236 user 119 critic

Bringing Down the House (2003)

PG-13 | | Comedy | 7 March 2003 (USA)
2:16 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $14.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

When a lonely guy meets a woman on the internet who happens to be in prison, she breaks out to be with him, and proceeds to wreak havoc on his middle-class life.



4 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Last Holiday (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Upon learning of a terminal illness, a shy woman (Queen Latifah) decides to sell off all her possessions and live it up at a posh European hotel.

Director: Wayne Wang
Stars: Queen Latifah, LL Cool J, Timothy Hutton
Beauty Shop (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A determined hairstylist (Queen Latifah) competes with her former boss (Kevin Bacon) after opening her own business in Atlanta.

Director: Bille Woodruff
Stars: Queen Latifah, Alicia Silverstone, Djimon Hounsou
Just Wright (2010)
Comedy | Romance | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A physical therapist falls for the basketball player she is helping recover from a career-threatening injury.

Director: Sanaa Hamri
Stars: Queen Latifah, Common, Paula Patton
Mad Money (2008)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Three female employees of the Federal Reserve plot to steal money that is about to be destroyed.

Director: Callie Khouri
Stars: Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah, Katie Holmes
Taxi I (2004)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

A mouthy and feisty taxicab driver has hot tips for a green and inept cop set on solving a string of New York City bank robberies committed by a quartet of female Brazilian bank robbers.

Director: Tim Story
Stars: Queen Latifah, Jimmy Fallon, Gisele Bündchen
HouseSitter (1992)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Con artist Gwen moves into Newton's empty house without his knowledge, and begins setting up house posing as his new wife.

Director: Frank Oz
Stars: Steve Martin, Goldie Hawn, Dana Delany
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

The remake of the 1970 Neil Simon comedy follows the adventures of a couple, Henry and Nancy Clark, vexed by misfortune while in New York City for a job interview.

Director: Sam Weisman
Stars: Steve Martin, Goldie Hawn, John Cleese
Sgt. Bilko (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Sgt. Bilko is in charge of the Motor Pool at an Army base. He's also a good-natured con man, providing gambling facilities for the soldiers on base. When an old enemy from his past shows up... See full summary »

Director: Jonathan Lynn
Stars: Steve Martin, Dan Aykroyd, Phil Hartman
Baby Mama (2008)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A successful, single businesswoman who dreams of having a baby discovers she is infertile and hires a working class woman to be her unlikely surrogate.

Director: Michael McCullers
Stars: Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Sigourney Weaver
Bowfinger (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

When a desperate movie producer fails to get a major star for his bargain basement film, he decides to shoot the film secretly around him.

Director: Frank Oz
Stars: Steve Martin, Eddie Murphy, Heather Graham
Guess Who (2005)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A young woman, Theresa, brings her boyfriend, Simon, home to meet her parents and surprise them with the news of their engagement. Another surprise: Simon is white.

Director: Kevin Rodney Sullivan
Stars: Ashton Kutcher, Bernie Mac, Zoe Saldana
Parenthood (1989)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The Buckmans are a midwestern family all dealing with their lives: estranged relatives, raising children, pressures of the job, and learning to be a good parent and spouse.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Steve Martin, Mary Steenburgen, Dianne Wiest


Cast overview, first billed only:
Ed Tobias
Aengus James ...
Widow's Bodyguard
Widow's Bodyguard


Peter Sanderson is a divorced, straight-laced, uptight attorney who still loves his ex-wife and can't figure out what he did wrong to make her leave him. However, Peter's trying to move on, and he's smitten with a brainy, bombshell barrister he's been chatting with online. However, when she comes to his house for their first face-to-face, she isn't refined, isn't Ivy League, and isn't even a lawyer. Instead, it's Charlene, a prison escapee who's proclaiming her innocence and wants Peter to help her clear her name. But Peter wants nothing to do with her, prompting the loud and shocking Charlene to turn Peter's perfectly ordered life upside down, jeopardizing his effort to get back with his wife and won a billion dollar client. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Bring it. March 7. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual humor and drug material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 March 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

In the Houze  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$33,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,101,026 (USA) (7 March 2003)


$132,541,238 (USA) (25 July 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Producers wanted the slang that was spoken in the movie to be current and relevant to the time period in which the movie was released. This proved to be difficult as words take on different meaning to become Ebonics almost everyday. (Whatever words they used during filming might not have been in circulation by the time the film was released.) In order to play it safe, some of the Ebonics spoken in the movie was made up by the actors on the spot. See more »


When Peter is preparing to meet Charlene for the first time, he opens the glass refrigerator door and the reflections of the cameraman and another man can be seen. See more »


Peter Sanderson: You are such an ass...
[drinks water]
Peter Sanderson: ... set to this company.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to residents of McCadden Place. See more »


Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Queen Latifah/Ms. Dynamite (2003) See more »


Beat Boyz
Written and Performed by Tommie 'Bishop' McLaughlin (as Bishop)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The Best Cat Fight Scene Since Kill Bill!
10 October 2006 | by (Chicago, Illinois) – See all my reviews

My mom has been begging for me to watch Bringing Down the House, especially since I've been getting more into Steve Martin. He brought me nothing but laughter with Bowfinger, Little Shop of Horrors, and now Bringing Down the House. He and Queen Latifa make such a great comedic duo, this movie was in no way over the top or stereotypical, at least of the sense where I think you couldn't find it offensive. For those who did find it offensive, I think you probably watched this movie in a serious mood, because how could you not laugh?

Steve Martin plays Peter Sanderson, a straight up-tight business man who won't get his priorities right with his family and work, he expects to meet a beautiful, intelligent, and blond white lawyer he met off the internet, but instead gets Charlene, a tough soul sister who has just escaped prison and wants Peter to get her name cleared. She claims she is innocent and she won't leave Peter alone until he helps out, through the madness of trying to play Peter off as a business man and trying to get his family back, Charlene teaches him a thing or two along with him teaching her as well.

There are just some hilarious scenes, my favorite I think was the cat fight scene between Charlene and Peter's ex sister in-law. That was just hilarious! I also loved Steve getting accepted at a hard core gangsta's club and the last scene of Charlene and her new boyfriend, Howie. Steve and Queen were so cool together and I would highly recommend this film!


15 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
RACIST butterfinger
my favourite line, how about you? Kindella
He shudda ended up with Charlene because... denx
Racial? Why typecast? laurinK
Why did Steve Martin do this film? niquems
Discuss Bringing Down the House (2003) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: