Julie Taymor’s The Tempest has been chosen to close the 67th Venice International Film Festival on September 11, 2010. The Tempest stars Helen Mirren, Russell Brand, Djimon Hounson, David Strathairn, Chris Cooper, Alan Cumming and Ben Wishaw. The film will be screening out of competition.

Synopsis: In Julie Taymor’s version of ‘The Tempest,’ the gender of Prospero has been switched to Prospera. Going back to the 16th or 17th century, women practicing the magical arts of alchemy were often convicted of witchcraft. In Taymor’s version, Prospera is usurped by her brother and sent off with her four-year daughter on a ship. She ends up on an island; it’s a tabula rasa: no society, so the mother figure becomes a father figure to Miranda. This leads to the power struggle and balance between Caliban and Prospera; a struggle not about brawn, but about intellect.

The Tempest was both directed and adapted, from William Shakespeare famous play, by Julie Taymor. Combining Taymor’s dynamic, visual attention-to-detail with an extremely talented British cast, The Tempest is sure to be a cinematic treat. It’s scheduled to be released in the US during December 2010. A UK release date has not yet been confirmed.