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View Poll Results: Your favorite movie or TV portrayal of Henry VIII?
Charles Laughton, in 'The Private Life of Henry VIII' 4 25.00%
Robert Shaw in 'A Man for All Seasons' 1 6.25%
Richard Burton in 'Anne of the Thousand Days' 2 12.50%
Keith Mitchell, in 'The Six Wives of Henry VIII' series 7 43.75%
Ray Winstone in 'Henry VIII' 2-part TV movie 1 6.25%
Jonathan Rys Meyers in 'The Tudors' series 1 6.25%
Voters: 16. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-20-2007, 04:35 PM
192 posts, read 798,497 times
Reputation: 230


I know there must be other Tudor history buffs out there somewhere!

The poll entries run from the earliest (1933) to the most recent (2007). I didn't include the two-part made-for-TV movie 'Henry VIII and His Six Wives' because that was a latter-day compressed version of the original Masterpiece Theatre series, and both of them starred Keith Mitchell as Henry. Nor did I include movies such as 'The Sword and the Rose' in which Henry VIII does appear but not as one of the two main characters.

If I've accidentally forgotten any Henrys, don't hesitate to mention them here!
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Old 04-20-2007, 04:57 PM
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,920,738 times
Reputation: 3840
I voted for Man for all Seasons, but frankly I haven't seen all that you listed.

It was a wonderful play, and a good movie.

And yes, there are many other Tudor movies/tv shows. I did a google and found some I never heard of.

I'm more an English history/literature buff than a Tudor buff, btw!
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:00 PM
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,936,227 times
Reputation: 13245
Loved Charles Laughton, but had to go for Keith Mitchell. Liked Burton okay, but was never a huge fan. Don't know Winstone.
With Mitchell, I felt as if I were peeking through a keyhole watching the real King.
Robert Shaw was Robert Shaw, which was marvelous, but it wasn't Henry.
Haven't seen Rhys Myers, but as much as I like the guy, I have not got high hopes.
On a competely different note, I just ordered the movie Henry V with Kenneth Branagh. "Once more unto the breach!"
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Old 04-27-2007, 10:30 PM
Location: Warwick, NY
1,173 posts, read 5,514,514 times
Reputation: 975
Every performance is judged against Laughton's. He just seems to have stepped out of Henry's portrait. Shaw's is excellent, but he's not quite Laughton. Laughton had the physical presence and combined the Henry the Tyrant with Henry the Brilliant Monarch with Henry the Cultured Gentleman in such a seemless way that his portrayal was completely believable. His Oscar was well earned and deserved.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:57 PM
Location: South of Oz & North of Shangri-La
7,129 posts, read 4,119,547 times
Reputation: 3081
I hate to be nitpicky, but I remember the miniseries so well. The actor's name is Keith Michell, not Mitchell.

From IMDb: Keith Michell, the Emmy Award-winning Australian television and movie actor best known for portraying King Henry VIII ...

I remember because I was certain that he was going to go on to other great acting roles. I love the portrayals by Richard Burton and Charles Laughton especially, but Michell covered the whole gamut as I recall. I might be mistaken, as it's been a very long time, but I seem to remember him playing a more-detailed role physically.

So, I'll vote for him because that role made me remember his name since 1970. Therefore, I'm guessing that he must have done a great job. Or, maybe I had a crush.

EDIT: Oh my! I just voted and see that he has the majority. Maybe memory is serving me well after all.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:42 AM
Location: Hawaii/Alabama
1,703 posts, read 3,173,296 times
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Ray Winstone was a fantastic Henry VIII; I believe his 2 part series came out in 2003. If you haven't had the pleasure of seeing this version I think that you would enjoy it.
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:13 AM
Location: Colorado
4,308 posts, read 11,813,797 times
Reputation: 4425
Can I vote for two? I liked both Richard Burton and Charles Laughton as they portrayed Henry at different times of his life. Burton when Henry was still healthy, young-ish and lusty. Laughton as Henry got older and bigger, altho he really didn't show Henry's psychotic side.

Never saw the Ray Winstone version - have to look it up on Netflix.

Jonathan Rhys-Meyers was the absolute worst !
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Old 02-07-2013, 02:49 PM
9,293 posts, read 9,245,126 times
Reputation: 11758
I've only seen the movies, not the television, but I think I'll always have a soft spot for the Charles Laughton version - although my favorite thing in the movie is really Elsa Lanchester, his wife.
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