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Iris (2001/I) More at IMDbPro »

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Iris -- Trailer
Iris -- US Home Video Trailer from Buena Vista Home Entertainment


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John Bayley (books)
Richard Eyre (screenplay) ...
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Release Date:
18 January 2002 (UK) See more »
Her greatest talent was for life
True story of the lifelong romance between novelist Iris Murdoch and her husband John Bayley, from their student days through her battle with Alzheimer's disease. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Won Oscar. Another 14 wins & 24 nominations See more »
(169 articles)
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User Reviews:
"If one doesn't have words how does one think?" See more (134 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Kate Winslet ... Young Iris Murdoch

Hugh Bonneville ... Young John Bayley

Judi Dench ... Iris Murdoch

Jim Broadbent ... John Bayley
Eleanor Bron ... Principal
Angela Morant ... Hostess

Penelope Wilton ... Janet Stone
Siobhan Hayes ... Check-Out Girl

Juliet Aubrey ... Young Janet Stone
Joan Bakewell ... BBC Presenter
Nancy Carroll ... BBC PA

Kris Marshall ... Dr. Gudgeon
Tom Mannion ... Neurologist
Derek Hutchinson ... Postman

Samuel West ... Young Maurice (as Sam West)
Saira Todd ... Phillida Stone

Juliet Howland ... Emma Stone
Charlotte Arkwright ... Young Phillida Stone
Harriet Arkwright ... Young Emma Stone
Matilda Allsopp ... Little Stone
Steve Edis ... Pianist
Emma Handy ... Policewoman

Timothy West ... Older Maurice

Stephen Marcus ... Taxi Driver

Pauline McLynn ... Maureen (as Pauline McGlynn)
Gabrielle Reidy ... Tricia
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Tony Blair ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
David Blunkett ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)

Directed by
Richard Eyre 
Writing credits
John Bayley (books "Iris: A Memoir" and "Elegy for Iris")

Richard Eyre (screenplay) &
Charles Wood (screenplay)

Produced by
Michael Dreyer .... line producer
DTeflon .... assistant producer
Guy East .... executive producer
Robert Fox .... producer
Thomas Hedley Jr. .... executive producer (as Tom Hedley)
Anthony Minghella .... executive producer
Sydney Pollack .... executive producer
Scott Rudin .... producer
David M. Thompson .... executive producer
Harvey Weinstein .... executive producer
Original Music by
James Horner 
Cinematography by
Roger Pratt (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Martin Walsh 
Casting by
Celestia Fox 
Production Design by
Gemma Jackson 
Art Direction by
David Warren 
Set Decoration by
Trisha Edwards 
Costume Design by
Ruth Myers 
Makeup Department
Kate Benton .... hair stylist assistant
Kate Benton .... makeup artist assistant
Jayne Buxton .... hair stylist assistant
Jayne Buxton .... makeup artist assistant
Julie Dartnell .... hair stylist assistant
Julie Dartnell .... makeup artist assistant
Antonia Kruger .... hair stylist assistant
Antonia Kruger .... makeup artist assistant
Lesley Smith .... hair stylist
Lesley Smith .... makeup artist
Gillian Thomas .... hair stylist assistant (as Gill Thomas)
Gillian Thomas .... makeup artist (as Gill Thomas)
Jane Walker .... hair stylist assistant
Jane Walker .... makeup artist assistant
Lisa Westcott .... hair designer
Lisa Westcott .... makeup designer
Production Management
Stephen Barker .... post-production supervisor
Tim Porter .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Martin Harrison .... first assistant director
Finn McGrath .... second assistant director
Chris Stoaling .... third assistant director
Art Department
Tom Bohan .... construction coordinator
Peter N. Brown .... supervising carpenter
Peter Burden .... dressing props
Will Cann .... stand-by props
Jane Clark .... storyboard artist
Charlie Cobb .... art department assistant
Mark Douet .... art department photographer
Robert J. Dugdale .... assistant scenic artist
Kevin Fleet .... dressing props
Segan Friend .... stand-by props
Alan Grenham .... painter
Patrick Honan .... stand-by stagehand (as Pat Honan)
Paul Inglis .... assistant art director
George King .... supervising stagehand
Cathal MacIlwaine .... stand-by carpenter
Pippa Marks .... storyboard artist
Thomas Martin .... construction coordinator (as Tom Martin)
Campbell Mitchell .... stand-by props
Tom Pleydell-Pearce .... property master
Pat Roberts .... stand-by painter
Nina Ross .... art department assistant
Howard Weaver .... scenic artist
Kenneth Welland .... painter (as Kenneth J. Welland)
Krissi Williamson .... production buyer
Kevin Woodhouse .... stand-by assistant art director
David Youngs .... carpenter (as David A. Youngs)
Michael Finlay .... painter (uncredited)
Warren Greenham .... painter (uncredited)
John Shergold .... painter (uncredited)
Sound Department
Jon Bailey .... assistant sound engineer
Chris Barrett .... assistant sound engineer
Chris Bolster .... assistant sound engineer
Paula Boram .... foley artist
Anthony Cleal .... sound re-recording mixer
Felicity Cottrell .... foley artist
Gillian Dodders .... adr editor
Gillian Dodders .... dialogue editor
Steve Finn .... sound maintenance
Glenn Freemantle .... supervising sound editor
Jim Greenhorn .... sound mixer
Matt Grimes .... sound editor (as Matt Grime)
Nicolas Le Messurier .... sound re-recording mixer
Tom Sayers .... sound editor
Mark Sheffield .... sound re-recording mixer
Kevin Tayler .... adr mixer
Kevin Tayler .... foley mixer
Andrew Caller .... foley assistant (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Paul Clancy .... senior special effects technician
Peter Notley .... special effects supervisor
Martin 'Marty' McLaughlin .... senior snow effects technician (uncredited)
David 'Pinkie' Thomas .... snow effects technician (uncredited)
Carly Harrup .... stunt performer (as Carly Harrop)
Lee Millham .... stunt driver
Lee Millham .... stunt performer
Gary Powell .... stunt supervisor
David Ware .... stunt performer
Bradley Farmer .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Paul Bond .... camera operator
David Bruce .... generator operator (as Dave Bruce)
Jason Bulley .... focus puller: underwater
Clive Coote .... still photographer
Perry Cullen .... electrician
Chuck Finch .... gaffer
Stephen Finch .... electrician (as Steve Finch)
Guy Frost .... clapper loader
Dan Garlick .... grip: second unit
Amy Gilliam .... clapper loader: second unit
Simon Hume .... focus puller
Sacha Jones .... camera trainee
Simon Lucas .... electrician
Colin Manning .... grip
Keith Manning .... grip
Graham Martyr .... first assistant camera
Graham Martyr .... focus puller: second unit
Richard Merrell .... best boy
Ron Osman .... video engineer
Denis Pollitt .... video playback operator
Bernie Prentice .... gaffer: underwater
Nick Schlesinger .... director of photography: second unit
Gordon Segrove .... clapper loader: second unit (as Gordon Seagrove)
John Sieminski .... video engineer
Mark Silk .... camera operator: underwater
Andy Thomson .... crane operator
Alf Tramontin .... Steadicam operator
David Weller .... stand-by rigger
Matt Wesson .... clapper loader: underwater
Michael White .... electrician
Alan Williams .... supervising rigger
Casting Department
Louis Elman .... adr voice casting
Alex Johnson .... casting assistant
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Liam Flavell .... costume assistant
Rebekah Griffiths .... costume assistant
Fiona McCann .... additional costume assistant
Jo Measure .... additional costume assistant
Michael Mooney .... costume supervisor
Julie Nethercote .... additional costume assistant
Marnie Ormiston .... additional costume assistant
Kate Ellen Stroud .... additional costume assistant
Kirsty Wilkinson .... costume assistant
Nicole Young .... assistant costume designer
Editorial Department
Peter Hunt .... color grader
Roger La Prairie .... colorist
Keith Lowes .... assistant editor
Steve Maguire .... first assistant editor
John Nuth .... assistant editor
Martyn Robinson .... assistant editor
Louise Seymour .... post-production coordinator
Music Department
Jon Bailey .... assistant scoring engineer
Chris Barrett .... assistant scoring engineer
Joshua Bell .... musician: solo violin
Matt Biffa .... music clearances: Air-Edel Associates
Chris Bolster .... assistant scoring engineer
Marcia Crayford .... concert mistress
Vic Fraser .... music preparation
Andrew Glen .... music editor (as Andy Glen)
Isobel Griffiths .... orchestra contractor
Jim Henrikson .... supervising music editor
James Horner .... orchestrator
Randy Kerber .... orchestrator
Randy Kerber .... synthesizer programmer
Tony Lewis .... assistant music editor
Barbara McDermott .... assistant music editor
Julyce Monbleaux .... music supervisor
J.A.C. Redford .... orchestrator
Simon Rhodes .... music scoring mixer
Simon Rhodes .... music scoring recordist
Randy Spendlove .... executive in charge of music
Ian Underwood .... synthesizer programmer
Jonathan Williams .... musician: solo cello
James Horner .... conductor (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Brian Agar .... unit driver (as Bryan Agar)
Simon Barker .... unit driver
Gerry Batson .... unit driver
Brian Claydon .... unit driver
Colin Giffin .... unit driver
Alan Hayter .... unit driver
Chas Hewitt .... unit driver
Stuart Holbury .... unit driver
John Hollywood .... unit driver
Brian Scott Jim .... unit driver
Lenny Jones .... unit driver
Alan Lewandowski .... unit driver
Steve Mitchard .... unit driver (as Steven Mitchard)
Vic Newell .... unit driver
David Ott .... unit driver
Johnny Ott .... unit driver
Steve Rogers .... unit driver (as Steven Rogers)
Linton Small .... unit driver
Tom Terry .... unit driver
Dean Tyler .... unit driver
Guy Bostock .... action vehicle coordinator (uncredited)
Ian Clarke .... vehicle technician (uncredited)
Sean Thornton .... picture vehicle technician (uncredited)
Other crew
Paul Almond .... unit publicist
Malcolm Auchincloss .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Joanie Blaikie .... production executive: BBC Films
Chris Blyth .... caterer: Hot Goblins
Jo Blyth .... caterer: Hot Goblins
Alison Brister .... legal services: The Simkins Partnership
Ashlee Burnette .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Abbey Careford .... stand-in: Kate Winslet
Rebecca Chambers .... assistant location manager
Sarah Clark .... unit publicist
Melanie Claus .... production coordinator (as Mel Claus)
Dee Clinton .... stand-in: Judi Dench
Jane Cody .... accounting services
Shaun Crean .... caterer: Hot Goblins
Paul Davis .... representative: Intermedia Films
Cathy Doubleday .... script supervisor
Nick Drake .... representative: Intermedia Films
Thomas Elgood .... location manager (as Tom Elgood)
John Ensby .... laboratory contact
Will Evans .... representative: Intermedia Films
Megan Gerard .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Jane Gibson .... choreographer
Daisy Gili .... production trainee
Antony Gostyn .... legal services: The Simkins Partnership
Ruth Halliday .... script clearance
Jere Hausfater .... representative: Intermedia Films
Jane Hawley .... production executive: BBC Films
Joshua C. Hersko .... assistant: Scott Rudin
Kate Hill .... production trainee
John Hocking .... stand-in: Jim Broadbent
Mel Klaus .... production coordinator
Lars Knudsen .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Maurice Landsberger .... production accountant
Paul Landsberger .... assistant accountant
Jamie Laurenson .... script executive: BBC Films
Emma Leslie .... assistant: Kate Winslet
Susie Lewis .... assistant: Robert Fox
Rhys Maitland-Jones .... sync rushes
Anna Mohr-Pietsch .... production trainee
Adam Morane-Griffiths .... production runner
Leda Nornang .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Charley Parlapanides .... assistant: Mr. Rudin (as Charles Parlapanides)
Scarlett Peart .... unit nurse
Richard Phillips .... accounting services
Robert Regis .... stand-in: Hugh Bonneville
Adam Richards .... location finder
Vicky Riley .... assistant coordinator
Will Rowbotham .... assistant: Mr. Rudin
Will Rowbotham .... production assistant
Tracey Scoffield .... script executive: BBC Films
Jesse Acton Thompson .... production runner
Charlie Waller .... floor runner
Kevin J. Walsh .... executive assistant: Mr. Rudin
Nick Williams .... assistant location manager
Phil Winchester .... caterer: Hoit Goblins
Rebecca Wulff .... production trainee
Tim Haslam .... worldwide sales (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
91 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Australia:PG (TV rating) | Brazil:12 | Canada:AA | Finland:K-11 | Germany:6 | Hong Kong:IIB | Hungary:14 | Iceland:L | Malaysia:18SX | Netherlands:AL | Peru:14 | Philippines:R-18 | Portugal:M/12 | Singapore:M18 (re-rating) | Singapore:R(A) (theatrical rating) (cut) | Singapore:PG (video rating) (heavily cut) | South Korea:15 | Spain:13 | Sweden:7 | Switzerland:10 (canton of Geneva) | Switzerland:10 (canton of Vaud) | Switzerland:14 (canton of the Grisons) | UK:15 | USA:R

Did You Know?

This film also marks the second time that Judi Dench, and another actress playing the same part, have both been nominated for an Oscar. Previously, Dench won Best Supporting Actress for playing Queen Elizabeth I in Shakespeare in Love (1998), the same year that Cate Blanchett was nominated for playing the part in Elizabeth (1998).See more »
Errors in geography: When Iris and John are traveling to the nursing home, they are seen crossing a bridge. This bridge is Magdalene Bridge and leads to East Oxford, yet The Vale House, where Iris Murdoch spent the final years if her life, was (and still is) in South Oxford.See more »
Iris Murdoch:People have obsessions and fears and passions which they don't admit to. I think every character is interesting and has extremes. It's the novelist privilege to see how odd everyone is.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in A Look at Iris (2001) (V)See more »
Reggae TrainSee more »


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26 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
"If one doesn't have words how does one think?", 13 January 2005
Author: Michael DeZubiria ( from Luoyang, China

Iris is one of those dramas that is so startlingly well acted and accurate to reality that you truly see the people on screen suffering through the story rather than the actors portraying them. And in a film that stars Judi Dench, that is a remarkable achievement. Dench and Kate Winslet are made to look so similar that when the film jumps back and forth between past and present, which it does quite often, it is never jarring no matter how abrupt it is. The young Iris, played by Winslet, is similar to the character that she played in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind in many ways. She is sexually adventurous without being promiscuous, independent without being unfriendly or unattached, and dependent without being needy or reliant. She ultimately pursues a successful career as a novelist, which serves to illustrate her love and dependence on words and to enhance the effect of her deterioration later in the film.

Iris is famously a study of Alzheimer's disease, which is the kind of thing that rarely makes its way into mainstream films, so it is that much more moving that a movie as brilliant as this one takes on the subject and brings it to the forefront in such a dramatic fashion. Iris goes from being a tremendously successful novelist to not understanding which side of an open door she should pass in order to get through it. As she loses touch with reality and experiences more and more difficulty in speaking and understanding, the most moving scenes are the ones that show the suffering that her husband goes through before his own deterioration.

Iris has spent her life exploring things like what it is that makes people happy and what makes them realize that they are happy once they are, and then shows as she loses touch with those things without even realizing it. Her husband, John Bayley, in a brilliant performance by Jim Broadbent, is the only man who she has ever been with that has truly loved her, and he is the one that has to watch her cognitive abilities decline. He is literally watching the love of his life slip away from him without her even realizing it.

The film is beautifully shot and the musical score enhances the film spectacularly and unobtrusively. It brings out the emotions in a movie about losing not only memory, but about losing the your identity, losing yourself. The gradual nature of the onset of Alzheimer's disease is one of the most brilliantly presented elements in the film. There is a conversation that Iris and her husband have in which she gives him a quote, which he responds to in a way that shows his own mental decline, and then Iris' as well.

Iris - "Between two evils always choose the one you haven't tried before."

John - "Mae West. Oh my vest! I tore my vest again this morning!"

Iris - "You must get some new vests."

John – "Jolly good…"

Iris – "You must get some new vests," then, surprised at herself, "I just said that."

This all kind of makes me wonder, because it is not very rare that I will ask someone a question that I already asked and they already answered, sometimes only a minute or two before, and when they tell me I just asked them that question I have to explain that I just wasn't sure if I had asked them out loud or just thought the question in my head. Where the answer ever went in my brain remains a mystery.

It is very important that the movie spends so much time showing how much of a fiercely intelligent philosopher (in Kate Winslet's words) Iris Murdock was, because it emphasizes the totality with which Alzheimer's affects her ability to think. As a young woman she could talk circles around people, but when she grew older and Alzheimer's began to set in she became confused by the simplest concepts, and the difficulty that her husband found in attempting to explain things to her and hide what must have been his overwhelming emotion.

I'm in the middle of reading a wonderful book by Sidney Lumet called Making Movies, and I just finished a chapter on actors, in which there is a section where he described some actors who believe so strongly in the material of a film that they will do whatever it takes to get the movie made. Many actors have taken salaries far below their usually asking prices in order to participate in a movie about which they felt very strongly, and Iris is one of those movies, although I don't know whether or not any of the actors took smaller salaries than they deserved. There is a short documentary on the DVD called 'A Look at Iris' in which the cast and crew talk about the movie, and it is clear how strongly they feel about the film. Kate Winslet nails it on the head in one clip, where she says that she knows that people who knew the real Iris Murdock would see the movie, so it was all the more important that she get the character exactly right. I love that.

In Iris's own words, "If one doesn't have words how does one think?" That's exactly the question that this movie so touchingly explores. It is about people loving and then losing each other with torturous slowness, in one of the most moving and important films of 2001.

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