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To Sheen, perchance to dream

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Laura Chamberlain Laura Chamberlain | 15:53 UK time, Thursday, 13 May 2010

Michael Sheen is to take the title role in Shakespeare's Hamlet at the Young Vic theatre in London next year.

Michael Sheen

The actor has been acclaimed for his past portrayals of David Frost, Tony Blair and Brian Clough. The Young Vic staging of Hamlet will be directed by Ian Rickson.

"It's the most dangerous play that exists, yet our culture has made it safe," Sheen told The Guardian. "It has become a rite of passage play for actors. But it is about the very nature of life, death and reality. What I want is to make it difficult and jagged again, unsettling and uncomfortable and disorienting for the audience."

"One of the advantages of coming at it at this end of my career is that I am less concerned with establishing myself as an actor. I've done enough things to realise that unless the whole piece is working, it doesn't matter whether your part is big or small."

Sheen will also return to his native Port Talbot in April 2011, to appear in a mystery play for National Theatre of Wales written by Welsh poet Owen Sheers.

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