4 Teen Movie Adaptations of Shakespeare’s Plays on Our Wish List

Posted by Sarah Fox

Shakespeare still lives on in the beloved teen adaptations of his plays such as Ten Things I Hate About You, She's the Man, and O. In honor of four hundred years since his passing, we've dreamed up for more teen adaptations we would like to see of his work.


Richard III

We would be open to taking this adaptation in three different directions: a straight-up comedy, a dark comedy, or a tragedy. In all the versions, Richard would be portrayed as a teenager vying for the position of prom king. If it went in a pure comedy direction, Richard would take down his competitors by playing innocuous pranks on them that would damage their reputations. If it were a dark comedy, he would commit murders in the vein of the movie Heathers. If it were a tragedy, the deaths would be portrayed as gruesome and sad. In all versions of this film, we would like to take a slight departure from the original: the last scene is Richard portrayed as a triumphant prom king.


A Midsummer Night's Dream

Fantasy is a hot trend among teens these days, so what better play to make into a film then this one? You have it all: magic, fairies, and, not a mere love triangle, but a love square. We envision the film occurring during a prom with the theme of an enchanted forest and costumes. Titania and Oberon would be the magical prom king and queen that are making their squads suffer because of their sudden breakup. As for the female halves of the couples, Hermia would definitely be a cheerleader, and Helena would be a major geek. Bottom, of course, would be a theater geek that wears an ass head to the prom. As for Puck? He would be the class clown, for sure.


Much Ado About Nothing

This story is the stuff all great teen stories are made of: gossip, love, and really awesome parties. Everyone loves a “will they/ won't they” plot, and Beatrice and Benedick perfectly fit the bill. We would love to hear their witty banter at the lunch table. As for the other central romance, Claudio could mistakenly believe that Hero is cheating on him at a Halloween party (instead of a masquerade) and ruin her reputation via social media and the old school rumor mill. They could also falsify her death through YouTube. We are not sure how to get around the whole marriage thing, but we are open to suggestions.


Troilus and Cressida

Since love triangles are so hot right now, we think this adaptation would be on trend. We would have Troilus and Cressida begin as lovers at the same high school, but, when Cressida is sent to boarding school by her conservative parents for dating at what they perceive to be too young an age, she has an affair with a boy named Diomedes at her new school. Troilus would discover her affair with Diomedes via social media, of course. To top it all off, the battles of the Trojan War could be translated into football games.


Sarah Fox

Sarah Fox

Sarah Fox is an editor, writer, writing consultant, and pop culture enthusiast. Besides regularly contributing to Quirk Books’ blog, she has published an edition of William Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure. She lives in Washington D.C. with her husband and Pembroke Welsh Corgi. You can find her online at www.thebookishfox.com.