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Quills (2000) More at IMDbPro »

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Quills -- QUILLS imagines the final days of the Marquis de Sade as a blistering black comedy thriller, a battle between lust and love - and between the brutality of censorship and the consequences of free expression.
Quills -- hv post


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Writers (WGA):
Doug Wright (play)
Doug Wright (screenplay)
View company contact information for Quills on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
25 December 2000 (USA) See more »
There are no bad words... only bad deeds. See more »
In a Napoleonic era insane asylum, an inmate, the irrepressible Marquis De Sade, fights a battle of wills against a tyrannically prudish doctor. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 21 wins & 38 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
provocative, daring study of sexuality See more (313 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Geoffrey Rush ... The Marquis de Sade

Kate Winslet ... Madeleine

Joaquin Phoenix ... Coulmier

Michael Caine ... Royer-Collard

Billie Whitelaw ... Madame LeClerc

Patrick Malahide ... Delbené

Amelia Warner ... Simone
Jane Menelaus ... Renee Pelagie

Stephen Moyer ... Prouix
Tony Pritchard ... Valcour

Michael Jenn ... Cleante
Danny Babington ... Pitou
George Antoni ... Dauphin (as George Yiasoumi)

Stephen Marcus ... Bouchon

Elizabeth Berrington ... Charlotte

Edward Tudor-Pole ... Franval
Harry Jones ... Orvolle
Bridget McConnell ... Madame Bougival (as Bridget McConnel)
Pauline McLynn ... Mademoiselle Clairwill (as Pauline Mclynn)
Rebecca Palmer ... Michette
Toby Sawyer ... Louison
Daniel Ainsleigh ... Guerin

Alex Avery ... Abbe du Maupas
Terry O'Neill ... Gaillon
Diana Morrison ... Mademoiselle Renard
Carol MacReady ... Sister Noirceuil (as Carol Macready)
Tom Ward ... The Horseman

Richard Mulholland ... Fop

Ron Cook ... Napoleon
Julian Tait ... Pawnbroker
Deborah Vale ... Sister Rose Fatima

Tessa Vale ... Sister Flavie
Howard Lew Lewis ... First Vendor
Andrew Dunford ... Second Vendor

Lisa Hammond ... Prostitute
Mathew Fraser ... Lunatic Band Member
Jamie Beddard ... Lunatic at Play
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Ivana Basic ... Lunatic (uncredited)
Royston Munt ... Footman (uncredited)

Directed by
Philip Kaufman 
Writing credits
Doug Wright (play)

Doug Wright (screenplay)

Produced by
Julia Chasman .... producer
Mark Huffam .... co-producer
Peter Kaufman .... producer
Des McAnuff .... executive producer
Sandra Schulberg .... executive producer
Nick Wechsler .... producer
Rudolf G. Wiesmeier .... executive producer (as Rudolf Wiesmeier)
Original Music by
Stephen Warbeck 
Cinematography by
Rogier Stoffers (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Peter Boyle 
Casting by
Donna Isaacson 
Priscilla John 
Production Design by
Martin Childs 
Art Direction by
Steven Lawrence 
Mark Raggett (supervising art director)
Set Decoration by
Jill Quertier 
Costume Design by
Jacqueline West 
Makeup Department
Jo Allen .... prosthetic technician
Nuala Conway .... chief hair stylist
Nuala Conway .... chief makeup artist
Martha Fein .... prosthetic technician
Andy Hunt .... prosthetic technician
Peter King .... hair designer
Peter King .... makeup designer
Kate Lee .... hair stylist
Kate Lee .... makeup artist
Conor O'Sullivan .... prosthetic supervisor
Robin Schoonraad .... prosthetic technician
Tristan Schoonraad .... prosthetic technician (as Tristam Schoonraad)
Stuart Sewell .... prosthetic technician
Jeremy Woodhead .... hair stylist
Jeremy Woodhead .... makeup artist
Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou .... makeup hair artist (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
James Armstrong .... third assistant director: second unit
Vic Armstrong .... second unit director
Toby Hefferman .... second second assistant director
Olivia Lloyd .... second assistant director
Matthew Penry-Davey .... third assistant director
Mari Roberts .... third assistant director
Deborah Saban .... first assistant director
Richard Styles .... first assistant director: second unit
Art Department
Dominic Ackland-Snow .... supervising carpenter
Steve Alder .... carpenter
Martin Asbury .... storyboard artist
Mark Bailey .... stagehand
Geoff Ball .... carpenter
Vince Bartlett .... props runaround
Gerry Batson .... props runaround
Ashley Bell .... plasterer's laborer
Ernie Bell .... painter
Otis A. Bell .... chargehand plasterer's laborer (as Otis Bell)
Frances Bennett .... graphics
Frances Bennett .... stand-by art director
Brian Bishop .... scenic artist
Doug Bishop .... scenic artist
John Blakeley .... sculptor
Celia Bobak .... production buyer
Tony Boxall .... supervising plasterer
Dean Budd .... painter's laborer
Paul Budd .... chargehand painter's laborer
Alastair Bullock .... draughtsperson
Alan Burrows .... construction stand-by
John Butler .... plasterer
Ray Campbell .... stand-by painter
Malcolm Carlo .... stagehand
Neil Clark .... plasterer
Stan Cook .... dressing propman
Chris Corke .... carpenter
Steven Corke .... carpenter
George Coussins .... head carpenter
Richard Denyer .... carpenter
Andrew Dixon .... carpenter (as Andy Dixon)
Keith Dyett .... supervising carpenter
Bob Eames .... carpenter
Stephen Eels .... stand-by carpenter (as Steve Eels)
Gavin Fitch .... assistant art director
Matthew Gray .... draughtsperson (as Matt Gray)
Kavin Hall .... head painter
Richard Hall .... painter
Ralph Harrison .... carpenter
Katy Harvey .... art department assistant (as Katy Pain)
Paul J. Hayes .... carpenter (as Paul Hayes)
Les Hazell .... carpenter
Martin Hedinger .... painter
Jessie Hepple .... art department assistant
John Hicks .... plasterer
Robert Hill .... chargehand painter (as Bob Hill)
Bill Howarth .... painter
Gary Ixer .... stand-by propman
Patricia Johnson .... draughtsperson
Arthur Jones .... supervising carpenter
Leslie Jones .... carpenter (as Les Jones)
Paul Jones .... plasterer
Jennie Lambert .... construction nurse
Robert Langridge .... stand-by stagehand
Richard Lyon .... construction buyer
Kevin McCarthy .... painter
Fred Myatt .... carpenter
Terry Newvell .... chargehand stagehand
Ronald Nicholls .... wood machinist (as Ron Nicholls)
Gary Norris .... plasterer
Ray Norris .... carpenter
Chris O'Neill .... plasterer's laborer (as Chris O'Neil)
Ian Pape .... chargehand rigger
Brian Pegg .... plasterer
Michael Redding .... construction coordinator
Mark Riding .... plasterer
Ian Rolfe .... stand-by rigger
Fred Round .... carpenter
Richard Rowlands .... chargehand wood machinist
Nick Russo .... carpenter (as Nicola Russo)
Andy Sandbach .... stand-by plasterer
Roy Seers .... supervising plasterer
David Skinner .... painter (as Dave Skinner)
Warren Stickley .... dressing propman
Gary Stokes .... plasterer
Don Taylor .... head plasterer
Alistair Thompson .... construction accountant
Alan Tilley .... carpenter
David Trice .... carpenter (as Dave Trice)
Anthony Turner .... plasterer (as Tony Turner)
Bill Turner .... construction runaround
Jeannie Udall .... construction nurse (as Jeanie Udall)
Tim Wake .... carpenter
Peter Wallace .... supervising rigger
Peter Wallis .... dressing propman
Peter Wallis .... propmaker
Peter Western .... supervising painter
Clive Wheeler .... stagehand
Barry Wilkinson .... property master
Jamie Wilkinson .... chargehand dressing propman
Simon Wilkinson .... chargehand stand-by props
David Williamson .... carpenter (as Dave Williamson)
Ken Wilson .... supervising stagehand
Douglas Woods .... plasterer
Sally Dray .... portrait artist (uncredited)
Sound Department
Michael Axinn .... assistant adr editor (as Mike Axinn)
Michael Axinn .... assistant dialogue editor (as Mike Axinn)
Lisa Chino .... assistant supervising sound editor
Frank E. Eulner .... supervising sound editor (as Frank Eulner)
Sue Fox .... adr editor (as Suzanne Fox)
Lora Hirschberg .... sound re-recording mixer
Bruce Lacey .... dialogue editor
Steve Mayer .... sound maintenance
John Midgley .... sound mixer
June Prinz .... boom operator
Bob Risk .... adr editor: UK
Robert Shoup .... sound effects editor
John Verbeck .... foley editor
Christopher Barnett .... re-recording engineer (uncredited)
Brian Chumney .... digital sound technician (uncredited)
Gabriel Guy .... sound re-recordist (uncredited)
Brian Magerkurth .... machine room operator (uncredited)
Colin O'Neill .... digital audio technician (uncredited)
Richard Quinn .... dialogue editor (uncredited)
John Soukup .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Stuart Brisdon .... special effects coordinator
Mark Haddenham .... senior special effects technician
John Van Der Pool .... senior special effects technician (as John Vanderpool)
Ian Lowe .... special effects technician (uncredited)
Mark Roberts .... special effects technician (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Tim Field .... visual effects supervisor
Steven Begg .... visual effects director (uncredited)
Angus Cameron .... digital effects supervisor (uncredited)
Max Dennison .... matte painter (uncredited)
Daniel Pettipher .... digital compositor (uncredited)
Andy Stevens .... visual effects camera assistant: Magic Camera Co (uncredited)
Andy Bradford .... stunt coordinator
Richard Bradshaw .... stunts
Nrinder Dhudwar .... stunt coordinator
Jim Dowdall .... stunt coordinator
Tracey Eddon .... stunts
Neil Finnighan .... stunts
Sarah Franzl .... stunts
Richard Hammatt .... stunt coordinator
Jazzer Jeyes .... stunts (as Jazza Jeyes)
Camera and Electrical Department
David Appleby .... still photographer
Sam Barnes .... clapper loader
Robert Brock .... electrician
Tony Burns .... electrician (as Tony Burnes)
Tony Cardenas .... rigger
Kevin Edland .... rigging gaffer
Jasper Fforde .... focus puller
Peter Field .... camera operator: second unit
Mark Fox-Potten .... rigger (as Mark Fox-Potton)
Stuart Graham .... film loader: second unit
Stuart Graham .... focus puller: second unit
Alan Grosch .... generator operator
John Higgins .... gaffer
Angus Hudson .... camera operator: "b" camera
Gary Hutchings .... camera grip
Martin Lewis .... camera car
Vince McGahon .... Steadicam operator
Ronnie Phillips .... electrician
Alastair Rae .... Steadicam operator
Jose Romero .... rigger
Joe Russo .... rigger
Colin Seers .... rigger
Kenneth Serth .... rigger (as Ken Serth)
John Turner .... electrician
John Ward .... Steadicam operator
Dean Wilkinson .... electrician
Sophie Wilson .... camera trainee
Angus Hudson .... director of photography: second unit (uncredited)
Dylan Jones .... video assistant (uncredited)
Casting Department
Louis Elman .... adr voice casting
Ilenka Jelowicki .... crowd casting assistant
Orla Maxwell .... casting assistant (as Orla Pulton)
Hannah Stokely .... crowd casting assistant
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Anthony Brookman .... wardrobe master
Jane Clive .... costume painter
Ian Maskell .... wardrobe bus
Helen Mattocks .... wardrobe assistant
Michael O'Connor .... assistant costume designer
James Smith .... costumer: Mr. Caine
Suzi Turnbull .... costume supervisor
Editorial Department
Alec Gibson .... color timer
Robert Marty .... post-production coordinator: USA (as Bob Marty)
Julian May .... second assistant editor
Liz Roe .... first assistant editor
Tim Fox .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Harry Muller .... color timer (uncredited)
David Suther .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Location Management
Lara Murray .... location finder
Rachel Neale .... location manager
Samantha Thomas .... location manager: Oxford
Music Department
Matt Barr .... music editor
Chris Dibble .... music mixer
Chris Dibble .... music recordist
Andrew Glen .... music editor (as Andy Glen)
Andrew Green .... additional orchestrator
Andrew Green .... assistant to composer
Andrew Green .... music preparation
Isobel Griffiths .... orchestra contractor
Robert Hollingworth .... choral coordinator
Robin Lee .... music editor
Tony Lewis .... music editor
Graham Read .... music preparation
Stephen Warbeck .... orchestrator
Rolf Wilson .... orchestra leader
Mark Berrow .... musician: violin (uncredited)
Lewis Jones .... assistant music engineer (uncredited)
Bruce White .... viola (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Gary Birmingham .... transportation captain
John Butters .... driver: cast
Andrew Clark .... driver: unit minibus
John Hollywood .... driver: cast
Roy Hopkins .... driver: crowd wardrobe bus
Mike Moran .... driver: construction minibus
Colin Morris .... driver: cast
Neil Pearson .... stand-by driver: props
Jim Pinhorn .... dining bus driver
Gerry Turner .... driver: makeup bus
Other crew
Jane Berry .... trainee script supervisor
Elaine Burt .... production coordinator
Sandra Butterworth .... voice
Paul Clarvis .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Nick Cooper .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Susan d'Arcy .... unit publicist
Joe Dapello .... production counsel: Hollywood Partners (as Joseph Dapello)
Sophie Dasic .... post-production accountant
Nicholas Du Boulay .... floor runner (as Nick Du Boulay)
Martin Flower .... assistant: Geoffrey Rush
David Guymer .... work experience
Christoph Haesner .... production counsel: Hollywood Partners
Carolyn Hall .... financial controller
Tim Harries .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Jono Hart .... assistant: Julia Chasman and Nick Wechsler, USA
Richard Henry .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Sarah Homer .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Paul Jackson .... health and safety officer
Carrie Johnson .... unit nurse
Dave Jones .... facilities generator
Dylan Jones .... trainee script supervisor
Sally Jones .... script supervisor
Debbie Kaye .... horses and carriages
Leslie Kaye .... assistant: Philip Kaufman and Peter Kaufman, USA
Gary Kettel .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Emily Lascelles .... assistant production coordinator
Dominic Latham .... work experience
Elizabeth Lee .... assistant: Philip Kaufman and Peter Kaufman, USA
Sara Longmuir .... accounting assistant (as Sarah Longmuir)
Hilary Marx .... assistant: Julia Chasman and Nick Wechsler, USA
Shaun McKeever .... health and safety officer
Hugh Montgomery .... work experience
Cho Moon .... production coordinator: Hollywood Partners (as Moon Cho)
Sarah Moore .... production runner
Janice Mordue .... title designer
Clarissa Newman .... assistant: Philip Kaufman and Peter Kaufman
Clive Noakes .... laboratory liaison
Sean O'Connor .... unit car
John Parricelli .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Claire Robertson .... assistant production accountant
Martin Robertson .... band member: The Quills Specialist Band
Katherine Rodden .... work experience
Samantha Rosich .... assistant: Julia Chasman and Nick Wechsler
Amanda Scott .... assistant: Kate Winslet
Vicki Sherwin .... work experience
Jeff Sommerville .... assistant: Julia Chasman and Nick Wechsler: USA
Piers Tempest .... assistant: Philip Kaufman and Peter Kaufman
Charles Vaughan .... floor runner
Britta Ziegert .... financial controller: Hollywood Partners
Steve Morphew .... stand-in: Geoffrey Rush (uncredited)
Erin Waters .... office production assistant (uncredited)
David McDowell .... thanks (as David McDowell M.D.)
Jody Podolsky .... thanks
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for strong sexual content including dialogue, violence and language
124 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Geoffrey Rush directed the play that the asylum residents put on.See more »
Continuity: When Madeleine is putting on her dress after getting her wounds clean, she slips her arm into the sleeve twice.See more »
Renee Pelagie:Can I impart to you his cruellest trick.
Dr. Royer-Collard:Of course.
Renee Pelagie:Once, long ago in the folly of youth, he made me love him.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Quills: The Marquis on the Marquee (2001) (V)See more »
Au clair de la luneSee more »


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76 out of 91 people found the following review useful.
provocative, daring study of sexuality, 4 November 2001
Author: Roland E. Zwick ( from United States

It's post-revolutionary France. Napoleon is in power. The Age of Enlightenment is in full swing, yet the remnants of the Dark Ages still linger to restrain the thinking of many a powerful monarch, religious leader and rank-and-file common citizen. In all areas of life, the barriers to freedom and self-expression are rapidly giving way, leaving traditional institutions and values fighting for their very survival. And this includes that most sensitive of all areas, the one that has, perhaps, caused more consternation for the race than any other in our history – determining the role that sexuality plays in defining who we are physically, emotionally and spiritually. Long thought of as little more than a necessary evil, sexuality is suddenly starting to be reexamined in the light of other scientific and academic reassessments. Small wonder that at such a crucial moment in mankind's sexual awakening, a figure like the Marquis De Sade would emerge, a man whose name has since become synonymous with perversion, deviancy and licentiousness. It is this epic struggle between religion and nature for the soul of humanity that Philip Kaufman captures so brilliantly in his wickedly perverse, mordantly witty and brilliantly acted film, `Quills.'

Director Kaufman, working from a screenplay by Doug Wright (based on his play of the same name), chooses to start his tale almost at its end – at the period when De Sade was already wasting away in an insane asylum, considered too perverted and dangerous in his ideas to be allowed to run loose among the general populace. Yet, it's hard to keep a creative genius down – and De Sade has, unbeknownst to the priest who runs the facility, been regularly smuggling out manuscripts to publishers on the outside, much to the chagrin and delight of many elements of the French public. One of those least amused is Napoleon himself, who decides that he must take action in silencing this reprobate once and for all. He decides to send a `specialist' in mental health – one Dr. Royer-Collard, a man more in tune with the techniques of the Spanish Inquisition than of modern medicine – to take charge and bring De Sade to his senses. Wright's and Kaufman's other two main characters include the priest, The Abbe du Coulmier, who is keeper of the institution, and Madeleine LeClerc, a beautiful young devotee of De Sade's work who serves both as laundress and chief smuggler for the author and his works.

In many ways, the most interesting conflict turns out to be the one between De Sade and the Abbe, two men seemingly antipodes apart yet somehow able to find a common ground of mutual respect and understanding. On the one hand, we have a man who has completely thrown away all sexual inhibitions and indeed lives to not only experience every possible sexual pleasure but to encourage others to do so as well. On the other hand, we have a man who has chosen a life of chastity and celibacy, opting to completely shut down the sexual aspect of his life as a pious sublimation to God – and yet neither extreme seems normal, healthy or practicable. In fact, near the end, De Sade suffers the torment of realizing that someone he cares for very deeply has become a tragic victim of one of his `ideas' run amuck, just as the Abbe, after years of repression, finds himself inching ever closer to the insanity that he is supposed to be curing in others.

Interestingly, the Abbe, the representative of the church that held the world in the grip of the Dark Ages for so long, is actually a beacon of enlightened reason compared to Dr. Royer-Collard, the self-ascribed `Man of Science.' Here is an individual actually aligned with the Church's Medieval methods, inflicting any form of excruciating physical and psychological torture on his patients to achieve their ultimate `cure' – though we can see by the way he subtly abuses his own sixteen year old wife that `power' is, as always, the world's strongest aphrodisiac.

Special not must be taken of the superb performances by Geoffrey Rush, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Caine and Kate Winslet. Each does a superb job in bringing these diverse and complex characters to vivid life.

In terms of art direction, costume design and cinematography, the filmmakers do a fantastic job in recreating this strange world of the past - capturing that startling admixture of piety and licentiousness that bespeaks the `dual nature in Man,' which has forever served as the basis for the epic struggle between religion and nature. In a world like the one we live in now - in which explicit pornography has found a comfortable and, indeed, quite lucrative niche - De Sade seems ever more a man ahead of his time. It was his misfortune to be born into a world not quite ready to accept the ideas he had to offer. Yet, had he been living in this century, perhaps we would never even have heard of the name De Sade at all. Perhaps he would be just another anonymous pornographer, using the camera rather than the written word to graphically illustrate his darkest sexual longings. Then again, who knows? Perhaps it would be he who founded a world famous magazine and set up a mansion dedicated solely to the propagation of male sexual pleasure. It is, in the face of `Quills,' a thought worth pondering.

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