Released – October, 1934
Directed By – Cecil B. DeMille
Starring – Claudette Colbert (Cleopatra), Warren William (Julius Caesar), Henry Wilcoxon (Marc Antony), Joseph Schildkraut (King Herod).
Description – The Love Affair That Shook The World!
It’s 48 BC and the Egyptian kingdom of Queen Cleopatra is threatening revolt. The impending visit of Roman Emperor Julius Caesar presents an opportunity for Cleopatra to solidify her rule.
Cleopatra sets out to seduce Caesar in a political move to keep her empire. The attraction between Caesar and Cleopatra becomes a shared one, with the Roman Senate afraid that Caesar may divorce his wife to be with the beautiful Queen and that Rome would cease to be a republic.
Before this could happen Caesar is murdered on his way to speak in the Roman Senate. With the great Caesar dead the Senate decides that Rome will be jointly ruled by Caesar’s nephew Octavian along with Marc Antony a Roman politician and general.
It is now also the duty of Antony to avenge the death of Caesar. Antony arranges a meeting with Cleopatra with the hope of capturing her. However, the Queen has other ideas and captures Antony taking him to her ship where she also seduces him.
As a result of this liaison, Marc Antony is declared a traitor to Rome. The ruthless ambition of Cleopatra is now evident as the Queen learns that her relationship with Rome would be greatly improved if Antony were dead.
NOTABLE: Cleopatra won the Academy Award for Best Cinematography, and also received nominations for Best Picture, Best Assistant Director, Best Film Editing, and Best Sound, Recording.
While popular here in America, the film was strongly criticized in Italy as being a “travesty and burlesque.”