Setting As You Like It

Shakespearean Appropriation for the Cable Television Market


  • Rachel Wifall Saint Peter's College


Kenneth Branagh's As You Like It: A Review Cluster

Edited by Matt Kozusko

Continuing his trend of Shakespearean adaptation, Kenneth Branagh and his Shakespeare Film Company recently released a new interpretation of As You Like It through HBO and BBC films. Although the film was released to theaters in Italy on 1 September, 2006, it went straight to television in the United States; HBO first aired the film on 21 August, 2007. With stage and screen veterans Brian Blessed, Kevin Kline, and Alfred Molina, RSC star David Oyelewo, RADA graduate Adrian Lester, and talented newcomers Bryce Dallas Howard (daughter of director Ron Howard) and Romola Garai, Branagh's film is generally well acted; indeed, Howard was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television, and Kline won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries. Set in nineteenth-century Japan, the film is also visually gorgeous; that setting, however, is also what makes this production awkward and ultimately unsatisfying.

Author Biography

Rachel Wifall, Saint Peter's College

Rachel Wifall is an Assistant Professor of English at Saint Peter's College, New Jersey, where she teaches Shakespeare and early modern literature. Her research interests include gender and performance studies. She has written book reviews for Shakespeare Quarterly and performance reviews for Shakespeare Bulletin.






Appropriations in Performance Reviews