Kenneth Branagh in the Homework High Chat Room - 15 February 2001, transcribed by The Homework High Team

Kenneth Branagh star of stage, screen, and radio who has played everything from Dr. Victor Frankenstein to Woody Allen, but is most famous for his Shakespearian works, was on Homework High chat on Thursday the 15th of February 2001 .

Here's what was said...

Kenneth Branagh : Hello everyone I'm Ken. Thanks for logging on and I'm happy to answer any questions you may have.

Paula : Who is your favourite Shakespearian character?

Kenneth Branagh : I think it would be Hamlet because he's so varied and having played the part many times it changes as you get older and you see different things each time. It's like your favourite music... if you go back to it when you are older you hear and see different things. It's the most complex and complete of characters that I've played. Plus you get to wear black, which is very slimming (grins)

Dtyson : Hello. I am a 12th grade English Teacher. Are you working on a screen play for MacBeth?

LadyM : Mr. Branagh, can you give us an update on the MacBeth project?

Kenneth Branagh : I have been working on a screenplay for MacBeth.

FlufRegular Steve : So why so gory?

Kenneth Branagh : The book itself is vivid in the way it suggests gore. You have to decide how much you show, but we were very keen to address the issue of physically constructing a human being from parts of other human beings. The horror of doing that is vivid in the book that is why we felt it to be legitimate to make it vivid in the film. But I appreciate it is not to everyone's taste.

Sarah : I especially love Patrick Doyle's score for Frankenstein. Was it your idea to have a score so bold and romantic?

Kenneth Branagh : Patrick and I share those sensibilities in relation to films where the subject matter allows for it. His Celtic personality is bold and passionate and that is reflected in his music. Where profound themes are concerned, he meets the challenge of providing music that matches in size and intensity where required.

Jude : Do you hope to make more interactive CD Roms, like the glorious version of The Little Prince?

Kenneth Branagh : I enjoyed working on that. The story, as many have found, is magical. The imagination behind the interactive CD Rom was very inspiring. I felt it connected in a very organic way to the spirit of the book. If there are other equally imaginative opportunities, I'd be happy to be involved.

Homer : What is your most memorable moment?

Kenneth Branagh : Tough question! My most recent was bringing my new dog home from Battersea dogs home and seeing the look of relief and happiness on her face, matched by my own due to the fact that she has still not poo'd in the house

HH Chat Ed : he he he

HH Chat Ed : bless :)

HH Chat Ed : Well folks, unfortunately our hour is nearly up - so last three questions now, thanks!

blomestyle : In Much Ado About Nothing (my fav. film of yours) what did u actually write on the paper when Benedict wrote something to Beatrice, if anything??

Kenneth Branagh : If I'm thinking of the right scene it was a piece of Shakespeare from the play beginning with the words...the God of love if it was another scene then probably a piece of nonsense

ferrisbueller : What words of advice do you have for a young actor pursuing formal education in theatre?

Kenneth Branagh : If you want to act then at some point, I do recommend drama school if it is possible, practically/financially. Also as much practice as you can get. Much is learnt by actually 'doing'. Supplement this as much as you can. Any chance you get to act, act.

Ladyhawk : If you could talk to William Shakespeare today, what questions would you have for him?

Kenneth Branagh : So many, the first would be, is your name really William Shakespeare or are you any of the other people that may have written your plays? Then I would say...How on earth did you do it? The...What on earth do you think of what has happened to him and his work since he left us? And finally would he explain to Ben Elton why there are no jokes in As you Like It.

HH Chat Ed : And lastly - about your dog :o)

Ladyhawk : What kind of dog?

justicerulesok : What kind of dog is it?

Jude : What have you named your dog?

Kenneth Branagh : Her name is Susie, she is 7. She is a Jack Russell terrier and she is very nice. She already runs my life.

HH Chat Ed : That's it!

HH Chat Ed : Thanks for joining us, Kenneth, that was fabulous

blomestyle : We love u kenneth!!!!!!!!

LadyM : Thank you very much for all you do and keep up the good work!

Arlynn : Thank you!

homer : Bye!!!!!! thanx very much

justicerulesok : Thank you for great films

Rach_M : Thanks for the help with my course work!

Kenneth Branagh : Thanks for all your questions

HH Chat Ed : Chuckles

Ladyhawk : Thanks, and good luck!

Kenneth Branagh : More importantly a big thank you for all the support, cliche though it is, it is true to say that without YOU, we couldn't do what we do.

p : Thanks very much

Kenneth Branagh : We do appreciate it very much.

isashax : Thanks for your films!!!

Kenneth Branagh : Be like Shackleton! Never give up!

Sarah : Ken, you're the best!

Kenneth Branagh : Cheerio....

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