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Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003)

PG-13  |   |  Biography, Drama, Romance  |  30 January 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 56,807 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 288 user | 160 critic | 37 from

A young peasant maid working in the house of painter Johannes Vermeer becomes his talented assistant and the model for one of his most famous works.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 38 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Chris McHallem ...
Gabrielle Reidy ...
Anaïs Nepper ...
Melanie Meyfroid ...
Nathan Nepper ...


This film, adapted from a work of fiction by author Tracy Chevalier, tells a story about the events surrounding the creation of the painting "Girl With a Pearl Earring" by 17th century Dutch master Johannes Vermeer. Little is known about the girl in the painting, it is speculated that she was a maid who lived in the house of the painter along with his family and other servants, though there is no historical evidence. This masterful film attempts to recreate the mysterious girl's life. Griet, played by Scarlett Johansson, is a maid in the house of painter Johannes Vermeer, played by British actor Colin Firth. Vermeer's wealthy patron and sole means of support, Van Ruijven, commissions him to paint Griet with the intent that he will have her for himself before it is finished. She must somehow secretly pose for the crucial painting without the knowledge of Vermeer's wife, avoid Van Ruijven's grasp, and protect herself from the cruel gossip of the world of a 17th century servant. Written by thexotherxchris

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Discover the mystery behind the legend. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

30 January 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Mädchen mit dem Perlenohrring  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$89,472 (USA) (12 December 2003)


$11,634,362 (USA) (30 April 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The painting shown when Griet goes to visit Pieter Van Ruijven is called 'The Girl with the Wine Glass'. See more »


When Van Ruijven comes to dinner, to discuss a new commission for Vermeer, he grabs Griet and she drops the dishes she is carrying. She leans down to pick them up placing a broken piece on top of one that isn't. When she stands back up neither plate she has in her hand is broken. See more »


[first lines]
Griet's Mother: Griet! Leave that.
See more »


Featured in The 61st Annual Golden Globe Awards (2004) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The whole movie was like a painting. A work of art.
7 December 2004 | by (Greece) – See all my reviews

I was fascinated by that movie. Every scene looked like a painting and they perfectly captured Vermeer's light . I also liked the historical references to how Vermeer liked to paint young people so he could work on big surfaces of colour and avoid the shading wrinkles give. The music was beautiful and gave off a Dutch feeling of the 17th century as it should have. The time customs that were mentioned are also a great asset.Griet looked so much like Vermeer's original painting that I thought in a moment that this was real (but of course it couldn't cause back in 17th century were no cameras around :p).It was a perfect movie for someone interested in art. Other might find it a bit tiring but if you are an art lover you definitely have to watch this.

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Scarlet's mouth made this movie unwatchable for me louisa-eggleton
WHY did they make this movie? mesaydayo
Thank goodness Kate Hudson and Kirsten Dunst pulled out ncmmorris
Why did they set this film in Italy? -; bminney
One of the best erotic non-sexual scenes... marga73
Earring Significance... LoreleiJones
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