and Pablo Picasso, Ca therine Oger as Minerva, Jean Marais as Oedipus, Brigitte Mosissa n as Antigone, Charles Aznavour, Serge Leflar (Oedipus and the Sphinx, included). They Call Me Mandrina, 1997, Christia n Gonzalez, dir., Manuel Ojeda, Marta Zamora (Me Llaman Mandrina)(Mexican )(said to be based on Sophocles, but unclear if Oedipus). Traveling Players, 1975, Theo Angelopo ulos, dir., (with performance of Electra set in World War II; Oresteia subplo t)(O Thiassos)(discussed by Marianne McDonald, Euripides in the Cinema 1983). Twice a Man, 1963, Gregory Markopoulos dir., (Â“[An] influential underground film...a retelling of Phaedra and Hipp olytus set in New York,Â” Stephen Holden, Â“CriticÂ’s Choice,Â” New York Times, June 4, 1999; Â“The film is
inspired by the myth of Hippolytus and Phaedra and is notable for its distinctive soundtrack, which has b een described as a monologue of truncated syllables spoken by Phaed ra juxtaposed with music, sound effects, and silence,Â” Dan Tranberg, Â“Cinematheque shows rare work of avant-garde filmmakers,Â” The Plain Dealer, May 4, 2001). The Virgin, 1966, Dimis Dadiras, di r., Alkis Yannakas, Sapfo Notara (free adaptation of the only complete comedy of Menander, ancient text discovered only in 1957) (Greek, O Parthenos)(MacKinnon, pp. 172-3). The Voyager, 1991, Volker Schloendorff, dir., based on the book by Max Frisch, Â“Homo FaberÂ” (Â“a provocative upda ting of SophoclesÂ’ Oedipus RexÂ”). Xena: Warrior Princess, 1995, TV, Â“Prometh eus episode,Â” (Â“In the story Hercules [Kevin Sorbo] joins forc es with Xena to free Prometheus, who has been chained to a mountaintop by the gods ...[and includes] six giant reptillian warriors whom the heroes must battle in order to liberate the bound Prometheus,Â” reports the PR Newswire, Oct. 24, 1995). Year of the Cannibals, 1970, Liliana Ca vani, dir., Britt Ekland (modern adaptation of a futuristic Sophocles' Antigone)(I Cannibali)(Italian). Zina, 1985, Kenneth McMullen, dir., (Â“The film is really a remake of Antigone,Â” says McMullen, Â“It is a classical tr agedy,Â” director quoted in Ethnic Newswatch, Jewish Exponent, Feb. 7, 1992).
Bibliography Stefan Altekamp, Winckelmann Institut, at http://www2.rz.huberlin.de/winckelmann/a ltekamp_film-klassik.html Margarete Bieber, The History of the Greek and Roman Theater 2d ed. 1961. Felix Budelmann, Pantelis Michelakis, edit ors, Homer, Tragedy and Beyond. Essays in Honour of P.E. Easterling London: Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies, 2001 Peter Burian, Â“Tragedy adap ted for stages and screens: the Renaissance to the present,Â” P.E. Easterling (ed.), The Ca mbridge Companion to Greek Tragedy 1997. Ian Christie, Â“Between Magic and Re alism: Medea on Film,Â” Medea in Performance 2000. Lucien Clergue, Jean Cocteau and the Testament of Orpheus 2001. Marianthe Colakis, The Classics in the Am erican Theater of the 1960Â’s and Early 1970Â’s 1993. Dr. JÂ’s On-Line survey of Audio Visual Resources for Cl assics, updated 2002, at http://lilt.ilstu.edu/drjclassics 2/Files/greeklitdrama.shtm (Dr. Janice Siegel, also known as Â“Dr. JÂ”); also 95 Classical World Spring 2002, at pp. 290-294. Dionysus Since 69: Greek Tragedy and the Public Imagination at the End of the Second Millennium Oxford U. Press, forthcoming 2002. Derek Elley, The Epic Film, Myth and History: Cinema and Society 1984. Stephen Flacassier, Muscles, Myths, and Movies 1993, 1994. Richard Griffith, Arthur Meye r & Eileen Bowser, The Movies rev. ed. 1981. Edith Hall, Fiona Macintosh, Oliver Taplin (eds.), Medea in Performance 2000. This listing omits newspaper articles c ited in footnotes and in the appendices.
Lorna Hardwick, Â“Greek Drama at the e nd of the Twentieth century: Cultural Renaissance or Performative outrage?Â” at www2.open.ac.uk/classicalstudies /greekplays/greekdrama.htm The Internet Movie Database, at http://us.imdb.com in the United States, or http://uk.imdb.com in Great Britain. Lexis/Nexis provided on-line research access to published cinema reviews for this study (especially enriching Appendix III with surprising and arcane references). N.J. Lowe, Ancient Greece in the Cinema, at http://www2.rhbnc.ac.uk/Cl assics/NJL/films.html Marianne McDonald, Euripides in the Cinema 1983. Marianne McDonald, Ancient Sun, Mode rn Light: Greek Drama on the Modern Stage 1992. Marianne McDonald and Martin Winkle r, Â“Michael Cacoyannis and Irene Papas on Greek Tragedy,Â” in Martin M. Winkler (ed.), Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema rev. ed. 2001. Kenneth MacKinnon, Greek Tragedy into Film 1986. Richard Schechner, ed., Dionysus in 69: The Performance Group 1970. Kirk Ormand review of Jon Solomon, The Ancient Worl d in the Cinema rev. ed. 2001, in Bryn Mawr Classical Review, 2002.01.08, at http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/b mcr/2002/2002-01-08.html Gary A. Smith, Epic Films: Cast, Credits and Commentary on over 250 Historical Spectacle Movies 1991. Jon Solomon, The Ancient World in the Cinema rev. ed. 2001. Oliver Taplin, Greek Fire: The Influence of Ancient Greece on the Modern World 1989. Lee Scott Theisen, Â“My God, Did I set a ll of this in Moti on?Â’: General Lew Wallace and Ben-Hur ,Â” 18 J. of Popular Culture pp. 33-41 (Fall 1984). Gonda A. H. Van Steen, Venom in Ve rse. Aristophanes in Modern Greece Princeton, 2000, see review by E. J.M. Greenwood, Bryn Mawr Classical
Review 2001.08.05, http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/bmcr/2001/2001-08-05.html Thomas Waugh, Hard to Imagine: Gay Male Photography and Film from their Beginnings to Stonewall 1996. T.B.L. Webster, The Tr agedies of Euripides 1967. Gary Wills, Â“ThereÂ’s Nothing Conserva tive About the Classics Revival,Â” New York Times Magazine Feb. 16, 1997. Martin M. Winkler (ed.), Classica l Myth and Culture in the Cinema rev. ed. 2001(Oxford U. Press). Maria Wyke, Projecting the Past: Ancient Rome, Cinema and History 1997. W. K. Zewadski, Greek, Roman and Bib lical Themes in the Cinema, 2002, a loosely edited and ever-evolving list of over on e thousand Greek, Roman, and Biblical films; available by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org