Romeo and Juliet (2013 film)

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Romeo & Juliet
Romeo and Juliet 2013 film.png
US theatrical release poster
Directed by Carlo Carlei
Produced by Ileen Maisel
Nadja Swarovski
Julian Fellowes
Screenplay by Julian Fellowes
Based on Romeo and Juliet 
by William Shakespeare
Starring Douglas Booth
Hailee Steinfeld
Damian Lewis
Kodi Smit-McPhee
Ed Westwick
Paul Giamatti
Music by Abel Korzeniowski
Cinematography David Tattersall
Edited by Peter Honess
Echo Lake Entertainment
Swarovski Entertainment
Distributed by Entertainment Film Distributors (UK)
Relativity Media (US)[1]
Universal Studios (CA)
Release dates
  • 11 October 2013 (2013-10-11) (United Kingdom)[2]
Running time
118 minutes[3]
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget £15 million
($24 million)
Box office $1,162,635[4]

Romeo & Juliet is a 2013 British film adaptation of William Shakespeare's romantic tragedy of the same name directed by Carlo Carlei. The film opened in the United Kingdom and the United States on 11 October 2013.

Like Franco Zeffirelli's adaptation of Shakespeare's tragedy, this film uses the traditional setting of Renaissance Verona,[5] but, unlike previous major film adaptations, this film only follows the plot and only uses some of Shakespeare's traditional dialogue. This has led to a controversy, with several critics denouncing the film's advertising as misleading, and losing the essence of the play.[6]


During the Late Middle Ages in Verona, two wealthy families, the Montagues and Capulets, have been feuding for centuries. The young Romeo Montague, secretly attends a party held by the Capulets, and there meets the beautiful Juliet Capulet. Romeo falls in love at first sight, and after a brief meeting between the two, Juliet returns his affections. Only later does Romeo realize Juliet is a Capulet and vice versa, but this fact does nothing more than increase their passion for one another. Romeo and Juliet decide to get married immediately, where they take one another to bed for the first and only time. After the ceremony Romeo is involved in a fight in which his friend Mercutio is killed by Tybalt, Juliet's cousin, and in turn Romeo slays Tybalt. Romeo is banished from Verona and Juliet's father demands she marry Paris, a wealthy acquaintance of the Capulet family. Juliet, seeking a way out of this arrangement and planning on reuniting with Romeo, calls Friar Lawrence, the monk who married the young couple, for help. He delivers a potion that gives the impression that she is dead, and agrees to pass on a note to Romeo. Romeo never receives the note, and returns believing Juliet dead. He goes to her crypt and ends his life next to her. Waking up moments later, Juliet discovers the body of her beloved, and fatally stabs herself.



Principal photography started on 3 February 2012 in Italy.[7] The film was shot at the grotto Sacro Speco in Subiaco; Mantua;[5] Caprarola, Lazio; Cinecittà, Rome; and in Verona. The first pictures of the set were posted on Italian newspaper Gazzetta di Mantova on 14 February 2012.[8][9] Steinfeld finished filming her scenes on 7 March 2012.[10]


Ed Westwick was the first actor to read the script.[11] In April 2011, Hailee Steinfeld was said to be in talks for the lead role as Juliet in this adaptation.[12] Owing to Steinfeld's young age, there was some concern she would be asked to appear nude in the film. Director Carlo Carlei explained "there was a lovemaking scene that included nudity for the married Romeo and Juliet. This script was written with a 20-year-old actress in mind. As soon as Hailee Steinfeld was cast, all nudity and lovemaking have been excised from the script. It will be romantic and age-appropriate for a 14-year-old."[13] Julian Fellowes added, "We did feel it would be nice to have romantic, married love, and that purity was an important part of the film. They don't make love until they have been married."[5]

The role of Romeo was found in June 2011 when Douglas Booth was cast, beating out 300 other actors who were interested in the part.[14]

Paul Wesley had been offered the role of Count Paris,[15] but it was announced in February 2012 that Tom Wisdom would play him.[16]


Relativity Media was paid for by the producers to release the movie in North America on 11 October 2013, while the film was released through D Films in Canada on the same date.[1][17] The premiere was held in Hollywood on 24 September 2013 at the ArcLight Hollywood.[18] It was released in Australia on 13 February 2014.

Critical reception[edit]

The film has received negative reviews from critics, as it currently holds a 22% approval rating on aggregate review site Rotten Tomatoes with an average score of 4.5/10, based on 75 reviews with the consensus: "Shakespeare's classic romance gets a so-so adaptation that's short on passion and energy."[19] The film has a 41 out of 100 rating on Metacritic, based on 30 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[20] Tony Howard, in his Around the Globe review writes that the film is "unique in its disrespect for the play, the actors, and young people".


  1. ^ a b Ford, Rebecca (11 June 2013). "Relativity Acquires U.S. Rights to 'Romeo & Juliet' Starring Hailee Steinfeld". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 14 August 2013. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "ROMEO & JULIET (PG)". Entertainment Film Distributors. British Board of Film Classification. 24 September 2013. Retrieved 24 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "Romeo and Juliet (2013)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c Bamigboye, Baz (22 March 2012). "Fellowes' Romeo will put Twilight stars in the shade". Daily Mail. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  6. ^ Duffin, Claire (1 September 2013). "Romeo, Romeo, what's Julian Fellowes done to you?". The Telegraph. Retrieved 3 September 2013. 
  7. ^ Labecque, Jeff (3 February 2012). "Hailee Steinfeld begins 'Romeo and Juliet' in Italy". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  8. ^ "Romeo & Juliet, Mantova diventa set della tragedia di Shakespeare - Fotogalleria". Gazetta Di Mantova (in Italian). 14 February 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012. 
  9. ^ "Photos of Douglas Booth & Hailee Steinfeld on ‘Romeo & Juliet’ Set". Page to Premiere Network. February 16, 2012. Retrieved March 8, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Twitter / HaileeSteinfeld: Bitter sweet day today". 7 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012. 
  11. ^ Cunningham, Erin (11 October 2013). "Ed Westwick on Life After Gossip Girl". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 12 October 2013. 
  12. ^ Kit, Borys (7 April 2011). "Hailee Steinfeld in Talks to Star in Indie 'Romeo & Juliet' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  13. ^ Krager, Dave (10 June 2011). "'Romeo and Juliet' director: No nude scene for Hailee Steinfeld -- EXCLUSIVE". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 18 February 2012. 
  14. ^ Chitwood, Adam (21 June 2011). "Douglas Booth Cast as Romeo Opposite Hailee Steinfeld in ROMEO AND JULIET". Collider. Retrieved 19 February 2012. 
  15. ^ Rosenfield, Kat (19 July 2011). "Romeo May Have Competition In 'Vampire Diaries' Star Paul Wesley". MTV. Retrieved 19 February 2012. 
  16. ^ Brooks, Brian (1 February 2012). "Tom Wisdom Set For ‘Romeo and Juliet’". Retrieved 19 February 2012. 
  17. ^ Vlessing, Etan (13 October 2013). "D Films Picks Up 'Romeo & Juliet' for Canadian Release". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 16 October 2013. 
  18. ^ Smarp (25 September 2013). "Ed Westwick in ArcLight Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA, USA". Retrieved 25 September 2013. 
  19. ^ "Romeo and Juliet (2013)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixter. Retrieved 9 October 2013. 
  20. ^ "Romeo & Juliet Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 12 October 2013. 

External links[edit]