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The first black Shakespeare film ever done. A reconfiguration using Shakespeare’s language of Henry IV Part I and Part II. Read more

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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on July 6, 2012.

The first black Shakespeare film ever done. A reconfiguration using Shakespeare’s language of Henry IV Part I and Part II.

About this project

WHAT? 

We have completed principal photography on what we believe to be the first black Shakespeare film ever done! 

WHY? 

Our purpose is to explore various aspects of African American politics in the 20th and 21st century through the lens of Shakespeare’s King Henry IV parts 1 and 2. Two scripts were combined to draw out in sharper detail the central story of the plays, which we believe to be the coming of age story of a son destined to lead a nation. The combination of which became H4.

We believe that the themes and ideas contained in the 1st and 2nd parts of King Henry IV are today as urgent as they were when Shakespeare was writing them. 

We believe further that if the story is creatively told, utilizing multimedia technologies, we can contribute a unique and original statement on Shakespearean performance and on the modern American socio/political landscape. 

HOW? 

Our method was innovative: we filmed the two idioms in which Shakespeare wrote; prose and poetry, in two distinct settings in 8 days. The iambic pentameter was shot in a theater to suggest a heightened reality— abstracted, lyrical, and symbolic, while the prose was shot on location—more realistic, literal, and visceral. This production idea has never before been attempted. This innovative approach made the filming process more fluid and economical. In addition, it pushed the parameters of Shakespearean production. 

WHO? 

Executive producer Harry Lennix, also stars as King Henry IV in our movie. He enlisted some talented actors to play along side him including Keith David, Heavy D, Terrell Tilford, Angus Macfadyen, Faith Evans, and Jeryl Prescott just to name a few! Please visit our IMDB page http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2011032/ for our entire cast list! 

WHY KICKSTARTER? 

Simply put, we need your help! Your financial support will enable us to EDIT, COLOR CORRECT, SOUND MIX, LICENSE SOUNDTRACK, MARKET AND PROMOTE, APPLY TO FESTIVALS, AND GET THIS MOVIE OUT THERE! 

We would be honored if you were to consider contributing to H4, a project we believe to be a significant artistic opportunity! 


Video from Update #3...

Half way through...almost half way there!!

Thank you for your support! This journey is beyond exciting and knowing that we are reaching an audience is inspiring. If this is your first time here, thank you for checking us out...we truly believe we have something special here!

Fun loving, funny, and full of life, Sir John Falstaff is a show stealer and audiences eat him up. This is ever so true in our production! ANGUS MACFADYEN plays what is perhaps the best loved and certainly most profane of Shakespeare's characters...that fat knight. We know you will eat him up as well!



FAQ

  • H4 is, to our knowledge, the first Black Shakespeare film to date. By this, we mean that the world in which the production is set is representative of the Black Experience in the United States of America. While many Shakespeare films have Black people in them, we are not aware of another using Shakespeare's language where the milieu and the majority of characters in it are rooted in the African diaspora.

    We are indebted to the African Grove Theater, the Mercury Theater, and other theatrical companies who have contextualized Shakespeare's work into new worlds and from different perspectives.

    We hope to contribute to a renewed examination of the universality of the work, and to broaden the reach of cinematic treatment of the plays and poetry of William Shakespeare.

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    A special non-denominational intercessory prayer said on your behalf for success and prosperity!

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    You get the non-denominational intercessory prayer AND a very special thank you on our official Facebook page!

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    The prayer, the thank you AND we will send you an original still photo from the production!

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    A prayer, a thank you, AND a PDF of our final shooting scrip OR a digital download of the film!

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    How about a hard copy of our final shooting script mailed to you?! Or would you prefer the H4 DVD? Your choice! You get the prayer and thank you too!

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    How about one of our principal cast members signs that final shooting script or H4 DVD? Your choice! You still get the prayer and thank you!

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    Watch your name scroll down the screen because you are thanked in the credits of H4. Additionally, one of our principal cast members will send a handwritten postcard personally thanking you as well.

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    THE SHAKESPEARE PACKAGE:

    This includes an Oxford edition of the complete works of Shakespeare signed by principal cast members.

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    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    THE TERRELL TILFORD PACKAGE: This includes a signed 8x10 photo, a signed script from his new hit show, “Single Ladies,” a shout out on his twitter page, and a personal thank you video message! (limit 10)

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    THE ANGUS MACFADYEN PACKAGE: This includes a signed 8x10 photo, a signed DVD of Braveheart, and a personal thank you video message!

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    THE HARRY LENNIX PACKAGE: This includes a signed DVD of your choice (Ray, The Matrix Reloaded, or season one of Dollhouse), a shout out on his Facebook page, and a 5 minute SKYPE CALL to talk about whatever you want!

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    1 backer All gone!

    You now own an original piece from our costume department worn by HEAVY D. The RED ARMBAND as seen on our facebook cover photo (https://www.facebook.com/H4TheMovie).

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    You now own an original piece from our costume department worn by HARRY LENNIX. The EYEPATCH as seen on our facebook profile photo (https://www.facebook.com/H4TheMovie).

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    Interested in Stage Combat? Our very own dramaturg and stage combat choreographer, Jeff Steele, will meet you and spend up to 3 hours teaching you the basics of stage fighting, and you will walk away with a sword used in our production! Chicago, LA, or St. Louis only.

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    Dinner with the filmmakers in Los Angeles! Come have dinner with our production team, director, and two cast members. You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers! Guaranteed to be a lot of fun! (travel and accommodation not included)

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    From the upcoming Superman movie, “Man of Steel,” Harry Lennix will sign and give you his shooting script pages (not the entire script…but the authentic watermarked character pages). The movie won’t be released until 2013, so you will have to be patient, but they will be yours.

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    Live in England? Can you get yourself there in August of 2012? How about a pass to the International Shakespeare Conference in Stratford Upon Avon to attend with Executive Producers Harry Lennix and Giovanni Zelko.

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Funding period

- (30 days)