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Look at This Butthead in the Trailer for A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM

Every film adaptation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream gets progressively weirder, but we may be hitting our peak with this year’s model. The star-studded cast (including American Horror Story’s Lily Rabe, Whedon favorite Fran Kranz, and ’90s sweetheart Rachael Leigh Cook) is worth noting, as is the modern-day setting of the woods of Greece. More remarkable, though, is how bizarre every frame looks—particularly the very literal interpretation of Bottom (Fran Kranz) as an “ass.” That’s right, the man whose head becomes a horse’s in traditional productions becomes a butthead. And everyone seems more or less OK with that. (That probably has something to do with Titania, here played by Mia Doi Todd, having ingested a love potion. But we digress.)

Along with a buttheaded man, we’re treated to an animated sequence, an avant garde filmmaker, mountaintop yoga, surfing sessions, and lots and lots of sex. None of this is so mind-blowing; the relatively simple story structure and Shakespearean tropes of mistaken identity and star-crossed love allow for some creativity on the part of the filmmakers. Given the pedigree of these actors—Rabe is a Shakespeare in the Park vet, and Kranz made a great Claudio in 2012’s Much Ado About Nothing—we’re not too worried about the quality of performance. And we’re willing to accept a bit of weirdness with our Will.

Though this might be more than a bit, let’s stick with cautious optimism for now. It’s been nearly a decade since the last great film adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and our bodies–butts included–are ready.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream premieres at the Los Angeles Film Festival on June 17.

Image: Empyrean Productions

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