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Otello is a 1986 film based on the Giuseppe Verdi opera of the same name based on the Shakespeare play Othello. The film was directed by Franco Zeffirelli and starred Plácido Domingo (in blackface) in the title role, Katia Ricciarelli as Desdemona and Justino Diaz as Jago.


With only a few exceptions, the film follows the same plot as the opera. Jago plots and brings about Otello's downfall by convincing him that his wife Desdemona is engaged in an affair with the young lieutenant Cassio, provoking Otello to murder her in a blind rage.



For the most part, the film follows the original score of the opera with several noticeable exceptions. There are, at various points, cuts in the music (such as when the end of the storm scene chorus is cut short and the film skips to the recitativo between Jago and Roderigo. At other points, the extra music from the rarely performed third act ballet (written for the opera's Parismarker premiere) is inserted in thefestivities of the first and third acts in the opera in the film.


The film was nominated for a Bafta Award for the Best Foreign Language Film in 1987, but the award was won by Ran from Akira Kurosawa. In the same category, it was nominated for a Golden Globe as well. The film was also entered into the 1986 Cannes Film Festival.

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