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The Tempest Resources

Movie or TV Productions

Taymor Takes on The Tempest (2010)

In Taymor's fantastical adaptation of the play, Prospero becomes a woman (Prospera, played by Helen Mirren) whose brother banishes her to an island where she has a big showdown with Caliban (Djimon Hounsou).

The Tempest (1998)

An adaptation of The Tempest set in… the Mississippi bayous and during… the Civil War. 

Prospero's Books (1991)

An artsy and surreal film obsessed with what's in Prospero's infamous library.

Prospero's Mid-Life Crisis?

In the film Tempest (1982), a New York architect dumps his wife and heads to Greece for some self-reflection and R & R.

The Tempest (1979)

A gothic/punk film adaptation of The Tempest. According to IMDb, a primary plot keyword is "Male Frontal Nudity," with capital letters and everything.

The Tempest Goes Sci-Fi in Forbidden Planet (1956)

In this film adaptation, Ariel is a robot. Of course.


Director Julie Taymor Hearts Shakespeare

Check out the one and only Julie Taymor talk about why she loves Shakespeare and The Tempest, and why she turned Prospero into Prospera.

2010 Movie Clips

Scroll down and look to the left for three clips from Taymor's 2010 adaptation of The Tempest.

The Tempest and the Civil War

Watch the trailer for the 1998 film adaptation of The Tempest, set in the American South during the Civil War.


"Helen Mirren Twists Shakespeare in 'The Tempest'"

An NPR Talk of the Nation episode about Helen Mirren's performance as Prospera in Taymor's 2010 film adaptation of The Tempest.

Speak the Speech

An audio play production of The Tempest!


Montaigne's "Of Cannibals" (1580)

Shakespeare (a notorious and unapologetic plagiarist) cribbed Gonzalo's utopia speech from Montaigne's famous essay.

An Introduction to The Tempest

An introductory lecture on different ways to look at The Tempest, either as a play about the playwright's stretch of the art and the imagination, or a political and social commentary about colonialism and imperialism in contemporary England.

A Tempest: Based on Shakespeare's the Tempest: Adaptation for a Black Theatre, by Aime Cesaire

Cesaire creates a post-colonial version of The Tempest, filling characters into roles contemporary with colonialism: Caliban is the black "field slave," Ariel an eager-to-please mulatto "house servant," and a trickster character, Esu Elegba is added from Yoruba mythology.

Online Versions of Shakespeare's Plays

An incredible resource for any student—all the plays are collected in one place, in full text, with breakouts for each character.


The Sea Venture

Many scholars think that The Tempest may have been inspired in part by the actual shipwreck of the Sea Venture. Read all about it here.

Art, Literature, and More That Reference The Tempest

A personal website collecting references to The Tempest by name or subject, in books and films over time. Some paintings and references are neatly aligned next to their referent. Definitely a lot of detail can be found here—a valuable starting spot when beginning research about a particular area or idea in the play.


Stone Sculpture

Eric Gill's sculpture Prospero and Ariel.

Discovery of the Bermudas

Title page for the travel tract, "Discovery of the Bermudas, Otherwise called the Isle of the Devils."

Ferdinand and Miranda Playing Chess

This is a painting by Lucy Madox Brown.  (Is Ferdinand cheating?  Look at his left hand!)

Caliban Goes to the Ballet

A photo of Caliban from Ballet San Jose's adaptation of The Tempest.

Theater Sketch of Caliban

Check out theater designer Malcolm Brown's sketch of Caliban.

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