Tom Hiddleston will recite Shakespeare’s ‘Sonnet 18’ just for you: awesome?

Lord, Tom Hiddleston is looking especially good today, isn’t he? After the crapfest that is Katia Elizarova’s interview and the subsequent acknowledgement that Benedict Cumberbatch has terrible taste in ladies (and/or friends), I’m looking at Tom Hiddleston with new eyes. These are some newly-released images from Tom’s vampire turn in Only Lovers Left Alive. Tom borrowed his most busted Loki wig for the role, I’m guessing. But the image of Tilda Swinton with (what I’m assuming is) a blood popsicle gives me life. POPSICLE REALNESS.

Two more pieces of Hiddleston news. You know how he’s doing Coriolanus at the Donmar Warehouse? Well, the performance is going to broadcast live on January 30th next year, so the performance has a “trailer”. Tom sounds pretty good here:

And here’s the other Hiddles thing I found today – apparently, Hiddleston took part in a little side project involving (guess who?!) Shakespeare. Tommy has recited Bill Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 18” for a “web-based project called The Love Book.” It’s an app with “a carefully curated selection of brilliant poems, quotes, short stories and love letters all inspired by that most noble (but troublesome) theme of love.” The app will benefit the charity Children In Need. Here’s a wonky recording of Tom:

Photos courtesy of ‘Only Lovers Left Alive’.

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93 Responses to “Tom Hiddleston will recite Shakespeare’s ‘Sonnet 18’ just for you: awesome?”

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  1. Pastyousayyouneverknew says:

    I think he sounded amazing, gave me chills, still doesn’t sound as good as Cumberbatch though 😉

  2. Sixer says:

    I know they probably cut him to ribbons in the Coriolanus trailer, but that’s much more like it. Able summary with a personal tone. Hooray! The Tomster has finally said something I like.

    That surgeon pic makes me a bit giddy.

    ETA: thanks for the post, Kaiser.

    • j.eyre says:

      I can’t decide between the intense one-eye stare over the chessboard shot or the open bathrobe on the couch with naked Tilda leg shot. I mean, we both know eventually I am going to go with both, but the torment in the meantime is so delicious.

      Oh, my inner dragonfly is racing around looking for its mommy pr0n for ideas.

      ETA: yes, thank you Kaiser

    • T.Fanty says:

      My phone posts kept vanishing, and they were epic.

      Bottom line: Hiddles not fangirling about Shakespeare – good. I like that he notes it’s a later play, because it’s relevant, and I like that he trips himself up by talking about private experience too early. It’s very cute. I do, however, hope that he doesn’t play Caius as a total martyr. I’m looking forward to seeing Tom play a snooty bitch.

      And, can we acknowledge the beauty of the white shirt, locked in a battle to contain TommyAnne’s magnificent torso?

      • Sixer says:

        I like an obnoxious Martius, too. Actually, I’m quite looking forward to seeing what kind of patrician Tommy-omelette imagines him to be.

        But this is how I want him to be about Shakespeare: knowledgeable, clear, and personal in a way that doesn’t make me need an emesis basin.

        Yes to torso!

      • j.eyre says:

        I am rooting for the torso… no, the shirt… wait, no, the torso.

        Maybe just the battle?

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        I’m tired of the white shirt, but an totally on with everything else you are saying. He might just pull this off.

        I like a man who plays chess. And wears weird dressing gowns. Mmmmm.

      • Lucrezia says:

        Each to their own. I actively dislike that white shirt. Is it slightly transparent? It certainly looks a different shade at the buttons where it’d be double-thickness. Makes it look old and worn out.

        I have nothing against see-through … fishnet would be fine. I just don’t like the “worn thin from repeated washing” look.

      • icerose says:

        The infamous white shirts which he buys in bulk.
        I am hoping for a hard pig headed Coriolanus because there is a great scene after he has been thrown out of the city in which he breaks down. It could be an epic emotional contrast and he excels at those.

      • T.Fanty says:

        I’m just looking forward to him shedding his cloak of humility. Show those scars, Caius!

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        Ahhhhhhh I have a big soft mushy spot for cummings…. 🙂 he also appears to love Auden. I would love to guide him gently toward surrealism and the avantegard.

      • Eve says:

        *does her best Puss’n’Boots big eyes impression*

        Would you guys accept me (back) as one of the draggonflies? I can’t take CumbyRova bullsh*t anymore.

        Yes, TommyAnne can be extremely annoying but in terms of passing his penis around, he seems to have been slightly smarter than Drunk Uncle Cumby.

      • Sixer says:

        They haven’t run me off yet, Eve, and I am the world’s worst Negative Nellie about TommyAnne. I should thi k the’ll dance a jig if you return!

      • Eve says:

        @ Sixer:

        Hmmm, interesting…

        But, you see…I need to hear that from the masters of the castle (T.Fanty, J.Eyre, Miss Jupitero).

        P.S.: When they arrive, tell them I looked like this when I asked that:

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        @eve: come back, come back, come back. Please. You are missed.

      • T.Fanty says:

        *joyfully throws open the gates and plays a little carnival music to make Eve feel at home*

        *also unlocks the cabinet with the fancy shanks in case Eve gets feisty*

      • Eve says:

        Carnival music as in itinerant circus/amusement park’s music? Because I LOATHE Brazilian Carnaval.

        Mind you, I’d like to enter (strutting, obviously) to the sound of my beloved Leonard Cohen singing “I’m Your Man” or “The Darkness”.

      • T.Fanty says:

        Done. Whatever you want. Then let’s get drunk and watch the cornetto trilogy.

      • Eve says:

        Preferably, while eating cornettos!

      • Vesta says:

        *sits by the typewriter somewhere in the currently chaotic CumberLand and sends fan mail @Eve to Dragonfly Castle*

        “Dear Eve,

        I’m glad to hear you’re back.
        I live in a cold northern country, so there’s always use for your warm (or hot if you prefer that) Brazilian breeze ~~~~~~~~~~

        I enclose a hand-made permanently sharp platinum shank for you (and since my reflexes are slow, just cross my fingers that I’ll never find it from my own back…)

        Beijos, from V “

      • Eve says:

        @ Vesta:

        Much calmer here, non? *breaths a sigh of relief*

        And I have no illusions about TommyAnne. The wonderful team of draggonflies have figured him out a long time ago — and they decided to have fun with that.

      • Vesta says:


        With TommyAnnE (god his name is hard to spell correctly, I’m gonna call him just TommY) one apparently starts from the ground/underground, so in a way the only direction is up 😉

        I wish TommY could get to my nerves as much as Cumby does, but what can you do – I’m blind as a bat when in love.

        I should try to find glasses similar to T.Fanty’s avatar goggles, they seem to give very accurate sight. (Your black magic bikinis would do the same trick too, but it’s freezing here…)

  3. Lizzie says:

    I swear to God….I actually giggled like a idiot when he read that poem.

    • sqs says:

      Having downloaded the app, I must urge you to listen to him read the ee cummings poem May I Feel Said He.

      • icerose says:

        oh yes the EE Cummings poet does it for me as well-love that readibg

      • Lucrezia says:

        I love Tom’s voice, but I dunno about anyone trying to read ee Cummings aloud. There’s usually a subtle kick or twist with the punctuation or grammar … something you’d only get if you actually see the poem in writing.

        In this case, there’s a play on divinity with “Mine” being the only capitalised word.

  4. Nanea says:

    Tilda will receive an award on Oct. 2 in Hamburg. My husband and I are going to the award ceremony/OLLA premiere, but I have no idea if Hiddles will show up as well. He’d better!

  5. Anna says:

    Damn, Tilda! That’s my spot on his lap!

  6. sqs says:

    Finally, a meaningful app for my teenaged daughters (and myself, of course).

  7. Side-Eye says:


  8. Elodie says:

    Yes Tom Hiddleston, you are perhaps Shakespeare’s biggest stan to date but the man from his grave would say “gimme a break and try other poets and writers ffs didn’t you study literature?!!!”

    Me bitch I know… *sigh of no regret*

    • icerose says:

      There is another AP with him on it which includes different poets and The Owl and the Pussy Cat with Helen Bonham Carter. Not sure if this is the same AP or not.I know he had done two but I do not use them so its only what I read

    • Flower says:

      Well said…

  9. Miss Jupitero says:

    I am liking all of this. 🙂

  10. Walt Jr! says:

    Tell me when and where! Tilda is an other world-y alien goddess!

    • Lucrezia says:

      That blood popsicle shot is absolutely incredible. She looks so wild and fey.

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        If I can make it to NYFF for the viewing next week I will, and Tfanty, we are going to have to find some deep red Popsicles 🙂

  11. DesertReal says:

    sweet jesus that man is way too tan. im sorry but he’s like…browner than I am? hiddleston: stop rotissering yourself.

  12. icerose says:

    I have tickets for the Only Lovers Left Alive UK premier with Q & A. I suspect Tom may be there but not sure about Tilda.

    He is onto his leadership kick again which was one of his focuses in Henry Vth. Coriolanus was a bad ass martyr in the end. I like that Coriolanus has arrogance, anger and redemption-its an interesting arc. But it is probably played best if as the actor you think of him as a hard done by hero and not as a superior prick which he is at times.

    • Sixer says:

      I would have called the opposite about him: I think he comes over sometimes as a passive aggressive hard done by wannabe hero, but never a superior prick.

      • icerose says:

        I probably depends on how he is played. He says some pretty demeaning stuff about the common people but I suppose it depends on how you view those comments and the tone in which they are played. It’s his arrogance that makes it easier for Aufidius to get rid of him. I do think he is hard done by but also that he brings some of it on himself. And he definitely has some mother issues.

      • Sixer says:

        My apologies, icerose. I completely misread your comment: I thought you were talking about Tommy-omelette, not Caius Martius. I should have realised you’d never call the Tomster a superior prick!

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        I don’t see Coriolanus as a leader who stands for something– he crosses to the other side because he is pissy about being rejected by the very people he looks down upon. Volumnia is the one who saves Rome in the end.

      • Miss Jupitero says:

        I don’t see Coriolanus as a leader who stands for something– he crosses to the other side because he is pissy about being rejected by the very people he looks down upon. Volumnia is the one who saves Rome in the end.

        And yeah, serious mommy issues. But then Volumnia gave him no nourishment .

    • G. says:

      Sorry if I ask, but the UK premiére you’re referring to is the London Film Festival one on October 19? and there will be a Q&A? thanks!

  13. icerose says:

    There is a long in depth interview re Shakespeare/HollowCrown floating around where he is asked some really intelligent questions by an interviewer who knows what he is talking about about.His answers are quite different to his normal run of the mill PR stuff. If I can find it I will post a link.

  14. anjulie says:

    Does anyone know if they release these broadcasted plays on DVD? I’m pretty sure they won’t be showing it out here in the prairie badlands.

    • icerose says:

      They have not done so far but they are recorded and they do encore viewings if they are popular. I am guessing their are issues re contracts with those involved actors etc have not been contracted for DVD. There is actually a recording of Cymbeline with Tom which was produced for schools but people have asked if it could be released but were told it was not possible. There is I have been told even a recording of Ben Wilshaw’s Hamlet which I think you can request to watch at some archive.

    • T.Fanty says:

      They’re streaming them on – it’s a bit of a treasure trove over there. They also give you access to the Tennant Hamlet and McKellen’s Lear.

  15. serena says:

    Oh. My. God.
    He looks so handsome and hot with that wig, wtf he should always wear that! (even tho I like him anyways). Tilda looks awesome too, I can’t wait to see this movie!

  16. Lisa says:

    What about when Alan Rickman read Sonnet 130? <3

  17. Mary-Rose says:

    I couldn’t concentrate on the first video due to the orange glow shinning off him. Honestly TommyAnne, stop playing with the fake bake will you?
    In the second video , I’m surprised he doesn’t recite the poem as he’s a huge Shakespeare fan. But forget the love app: you need to hear him read the James Bond thing. It’s like ….. Gaaaaaa 😉

  18. icerose says:


    I am pretty sure most of us can be superior pricks at some time including Tom. One day I might surprise you with a negative Tommy comment I am just waiting for him to do something that really pisses me off like cancelling his New Years Eve performance or singing Cameron’s praises in relation to the arts and NHS funding.

    • Mary-Rose says:

      I can’t see him cancelling any performance unless he’s sick or has a genuine family emergency. Our TommyAnne LOVES the limelight too much.
      I could see him doing the Cameron thing without thinking, hence the fact he’s now following Clegg and Mr Beaniband now even though their policies will in no way affect or benefit him whatsoever.
      I really don’t like it when TommyAnne unintentionally patronises ‘Normal ‘ people but its Luke fault for not telling him to stay away from the subjects which lead to that

      • icerose says:

        He follows all the leaders on twitter. But which ever party he came out for he would probably get hammered by one side or the other. If he goes Labour he will be accused of being a champagne socialist, if he goes conservative one of the educated elite.

  19. moon says:

    For a RADA and Cambridge graduate, that really wasn’t a very good reading of Sonnet 18 was it? It wasn’t bad, but it was so school boy recital-ish. Cumby would’ve made that sonnet come alive with more emotion and made the words actually mean something.

    • icerose says:

      Sometimes Benny overdoes the deep dramatic voice and the words get lost in his performance. It probably depends how you like your poetry/Shakespearean readings. I am a let the words speak for themselves and do not overdo the dramatics. For me it’s about focus not performance.

      • moon says:

        I get what you mean about being overdramatic…but nonetheless in acting, the words should sound like they mean something to you. I’m not saying overdo the theatrics, but don’t just be flat either.

  20. Browniecakes says:

    Get the Love Book app – it is fabulous. TH’s reading of ‘Let Me Put It This Way’ by Simon Armitage is worth the price of admission. Sports a Southern accent for ‘Life Story’ the funny poem by Tennessee Williams. Make sure you are not driving or operating heavy machinery during his ‘May I Feel Said He’ by ee cummings. Wow. Many more.

  21. Vesta says:

    “After the crapfest that is Katia Elizarova’s interview and the subsequent acknowledgement that Benedict Cumberbatch has terrible taste in ladies (and/or friends), I’m looking at Tom Hiddleston with new eyes.”

    Kaiser, with these lines you just made my day 🙂

    • Katie says:

      That made me laugh too. Hiddleston’s run of ladies is pretty questionable, but he’s smarter about it for the most part. [I’ll admit I couldn’t care less about who they bed. The gossip is just fun.]

      I’ve heard mixed things about OLLA. Anyone here see it?

  22. T.Fanty says:

    So, did anyone see the new Thor trailer during the break of S.H.I.E.L.D. (man that’s going to be annoying to type) last night? Looks like they’re trying to stamp it as a Whedon film now.

    • Browniecakes says:

      with added bitchy Jane footage!

    • Browniecakes says:

      Alan Taylor reported that Joss Whedon flew to London to do some re-writes on ‘Thor the Dark World’. Joss’ Twitter response: “Joss Whedon ‏@josswhedon 19 Sep
      Internet blithely oversells my tinkering on @ThorMovies script — & FAILS to mention my body doubling for Hemsworth”

      • Eve says:

        “Internet blithely oversells my tinkering on @ThorMovies script — & FAILS to mention my body doubling for Hemsworth”

        LOL! I love this man (Whedon, not HAMsworth).

  23. flower says:

    I would love it, don’t care for Mr Shakes, but Tom has a gorgeous voice. He could read me the tax forms from the IRS and it would be pure sex.

  24. Browniecakes says:

    If your fav thing about TH is his voice, then the Love Book app is not to be missed.

  25. Virgilia Coriolanus says:

    Now does ANYONE get where my name is from? Hint, hint my favorite Shakespeare play.

  26. icerose says:

    We had to do some live poetry work on my drama course and we on poets like EE Cummings, Robert Creeley,and Michael McClure. It worked really well.It also helps if you know the poetry as well before you hear it. But my feeling is that the APS are more about listening than subtle interpretations.

  27. Mary-Rose says:

    Some peeps on Twitter were talking about this article apparently someone analysised TommyAnne’s handwriting.

    • flower says:

      Oh I remember that, always wondered how much of it was spot on.

    • kaisei says:

      That was a curious thing to read.
      Problem with graphology is that your handwriting can change with time due to things happening to you, or much more simply, because you don’t write as much as you used to (computer, smartphones etc) or you are in a hurry.
      For example, given the amount of people asking for a signature at events, he now just scribbles his name.

      What about this one?

      • Mary-Rose says:

        I’ve always got the feeling that he wants to move away from the Loki connection but he doesn’t make it easy for himself by willingly doing promos dressed as Loki and interviews about him. Hemsworth managed to tone it down so I don’t understand why TommyAnne won’t if he’s wants to move away from Loki

      • browniecakes says:

        Not sure how you got that impression Mary-Rose. He has Loki fan art in his home. All actors want to diversify but he loves Loki as much as his fans do.

  28. FW says:

    So sad I’m a windows phone user. I can’t even spend the money…Tom’s Bond audio book is on sale in Amazon. That I can have~

  29. Gin Princess says:

    Hi, longtime listener, first time caller… *curtsies*

    The other app is called IFPoems and I defy your ovaries not to quiver when he and Helena Bonham Carter read ‘Us Two’ by AA Milne.

  30. Mary-Rose says:

    I really want TommyAnne to play Richard ii. Not only does he resemble the monarch but I could really think he could make it his own. Even though he was great as Hal and ok but better than ken as Henry, I think he’ll smash it playing Richard ii. Especially on stage. Pity Tennant got there before him.
    What does everyone else think?