IMDb > Living with the Dead (2002) (TV)
Living with the Dead
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
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
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Living with the Dead (2002) (TV) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 6 | slideshow)


User Rating:
7.2/10   1,048 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
No change in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
James Van Praagh (book)
John Pielmeier (written by)
View company contact information for Living with the Dead on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
28 April 2002 (USA) See more »
The dead are talking. One man is listening.
A man begins to have disturbing visions of dead people, among whom are his mother and victims of a local serial killer. The detective investigating the murders looks to him for help in solving the case. | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
4 nominations See more »
(4 articles)
User Reviews:
A stunning mystery masterpiece See more (28 total) »


  (in credits order)

Ted Danson ... James Van Praagh

Mary Steenburgen ... Detective Karen Condrin

Diane Ladd ... Regina Van Praagh

Michael Moriarty ... Adrian, Psychic
Donna White

Connor Widdows ... Young James Van Praagh
Joy Coghill ... Mrs. Ziff

Jay Brazeau ... Psychiatrist
Maggie Blue O'Hara ... Sandy - Andy's deaf sister

Queen Latifah ... Midge Harmon

Jack Palance ... Allan Van Praagh

Reece Thompson ... Andy, Abducted Boy
Neil Denis ... Dennis Branston
Mikela Jay ... Young Regina Van Praagh (as Mikela J. Mikael)

Eric Breker ... Young Allan Van Praagh
Lindsay Bourne ... Priest

Kavan Smith ... Matt

Hiro Kanagawa ... Frank the Business Consultant
Bill Meilen ... Eli Ziff

John B. Lowe ... David Ziff
Henry O. Watson ... Walter Branston

Veena Sood ... Mrs. Morse, School Teacher

David Kaye ... Gideon Morse

James Kirk ... Eddie Katz, Molly's Son

Joel Palmer ... Second Boy
Ben Johnson ... Third Boy
Branden Nadon ... Fourth Boy
Matthew Brevner ... Fifth Boy

Jaren Brandt Bartlett ... Sixth Boy
Bethoe Shirkoff ... James' Grandmother

Michael Eklund ... Ronnie Higgins
Ben Baxter ... Billy, Boy in Schoolyard
Nancy Sivak ... Sister Mary Edward
Karen Elizabeth Austin ... Nun (as Karen Austin)
Dee Jay Jackson ... Police Desk Sergeant (as Deejay Jackson)
Klodyne Rodney ... Nurse

Kwesi Ameyaw ... Doctor

Lorena Gale ... Midge's Grandmother
Richard Sali ... News Vendor
David Petersen ... Karen's Father
Jessica Schreier ... Psychiatrist's Wife
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Patti Allan ... Coroner
Norman Armour ... Minister

Nahanni Arntzen ... Nurse

Simone Bailly ... Amy Condrin

Chilton Crane ... Jennifer

Linda Darlow ... Linda the Florist
Jason Gaffney ... Ben

Fred Henderson ... Lester

Tim Henry ... Richard

Lauren Holly ... James's (Danson) wife
Sadie Lawrence ... Interpreter
Don MacKay ... Old Man
David Makay ... Mailman
Larry Musser ... Arnie
John Sampson ... Irate Driver

James Van Praagh ... Organ Player

Directed by
Stephen Gyllenhaal 
Writing credits
James Van Praagh (book "Talking To Heaven")

John Pielmeier (written by)

Produced by
Scott W. Anderson .... co-executive producer
Richard J. Anobile .... associate producer
Stanley M. Brooks .... executive producer
Preston Fischer .... producer
Greg Gugliotta .... executive producer
Stephen Gyllenhaal .... co-executive producer
Shanna Nussbaum .... executive producer (as Shanna Tyndall)
John Pielmeier .... co-producer
James Van Praagh .... co-producer
Original Music by
Normand Corbeil 
Cinematography by
Jeff Jur 
Film Editing by
Neil Mandelberg 
Casting by
John Papsidera 
Production Design by
Brent Thomas 
Art Direction by
Roxanne Methot 
Set Decoration by
Mary-Lou Storey 
Costume Design by
Trish Keating 
Makeup Department
Melina Calogiros .... hair stylist
Angelina P. Cameron .... hair department head
Stan Edmonds .... makeup department head
Marsha Lewis .... hair stylist: Ms. Ladd
Charles Porlier .... key makeup artist: Mr. Danson
Roy Sidick .... hair stylist: Mr. Danson (as Roy A. Sidick)
Production Management
Mary Eilts .... production manager
Damian Ganczewski .... executive in charge of production
Danielle Zalaznick .... production supervisor: Los Angeles
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Peter Dashkewytch .... first assistant director
Jody Ryan .... trainee assistant director
Michael Shandley .... second assistant director
Art Department
Maureen Carey .... set decoration buyer
Gerri Crawford .... props
Michelle Hendriksen .... assistant property master
Neil McLeod .... property master
Nick Richardson .... on-set dresser
Patrick Romine .... construction coordinator
Norm Spence .... paint coordinator
Sound Department
Alek Bromke .... adr assistant
William Butler .... sound mixer
Richard Calistan .... adr editor
Alison Clark .... sound effects editor
Rob Hegedus .... dialogue editor
Ken Lee .... second boom operator (as Kenny Lee)
Cory Mandel .... sound re-recording mixer
Martin Mitchell .... boom operator
Victor Oland .... dialogue editor
James Porteous .... sound re-recording mixer
Ed Poty .... adr editor
Elma Bello .... assistant sound effects editor (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Amanda Paller .... special effects assistant
Gary Paller .... special effects coordinator
Visual Effects by
Louise Barkholt .... visual effects producer
Kathryn Bolt .... digital compositor
Debora Dunphy .... digital compositor
Aruna Inversin .... digital compositor
Sarah McMurdo .... visual effects coordinator
Tom Turnbull .... visual effects supervisor (as Thomas Turnbull)
Rick Moore .... stunt double
John Sampson .... stunt coordinator
John Sampson .... stunt double: Ted Dansen
Lori Stewart .... stunt driver
Suzi Stingl .... stunt double: Andy
Camera and Electrical Department
Fraser Boyle .... key grip
Bob Findlay .... first assistant camera
Glen Forrieter .... dolly grip
Stephen Jackson .... gaffer
Robyn Link .... camera loader: re-shoots
David Lourie .... second assistant camera: "a" camera
Niel Rasmussen .... grip
Trig Singer .... camera operator
Ted Smith .... first assistant b camera (uncredited)
Casting Department
Heike Brandstatter .... casting: Canada
Andrea Brown .... extras casting
Coreen Mayrs .... casting: Canada
Wendy O'Brien .... casting associate
Wendy Spooner .... extras casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Janice Swayze .... assistant costume designer
Editorial Department
Eric Davidson .... assistant editor
Rob Evans .... colorist: high definition video
Will Hearn .... on-line editor: HDTV
Music Department
Peter Fuchs .... score mixer
Roger Hewett .... conductor
Roger Hewett .... orchestrator
Craig Pettigrew .... music editor
Transportation Department
David R. Anderson .... transportation coordinator
Ian Thompson .... picture cars
Other crew
Ed Baran .... publicist
Kevin Bolton .... production assistant
Amanda Bronswyk .... payroll accountant
Fiona Crossley .... location manager
Ian Doig .... animal coordinator
Byron Drinkle .... playback coordinator
Lara Fox .... script supervisor
Jason Gilmore .... production assistant
Laurie Hayes .... production accountant
Ken Hovgaard .... assistant location manager: second unit
Ken Hovgaard .... location scout
Jared Howitt .... office production assistant
Sharon Ingram .... production coordinator (as Sharon P. Ingram)
Kenneth Kantymir .... stand-in: Ted Danson
Laura Livingstone .... second assistant production coordinator
Grace MacLeod .... animal trainer
Peter Madamba .... script researcher
Jackie Pytel .... assistant: Mr. Fischer
Hayley Stewart-Moran .... assistant: Mr. Gyllenhaal
William Sy .... assistant: Mr. Brooks
Carrie Van Hoy .... assistant: Ms. Tyndall

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Talking to Heaven" - International (English title) (alternative title), USA (working title)
See more »
Rated PG-13 for violent and disturbing content, and thematic elements
UK:142 min | USA:240 min (including commercials)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

James Van Praagh, the author of the book this film is based on and real-life version of Ted Danson's character, appears in this film as the organ player.See more »
Movie Connections:
References The Sixth Sense (1999)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
3 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
A stunning mystery masterpiece, 8 February 2006
Author: Andreas Niedermayer ( from Klagenfurt, Austria

Talking to Heaven aka Living with the Dead is based on the book by James van Praagh, one of America's most famous mediums. He is also the main character, played by Ted Danson. The movie features the story of James' ability to connect with dead people and traces his supernatural gift back to his childhood. Now he is in his forties. When his mother (Diane Ladd) dies everything comes back and his abilities grow stronger. Mysterious things start to happen, dead boys haunt James and want him to do something. James is baffled and starts investigating with the help of detective Karen Condrin (Mary Steenburgen). While they come across a 30-year-old murder case involving seven young boys, James delves deeper into the mysteries and finds evidence of a connection to his own past. But their time is running out and the life of another boy (Reece Thompson) is on the line.

The story is very complex and sophisticated. You never stop making your own assumptions and the numerous subtle hints and connections between times and places give the story tremendous strength and add substantial quality to the plot. I have seen many mystery movies and thrillers, but hardly any is able to match the suspense and the complexity of Talking to Heaven. Despite its length of almost three hours and due to the wonderfully paced unraveling of mysteries and the ability of Ted Denson in particular to maintain the level of suspense, the story keeps the audience alert and never becomes slow or corny. There are so many connections and hints, so many scenes that are simply awesome and so many sub-plots with underlying themes and messages that Talking to Heaven can be called a revelation and a stunning mystery masterpiece.

The strongest aspect of the story is the link between the murder of the boys and James' own past. This makes him emotionally very much attached to the crime story and is perfectly connected to the introductory sequences that feature him as a boy. Everything is a puzzle at the outset and there is never a point in the course of the story where you could predict what is going to happen next. Very few movies achieve this level of unpredictability.

James' life and his struggles make up a significant part of the story, especially his relationship and his ensuing contact with his late mother. She provides some sort of guidance for him and makes him understand the issue of death and accept his gift as a blessing rather than a curse. The relationships with his father (veteran Jack Palance) and his friend Midge (Queen Latifah) have no immediate connection to the crime story, but provide substantial depth for understanding him as a character. The many scenes in which James talks to strangers about their late relatives collaborates to get a sense of his abilities and the mysteries of his life.

The murder case is the core of the story, its major strength and the main source of suspense. Even without the mystery aspect, this would make an awesome thriller. Mary Steenburgen as detective Condrin acts as a kind of buffer between the supernatural background story and the terrific real-life murder case and helps to combine the strengths of both. There are many pieces that need to be collected, many assumptions that need to be made and many secrets that need to be unraveled.

A major sub-theme is the story of Eddie Kats (James Kirk) and his mother. Their paths are a significant part of the story and add another very sophisticated emotional level. The scenes that feature Eddie and James reminded me very much of thematic elements that pervade the writings of Stephen King, who makes strong use of these cross-time stories that appeal emotionally and make you think about values and life in general. A similar pattern surfaces in the story of Reece Thompson's character, who is terrorized and trying to escape death. Both boys (Thompson and Kirk) are perfectly cast and deliver superb performances – though they appear on entirely different settings. They shine and add authenticity to the story, in particular on an emotional level.

Talking to Heaven is a combination of different genres. It features a complex and outstandingly sophisticated storyline, awesome actors and so many sub-themes that culminate in an entirely stunning and satisfying climax that leaves you at the edge of your seat. The final denouement connects with all the layers of setting, both time and place, and by then you realize the complexity and quality of the story. A brilliant mystery masterpiece by all means.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (28 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Living with the Dead (2002)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Talking to Heaven available still slumdogGal2009
James Van Fraud emily_bronte2000
The Killer? bthcrlsol
Got tired of watching it on cable today ebonius
Anyone notice? elizabethdicely
Anyone noticed ... MatthiasHolzer
See more »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Frequency Mystic River The Gift Michael Clayton Fallen
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 Drama 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.