The first-person "fantasy" documentary Three Days of Hamlet is pinned on an insane stage premise. In three days flat, real-time, actor-manager Alex Hyde-White attempts to rehearse and stage a non-costumed performance of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
It certainly helps that he has collaborators like Richard Chamberlain and Stefanie Powers. But ultimately, the movie – screening September 20th at Illinois' Naperville Independent Film Festival – and Hyde-White's performance as Hamlet connect first and foremost to his own personal history.
“Part of Hamlet is or course his relationship with the ghost of his father, so there was a symbiotic connection for me to the subject matter,” Hyde-White told KSDK-TV in St. Louis earlier this year. “A part of me is willing talk about it now. Initially, I wasn't."
"My dad was a well-known British character actor, Wilfrid Hyde-White. My Fair Lady.... Buck Rogers in the 25th Century was his last big TV credit," he added. "Anytime you grow up in the shadow of a famous and articulate father, it's an issue. And put that in a public arena and there are interesting stories. We sort of goose it a little bit.”
When Three Days screened this spring at the Palm Beach International Film Festival, a reviewer for Boca Raton magazine deemed the doc to be far superior and more personal than Al Pacino's Looking for Richard. High praise indeed.
Hyde-White and Powers will be in Naperville for next week's screening. Afterwards, the two will mingle with festival goers at a special reception.
[Three Days of Hamlet]