Internet Shakespeare Editions

Shakespeare in Performance: Film

Twelfth Night: or, What You Will (1949, Luis Lucia)

TitleTwelfth Night: or, What You Will
Release LocationsUSA
DirectorLuis Lucia
MediumBlack & white video
Length1 hrs
Play ConnectionsTwelfth Night (abridgment)
SeriesThe Philco Television Playhouse


Of historical significance because it is probably the first transmission by a major studio of non-operatic Shakespeare on television in North America. Even before WWII, the British as early as 1937 (see 35) had carried Shakespeare on the BBC. If a record of this 1949 production does remain, it is probably a blurry "Kinescope." It was a joint venture of the Actors Equity and Philco Playhouse. (Earlier, in 1948, Verdi's Otello had been televised from the New York Metropolitan Opera ( but the compelling interest in that instance was doubtless more in the opera than in its source.)

Description from Shakespeare on Screen : an International Filmography and Videography by Kenneth S. Rothwell and Annabelle Henkin Melzer. ©1990 Kenneth S. Rothwell. Cited by permission. — Added 2008-11-14

Cast Overview

ViolaMarsha Hunt
FesteJohn McQuade
Sir Toby BelchRichard Goode
Sir Andrew AguecheekVaughan Taylor
MalvolioJohn Carradine

Production Team and Crew Overview

DirectorLuis Lucia
ProducerFred Coe

Company Overview

Playgroup Philco Television Playhouse

Production information courtesy of: Kenneth Rothwell