Restored 'Hamlet' to premiere at Berlin fest


COLOGNE, Germany -- A rediscovered and now restored color version "Hamlet" (1920/21), featuring silent film diva Asta Nielsen as the cross-dressing prince of Denmark, will have its world premiere at the 57th Berlin International Film Festival.

Several black-and-white copies of the film exist but the full-color version has never been shown since the movie's initial release.

"Hamlet" will have its premiere Feb.10 at Berlin's Volksbuehne and features a new score from composer Michael Riessler.

Berlin will hold a special screening of another recently rediscovered work, Giovanni Pastrone's epic "Cabiria." The Berlin Festival will show both versions of the Italian classic, the 1914 silent version and the 1931 sound version, which had been thought lost, on Feb. 17 and Feb. 18. The films have been restored by Turin's Museo Nazionale del Cinema.

Both films fit nicely with Berlin's Retrospective this year, which focuses on images of women in the silent film era.

The 57th Berlin International Film Festival runs Feb. 8-18, 2007.