IMDb > Possession (2002)
Possession
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Possession (2002) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 44 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
Possession -- A pair of literary sleuths unearth the amorous secret of two Victorian poets only to find themselves falling under a passionate spell.

Overview

User Rating:
6.4/10   10,572 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 15% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers (WGA):
A.S. Byatt (novel)
David Henry Hwang (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Possession on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
30 August 2002 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The past will connect them. The passion will possess them.
Plot:
A pair of literary sleuths unearth the amorous secret of two Victorian poets only to find themselves falling under a passionate spell. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
pretty to look at, but have the filmmakers understood the book? See more (167 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Gwyneth Paltrow ... Maud Bailey

Aaron Eckhart ... Roland Michell

Jeremy Northam ... Randolph Henry Ash

Jennifer Ehle ... Christabel LaMotte

Lena Headey ... Blanche Glover

Holly Aird ... Ellen Ash

Toby Stephens ... Fergus Wolfe

Trevor Eve ... Cropper
Tom Hickey ... Blackadder

Georgia Mackenzie ... Paola

Tom Hollander ... Euan

Graham Crowden ... Sir George

Anna Massey ... Lady Bailey
Craig Crosbie ... Hildebrand
Christopher Good ... Crabb-Robinson

Elodie Frenck ... Sabine
Victoria Bensted ... Woman in Hotel

Shelley Conn ... Candi
Jonty Stephens ... Shop Owner
Alexi Kaye Campbell ... Auction Director
Hugh Simon ... Librarian
Richard Heffer ... Lord Lytton
Felicity Brangan ... Ash's Maid

Holly Earl ... May Bailey

Kate O'Toole ... Mrs. Jameson
Meg Wynn Owen ... Mrs. Lees

Roger Hammond ... Professor Spear

Jeanne Marine ... University Secretary
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Henry Ian Cusick ... Toby Byng (uncredited)
Ray Donn ... University's Professor (uncredited)
Barbara Pierson ... Mrs. Cammish (uncredited)
Natalie Stevenson ... Kate's Assistant (uncredited)
Create a character page for: ?

Directed by
Neil LaBute 
 
Writing credits
(WGA)
A.S. Byatt (novel)

David Henry Hwang (screenplay) and
Laura Jones (screenplay) and
Neil LaBute (screenplay)

Produced by
Len Amato .... executive producer
David Barron .... executive producer
Barry Levinson .... producer
Stephen Pevner .... co-producer
Guy Tannahill .... line producer
Paula Weinstein .... producer
 
Original Music by
Gabriel Yared 
 
Cinematography by
Jean-Yves Escoffier 
 
Film Editing by
Claire Simpson 
 
Casting by
Mary Selway 
 
Production Design by
Luciana Arrighi 
 
Art Direction by
Paul Ghirardani 
Andrew Sanders 
Su Whitaker (uncredited)
 
Set Decoration by
Ian Whittaker 
 
Costume Design by
Jenny Beavan 
 
Makeup Department
Jan Archibald .... key hair stylist
Kay Georgiou .... hairdresser: Ms. Paltrow
Sallie Jaye .... chief makeup artist
Rebecca Lafford .... makeup artist: Ms. Paltrow
Sylvie Muinos .... hair stylist
Belinda Parish .... makeup artist (as Belinda Parrish)
Astrid Schikorra .... hair stylist
Loulia Sheppard .... hair stylist
Kate Thompson .... makeup artist
Christine Whitney .... makeup artist
 
Production Management
Stephen Barker .... post-production supervisor
Jake Cook .... unit manager runner
Joseph Jayawardena .... unit manager
Iona Price .... production manager: additional photography
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Anne Braucks .... assistant director
Michael Elliott .... assistant director
Carlos Fidel .... third assistant director
Frank Gell .... second unit director
Ben Johnson .... first assistant director: second unit
Nic Shearer .... assistant director
Richard Styles .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Alison Cardy .... art trainee
Joanna Foley .... assistant art director
Tony Graysmark .... construction manager
Saskia Green .... lead art department assistant
Rohan Harris .... model maker
Christian Huband .... assistant art director
Danny Rogers .... graphic designer
Lucinda Sturgis .... props buyer
Remo Tozzi .... draughtsman
 
Sound Department
Hugo Adams .... assistant sound editor
Philip Alton .... dialogue adr editor
Mark Auguste .... supervising sound editor
Sam Auguste .... assistant sound editor
Sandy Buchanan .... adr mixer
Peter Burgis .... foley artist
John Casali .... boom operator
David Crozier .... sound mixer
Mike Dowson .... sound re-recording mixer
Peter Gleaves .... adr mixer
Alex Hudd .... sound consultant: dolby
Christian Joyce .... additional boom operator
Daniel Laurie .... adr editor
Daniel Laurie .... dialogue editor
Jed Loughran .... assistant sound editor
Nigel Mills .... supervising sound editor: final mix
Stuart Morton .... sound editor
Esther Smith .... sound technician
Richard Street .... sound re-recording mixer
Mark Taylor .... sound re-recording mixer
Derek Trigg .... foley editor
Andrew Caller .... adr assistant (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Paul Dunn .... special effects supervisor
Wilma Dunn .... special effects coordinator
Daniel Letch .... special effects technician
Scott McIntyre .... special effects
Charlie Olsen .... special effects crew
Mark Phillips .... special effects technician
Tim Jordan .... special effects technician (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Mark Bakowski .... digital compositor
Simon Carr .... digital compositor
Antony Hunt .... executive Producer: Mill Film
Andrew Jeffery .... visual effects producer
David Sewell .... digital compositor
Andy Stevens .... visual effects camera assistant: Millfilm
Daniel Pettipher .... 2D digital supervisor: Mill Film (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Andy Bennett .... stunt performer
Richard Bradshaw .... stunts
Rowley Irlam .... stunts
Tom Lucy .... stunt coordinator
 
Camera and Electrical Department
David Appleby .... still photographer
Marc Atherfold .... clapper loader: "a" camera
Steve Casey .... electrician
Steve Costello .... gaffer
Mike Evans .... focus puller: "a" camera
Warren Evans .... rigging gaffer
Catherine Frift .... clapper loader: "b" camera
Bill Geddes .... camera grip: "a" camera
Alan Grayley .... electrician
Gordon Hayman .... camera operator: "a" camera
Leo Holloway .... video assistant
Andy Hopkins .... grip: "b" camera
Bill Kaye .... additional still photographer
Brad Larner .... first assistant camera: "b" camera
Brad Larner .... focus puller: "b" camera
David Mackie .... camera trainee
Vince Madden .... rigging electrician
Simon Mills .... focus puller: "b" camera
Nic Milner .... camera operator: "b" camera
Jim Smart .... rigging electrician
Howard Smith .... Steadicam operator
Howard Smith .... camera operator: "b" camera
Chris Taylor .... video assist operator
Simon Werry .... aerial camera operator
David Holliday .... grip (uncredited)
Vince McGahon .... Steadicam operator (uncredited)
 
Casting Department
Vanessa Baker .... adr voice casting
Brendan Donnison .... voice casting
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ken Crouch .... costume supervisor
Sarah Higbid .... costume buyer
Jane Law .... additional costumes
Stephen Miles .... assistant costume designer
Sophie Norinder .... dresser: Ms. Paltrow
Barbara Ohren .... costumer
Barbara Ohren .... seamstress
 
Editorial Department
Victoria Bate .... second assistant editor
Dale E. Grahn .... color timer
Kevin Holt .... assistant editor
Deborah Kavanagh .... trainee assistant editor
Lea Morement .... assistant editor
Mark Sanger .... first assistant editor
Louise Seymour .... post-production coordinator
Jeff Smithwick .... color timer
Maria Montoreano .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Jonathan Allen .... score mixer
Jonathan Allen .... score recordist
Jean-Pierre Arquie .... music supervisor
John Bell .... orchestrator
Isobel Griffiths .... orchestra contractor
Allan Jenkins .... synthesizer programmer
Gerard McCann .... music editor
Stéphane Moucha .... orchestrator
Kirsty Whalley .... synthesizer programmer
Gabriel Yared .... music producer
 
Transportation Department
Gary Birmingham .... transportation coordinator
Lee Isgar .... driver: Neil Labute
John Ott .... driver: grip truck
Colin Sheffield .... driver: camera truck
Glen Carroll .... driver (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Libbie Barr .... script supervisor
Caroline Chapman .... floor runner
Sonia Coppi .... assistant: Paula Weinstein
Steve Hart .... location manager: additional photography
Richard Hill .... locations runner
Sally Hilton .... assistant: David Barron and Neil LaBute
Claudia Kalindjian .... unit publicist
Linda Labov .... assistant: Paula Weinstein
Barbara McFarlane .... assistant co-production coordinator
Jamie McKay-Haynes .... runner
Lynette Meyer .... design consultant
Duncan Muggoch .... locations unit manager
Zelda Perkins .... assistant: David Barron and Neil LaBute
Holly Perry .... assistant: Mr. Eckhart
Sue Quinn .... location manager
Ashton Radcliffe .... assistant location manager
Vicki Dee Rock .... production executive
Natalie Stevenson .... assistant: Ms. Paltrow (as Natalie Stephenson)
Imogen Stringer .... assistant coordinator
Aurelia Thomas .... location assistant
Tony Tucker .... marine coordinator
Clare Wade .... runner
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies
Create a character page for: ?

Additional Details

Also Known As:
MPAA:
Rated PG-13 for sexuality and some thematic elements
Runtime:
102 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The character names "Maud Bailey" and "Christabel LaMotte" refer to a special form of castle, the Motte-and-Bailey, widespread in the 11th/12th century.See more »
Goofs:
Factual errors: Bailey's driving license has 'Miss Maud' on the line for forenames. UK driving licenses don't have titles or Mr/Mrs/Miss on there.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Randolph Ash:They say that women change. 'Tis so, but you are ever-constant in your changefulness. Like that still thread of falling river, one from source to last embrace, in the still pool ever-renewed and ever-moving on, from first to last, a myriad water-drops.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
PossessoSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
54 out of 65 people found the following review useful.
pretty to look at, but have the filmmakers understood the book?, 29 April 2004
Author: frodolives from Wellington, NZ

This film offers some gorgeous visuals and some great performances - notably those by Jeremy Northam and Jennifer Ehle (a bit of a casting joke since those two are famous for playing Jane Austen's Mr. Knightley and Elisabeth Bennet, respectively) - but as a literary adaptation, the movie falls short on too many points. Sadly, the filmmakers have missed out on most of the central themes of the novel, without substituting a sufficiently interesting interpretation of their own.

A.S. Byatt's novel examines the shifting relationships between men and women a century and a half apart - to that end, the characters in the two storylines (the Victorian and the contemporary) mirror each other deliberately. For some unfathomable reason, the screenwriters have decided to cut out completely two crucial characters from the modern-time storyline - Val, Roland's girlfriend, and the feminist (and Lesbian) researcher friend of Maud's, whose name I forget - their equivalents in the Victorian period are Ash's wife, and Christabel's lover Blanche.

One of the main interests of the original story lies in the ways in which the relationships between those characters have changed because of the changes in society that the 20th century has brought - particularly the way the main characters relate to each other (significantly, Maud is the stronger and more successful person in the modern-time relationship) - but also with respect to all the other characters involved (Roland and Val's relationship, which is based almost exclusively on sex, as contrasted with Ash's and his wife's relationship, which is entirely sex-less - the point here being that in a truly fulfilled relationship, these two things must be in balance).

Also, the characters, particularly that of Roland, are bent and twisted beyond recognition - I have nothing against Aaron Eckhard or his performance, but he simply plays a completely different character from the Roland Mitchell of the novel - who is *not* brash (nor is he celibate), but has a certain mousy-ness about him that is quite essential to the plot. Also, he is British for a reason, so making him into an American adds a completely wrong dimension to his and Maud's differences. Judging from the director's commentary, the main reason for casting Eckhard was that he's a buddie of director Neil La Bute's - it's a sad thing that the filmmakers decided to twist the character and plot to accomodate the actor, rather than making a more informed casting choice, as I am sure there are plenty of suitable British actors out there that would have fitted the part admirably.

Gwyneth Paltrow offers a convincing enough performance, and is well-cast as Maud Bailey - a woman whose physical attractiveness stands in the way of her being taken seriously as the bright academic she is. But she is not being given enough scope to be the reserved intellectual she is supposed to be, because her relationship with Roland developes far too quickly, and with not enough plausibility (particularly given a certain lack of chemistry between the two actors) - thereby missing another of the main themes (and contrasts) in the novel.

Having said that, the film is worth watching for its final five minutes alone - and incidentally, this is the one scene that catches most accurately the spirit, and the point, of the original novel.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (167 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Possession (2002)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
trailer soundtrack iprewitt
Seen the movie, but not read the book? Enter here.... flippetskater
Boring and useless deadraque
If you were to remake and recast who would you pick? hmcconnell
Was Roland Mitchell American in the book? tanyareeves
did i miss something in the end *contains spoiler* please help TheSausageKingOfChicago
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Kings & Queen The Children of the Century Those Who Love Me Can Take the Train Basil The Best of Youth
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Romance section IMDb USA section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.