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William Shakespeare

John Madden's 'The Debt' Benefits from the Sudden Ascent of Its Young Stars

During an era when so many new directors come from the worlds of advertising and music video, catering to increasingly shorter attention spans and relying on gaudy visuals to engage audiences for seconds at a time, Oscar winner John Madden (Shakespeare in Love, not Monday Night Football) is a throwback to a time when dramas drew their strength from the spoken word.

Linklater Finds a Worthy Muse in ‘Orson Welles’

Richard Linklater’s new comedy isn’t a biography of Orson Welles – based on Robert Kaplow’s bestselling novel, it portrays the late, great director at 22, brimming with confidence and a furious desire to take Broadway by storm – but it captures his larger-than-life spirit, the hubris of an artist reaching the height of his creative powers and fully aware of it.

The film is set in 1937, a week prior to the opening of Welles’ innovative reimagining of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar with the Mercury Theatre players. Richard (Zac Efron) is a fresh-faced rube, hired by Welles on a whim and thrust into the role of Lucius, which requires a strong set of pipes, a familiarity with the ukulele and the moxie to act opposite the director himself, playing Brutus.

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