Romantic comedy set in London in the late 16th century: Young playwright William Shakespeare struggles with his latest work "Romeo and Ethel the Pirate's Daughter". A great fan of Shakespeare's plays is young, wealthy Viola who is about to be married to the cold-hearted Lord Wessex, but constantly dreams of becoming an actress. Women were not allowed to act on stage at that time (female roles were played by men, too), but dressed up as a boy, Viola successfully auditions for the part of Romeo. Soon she and William are caught in a forbidden romance that provides rich inspiration for his play.
(Written by Armin Ortmann of IMDB)
The film won 7 Oscars in 1998 including best picture and best actress for Gwyneth. It was ironic that the one of the other nominated films "Elizabeth" was also filmed at the time of Queen Elizabeth I. Both films starred Joseph Fiennes as the romantic lead, as well as having the talented Geoffrey Rush.
It was the first comedy to win the Oscar since Annie Hall in 1977. Many considered the win an upset over Saving Private Ryan which many considered the one favoured to win.
Originally Julia Roberts and Daniel Day-Lewis were cast in the lead roles but dropped out before filming began.
Best Actress — Gwyneth Paltrow
Best Supporting Actress — Judi Dench
Best Art Direction — Martin Childs & Jill Quertier
Costume Design — Sandy Powell
Original Music Score — Stephen Warbeck
Writing Original Screenplay — Marc Norman & Tom Stoppard
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