IMDb > Woman on Top (2000)
Woman on Top
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Woman on Top (2000) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 46% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer (WGA):
Vera Blasi (written by)
View company contact information for Woman on Top on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 September 2000 (Greece) See more »
It's gonna be one hot summer. See more »
Brazilian chef Isabella Oliveira moves to San Francisco when her husband, frustrated by her motion sickness, cheats on her. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Tasty Dish, but more of just a side dish See more (83 total) »


  (in credits order)

Penélope Cruz ... Isabella Oliveira (as Penelope Cruz)

Murilo Benício ... Toninho Oliveira

Harold Perrineau ... Monica Jones (as Harold Perrineau Jr.)

Mark Feuerstein ... Cliff Lloyd

John de Lancie ... Alex Reeves (as John De Lancie)

Anne Ramsay ... TV Director

Ana Gasteyer ... Claudia Hunter
Analu De Castro ... Little Isabella - Age 2
Thais De Sá Curvelo ... Little Isabella - Age 5
Eliana Guttman ... Isabella's Mother
Eduardo Mattedi ... Isabella's Father
Ana Paula Oliveira ... Cook
Marilice Santos ... Sexy Neighbor
Giba Conceição ... Troubadour #1
Joaquim Pinto ... Troubadour #2
Vevé Calazans ... Troubadour #3

June Carryl ... Zeke (as June A. Lomena)
Bob Greene ... Nikos
Lázaro Ramos ... Max

Wagner Moura ... Rafi
Cléa Simões ... Serafina
Tom Curti ... Maitre D'
John Crook ... Seafood Restaurant Manager
Jonas Bloch ... Pierre Laroche
Michel Bercovitch ... Academy Student

Carlos Gregório ... Melvin
Malu Pessin ... Esther
Daniele Suzuki ... Yoko
Luis Careca ... Thor

Jerry Penacoli ... Tom Kelly
Inaldo Santana ... Angry Fisherman
Jorge Maia ... Yemanja Waiter
Dizoneth Santos ... Prison Officer

Phil Miler ... Gaffer (as Phil)
Roberta Kennedy ... Bar Waitress

Jeff Scott ... Bar Regular (as Jeff Scott Flores)

Roger Stoneburner ... Bartender
Gordon Hansen ... Bar Regular
Sergio Maciel ... Flower Delivery Man
B. Chico Purdiman ... Guard #1

Bob Sáenz ... Guard #2 (as Bob Saenz)
Thomas Hieatt ... Hippie Prisoner
David Herman ... Photographer
Edlon Tupi ... Jail Guard
Otávio Martins ... P.A.
Inês Cardoso ... Food Stylist

Alan Poul ... Suit
Jim Freeman ... Suit
Adele Proom ... Nikos' Mother
Jujuba ... Monica's Dog - Nancy Reagan
Quake ... Monica's Dog - Nancy Reagan
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Chris Corporandy ... Smitten San Franciscan

Carmen Molinari ... Culinary Student #1

Tina Marie Murray ... Woman on the Street
Piki Chappell ... Violinist (uncredited)

Jim Hechim ... TV Electrician (uncredited)
Calvin Roberts ... TV Camera Operator (uncredited)

Robert Paul Taylor ... News Reporter (uncredited)

Jude S. Walko ... Cable Car Operator (uncredited)

Directed by
Fina Torres 
Writing credits
Vera Blasi (written by)

Produced by
Augusto Casé .... executive producer (as Augusto Case)
Caíque Martins Ferreira .... line producer
Preta Gil .... executive producer
Bronwen Hughes .... executive producer
Nancy Paloian .... co-producer (as Nancy Paloian-Breznikar)
Alan Poul .... producer
Leigh Shanta .... line producer
Elisa Tolomelli .... line producer
Fina Torres .... executive producer
Original Music by
Luis Bacalov 
Cinematography by
Thierry Arbogast (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Leslie Jones 
Casting by
Ruy Brito 
Alexa L. Fogel 
Laura Folger 
Production Design by
Philippe Chiffre 
Art Direction by
Alexandre Meyer 
Set Decoration by
Monica Rochlin 
Costume Design by
Elisabeth Tavernier 
Makeup Department
Catherine Childers .... hair stylist
Colleen LaBaff .... hair stylist: underwater unit
Maria Lucia Mattos .... key makeup artist
Celeste Randall .... key hair stylist
Production Management
Valeria Costa Amorim .... production supervisor (as Valeria Amorim)
Caíque Martins Ferreira .... production manager
Lisa Lynn Kearsley .... production supervisor (as Lisa Kearsley)
Gonzalo Parra .... location assistant production manager
Claudia Reis .... assistant production manager
Linda Warrilow .... production manager: San Francisco Unit
Fernando Zagallo .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Timothy Bird .... first assistant director
Luiz Henrique Fonseca .... assistant director
Leslie Garvin .... second assistant director
Olivia Guimaraes .... assistant director: Brazil
Christopher James Hall .... second second assistant director
Eve Ramboz .... second unit director
David Rimer .... first assistant director
Cris D'amato .... second second assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Cage Copher .... set decorator: San Francisco (as Craig T. Copher)
Claudine Franco .... clearances
Claudine Franco .... product placement
Tracey Gallacher .... art director: San Francisco
Julie Grimm .... art department assistant
Carlos Eduardo Mallet .... assistant art director
Chad Owens .... set designer
Tom Richardson .... scenic artist: San Francisco
Monica Rochlin .... set dresser
Mark Warren .... property master
Sound Department
Glenn Auchinachie .... sound effects editor
Stephen Balliet .... boom operator
Jeff K. Brunello .... sound effects editor
Daniel Camargo .... sound assistant
Paul Curtis .... dialogue editor
Andrew DeCristofaro .... supervising sound editor
Mark DeSimone .... adr engineer
Marshall Garlington .... sound recording mixer
Rebecca Hanck .... sound effects editor
Mark Lanza .... sound effects editor (as Mark A. Lanza)
Michael Meier .... cable person
Michael Mullane .... sound effects editor
Brad North .... sound effects editor
Michael Orlowski .... sound effects editor
Andy Peach .... sound recordist
Stephen P. Robinson .... sound effects editor
George Saldanha .... boom operator
Jorge Saldanha .... sound mixer
Ann Scibelli .... supervising sound effects editor
Dan Scolnik .... foley cue
Dan Scolnik .... foley editor
John C. Stuver .... dialogue editor
Ken Teaney .... sound re-recording mixer
Dave Tinsley .... sound engineer
David F. Van Slyke .... sound effects editor (as David Van Slyke)
Jeffrey R. Whitcher .... sound effects editor
John Soukup .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Thomas A. Barone .... special effects technician: San Francisco
Dennis Becker .... special effects technician: San Francisco
Marcelo Couto .... special effects
Geoffrey Lake .... special effects technician: San Francisco (as Geoffrey Lake)
Tom Sindicich .... special effects supervisor: San Francisco (as Tommy Sindicich)
I.J. Van Perre .... special effects foreman: San Francisco
Visual Effects by
Constance Bracewell .... lead animator
Matthieu Chatelier .... visual effects assistant
Daniel Chuba .... visual effects producer: Hammerhead Productions (as Dan Chuba)
Jamie Dixon .... visual effects supervisor: Hammerhead Productions
Jay Grunfeld .... main title animator
Allison Troxell .... visual effects coordinator
Robert Yamamoto .... visual effects supervisor (as Rob Yamamoto)
Liisa Cohen .... stunts
Ashley Cusato .... stunts (as Ashley L. Cusato)
Trisha Lane .... stunts
Jeff Scott .... stunt coordinator (as Jeff Scott Flores)
Roger Stoneburner .... utility stunts
Astrid Walti .... stunt double: Penelope Cruz
Kris A. Jeffrey .... water safety coordinator (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Tim Bellen .... Steadicam operator
Tim Bellen .... camera operator
Dave Childers .... key grip
Dave Childers .... key grip: San Francisco
Kika Cunha .... camera operator
Christopher Duskin .... second cinematographer
Silvia Gangemi .... assistant camera
Gustavo Hadba .... camera operator
Mark D. Hysen .... underwater grip: Los Angeles
Kim Marks .... camera operator: San Francisco
Gu Ramalho .... second assistant camera
Calvin Roberts .... video playback operator
Pete Romano .... underwater director of photography
John Trunk .... video assist operator
Carl A. Vidnic .... lighting technician: underwater unit
Casting Department
Christian Kaplan .... executive in charge of casting (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Patricia Kazmierowski .... costume supervisor: San Francisco
Editorial Department
Ryan Brown .... editorial production assistant
Gary Burritt .... negative cutter
Yvan Lucas .... color timer
Jim Passon .... color timer
Laura Rindner .... assistant editor
Patrick Thornhill .... post-production assistant
Music Department
Angelo Giovagnoli .... orchestra coordinator
Heitor Pereira .... music consultant
Frankie Pine .... music supervisor
Paul Silver .... music editor: temp mix
Sharon Smith .... music editor
Julia Michels .... executive in charge of music (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Krister C. Johnson .... transportation captain
Other crew
Terran Benveniste .... production assistant
Beth M. Bodo .... production coordinator
Heather Cappiello .... script supervisor
Michael E. Clay .... location assistant
Francisco Cortes .... set production assistant: San Francisco
Darlene Eliopoulos .... production assistant
Gary Gillingham .... production controller
Marcy Guiragossian .... set production assistant
K.D. Gulko .... production assistant
Marielbi Huerta .... production assistant location scout: Venezuela
Ricardo Karam .... location manager
Bridgette Kelley .... script supervisor
Melissa Lekus .... location assistant: San Francisco
Ellen Lent .... location manager: San Francisco
Rob Meisenholder .... production accountant: Brazil/USA
Ana Maria Otero .... production assistant location scout: Venezuela
Gonzalo Parra .... location scout: Venezuela
Joe Pichirallo .... production executive
Matthew Riutta .... assistant to producer
Korin A. Tarin .... post-production accountant
Nancy A. Terriberry .... production coordinator: San Francisco
Carson Turell .... assistant to director
Jude S. Walko .... office production assistant
Howard Young .... production accountant: San Francisco
John Siedenburg .... chef (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for some strong sexuality and language
92 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

All interiors for the San Francisco scenes were shot in soundstages in Brazil.See more »
Continuity: Isabella and Monica burn the photo of Toninho but later, while Isabella and Cliff are fooling around on the sofa, the same picture is in the frame on the table.See more »
Toninho:How COULD she? Squeezing her coconuts for all the world to see!See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Cheeni Kum (2007)See more »
MariaSee more »


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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
A Tasty Dish, but more of just a side dish, 27 March 2006
Author: gradyharp from United States

WOMAN ON TOP is one of those films that was made, publicized and viewed as pastiche and because of its honesty as a simple romantic comedy, it rates higher than many of the over the top and overproduced competitors. The film is colorful, filled with wonderful Bossa Nova music, and has enough eye candy to almost make you forget the main dishes! Isabella Oliveira (Penélope Cruz) lives in Bahia, Brazil totally in love with Toninho Oliveira (Murilo Benício) where the two have a restaurant featuring Isabella's passionate cooking and Toninho's macho front man role. Isabella has a problem: motion sickness - she cannot fly, ride in a car, or assume the bottom position during sex or she becomes violently ill (it seems that the sea goddess compensated her problem by making her an inimitable chef). All is well until Toninho has a brief affair that drives the crushed Isabella to move to San Francisco alone despite her love for Toninho. There she moves in with her old friend Monica from Bahia (Harold Perrineau as a superbly enacted crossed dressed drag queen) and begins her unsuccessful search for a job. In order to overcome her longing for Toninho and regain her culinary skills she makes a pact with the sea goddess, forsaking ever loving Toninho again. Eventually Isabella lands a TV show on Passionate Cooking when desperate producer Cliff (Mark Feuerstein) gets a whiff of her talent. She is an immediate success. Meanwhile Toninho, unable to endure life in Bahia without Isabella, flies to San Francisco and begins a series of Bossa Nova serenades to win her back. Cliff places Toninho on Isabella's show as background music and the ratings soar. But it is the ultimately the conflict resolution between Isabella and Toninho that brings the story to its expected end.

The story may be light and the script may be pedestrian, but the direction and camera work suffuse this film with Latin American magical realism and that keeps it lighthearted and fun. Cruz is terrific, Perrineau is the true star of the show displaying a sophisticated and sensitive acting skill that is very special, and Murilo Benício is not only a hunk and eye candy but also a fine singer and a warm actor who deserves a lot of attention. Story five, stars six. Have fun with this one! Grady Harp, March 06

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