The first trailer for the newest adaptation of Romeo and Juliet is now online, and there’s plenty of ancient grudges, unclean civil hands, and death-marked love on display in this peek at the film.
While the other buzzy Shakespeare adaptation of 2013 – Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing – went the route of a fresh, modern interpretation, this Romeo and Juliet is going back to the play’s Elizabethan roots, with period costumes, a shoot in Verona and other Italy locations, and a young pair of actors playing the leads. The film’s Juliet, Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit), who shot the film when she was 15 years old, is much closer to Juliet’s age (nearly 14) than most actors taking on the role these days, and the film’s Romeo, Douglas Booth (The Pillars of the Earth) was 19 during production.
But as traditional as this adaptation is, the trailer has some modern touches, like the song “Skin” by industrial pop artist Zola Jesus. The preview also does some interesting things structurally, kicking off with the very last lines of the play, and concluding on quite a sweet, romantic note (complete with a ride off into the sunset) that we all know is not how we’ll see Romeo and Juliet’s tragic story end when the film opens in theaters later this year.
Check out the trailer below:
Romeo and Juliet also stars Paul Giamatti as Friar Laurence, Damian Lewis as Lord Capulet, Ed Westwick as Tybalt, Kodi Smit-McPhee as Benvolio, and Stellan Skarsgård as the Prince of Verona. The film was directed by Italian filmmaker Carlo Carlei, and Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey) wrote the screenplay using Shakespeare’s original verse and also produced the project. A U.S. release date has not yet been set for the film.
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