A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935 film)

See Instrumentation and synchronization

A Midsummer Night's Dream is the title of an American comedy film directed by Max Reinhardt and William Dieterle, staged in 1935. The screenplay is based on the eponymous play by William Shakespeare. The film premiered on October 9, 1935, both in London and New York City. In Germany the film was first shown on October 1, 1962 as a television premiere in the ARD.


Theseus, the ruler of Athens, is preparing for the wedding with the Queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta. In these preparations, he finds out that there is in his court many intrigues and love intrigues. Lysander and Hermia are lovers, but Hermia 's father Egeus urges Theseus to marry his daughter to Demetrius. Theseus decrees that Hermia have to submit to her father's wishes, otherwise they will remain unmarried until her death.

Hermia flees to a nearby wooded area and there marries Lysander. Demetrius pursues, but is in turn pursued by Helena, which he rejected. The couple comes to the court of the fairies. King Oberon is jealous because his wife Titania feels attracted to a man kidnapped boy. Oberon instructs the sneaky puck to lure the boy from Titania and to provide them with a love potion. Puck administered the potion not only the boys, but Lysander and Hermia, both fall in love with Helena just arrived, both declines again.

A troupe of actors headed by Quince comes into the forest to rehearse there. In the sample Puck transforms the main character list into a donkey. By pucks magic to Titania in love with paper. Now he can get rid of the boy. Puck gets pity Titania and lifts the spell on. In addition, it also removes the effect of the potion on Lysander and Hermia, who are now reunited, while Demetrius falls in love with Helena. The actor list is changed back to a human.

The two lovers return to Athens to celebrate the marriage of the ruler. At the celebration of Theseus picks up his excommunication on Hermia. You can now marry Lysander. Quince and his troupe perform on a romantic comedy in which the slightly retarded Flaut the girl and Thisbe list plays her lover Pyramus. As viewers flock to the idea that the fairies say goodbye to the lovers.

Instrumentation and synchronization

The German synchronous processing was made in 1981 on behalf of ARD.


  • For Max Reinhardt was the first and only film he made in Hollywood. Also, it was his last film. As Reinhardt spoke no English, acted his directing partner William Dieterle primarily as an interpreter. In the first week of filming Dieterle was alone responsible director of the film, because there had been disputes over Reinhardt between production company Warner Bros. and a French co-producers.
  • The dance scenes were choreographed by Bronislava Nijinska and Nini Theilade.
  • As a sound engineer Nathan Levinson was hired in 1943 won an Oscar. For special effects, among others attended who later became known as a director Byron Haskin and Hans F. Koenekamp. As a camera assistant worked the later three -time Academy Award winner Robert Surtees.
  • For Olivia de Havilland, the film marked the feature film debut, after playing the role of Hermia on an outdoor stage in Saratoga. Max Reinhardt saw her and cast her as a replacement for the ailing Gloria Stuart.
  • At the time of National Socialism in Germany, the film was banned as director Max Reinhardt ( born in Austria ) and Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (see Chapter Soundtrack) were of Jewish descent.
  • Underground - director and author Kenneth Anger scandal claims to have played the Indian prince in this movie. This is now regarded as refuted, the child actor Sheila Brown is said to have embodied the role in his only film appearance.

Film Music

The musical director Leo F. Forbstein set for the film together following pieces by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, all of which have been adapted and directed by Erich Wolfgang Korngold:

  • Spring Song from Twelve Songs, Op 8
  • Overture to A Midsummer Night's Dream, Op 21
  • Symphony No. 3 in A minor (also known as Scottish Symphony ) - sung by Olivia de Havilland, Dick Powell, Ross Alexander, Jean Muir, James Cagney and Joe E. Brown
  • Children's Pieces No. 1: Allegro non troppo - sung by James Cagney
  • Spinning Song C Major from Songs without Words, Op 67 No 4
  • Lullaby from Songs without Words, Op 19, No. 6 - sung by Anita Louise and James Cagney
  • Symphony No. 4 in A major, Op 90 (known as the Italian Symphony )
  • Lullaby from Songs without Words, Op 67, No. 6
  • Philomel - sung by Anita Louise
  • Scherzo in E minor
  • Hand in hand with fairy grace - sung by Anita Louise
  • Over hill and dale, through bush and shrub - sung by Nina Theilade

The voice of Anita Louise was from Carol Ellis.


" Closely related to the stage play, splendidly equipped, decorated with fanciful cinematic trick wizardry and played well. "

" Theater guru Max Reinhardt and William Dieterle William Shakespeare's amorous classics transformed into an exuberant Hollywood fantasy. "

"The question whether a Shakespeare play can be produced successfully by elaborate style of the film, can be answered in this laudable effort. The famous story of A Midsummer Night's Dream, half of which plays in the illusory world of elves and fairies, is technically successful. The imagination, the ballet of the entourage of Oberon and Titania and the figures in the eerie scenes are compelling and enticing fantastic. The film is filled with wonderful scenes, beautifully filmed and presented charming. All Shakespeare fans will be delighted at the soothing sound of Mendelssohn melodies. The actresses are always better than the men, even as they have better inserts. Dick Powell is miscast: he never seems to be able to capture the spirit of the piece or the roll. Mickey Rooney as Puck is so hard to be cute, that it is almost annoying. There are some spectacular views, especially Victor Jory as Oberon convinced. Its clear, distinct voice shows bring what careful recitation and good interpretation. Olivia de Havilland plays fine, just as Jean Muir, veree Teasdale and Anita Louise as Titania modern foil made, but which is often blurred in their lines. "


Academy Awards 1936

  • Oscar in the category Best camera for Hal Mohr
  • Oscar for Best cut for Ralph Dawson
  • Nomination for Best Picture
  • Nomination in the former category best assistant for Sherry Shourds