Life would certainly be very different for William Shakespeare if he was around in this day and age. Of course, the ingenuity of his work would remain intact. Hopefully. But considering how the archaic nature of the English language has drastically diluted over time, possibly Shakespeare too would have altered a little to “fit in”. Not that he’d need to, because according to Philosophy Now:
Shakespeare’s plays fall into the class of art Nietzsche described as the “highest task and the proper metaphysical activity of this life.”
And that’s probably why he is lauded for his work even today. Context has changed, our ideologies have changed, but Shakespeare is still the first to be picked up by those just stepping into the world of English literature, and he continues to remain a favourite among avid readers and theatre fans.
But if Shakespeare was around today, his work would definitely be very different in form and format. We asked a bunch of Shakespeare fans what they thought we’d get to witness if the Bard were alive, and we received some interesting, some hilarious, and some witty responses:
A common thought among fans was the understanding that he‘d probably be a screenwriter or director rather than a playwright.
So here, take a look at what most of the fans suggested:
1. Omkara, Maqbool and Haider would have ended up being inspired by older “movies”, not plays. And they would be as rage as Bhai movies. Because masses are the shiz!
2. To make more and more money, Shakespeare would write sequels to all his great movies. Romeo & Juliet: The Lovers Avenged; Macbeth: The Madness Returns, et al.
3. If he were alive, he’d probably not be liked by many because of the massively misogynistic undertones to all his writing.
4. Imagine William Shakespeare going to a stationery store and saying, “2B or not 2B, that is the question?”, before getting strange looks from the shop owner.
5. Chetan Bhagat would lend to him on social media. Nolan would direct a film scripted by him for HBO/Netflix. The Bhatts would copy his ideas and make a film.
6. Romeo would meet Juliet at a house party, get trippy, and maybe enjoy a threesome involving Rosaline, while the bouncers would “take care” of all their “enemies”. Then R would get serious about J but neither would believe in marriage as a concept.
7. All those politician memes we come across these days, would be work coming straight out of Shakespeare’s office.
8. Shakespeare would write his first listicle with the headline: “15 ways in which Hamlet can go mad”
9. King Liar would be a movie about how a ruling party causes doom to its nation. It starts to trust and joins hands with only those who recite “the words” that laud their nation but whose actions display a lack of patriotism.
10. All those Marlovian and other theories would be dismissed by one single tweet from the verified @TheRealShakespeare account.
11. He would be really pissed off at the Indian movies adapted from his writings.
April 24th is William Shakespeare’s birthday and we can’t stop thinking about him!
Are you a (real) Shakespeare fan? What do you think Shakespeare would be doing if he was around today? Share your thoughts with a comment below.