So because we just watched The Tempest, 2010 edition, I decided to look it up because I was really interested in why they would change Prospero to a woman, Prospera. I found it very interesting because it’s quite different to have a woman act that part and I wanted to know why.
Turns out, Julie Taymor, the writer and director of The Tempest, changed the character’s genes in order to case Helen Mirren as Prospera. She said that it was because she didn’t really have a male actor that excited her in mind and there had been a couple of “phenomenal females–Helen Mirren being one of them–who made her think: ‘My God, does this play change? What happens if you make that into a female role?'” And Taymor found out that changing the gender did not affect the story that much.
So in this adaptation, Prospera is the wife of the duke, rather than the Duke of Milan. She is accused of witchcraft by her brother Antonio when the duke is killed. He makes this accusation in order to be rid of Prospera and claim her title. Taymor had said, “She had her whole life taken away from her because she was a woman,” so Prospera wanted to make sure that the same thing would not happen to Miranda.
Turns out this movie is also a feminist cry. How awesome.
Have a good weekend,