Nick Dear’s adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was staged in 2011, with the idea inspired by Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller alternating between the roles of Victor Frankenstein and the creature on different nights. The public will be able to see the two actors in each role, because two versions will be presented during consecutive evenings (April 30 and May 1). “The actors complement each other perfectly rather than offer a contest,” wrote Guardian Michael Guardington in his review. “Boyle’s production is a triumph of bravery in which Mark Tildesley’s design provides a whole series of visual coups. “
The 2018 epic production of Antony and Cleopatra by Simon Godwin, beautifully designed by Hildegard Bechtler and starring Fiennes and Okonedo as tragic lovers, will be released on May 7. Fiennes and Okonedo were named Best Actor and Best Actress at the Evening Standard Theater Awards for their performance in the show which, like Frankenstein, was a hot ticket to the huge Olivier Theater. Their co-stars include a one-meter-long living snake: four constrictors were used throughout the race.
In addition to its weekly theatrical broadcasts, the National announced a monthly virtual quiz, including questions about sport and history as well as the theater, with stage and screen stars playing the role of quizmaster. The first will take place on April 27 with questions from Helen Mirren, Lenny Henry, Lesley Manville and Ian McKellen, who has his own regular quiz in his London pub, The Grapes.
The National has already broadcast three popular productions during the arrest caused by the coronavirus. The tumultuous comedy One Man, Two Guvnors had more than 2.5 million views in the week it was available. It was followed by adaptations of Jane Eyre and Treasure Island. The fourth stream, which takes place Thursday evening, is Twelfth Night with Tamsin Greig.