Hamlet: a horror film
My initial interpretation of the Shakespeare adaptation project failed to include possible difficulties. With the guidelines of the predetermined adaptation (horror film for my group), and a maximum time length of three minutes I perceived the project to come easily. It did not.
Upon discussions my group decided to modernize the Shakespearean language in order to better fit our adaptation. Our aim was for a sort of teen-horror flick. The setting was determined to be a college dorm which would engage students as they discuss a recently relevant ghost rumor. Our modernization of the language involved cutting many unnecessary elaborations that would not suit the quick paced chatter of excited friends. For example, the very first dialogue spoken by Bernardo in our scene (42-46) could be simplified down to “Wanna hear a ghost story? So, exactly one year ago on Halloween–.” In addition, to the script change we altered the character’s names to be more relevant; in doing this we change the genders to fit the genders of our group. The character I portrayed had the name Haley which came from the Shakespearean name Horatio.
The adaptation aspect enabled difficulties as well because the chosen scene already involved a ghost and similar frightening aspects. Our adaptation felt like less of an adaptation and more of just a modern remake. We utilized the character of the ghost which was given in the original to generate a horror-film-esque piece. Given more time and resources I would have liked to further develop plot-orientated ideas. It would have been interesting to replace the ghost with a serial killer or something of that nature but to keep some of the original language.
As an opinion, I don’t find any adaptation to be a failed attempt so long as the intent was to generate this adaptation which was represented. The various Shakespeare inspired films which have been unveiled over time are all initiated through different thoughts of different people in different times. There are many ways to interpret Hamlet alone so even if the audience doesn’t appreciate the connections made, they still exist. We’ve seen adaptations more abstract than a horror film (as my group was tasked). The example of Lion King was discussed in class as an adaptation of Hamlet though not commonly recognized as being such.