BBC Worldwide Scores Global Sales for Shakespeare Event


LONDON: A number of broadcasters in Europe have snapped up the rights for the two-hour event Shakespeare Live! From the RSC from BBC Worldwide.

The TV rights for Shakespeare Live! From the RSC were licensed by Movistar in Spain, NRK in Norway and YLE in Finland, with ARTE in Germany and France also going for the digital rights. The event, hosted by David Tennant and Catherine Tate and featuring such acclaimed actors as Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Helen Mirren and Benedict Cumberbatch, celebrates Shakespeare’s plays and their lasting influence on various types of performing arts. It will broadcast live on BBC Two in the U.K. on Saturday, April 23, at 8:30 p.m., and will also air live in Norway, as well as online in Germany and France.

BBC Worldwide is also bringing the stage show to theaters across Australia, Russia and the U.S. Shakespeare Live! From the RSC will broadcast live in cinemas across Russia, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and Kazakhstan. The live recording of the event will screen in select Australian theaters on May 6, and on May 23 in the U.S., where it will be titled The Shakespeare Show: Recorded Live from the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Salim Mukaddam, the director of music at BBC Worldwide, commented: “It’s fantastic to be able to take such world-class content to viewers around the globe. Shakespeare is a fundamental influence on the arts and contemporary culture not just in the U.K. but all around the world. Shakespeare inspired works spanning the musical genres, theater, dance, opera and comedy, and the RSC have created a really spectacular show encapsulating all of this, which global audiences will find enthralling.”

Shakespeare Live! From the RSC is created and directed by RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran, and produced for television by RSC Screen Productions Director John Wyver, BBC Producer Catherine Stirk and Executive Producer Phil Dolling. It is distributed internationally by BBC Worldwide and sub-distributed in Australia by Sharmill Films, in the U.S. by Phathom Films, and in Russia by Cool Connections. The event will also be screened live in 368 theaters in the U.K. and Europe by Picturehouse Cinemas.