IMDb > But I'm a Cheerleader (1999)
But I'm a Cheerleader
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Brian Wayne Peterson (screenplay)
Jamie Babbit (story)
View company contact information for But I'm a Cheerleader on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
11 August 2000 (USA) See more »
A Comedy Of Sexual Disorientation
A naive teenager is sent to rehab camp when her straitlaced parents and friends suspect her of being a lesbian. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins & 2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
fun clever comedy See more (185 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Natasha Lyonne ... Megan

Michelle Williams ... Kimberly
Brandt Wille ... Jared

Bud Cort ... Peter

Mink Stole ... Nancy

RuPaul ... Mike (as RuPaul Charles)
Katie Donahue ... Cheerleader #1
Danielle Reneau ... Cheerleader #2

Cathy Moriarty ... Mary Brown

Eddie Cibrian ... Rock

Melanie Lynskey ... Hilary

Clea DuVall ... Graham

Katrina Phillips ... Jan

Katharine Towne ... Sinead

Joel Michaely ... Joel

Douglas Spain ... Andre

Dante Basco ... Dolph

Kip Pardue ... Clayton
Kyle Thatcher ... Joel's Father

Robert Pine ... Mr. Eaton

Rachelle Carson ... Graham's Stepmom

Wesley Mann ... Lloyd

Richard Moll ... Larry

Julie Delpy ... Lipstick Lesbian
Charles Braden ... Bruce
Jacqueline Aguirre ... Extra
Amy Ash ... Extra
William Bilaclac ... Extra
Patricia Cadena ... Extra
Thai Chau ... Extra
Jeff Diehl ... Extra
Tony Dimaio ... Extra
Robert Francis ... Extra
Katina Garrett ... Extra
Terri Gloyd ... Extra

Candi Guterres ... Extra
Nathan Hayden ... Extra
Ryan Nick Hilckmann ... Extra
My Hua ... Extra
Sam Irwin ... Extra
Justine Jagoda ... Extra
Jolynn Jones ... Extra
Seth Jones ... Extra
Bret Keisel ... Extra
Carolyn Krieger ... Extra
Rocky Leiva ... Extra
Alfred Leivas ... Extra
Linda Lichtman ... Extra
Beverly Neufield ... Extra
Lonnie Moreno ... Extra
Sheri Ozeki ... Extra (as Sherri Ozeki)
Charlene Pascall ... Extra
Christopher Perez ... Extra
Jenny Rounds ... Extra
Marilyn Sanders ... Extra
Andrew Seder ... Extra
Bambi Shulte ... Extra
Dawn Stobaugh ... Extra

Heidi Sulzman ... Extra
Manuel Tombakian ... Extra
Jeffrey Vandenburgh ... Extra (as Jeffrey Vandenberg)
Dawn Zika ... Extra
Lindsay Calnon ... Cheerleader
Charlene Hooper ... Cheerleader
Jamie Jessick ... Cheerleader
Angela Klein ... Cheerleader
Kristina Klein ... Cheerleader
Kimberly Martinez ... Cheerleader
Michelle Patterson ... Cheerleader
Bethany Swader ... Cheerleader
Katy Swader ... Cheerleader
Danielle Vachal ... Cheerleader

Jenni Pulos ... Cheerleader (as Jeni Pulos)
Niki York ... Cheerleader
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Robert Farrior ... Extra (uncredited)

Ione Skye ... Kelly (uncredited)

Directed by
Jamie Babbit 
Writing credits
Brian Wayne Peterson (screenplay)

Jamie Babbit (story)

Produced by
Effie Brown .... line producer (as Effie T. Brown)
Michael Burns .... executive producer
Marc Butan .... executive producer
Leanna Creel .... producer
Andy Kaplan .... co-executive producer
Donald Kushner .... executive producer
Peter Locke .... executive producer
Alexis Magagni-Seely .... co-executive producer
Andrea Sperling .... producer
Original Music by
Pat Irwin 
Cinematography by
Jules Labarthe (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Cecily Rhett 
Casting by
Sheila Jaffe 
Julia Kim 
Georgianne Walken 
Production Design by
Rachel Kamerman 
Art Direction by
Macie Vener 
Costume Design by
Alix Friedberg 
Makeup Department
Walter Kenyon .... assistant hair stylist
Walter Kenyon .... assistant makeup artist
Rosemary Lawrence .... key makeup artist
Michele Lewis .... assistant hair stylist
Michele Lewis .... assistant makeup artist
Nicholas Serino .... key hair stylist
Production Management
Effie Brown .... unit production manager (as Effie T. Brown)
Ross Guidici .... post-production supervisor
Wendy Kutzner .... production supervisor (as Wendy J. Kutzner)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
James Barrett .... second second assistant director
Van Hayden .... first assistant director
Linns Williamson .... second assistant director
Art Department
Rob Alexander .... carpenter
Treven Bedwell .... lead man (as Morgan Treven Bedwell)
Lisa Cherry .... scenic artist
Leslie Davidson .... art department seamstress
Candi Guterres .... property master
Jed Hallaway .... carpenter
Pearl Hsiung .... title illustrator
Susan Hutchinson .... lead scenic artist
Eric Jobson .... carpenter
Melissa R. Jones .... scenic artist (as Melissa Jones)
Bill Kincaid .... swing gang
Frank Lawas .... assistant property master
Minette Lew .... art department seamstress
Peter Mathus .... swing gang (as Peter Mathis)
Takashi Matsubara .... swing gang
Bryan Matulay .... property master (as Bryan Daniel Matulay)
Frank Mazzotta .... carpenter
Patricia R. Mitchell .... scenic artist (as Patricia Mitchel)
Gayle Mosely .... art department seamstress
Jeff Nakao .... swing gang
Steve Nestlerode Jr. .... construction coordinator
Kat Pankam .... art department assistant
Nick Ralbovsky .... on-set dresser
Andrea Rutledge .... lead art department seamstress
Margie Schnibbe .... assistant property master
Kye B. Sharp .... carpenter
Brent Smith .... carpenter
Suzette Stotts .... scenic artist
Adam Svatek .... carpenter
Tracy Michele Tabb .... graphic designer (as Tracy Tabb)
Jed Hathaway .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sound Department
Trip Brock .... supervising sound editor
Stan Bush .... sound effects editor
Eric A. Christoffersen .... sound consultant: Dolby (as Eric Christoffersen)
Kevin Compayre .... boom operator
Jason DeLaurentis .... assistant sound editor
Jim Eustace .... foley artist
Shawn Holden .... sound mixer
Daniel S. Irwin .... adr supervisor
Todd Langner .... adr mixer
Jen MacNeill .... foley artist
Greg Morgenstein .... assistant sound editor (as Greg Morganstein)
Tim O'Connell .... sound re-recording mixer
Peter Persaud .... foley recordist (as Pete Persaud)
Scott Purdy .... foley recordist
Scott Purdy .... sound re-recording mixer
Lisalee Starkman .... assistant sound editor (as Lee Starkman)
Ronald J. Webb .... sound effects editor
Skip Williams .... dialogue editor
Brad Zoern .... foley recordist (as Brad Zorn)
Mark Zsifkovits .... sound re-recording mixer
Dennis C. Salcedo .... sound mixer (uncredited)
Jenessa Salcedo .... sound utility (uncredited)
Mike Woroniuk .... sound re-recording mixer (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Tony Venezia .... digital effects: THDX
Christopher Dusendschon .... in-show optical process and effects compositor: THDX (uncredited)
Christopher Dusendschon .... optical element Hazeltine colorist: THDX (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Mike Bergstrom .... first assistant camera
Kevin Cadwallader .... electrician
Eric Cross .... best boy grip
Amy Hoffecker .... electrician
Jeffrey G. Hunt .... Steadicam operator (as Jeffrey Hunt)
Patrick Lennon .... gaffer (as Packy Lennon)
Mark Lipson .... still photographer
Denis Maloney .... camera operator: "b" camera (as Dennis Maloney)
Eamon McGillicuddy .... key grip
Gabe Miller .... grip (as Gabriel Miller)
John M. Plume .... electrician
Beth Puorro .... second assistant camera
David C. Romano .... grip (as David Christian Romano)
David A. Seekins .... camera loader (as David Seekins)
Jandy Sexton .... grip
Joann Sweiven .... best boy electric
Chris Thornton .... grip
Michael Valenzuela .... grip
Jon Weiner .... electrician (as Jonathan M. Weiner)
Casting Department
Sherry Aude .... extras casting: Millennium Casting
Victor Dagan .... extras casting: General Casting
Jessie Disla .... casting associate
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Kimmie Furlong .... costume supervisor
Frank Helmer .... set costumer
Larry Karns .... tailor
Kim Kottler .... wardrobe intern
Editorial Department
Jon Cinman .... post-production assistant
Adam Clark .... color timer
Bryson Jones .... avid technician
Mike Knibbs .... post-production assistant
Mary Nelson-Duerrstein .... negative cutter: Executive Cutting
Joel T. Pashby .... assistant editor
Music Department
Ryan Brown .... assistant music supervisor
William Garrett .... music producer
William Garrett .... music recordist
Pat Irwin .... musician: guitars, keyboard
Sara J. Seiver .... musician: cellist
Stephen E. Smith .... music supervisor
Greg Vossberg .... music editor
David Falzone .... music consultant (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Tom Calzia .... transportation captain
Jeffrey F. Jones .... driver (as Jeff Jones)
Luis Mata .... driver
Manuel Ruiz .... driver
Steve Shoemaker .... driver
Kevin Simmons .... driver
Darcy Souza .... driver
Travis Stake .... driver
Vaughn Wahlen .... driver
Greagrey Waldrop .... transportation coordinator (as Greag Waldrop)
Other crew
Ray Amador .... location intern
Jose Avitia .... titles and opticals: Title House
Michael Back .... set production assistant
Blake Busby .... titles and opticals: Title House
Genevieve Chalom .... assistant: Ms. Creel
Lara Cody .... adr loop group
Nicole Colombie .... production secretary
Robert Darwell .... legal counsel: Troup, Steuber, Rasich, Reddick & Tobey (as Robert A. Darwell)
Shawn Davis .... production coordinator
Karen Marls Dinwiddie .... assistant accountant (as Karen Marls Dimwiddie)
Michael Enriquez .... set production assistant
Kai Ephron .... location manager
Ted Gidlow .... production executive: Ignite
Kent Hamilton .... production insurance
Candice Hinds .... choreographer: cheerleaders
Ben Hines .... set production assistant
Heather Jones .... choreographer: cheerleaders
Nikki Kelber .... unit publicist: MPRM
Nikki LaRosa .... office production assistant
Sandy Laureno .... craft service
Michael Lawson .... unit publicist: MPRM
Monika Lowe .... set production assistant
Bernice Moschini .... production accountant (as Bernice B. Moschini)
Jonathan Nichols .... adr loop group
Mark Patterson .... key set production assistant
Jennifer Rae Smith .... titles and opticals: Title House
Irwin M. Rappaport .... production attorney (as Irwin M. Rappaport Esq.)
Kristi Reed .... epk: Farm Fresh Productions
Michael Reisz .... adr loop group
Dan Riley .... legal assistant
Ian Root .... assistant location manager
Tino Sage .... epk: Farm Fresh Productions
Marcia Scanlon .... office production assistant
Pat Scanlon .... production coordinator
Eddie Schmidt .... hot gluer
Marianne Shiffrar .... payroll accountant
Michael Sipes .... post-production accountant (as Michael D. Sipes)
Robert 'Skid' Skidmore .... set production assistant
Winnie Tanaka .... script supervisor (as Carrie 'Winnie' Tanaka)
Daisy Tormé .... adr loop group
Truman Van Dyke .... production insurance
Keith Allan .... thanks
Mark Allan .... thanks
Gregg Araki .... thanks
Harold Babbit .... thanks
Nikki Babbit .... thanks
Jen Baers .... thanks: Digital Soup
Scott Bernstein .... thanks
Tom Bianchi .... thanks
Ridge Blackwell .... thanks
L.D. Brinkman .... thanks
Pete 'The Chairman' Burns .... thanks
Melissa Busby .... thanks
Fernando Cardenas .... thanks
Chic Chaldu .... thanks: Sony Pictures Studios, Property
Morty Coyle .... thanks
Winston Creel .... thanks
Rachel deBrier .... thanks
David Drake .... thanks
Julia Drumheller .... thanks (as Julie Drumheller)
Clea DuVall .... thanks
Melissa Etheridge .... thanks: Island/Polygram Records & WF Leopold Management
Keythe Farley .... thanks
Robert Farrior .... thanks (as Rob Farrior)
Michael Fisher .... thanks
Molly Fitzsimons .... thanks (as Molly FitzSimons)
R. Lee Fleming Jr. .... thanks (as Lee Fleming)
Matt Frauman .... thanks
Morgan J. Freeman .... thanks
Ari Gold .... thanks
Kal Gowdy .... thanks
Enid Graddis .... thanks
David Hagberg .... thanks (as Dave Hagberg)
Martha Haight .... thanks
Christopher Johnson .... thanks
Mark Kaplan .... thanks
Heather Kindberg .... thanks
Josh Kramon .... thanks
Steven Levy .... thanks
Patty Long .... thanks
Christopher Makos .... thanks
Tony Maxwell .... thanks
Jeffrey Nicholson .... thanks
Narween Otto .... thanks
Christine Palczynski .... thanks
Julie Pearce .... thanks
Jodi Peikoff .... thanks
Angela Robinson .... thanks
Victoria Robinson .... thanks
Matthew Saver .... thanks
Joan Scheckel .... thanks
Jenny Shimizu .... thanks
Parker Shipp .... thanks
Debi Shockley .... thanks
Ione Skye .... thanks
Kelly Sounders .... thanks
Lara Spotts .... thanks
Sean O. Strub .... thanks (as Sean Strub)
Joel Unangst .... thanks
Scott Valentine .... thanks: Sony Pictures Studios, Property
Andrew Volk .... thanks: B. Black and Sons
Barney Volk .... thanks: B. Black and Sons
Jan Watkin .... thanks
Kim Welsh .... thanks
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for strong language and sexual content involving teens
85 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:M | Canada:14A | Canada:18A (Manitoba) | Germany:12 | Malaysia:(Banned) | New Zealand:M | Sweden:7 (DVD rating) | UK:15 | USA:R | USA:NC-17 (original rating)

Did You Know?

Cathy Moriarty asks a character if she wants to be a "raging bull-dyke." Moriarty received an Oscar nomination for her role in Raging Bull (1980).See more »
Crew or equipment visible: When the pickup truck is pulling away in the last scene, a larger truck pulling the pickup can be seen through the tree and even hitting branches of the tree.See more »
Mary:Get out of bed! You hormonal hussy! I can't believe you did this. You were supposed to be the role model! Now, Get - Up - Right - Now!See more »
Movie Connections:
Evening in ParisSee more »


Where can I buy the soundtrack?
Chapter Headings, a semi - official version:
See more »
65 out of 82 people found the following review useful.
fun clever comedy, 15 August 2001
Author: Roland E. Zwick ( from United States

As gays and lesbians have achieved more and more acceptance in our society, a countervailing force – led mostly by conservative religious organizations - has been rearing its head in recent years. The movement is often referred to as `reparative therapy,' the rather absurd notion that, with just a little grit, determination and behavior modification, homosexuals can be `cured' of their `illness' and groomed to take their place as fine, upstanding members of the heterosexual community. Certain `treatment centers' dedicated to this dubious cause have even begun to spring up in areas around the country, modeling themselves after 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous.

The makers of `But I'm a Cheerleader' have chosen to have a little fun with the concept, imagining one of these centers in almost surrealistic terms. Sweet-faced Natasha Lyonne stars as Megan, a regular teenager happily content to give her all to her cheerleading squad and only mildly confused as to why she can't seem to get quite as excited by her boyfriend as by thoughts of her buxom cheerleader buddies. Suspecting her of being a lesbian – long before Megan herself does, actually – her `concerned' parents, friends and boyfriend cart her off to True Directions, a treatment center tucked safely away in the country. In this bucolic setting, Megan and a group of other `deviants' are put through the rigors of a 5-step therapy program which includes admitting their homosexuality, undergoing gender role playing and even `practicing' man/woman sexual behavior under the stern tutelage of the mistress of the place. In keeping with the near-surrealism of the subject matter, the center is done up in an almost Montessori school motif, with bold colored walls and furniture somehow emphasizing the cold, inhuman sterility of the setting.

`But I'm a Cheerleader' is, by no means, a great or entirely successful comedy. Its attempts at humor, particularly in its opening scenes, seem a bit forced and heavy-handed at times. Moreover, the tone shifts a bit uneasily every so often, running the gamut from stylized absurdity to heartbreaking seriousness. Still, the undisciplined messiness is really part of the film's overall charm. It removes the work from the same category as all those ultra-slick bubble-headed comedies about teens that major studios seem to release with frightening regularity. And the movie does have many laugh-out-loud moments of inspired lunacy, showing to what preposterous lengths many straights and even some pressured gays will go in order to `correct' the uncorrectable. We see the girls being given instructions on how to use a vacuum cleaner, wear makeup and change diapers. The boys are instructed in the fine arts of wood chopping, throwing a football and fixing cars. These scenes work, in particular, not only for their comic effectiveness but their underlying poignancy, as these scared youngsters – many threatened with disownment by their parents if they don't `straighten up' – give it their all, against all hope, to truly change, to deny the very person their raging hormones are screaming at them to be.

The movie also manages to make the gay characters seem real and believable. Thanks to a superb cast, many of the teens emerge as touching, three-dimensional people rather than the cartoon characters that they might have become in a similar film of this kind - particularly when it would be so easy for them to become so in the face of the caricatures of parents and camp counselors who swirl around them in this highly stylized setting. Prime among these is Cathy Moriarty, brilliant as Mary, the prim and proper leader of the establishment, a woman whose righteous wrong-headedness the actress captures to a comic tee. In contrast, Rue Paul, out of drag for once, gives a superbly understated performance as an `ex-gay' now working for the enemy. Among the teens, Lyonne and Clea DuVall, as the girl Megan falls in love with, are the obvious standouts. They turn these potentially cardboard comic characters into full-sized, instantly recognizable young women filled with yearning, confusion and a desire to both please others and be true to themselves.

And that is the ultimate message of this film. Though done in an absurd way, the movie strives to point out that all of us must be allowed to be who we are and to live the life that best suits us. Whether we are gay, straight or whatever, that's a philosophy of life we all need to be reminded of from time to time.

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