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The Cat's Meow
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The Cat's Meow (2001) More at IMDbPro »

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The Cat's Meow -- From acclaimed director Peter Bogdanovich comes an extraordinary look at a fateful excursion aboard William Randolph Hearst's private yacht in November 1924 that brought together some of the country's best known personalities and resulted in a still-unsolved, hushed-up killing.
The Cat's Meow -- Semi-true story of the Hollywood murder that occurred at a star-studded gathering aboard William Randolph Hearst's yacht in 1924.


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Writers (WGA):
Steven Peros (screenplay)
Steven Peros (play)
View company contact information for The Cat's Meow on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 May 2002 (USA) See more »
"The Whisper Told Most Often..." See more »
Semi-true story of the Hollywood murder that occurred at a star-studded gathering aboard William Randolph Hearst's yacht in 1924. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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(29 articles)
R.I.P. Edward Herrmann
 (From Dark Horizons. 31 December 2014, 10:02 AM, PST)

R.I.P. Edward Herrmann
 (From Dark Horizons. 31 December 2014, 10:02 AM, PST)

Review: The Last of Robin Hood
 (From Slackerwood. 6 September 2014, 11:30 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
entertaining but nothing to get excited about See more (119 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Directed by
Peter Bogdanovich 
Writing credits
Steven Peros (screenplay)

Steven Peros (play)

Produced by
Julie Baines .... producer
Ernie Barbarash .... co-producer
Kim Bieber .... producer
Fenia Cossovitsa .... line producer: Greece
Martin Hagemann .... line producer
Carol Lewis .... producer
Iraklis Mavroidis .... line producer: Greece
Dieter Meyer .... producer
Jason Newmark .... associate producer
Michael Paseornek .... executive producer
Wieland Schulz-Keil .... executive producer
Original Music by
Ian Whitcomb 
Cinematography by
Bruno Delbonnel (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Edward G. Norris  (as Edward Norris)
Production Design by
Jean-Vincent Puzos 
Art Direction by
Christian Eisele (supervising art director)
Susanne Hopf 
Loukas Oikonomopoulos (uncredited)
Set Decoration by
Daniele Drobny (uncredited)
Costume Design by
Caroline de Vivaise  (as Caroline De Vivaise)
Makeup Department
Mark English .... hair stylist supervisor
Jacqueline Fowler .... makeup artist (as Jacqui Fowler)
Kathleen Leersen .... assistant makeup artist
Trefor Proud .... hair designer
Trefor Proud .... makeup designer
Production Management
Nestoras Katsimichas .... production manager: Greece
Hartwig König .... production manager: Greece (as Hartwig Konig)
Sevi Morou .... assistant production manager: Greece
Martin Schlüter .... unit production manager
Tom Sternitzke .... production manager: Greece
Philip Stilman .... post-production supervisor (as Phil Stilman)
Zoi Tsochla .... assistant production manager: Greece
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Tatjana Bonnet .... second assistant director (as Tatjana Jakovleski)
Gesche Carstens .... first assistant director
Art Department
Ana Montarana Alba .... assistant production designer
Marie-Jo Arnautin .... artistic painter
Friederike Beckert .... prop runner
Hubert Bock .... swing gang
Danny Burke .... prop master: Greece
Angela Dorsch .... drawer
Daniele Drobny .... set designer
Carlo Ferrante .... architect
Benjamin Forster-Baldenius .... drawer
Jens Gaube .... carpenter
Stefan Grebe .... prop buyer
Marita Götz .... constructions props
Ingeborg Heinemann .... art department coordinator
Philipp Hübner .... stand-by construction (as Paul Philipp Hübner)
Gerassimos Karvounis .... props: Greece (as Gerasimos Karvounis)
Robert Kellner .... prop runner
Claudia Kiefer .... stand-by props
Thomas Krause .... set construction
Thomas Krause .... set construction: Greece
Grit Kronacher .... set dresser
Padraic Mac Donnacha .... set construction: Greece
Natalja Meier .... construction drawing assistant (as Natalia Meier)
Christoph Merg .... prop master
Christoph Merg .... set dresser
Anne Metzen .... constructions props
Constanza Niemack .... graphics
Anja Niesler .... financial/controller: construction
Henrik Niesler .... construction manager
Jan Niesler .... construction art director
Jan Niesler .... construction supervisor: Greece
Andrea Oberlechner .... stand-by props assistant
Simon Pasiut .... set construction: Greece
Santiago Isidro Pin .... artistic painter (as Santiago Isidropin)
Christian Pralle .... set construction
Shirley Robinson .... prop buyer: London
Peter Rose .... swing gang
Ronald Rudolph .... construction runner
Markus Schroeder .... set construction: Greece (as Markus Schroder)
Marius Schroger .... architect
Roland Schwarthoff .... carpenter
John Seddal .... greens: Greece
Constanze Siedenburg .... prop designer
Holger Stark .... construction foreman
Ben Stephens .... greens: Greece
Sascha Strutz .... swing gang
Peter Stückenschneider .... set construction: Greece
Ekaterini Thomaidou .... prop buyer: Greece
Claudia Tietjen .... art department office
Christian Tircher .... set construction: Greece
Babis Triantis .... props: Greece
Günter Unterburger .... set painter foreman
Anastasis Venetis .... set construction: Greece
Tom Weber .... stand-by construction
Pete Wendler .... head of construction
Lucinda Whittle .... greens: Greece
Darius Wientzek .... architect
Philipp Hübner .... carpenter (uncredited)
Philipp Hübner .... on-set swing gang (uncredited)
Sound Department
Louis Bertini .... adr editor
Matthew C. Beville .... adr mixer: Los Angeles (as Matt Beville)
Sahin Dagdelen .... assistant sound mixer
Pam DeMetruis-Thomas .... dialogue editor (as Pam Demetruis)
Bobby Johanson .... adr mixer: New York
Robert Jäger .... sound mixer
Erik Mischijew .... sound designer
Matz Müller .... sound designer
Thomas Neumann .... foley editor
Paul Oberle .... sound mixer
Alex Raspa .... adr recordist: New York
Frank 'Talky' Regente .... boom operator
Chris Roberts .... adr: London
Günther Röhn .... foley artist
Peter Sandmann .... foley artist
Martin Schloemer .... adr recordist: Los Angeles
Simone Schulz .... foley recordist
Herbert Wüst .... boom operator
Matz Müller .... sound effects editor (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Martin Gaskell .... special effects supervisor
Camera and Electrical Department
Tobias Bauermeister .... video operator
Isabelle Casez .... first assistant camera
Birgit Dierken .... assistant camera
Nicole Dierken .... clapper loader
Gerd Domde .... studio electrician
Richard Foreman Jr. .... still photographer (as Richard Foreman)
Paul Freuer .... key grip
Harald Mellwig .... second assistant camera
Andre Poser .... electrician
Johannes Precht .... electrician
Ron Rakowski .... gaffer
Mark Ramsey .... technical supervisor: camera/grip (as Marc Ramsey)
Jorg Santjer .... electrician
Thomas Schenk .... studio electrician
Marc Spicer .... Steadicam operator
Marc Spicer .... camera operator
Danny Steinbrecher .... assistant dolly grip
Mario Suter .... studio electrician
Alexander Fischerkoesen .... director of photography: Greece, second unit (uncredited)
Jens Winkler .... assistant camera: Greece, second unit (uncredited)
Casting Department
Sarah Beardsall .... casting
Annette Borgmann .... casting: Germany
Beth Bowling .... casting: USA
Makis Gazis .... casting: Greece
Iris Müller .... extras casting
Alexandros Romanos Lizardos .... assistant casting: Greece (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Robert Isaac .... assistant costume designer
Sarah Meyer .... wardrobe
Katja Pothmann .... costume coordinator
Patricia Saalburg .... assistant costume designer
Martina Strauss .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Jason Brodkey .... first assistant editor: New York
Nina Caspers .... first assistant editor: Berlin
Chris Houghton .... assistant editor: New York
Traudl Nicholson .... color timer
Laura Weinberg .... assistant editor: New York
Music Department
Tim Boatman .... musician: drums
Bobby Bruce .... musician: violin
Tim Emmons .... musician: double bass
James Flatto .... music editor
Joel C. High .... music supervisor
Dan Levinson .... musician: clarinet and saxophone
Tom Marion .... musician: guitar and mandolin
Geoff Nudell .... musician: clarinet and saxophone
Fred Sokolow .... musician: banjo, guitar, mandolin and Hawaiian steel guitar
Chris Tedesco .... musician: trumpet
Stephanie Lynn Urcheck .... music coordinator
Ian Whitcomb .... conductor: The KFI Radio Band
Ian Whitcomb .... musician: piano, musette, accordion, ukelele and vocals
Randy Woltz .... musician: drums, xylophone, vibraphone, bells and piano
Transportation Department
Ludger Diekämper .... transportation manager
Edgar Hainke .... production driver
Michael Kraft .... production driver
Jan Kramer .... production driver
Hubert Malouschek .... production driver
Mark Naujock .... picture vehicles: historical vehicles, F.J. Kroger
Michael Schütze .... production driver
Arndt Stepper .... driver: props
Wolfgang Werner .... production driver
Patrick Wiethoff .... driver: props
Other crew
Matthias Althaus .... tag advisor
Thodoris Athanasopoulos .... caterer: Greece
Volker Beyer .... project controller
Kim Bieber .... stage producer
Heenan Blaikie .... legal
Richard Böhringer .... assistant: Mr. Bogdanovich, Berlin
Paul Cable .... insurance
Dimitris Chalilopoulos .... production assistant: Greece
Iris Chester .... executive assistant: Mr. Bogdanovich
Emily Dische-Becker .... hospitality
Annette Drees .... continuity
Geraldine East .... legal
Christian Ebner .... assistant accountant
Renate Farber .... production coordinator
Pari Garvanos .... production assistant
Luke Golden .... assistant: Mr. Bogdanovich, New York
Peter Grossman .... legal: Lichter, Grossman, Nichols & Adler
Ralf Hartmann .... business affairs: CP Medien
Arlette Heyn .... production accountant
Sarah Hunt .... assistant accountant: UK
Claudia Kalindjian .... publicist
Sandra Lohr .... production assistant
Michael Marker .... banker: Deutsche Bank Berlin
Nickoletta Marouli .... caterer: Greece
Laurie May .... business and legal affairs: Lions Gate
Felix Neunzerling .... publicist
Yiannis Nickolopoulis .... production assistant: Greece
Olga Papada .... production secretary: Greece
Simon Pasiut .... production assistant: Greece
Georgia Passali .... hospitality: Greece
Andreas Pfitzmann .... floor manager
Viola Retzmann .... production secretary
Janine Rieger .... publicity assistant
Jean-Louis Rodrigue .... movement consultant
Marie Schwarz .... runner: assistant director
Frieder Sievert .... assistant floor manager
Natascha Skara .... production assistant
David Steinberg .... legal
Jim Sternberg .... completion bond
Dominique Thibaud .... banker: National Bank of Canada
Vana Evanthia Tsantila .... assistant production coordinator
Giorgos Tzanakis .... production assistant: Greece
Jasmin Wagner .... production assistant
Frank Weidemann .... banker: Deutsche Bank Berlin
Eric Ayzenberg .... thanks
Maureen Baker .... thanks
Dennis Bartok .... thanks
Darcy Bieber .... thanks
Arpad Bondy .... thanks
Sarah Botstein .... thanks: musician
Paul Brooks .... thanks: musician
Diana Brown .... thanks: Department of Culture
Randall Burg .... thanks
Ken Burns .... special thanks
Julio D'Angelo .... thanks: musician
Marc Elsner .... thanks
William K. Everson .... thanks: in memoriam
Jeff Freilich .... special thanks
Mrs. Georgiadis .... thanks: Radio Korasidi
Stuart Goodman .... thanks
Colin Green .... thanks: Department of Culture
Hristina Hatzaridou .... thanks
Mark Hill .... thanks: musician
Wicky Kalaitzi .... thanks (as Vicky Kalatzi)
Carvin Knowles .... thanks: musician
Myrsini Kontou .... thanks
Ann Kroeber .... thanks
Gogo Lewis .... thanks
William Lewis .... thanks
Tomasz Lipinski .... thanks: musician (as Tom Lopinski)
Rose Markisello .... thanks
Mary McDonwell .... thanks: musician
Loukas Oikonomopoulos .... thanks (as Loukas Iconomopoulos)
Marty Olinick .... thanks: musician
John Peros .... thanks
Bill Rosenfield .... thanks: musician
Dimitrios Rovatsos .... thanks
Philipas Rovatsos .... thanks
Christina Russell .... thanks: musician
Larry Spier .... thanks: musician
Jenny Sullivan .... thanks
Quentin Tarantino .... special thanks
Dimitris Theocharis .... thanks
Doctor Theodosiou .... thanks
Leuteris Vourthis .... thanks
Vasilis Vourthis .... thanks
Kevin Wang .... thanks: musician

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG-13 for sexuality, a scene of violence and brief drug use
114 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Producer Kim Bieber played the Marion Davies role (here played by Kirsten Dunst) in the stage version.See more »
Anachronisms: When he looks up Ince's address, Hearst's address book shows two-letter state abbreviations (CA). These did not come into use until some fifty years later. Further, the address book displays at least one ZIP code, introduced in 1963.See more »
[first lines]
Man in crowd:Stop pushing! Stop pushing!
[unintelligible yells from crowd]
Man in crowd:Please, calm down!
Elinor Glyn:[voiceover] In November of 1924, during a weekend yacht party bound for San Diego, a mysterious death occurred within the Hollywood community. However there was no coverage in the press, no police action, and of the fourteen passengers on board only one was ever questioned by authorities...
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in "Jeopardy!: Episode #26.18" (2009)See more »
Wabash BluesSee more »


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18 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
entertaining but nothing to get excited about, 19 May 2002
Author: Roland E. Zwick ( from United States

Peter Bogdanovich's `The Cat's Meow' is an only mildly interesting take on an unsolved scandal that has become a part of early Hollywood folklore. The year is 1924. The setting: a yacht owned by newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst. The occasion: the birthday celebration of one Thomas Ince, a movie mogol desperate to join forces with Hearst's organization. The guests: Charlie Chaplin, Hearst's mistress, actress Marion Davies, the neophyte gossip columnist Louella Parsons, and famed bodice-ripper writer Elinor Glyn. The mystery: the sudden death of Ince under potentially shady circumstances. It is Miss Glyn, serving as the tale's narrator, who states right up front that most of what we will be seeing in this rendition is pure speculative fiction.

Given the fact that writer Steven Peros (who wrote both the screenplay and the stage play on which it is based) had pretty much a free hand when it came to dreaming up a convincing scenario to explain the tragic events of that November weekend, it seems odd that he basically settled for little more than an updated production of `Othello' played out in a `Great Gatsby' setting. Hearst is, of course, Othello himself, the powerful leader driven into a jealous rage at the thought of his dearly beloved's betraying him with another man. Ince plays the part of Iago, a self-centered opportunist who poisons Hearst's mind against Marian's fidelity, using a combination of whispered innuendo and fabricated circumstantial evidence to achieve his purpose (though his motive for doing all this is never very adequately explained, I must confess). Marian is, of course, the beloved Desdemona - though she seems a less wholly virtuous innocent than the character Shakespeare gave us. Finally, Chaplin plays a considerably less virtuous innocent than the play's Cassio, the man allegedly having an affair with Othello's – that is to say, Hearst's – dearly beloved.

Even without the `Othello' parallels, `The Cat's Meow' never really adds up to very much in the long run. Perhaps, the characters are too broadly drawn to really make us believe that what we are seeing is an actual historical event and not mere dress-up playacting. Hearst (Edward Herrmann) seems like little more than a petulant, befuddled buffoon, hardly a man who would be sitting atop one of the world's great corporate empires. Louella Parsons, as played by Jennifer Tilly, comes across as a hopeless ditz, a nitwit who literally stumbles, through a stroke of `good' fortune, into her long and lucrative career as one of Hollywood's premiere gossip columnists. And Eddie Izzard makes a thoroughly bland and unconvincing Charlie Chaplin. He neither looks nor moves like the legendary performer and seems to be completely devoid of the kind of charismatic persona one would naturally associate with Chaplin, both on-screen and off. Only the lovely Kirsten Dunst makes a mark on the audience's emotions. Her Marion Davies radiates a high-spirited warmth that brings a touch of much-needed humanity to the rather cold, clinical world these characters inhabit. Of course, recreating this world is one of the prime dictums of the film, but it is hardly earth-shattering news at this late date (and especially to anyone who has ever read the works of F. Scott Fitzgerald) to discover that the idle rich of the 1920's were all a bunch of shallow, self-absorbed hedonists without morals, values, direction or purpose. When Glyn gets the chance to sum up the moral lesson for us at the end, we can barely stifle a yawn at the pedestrian nature of the `revelation.'

So what makes `The Cat's Meow' worth seeing? Well, it certainly feeds a kind of morbid fascination we have for that long-ago world of early Hollywood, when movies were in their infancy, their creators larger-than-life figures and their scandals made all the juicier by the fact that the press actually played along with keeping the details a deep, dark secret – thereby enhancing the curiosity factor and guaranteeing that a kind of modern, pop-culture mythology would grow up around that industry and that time. It is that mythology that `The Cat's Meow' effectively opens up for us. That, along with the sharply observed details of the period, is what makes the film, flaws and all, into a reasonably diverting drawing room entertainment.

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