While Hulu’s Rosaline gives viewers a fresh look at the story of Romeo and Juliet, it gives star Minnie Driver a chance at Shakespearian redemption.
“I was invited by the National Theater of Great Britain,” according to Driver. “They got a collection
of actors together. We didn’t know that it was a giant audition for Romeo and Juliet. We thought we were just there to do a study group.”
Driver took to the stage first and performed the balcony scene. Artistic director Richard Eyre greeted her performance with biting criticism. “He was like, ‘That was so great because it’s really important to see how not to do it. Every pitfall that you fell into are pitfalls that actors fall into with this role. So, good job. You can sit down now.'”
Despite the experience, which Driver described as “humiliating,” she actually agreed with him. “And I can recite the balcony speech in my sleep,” says Driver.
Now gets to return to Romeo and Juliet, this time as Janet, the nurse, in Rosaline. “I love that character,” gushes Driver. “I love all of the sort of vague resentment and sadness of this lost life that you know nothing about. This film has nothing to do with Janet’s other life. But I like that you feel it there. And I love how much she loves her girl and how she wants the best for her girl.”
Best of all, her character is much more engaging than the traditional nurse role in Romeo and Juliet. “It was the worst part at drama school. Nobody ever wanted to be the nurse because it was like the boring old person,” according to Driver. “But now in this, she’s obviously youthful and vigorous and extremely funny. I was thrilled to be part of this whole thing with all these lovely people ’cause they’re all good souls. They’re all lovely, good humans, and that’s what’s most important.”
Rosaline is streaming now on Hulu.
“Rosaline” is a fresh and comedic twist on Shakespeare’s classic love story “Romeo & Juliet,” told from the perspective of Juliet’s cousin Rosaline (Kaitlyn Dever), who also happens to be Romeo’s recent love interest. Heartbroken when Romeo (Kyle Allen) meets Juliet (Isabela Merced) and begins to pursue her, Rosaline schemes to foil the famous romance and win back her guy.