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While there are many straight up film adaptations of William Shakespeare’s plays, there are others that are also adaptations, but in disguised. Here are 12 movies you didn’t know were based on Shakespeare’s plays.
- Forbidden Planet. Based on The Tempest, but in outer space instead of an island.
- Strange Brew. Believe it or not, but Strange Brew is based on Hamlet.
- West Side Story. The Jets are the Montagues and the Sharks are the Capulets. Tony and Maria are Romeo and Juliet.
- She’s The Man. Based on Twelfth Night, Amanda Bynes disguises herself as a boy.
- Throne of Blood. Akira Kurosawa based Throne of Blood on Shakespeare’s MacBeth, but instead of 11th Century Scotland, he sets it in Feudal Japan.
- Big Business. The comedy is based on The Comedy of Errors with Bette Midler and Lily Tomlin playing twins separated at birth.
- 10 Things I Hate About You. It’s based on The Taming of the Shrew with a lot of nods to the Shakespeare’s play. Bianca is Bianca, Katherina is Katherina, Patrick is Petruchio, and Cameron is Lucentio. Get it?
- My Own Private Idaho. The film is based on Henry IV and Henry V.
- A Thousand Acres. It’s based on King Lear with Jason Robards as the dying father dividing his estate to his children, played by Jessica Lange, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Jennifer Jason Leigh.
- The Lion King. It’s kind of overt, but Disney’s The Lion King is based on Hamlet with Simba as Hamlet and Scar as his evil uncle.
- Get Over It. The teen movie is based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
- Warm Bodies. The teen romance is based on Romeo and Juliet, but during the zombie apocalypse.