William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream is set for a new adaptation and it features a literal butthead. Head of an ass is supposed to be the head of a donkey, but this "fresh" new take will feature a literal interpretation on the age-old pun. Bottom will have an actual ass for a face and you can see it in the picture below, no pun intended. Shakespeare wrote the comedy in 1595/1596 and it portrays the events surrounding the marriage of Thseus, the Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta, the former queen of the Amazons. The events include the adventures of six amateur actors, aka the Mechanics and four Athenian lovers who are controlled and manipulated by fairies who live in the forest where most of the play is set.
The trailer for A Midsummer Night's Dream comes to us courtesy of Entertainment Weekly and in addition to the previously mentioned ass face, the movie will bring the play to modern day 2017. The pompous actor Bottom has his face transformed into an ass by a fairy and then Titania, the Queen of the Fairies falls in love with his cracked face after being drugged with a love potion. It's set in a world where famous stars, commanding moguls, starving artists, and pretenders all try to get ahead. The play is weird enough as it is, so it's hard to imagine just exactly what we're in store for with an updated current times version. If the trailer is any indicator, it's about to get real weird.
The latest adaptation is also notable because it reunites American Horror Story stars Finn Wittrock and Lily Rabe. Wittrock plays Demetrius while Rabe plays the role of Helena. In addition, the movie also stars Rachel Leigh Cook as Hermia, Hamish Linklater as Lysander, Paz De La Huerta as Hippolyta, and Fran Kranz as Bottom, the butt-faced man. The adaptation was shot in 2015 and then post-production started, but director Casey Wilder Mott and crew needed some additional funding to deliver their vision. So the team took to Kickstarter and raised over $58,000 to fully complete the project that is now set to premiere this month.
The last big screen adaptation for A Midsummer Night's Dream came out in 1999 and was directed by Michael Hoffman. The movie received mixed to positive reviews, the latter highlighting Kevin Kline's portrayal of Bottom, who did not have a literal ass for a face. Calista Flockhart as Helena also gained praise and the movie currently sits at 67% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. 18 years later we might be in for the weirdest adaptation yet.
Mott wrote and directed the adaptation, marking his directorial debut. Mott's "fresh and stylish reinvention" of A Midsummer Night's Dream will premiere June 17th, 2017 at the Los Angeles Film Festival. It is not clear when the movie will be available after the premiere, but I'm sure the butt-faced man will generate some buzz, probably not Oscar buzz, but buzz nonetheless. Check out the butthead below.