Riz Ahmed will star in Netflix’s “Hamlet,” and is it dramatic to say this is the greatest thing to happen to Shakespeare?
Every once in a while, someone has an idea so brilliant, it immediately becomes a game changer. Kristy Thomas had a Great Idea and formed the greatest babysitter’s club known to man. Lin-Manuel Miranda changed just about everything when he picked up a biography and decided to write a song about it.
But now, in what seems to be (…or not to be) the greatest idea ever, it appears Riz Ahmed is about to take on Shakespeare’s Hamlet!
According to Deadline, the newly minted Emmy winner is in negotiations with Netflix to bring a contemporary version of Hamlet to the streaming site. The feature was developed by The Night Of actor himself and writer Mike Lesslie, who wrote 2015’s Macbeth starring Michael Fassbender. Here’s a bit about Ahmed and Lesslie’s take on the iconic Shakespeare play:
"Set in a modern-day London of economic and political uncertainty, the story follows the intersecting themes of familial honor, moral duty, and dynastic corruption."
Wow, we need this in our queues immediately!
Hamlet is one of Shakespeare’s most adapted plays, having been turned into at least half a dozen films, like the Laurence Olivier version of 1948, Franco Zefferelli’s 1990 adaptation starring Mel Gibson as a very dramatic Hamlet and Glenn Close as Gertrude, and Kenneth Branagh’s four-hour 1996 film in which he played the title role.
Hamlet may be notoriously tricky to adapt, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s Riz.
The last couple years have been busy for Ahmed, who has had breakout roles in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The Night Of, Nightcrawler, and Jason Bourne. The actor made headlines last month when he became the first man of South Asian descent to win an acting Emmy, with the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie award.
Additionally, Ahmed works as an activist — speaking about the importance of diversity at the House of Commons, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for Syrian refugees, and combatting Islamophobia — leading him to be named one of Time‘s most influential people.
We have a feeling the film will not only be incredible to watch but will also highlight contemporary issues we should all be paying closer attention to.
We’re already making room in our queues!