Kenneth Branagh has set up his own theatre company to perform a season of plays featuring stars including Judi Dench, Lily James, Rob Brydon and Richard Madden. Branagh, who has not done Shakespeare on London stage for over 20 years, will star in 4 of the five plays including Winter’s Tale with Dench. Downton’s Lily James will star opposite Game of Thrones actor Madden in Romeo and Juliet.
The Winter’s Tale: Shakespeare’s tragi-comedy will be re-imagined by Sir Kenneth. He is co-directing and playing Leontes. Dame Judi Dench will play Paulina.
Harlequinade: This little-performed Terence Rattigan play follows the intrigues and dalliances of theatre company members as they try and stage The Winter’s Tale and Rome and Juliet.
The Painkiller: Sir Kenneth and Rob Brydon reprise the roles they took on at Belfast’s Lyric Theatre in the French farce about two men in adjoining hotel rooms; one is a killer and one wants to die.
Romeo and Juliet: Richard Madden and Lily James, the stars of Sir Kenneth’s Cinderella, will reunite to play the star-crossed lovers.
The Entertainer: John Osborne’s 1957 play about a fading music hall performer will star Sir Kenneth as Archie Rice