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Cheaper by the Dozen (2003)

With his wife doing a book tour, a father of twelve must handle a new job and his unstable brood.

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(novel) (as Frank Bunker Gilbreth Jr.), (novel) | 4 more credits »
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2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

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Storyline

The Bakers, a family of 14, move from small-town Illinois to the big city after Tom Baker gets his dream job to coach his alma mater's football team. Meanwhile, his wife also gets her dream of getting her book published. While she's away promoting the book, Tom has a hard time keeping the house in order while at the same time coaching his football team, as the once happy family starts falling apart. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

This Christmas The More... The Scarier! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Family

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language and some thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Release Date:

25 December 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Im Dutzend billiger  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$27,557,647, 28 December 2003, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$138,614,544, 6 June 2004

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$190,212,113
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the beginning of the movie, Kate reveals the title of her new book to be "Cheaper By The Dozen". Although this movie is loosely based on a book by that title about a real-life family, the book was written by one of the sons, Frank B. Gilbreth Jr., along with his sister, Ernestine Gilbreth Carey. Although this film is based on that same book that inspired the 1950 film (Cheaper by the Dozen (1950)), the only element it retains from the original is the idea of there being 12 children in one family. Even the names of the characters are changed. See more »

Goofs

As the kids are pulling the hose to trip Hank, right before he falls his hair and shirt are already wet from previous takes. See more »

Quotes

Sarah Baker: Does anyone besides me think our "happier and stronger" life, is actually code for "nastier and suckier"?
Mike: First dad forces us to move
Jake: Then mom decides to become a career women and like, travel the globe
Jessica Baker: And now, we have to take orders from Hank, the model/actor!
Mark: And he hates kids too.
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Crazy Credits

Over the first part of the credits, we see outtakes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dinner for Five: Episode #4.5 (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi: 'O Fortuna' from Carmina Burana
Written by Carl Orff
Performed by Orchestre symphonique de Montreal
Courtesy of Decca Music Group Ltd.
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

'Name Only' Remake of 1950 Classic is Warm, Funny Film...

While the CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN opening titles credit the authors of the best-selling book the original 1950 film was based on (Frank B. Gilbreth Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey), don't expect to see a remake of the charming, early-20th century comedy about two efficiency experts (Clifton Webb and Myrna Loy) running a complex but happy family...and this is not a BAD thing!

While the 1950 production is a minor classic, the thrust of the earlier film was with the parents, and oldest daughter (the late Jeanne Crain). Clifton Webb was a gifted, acerbic actor, best known, previously, as 'child hating' author Lynn Belvedere, who proved he was as adept at raising children as he was at EVERYTHING he attempted, in the 1948 hit, SITTING PRETTY. The film was such a success that two sequels were made, and Webb would do several more 'family' comedies before his death in 1966. Playing Frank Bunker Gilbreth, the father of twelve, was a 'natural' for the actor, and the 61-year old Webb 'stole' the film with his self-effacing, 'scientific' approach to child rearing. As his wife, Lillian, Myrna Loy, who had graduated from being 'Nora Charles' in the "Thin Man" series, to being Hollywood's favorite wife/mom, shared Bonnie Hunt's sweetness, sense of organization, and dry humor, but lacked a sexual chemistry with Webb that would have actually produced twelve children (perhaps because of the less 'permissive' time the film was made, or perhaps because of Webb's screen persona). Jeanne Crain, one of 20th Century Fox's favorite ingénues for over six years, had a large fan base, which the studio capitalized on (She was actually second-billed in the film, behind Webb). Her scene at a 1920's prom, with Webb as her 'date', is a film highlight. While the eleven other children were given 'moments' in the film, they barely registered, individually.

Would 2003 audiences have gone to see Martin in a period comedy set eighty years earlier? I doubt it. And had the original story had been simply 'updated', would it have been truly faithful to the source, even in spirit? Unlikely, as so much has changed over the years. Ultimately, the film makers erred, I believe, in using the title of the earlier film, but not in the approach of making a 'family-friendly' comedy about a household of massive proportions.

With Steve Martin, who has become Hollywood's quintessential 'Dad', as a loving, unconventional father/football coach given an opportunity to head his alma mater's team, he displays the same kind of sensitivity that made PARENTHOOD such a wonderful film. Bonnie Hunt, as his wife, is completely believable as a successful author who could handle her large family and still-frisky husband equally well. She is, as always, a treasure!

The children are really the stars of the film, though, and each is special, and individual, from the eldest daughter (Piper Perabo), who, at 22, wants the family to accept the guy she's living with (Ashton Kutcher, in a funny, brief role), to the youngest pair of twins (Brent and Shane Kinsman), who make an art out of wreaking havoc. Tom Welling is quite likable, and proves that he is more than just 'Clark Kent' (For you trivia fans, Kutcher almost got the part of 'Superman' in an upcoming film, which would have put two 'Men of Steel' in the cast). The only discordant note is Hillary Duff's annoyingly brittle second daughter; she may be a 'teen idol', but she is more grating than endearing.

Director Shawn Levy's previous film, JUST MARRIED, was a loud, unpleasant, clichéd bore; in CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN, he redeems himself with a more enjoyable, richer film.

While the movie will never earn the 'classic' status the earlier film achieved, it stands very well on it's own merits!


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