The best of Robin Hood on screen and in literature

On the big screen

1991 Prince of thieves is far from Robin’s first cinematic appearance, but it’s certainly one of the most memorable thanks to its all-star cast. Kevin Costner dons the pantyhose in this rendition, taking on Alan Rickman as sheriff – we also see Morgan Freeman as fugitive Azeem and Sean Connery as King Richard.

Several years later, Men in tights gave us another iconic take on the hero, this time taking himself a lot less seriously. Director Mel Brooks loosely follows the rhythms of the story set by Prince of thieves, but fills the movie with jokes and musical numbers to keep it light.


Before Men in tights, there was Maid Marian and her merry men, a BBC comedy series created by Black viper actor Tony Robinson. Originally created for children, the show was also beloved by parents for its underlying social commentary and pop culture references.

The Outlaw returned to the BBC in 2006 with a more gritty series simply titled Robin Hood. Jonas Armstrong starred in a story intended to have clear parallels to modern politics, but it gradually came to a halt due to numerous departures of actors over its three years of execution.

In Animation

Perhaps the most recognizable version of Sherwood’s hero is Disney’s Robin Hood, featuring the main character as a charming fox and his buddy Little John as a bear. The songs are super catchy and the classic hand-drawn animation is flawless, making it one of the best portrayals of Robin Hood.

A version of the character with a French accent appears in the first Shrek film, dubbed by Vincent Cassel. “Mister Hood” and his Merry Men are shown as minor antagonists in this performance, performing a musical number as they attempt to kill Shrek, before being singlehandedly defeated by Princess Fiona.

In the litterature

Marian by Ella Lyons reinvents the legend from a love interest perspective, moving to Nottingham from the countryside. In this story, the Robin Hood with whom she falls in love is a young woman who wants to become a knight and ends up protecting her from the king.

The recent Mad Cave Studios Nottingham The comic takes a new take on the legend, following the Sheriff of Nottingham as he attempts to hunt down the Merry Men in a ‘Real detective-black medieval style ‘.

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