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The Great New Wonderful
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The Great New Wonderful weaves five stories against the backdrop of an anxious and uncertain post-9-11 New York City. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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Post Traumatic Stress Malaise Well Captured See more (35 total) »


  (in credits order)

Olympia Dukakis ... Judy Hillerman (segment "Judy's Story")

Jim Gaffigan ... Sandie (segment "Sandie's Story")

Judy Greer ... Allison Burbage (segment "David and Allison's Story")

Maggie Gyllenhaal ... Emme Keeler (segment "Emme's Story")

Tom McCarthy ... Davie Burbage (segment "David and Allison's Story")

Sharat Saxena ... Satish (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Naseeruddin Shah ... Avinash aka "Avi" (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Tony Shalhoub ... Dr. Trabulous (segment "Sandie's Story")

Stephen Colbert ... Principal Peersall (segment "David and Allison's Story")

Dick Latessa ... Jerry Binder (segment "Judy's Story")

Will Arnett ... Danny Keeler (segment "Emme's Story")

Seth Gilliam ... Clayton (segment "Emme's Story")

Anita Gillette ... Lainie (segment "Judy's Story")

Julie Dretzin ... Julie Driscoll (segment "Emme's Story")

Edie Falco ... Safarah Polsky (segment "Emme's Story")

Jim Parsons ... Justin (segment "Emme's Story")

Martha Millan ... Alexa (segment "Emme's Story")

Nancy McDoniel ... Agnes Whitehead (segment "Emme's Story")
Fred Burrell ... Wexler Whitehead (segment "Emme's Story")
Jillian Crane ... Crying Woman (segment "Emme's Story")

Mario Polit ... Elvis Cedeno (segment "Emme's Story")

Tony Kushner ... Himself (segment "Emme's Story")

Finnerty Steeves ... Isabelle (segment "Emme's Story")
Priscilla Shanks ... Priscilla Krindel (segment "Emme's Story")
Bernie McInerney ... Duff Krindel (segment "Emme's Story")

Ari Graynor ... Lisa Krindel (segment "Emme's Story")
Kathryn Faughnan ... Karaoke Girl (segment "Emme's Story")
Bill Donner ... Charlie Burbage (segment "David and Allison's Story") (as Billy Donner)
Tom Ford ... Mr. Jeffers (segment "David and Allison's Story)

Zack Wall ... Geography Bee Contestant (segment "David and Allison's Story")

Rosemarie DeWitt ... Debbie (segment "David and Allison's Story")
Kapil Bawa ... General Ganjee (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Eliyas Qureshi ... Head Security Guard (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Rajika Puri ... Sucheta (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Mukesh .C. Patel ... Vijay (Satish's brother-in-law) (segment "Avi and Satish's Story") (as Mukesh M. Patel)
Nikhil Patel ... Bhanu (Satish's son) (segment "Avi and Satish's Story") (as Nikhil M. Patel)
Jyotsna Du Ciel ... Avi's Daughter (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Tonye Patano ... Shirley (Meter Maid) (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")

Alex McCord ... Jessilyn (Lola Hostess) (segment "Avi and Satish's Story")
Moises Castillo Orta ... Tough Teen (segment "Ari and Satish's Story")
Masayasu Nakanishi ... Japanese Tourist (segment "Ari and Satish's Story")

Ed Setrakian ... Henry Hillerman (segment "Judy's Story")

Sam Catlin ... Councilman Blenick (segment "Judy's Story")
Nicky 'Pops' Anest ... Lou

Marilyn Chris ... Phyllis (segment "Judy's Story")

Eric Fleishman ... Water Exercise Instructor (segment "Judy's Story")

David Costabile ... Vending Machine Guy (segment "Sandie's Story")
Alicia Van Couvering ... Girl in Truck (segment "Sandie's Story")
Justin Rosen ... Boy in Truck (segment "Sandie's Story")
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kimberly Asa ... School principal

Alexis Dziena ... Angie (scenes deleted)
Tony Galtieri ... Waiter
Nadir Hasan ... Restaurant Patron
Matthew Seife ... Boisterous Tourist Family

Parthiban Shanmugam ... Under cover agent
Joseph M. Abbott ... Man in Park (uncredited)

Orlagh Cassidy ... Flirty Woman (uncredited)

Michael Den Dekker ... Cafe Patron (uncredited)
Mike Dressel ... Young Teacher (uncredited)
Adrianna White Eagle ... Girl Looking Down School Hallway (uncredited)

Brian Kirchoff ... Actor (uncredited)
Michie Madison ... Theatregoer (uncredited)

Dominick Mancino ... Train Passenger (uncredited)
K'Dee Miller ... Rhonda (uncredited)

Meredith Ostrom ... Anita (uncredited)

Farrah Peskoff ... Girl in Pigtails (uncredited)

Dawn Ressy ... Train Passenger (uncredited)

Emily Anila Shah ... Avi's Daughter (segment "Avi and Satish's Story) (uncredited)
Namrata Shah ... Avi's Daughter (segment "Avi and Satish's Story) (uncredited)

Jeremy Shamos ... Young Rabbi (uncredited)

Directed by
Danny Leiner 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Sam Catlin  written by

Produced by
Victor Bardack .... executive producer (as Vic Bardack)
Michael Hoffman .... executive producer
C.C. Lagator .... executive producer
Danny Leiner .... producer
Damon Martin .... executive producer
Lila Mirochin .... associate producer
Michael Nozik .... executive producer
Amy Robinson .... executive producer
Gary Rubin .... executive producer
Jesse Scolaro .... co-producer
Nick Goodwin Self .... co-producer
Raj Singh .... executive producer
Daniel Swee .... co-producer
Matt Tauber .... producer
Leslie Urdang .... producer
Allison Wolf .... associate producer
Original Music by
John Swihart 
Cinematography by
Harlan Bosmajian (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Robert Frazen 
Casting by
Daniel Swee 
Production Design by
Laura Ballinger 
Art Direction by
Tyler Q. Rosen 
Set Decoration by
Kate Foster 
Costume Design by
Alysia Raycraft 
Makeup Department
Tom Brumberger .... hair stylist: Ms. Dukakis
Tom Brumberger .... makeup artist: Ms. Dukakis
Persefone Karakosta .... key hair stylist
Persefone Karakosta .... key makeup artist
Brenna Scarrott .... additional hair stylist
Brenna Scarrott .... additional makeup artist
Joanna Stewart .... assistant hair stylist
Joanna Stewart .... assistant makeup artist
Production Management
Seth Eisman .... production supervisor
Patrick Huber .... production assistant
Joe Leonard .... post-production supervisor
Doug Torres .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Bruce Hall .... first assistant director: second unit
Bruce Hall .... second second assistant director
Kathleen E. Kearney .... second assistant director
Doug Torres .... first assistant director
Art Department
Hillary Baldwin .... set dresser
Fay Chang .... set dresser
Erin Diebol .... set dresser
Katie Dillon .... set dresser (as Katie Dillan)
Maus Drechsler .... property master (as Ana Katharina Drechsler)
Ana Katharina Dreschsler .... property master
Eduardo Garabal .... assistant property master
Shelley Herbert .... additional props
Sean Marks .... set dresser
Jennifer Massi .... set dresser
Don O'Reilly .... additional art director (as Donald O'Reilly)
Tanya Preminger .... set dresser
Paula Raymond .... set dresser
Richard Rogers .... set dresser
Justin Rosen .... art production assistant
Justin Rosen .... lead man
Ry Russo-Young .... set dresser (as Ry Russo Young)
Gela Zefira .... assistant property master
Tomas Zeman .... set dresser
Sound Department
Joshua Anderson .... additional sound mixer
Joshua Anderson .... boom operator
Sarah F. Badiee .... adr editor (as Sarah Badiee)
Dominic Bartolini .... adr recordist
Andrew Bellware .... additional sound mixer
Kevin Bowe .... additional boom operator
Michael Brown .... foley mixer
Gary Coppola .... foley mixer (as Gary J. Coppola)
Gary Coppola .... re-recording mixer (as Gary J. Coppola)
Alexandra Gallo .... additional boom operator
Kenneth Hassell .... additional boom operator
Dean Hurley .... sound editor
Jeff Kushner .... sound designer (as Jeffrey A. Kushner)
Jeff Kushner .... supervising sound editor (as Jeffrey A. Kushner)
Tim H. Lee .... adr mixer
Bryant Musgrove .... additional boom operator
Shannon Potter .... foley artist
Trevor Reed .... sound effects editor
Griffin Richardson .... sound mixer
Gabriel Sanders .... additional boom operator
Mike Shear .... sound effects editor
Edward M. Steidele .... foley artist (as Edward Steidele)
Jose Torres .... additional sound mixer
Jerry Trent .... foley artist
David Warburton .... post facility coordinator
Visual Effects by
Ian Vertovec .... digital colorist
Manny Siverio .... stunt coordinator
Jeff Ward .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
John Anctil .... swing
Quarry Bastfield .... best boy electric (as Quarry Basfield)
Bob Behrens .... camera intern
Manuel Billeter .... camera operator: "b" camera
Manuel Billeter .... director of photography: second unit
Manuel Billeter .... first assistant camera
Ethan Borsuk .... second assistant camera
Steven Capitano Calitri .... key grip
Matthew Caton .... swing
Othmar Dickbauer .... camera engineer (as Othmar Dickbaur)
Avra Fox .... swing
Fernando Gayesky .... second assistant camera
Abbot Genser .... still photographer
Shawn Greene .... gaffer
Adam Hall .... best boy grip
Nina Kuhn .... swing
Robert McKenna .... additional camera operator
Jessica Miglio .... additional still photographer
Ron Morales .... best boy electric
Mike Morini .... grip
Mike Morini .... swing
Allesandra Petlin .... additional still photographer
Daniel Sharnoff .... camera intern (as Dan Sharnoff)
Julianna Thomas .... additional still photographer
Kenny Trice .... additional still photographer
Casting Department
Lois J. Drabkin .... casting associate
Jimmy Floyd .... extras casting
Jacob Gitzis .... extras casting
Eddie Gutch .... extras casting assistant
Sheila Jaffe .... casting consultant: Serenade Films
Kristen McTigue .... casting associate
Kristie Sessions .... extras casting assistant
Charlotte Wanberg .... casting intern (as Charlotte Manning)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Marygrace Brennan .... wardrobe intern (as Mary Grace Brennan)
Amy Clark .... assistant costume designer
Catherine Osborne .... wardrobe supervisor
Melissa Ross .... assistant costume designer
Lea Umberger .... wardrobe intern
Belinda Yee .... wardrobe intern
Editorial Department
Michael Cioni .... digital intermediate post supervisor
Jake Cohen .... first assistant editor (as Jacob Cohen)
J.P. Impastato .... post-production assistant
Joe Leonard .... second assistant editor
Jesse Tushinsky .... assistant editor: opening titles
Ian Vertovec .... colorist
Ian Vertovec .... on-line editor
Chris Wong .... second assistant editor
Christopher C.C. Wong .... assistant editor
Kai Wu .... assistant post-production coordinator
Location Management
Olivia Byun .... location intern
Kat Donahue .... assistant location manager
Denyse R. Jones .... location intern
Chris Marsh .... location manager (as Christopher Marsh)
Danny O'Brien .... location assistant
Music Department
Michael Baber .... music editor (as Mike Baber)
Adam Blau .... assistant to composer
Adam Blau .... musician: piano
Mari Cuney .... musician: violin
Peter Gordon .... musician: flute and clarinet
Aram Mandossian .... composer intern
Greg Morgenstein .... score engineer
John Swihart .... musician: guitar and upright bass
Robin Urdang .... music supervisor
Other crew
Nicholas Allen .... additional set production assistant (as Nick Allen)
Ami Armstrong .... creative executive: Serenade Films
Georgia Boyce .... office intern
Margaret Braun .... cakes designer
J.C. Bridges .... parking production assistant
Robert Broden .... on-set medic
Eric M. Brooks .... legal counsel: Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal & La Violette, Sky Dog Films
Amy Chang .... office intern
Kira Cohen .... assistant: Mr. Tauber
Nicholas Coles .... additional set production assistant
Tom Collier .... legal counsel: Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal & La Violette, Sky Dog Films (as Thomas B. Coillier)
Carol A. Compton .... script clearance researcher: IndieClear
Christianne Cook .... craft service
Gabrielle Cran .... assistant: Ms. Robinson
Tim DeYoung .... assistant: Mr. Leiner
Rebecca Ehrhardt .... production coordinator
Massoumeh Emami .... script supervisor
Marta Forns-Escudé .... key production assistant
Carol Frances .... production banking: City National Bank
Nitin Gambhir .... translator: Hindi
Davina Gazo .... office intern
Laurie Gershon .... product placement and clearances
Traci-Ann Gibson .... office intern
Avi Glijansky .... set production assistant
Johan Grimm .... office intern (as Johann Grimm)
Amy Gunzenhauser .... distribution consultant
Esme Haddock .... craft service
Patrick Huber .... set production assistant
Todd James .... advisory board: Serenade Films
Sarah Kramer .... additional set production assistant
Geoff Linville .... production executive: Serenade Films (as Geoffrey Linville)
Brian Mackey .... additional set production assistant
Shelly Madeja .... set production assistant (as Shelley Madeja)
Jacquie Mitchell .... production banking: City National Bank
Derek Pastures .... parking coordinator
Kia Perry .... craft service
Michael A. Price .... advisory board: Serenade Films
Daniel Rbibo .... insurance services: AON/Albert G. Ruben
Michele Robertson .... publicist
Safwan Salaam .... parking production assistant
Stephen Scharf .... advisory board: Serenade Films
Stephen Scharf .... legal counsel: O'Melveny and Myers
Sloane Schneier .... office intern
Madhavi Singh .... translator: Hindi
Raj Singh .... advisory board: Serenade Films
Maggie Slavonic .... title designer: end titles
Kim Tobash .... on-set tutor
Brandi Tufenkjian .... assistant production coordinator
Jesse Tushinsky .... assistant title editor
Adriano Valle .... set production assistant
Collin Warhaftig .... office intern
Julia Wells .... assistant to producers: Serenade Films (as Julia C. Wells)
Anthony Wright .... additional set production assistant
Lang Yee .... production accountant
Kevin Kline .... special thanks
Annie Leibovitz .... special thanks
Susan Michals .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for language and some sexuality
USA:87 min (Tribeca Film Festival)
Aspect Ratio:
1.78 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

WILHELM SCREAM: Heard on TV.See more »
Factual errors: Avi says that the Mall of America in Minneapolis is the largest mall in the world. Actually, at the time of the store, CentralWorld Mall in Thailand is larger, opening in 1990.See more »
[last lines]
Sandie - Dr. Trabulous' patient:I think I'm lost.
See more »
Movie Connections:
References Oh! Calcutta! (1972)See more »


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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
Post Traumatic Stress Malaise Well Captured, 10 July 2006
Author: noralee from Queens, NY

"The Great New Wonderful" marks the lead-up to a nervous anniversary I vividly remember - September 2002 -- so it is difficult to separate out my own recall of feelings of unease and dread in comparison to the film's portrayal of how a somewhat disparate group of New Yorkers experienced the same month or to evaluate it as a film on its own.

It certainly will have more resonance to New Yorkers than to others, even as TV's "Rescue Me has" already sneered at such feelings of those like most of the characters in the film who didn't directly lose a loved one or colleague on 9/11. But the documentaries and TV shows have focused on survivors and first-responders so that this attempt to capture every day New Yorkers, albeit mostly neurotic middle-class white ones, provides fresh insight.

The film well captures the malaise that seemed to infect us all, powerfully enough that I cried just before the climax, though to me it's like commemorating a yahrzheit, an anniversary of a death. When three-quarters through the film a plane traverses the screen, I gasped, just as I did at noisy planes throughout that month. While it took me over a year until I could even walk by Ground Zero, and then only by looking away from that hole in the ground, the repeating panning to the new skyline has already gotten too familiar to us and no longer has the shock of the gaping hole in the sky, or maybe the golden-tinged panorama is more of midtown with the Empire State Building restored as our icon than of lower Manhattan.

Directed in an European-feeling style by Danny Leiner, like an inter-edited take on the 2002 collection of 11 minute thematically-linked films by 11 international directors "11'09''01 - September 11", the mordant script by debut screenwriter Sam Catlin emphasizes festering explosions of repressed violence in various forms, mocking New Yorkers' contentions that 9/11 would somehow change us forever to be more serious and to appreciate life and despite what we read in the wedding stories in The New York Times for a year or two afterwards.

Sharply edited through leisurely short stories that gradually ratchet up in pacing, the characters do not have coincidental mutual impact as in "Amores Perros" and even fewer interrelations than the characters in "Nine Lives" except for occasional propinquity that has a frisson of 9/11 jitters.

The five boroughs are represented, with an age range from senior citizens (a terrific Olympia Dukakis' restless Jewish wife in Brooklyn) to a frazzled couple (Thomas McCarthy and Judy Greer) coping with their creepy child who is manifesting more symptoms of an incipient serial killer than the teens in the Columbine-inspired "Elephant", to service workers of the rich-- an ambitious pastry chef (Maggie Gyllenhaal as the skinniest baker in the world) and her circle very amusingly prepare for a "My Super Sweet 16" on MTV-like party in a satire of "let them eat cake" as she unironically offers a fancy dessert called "The Ophelia"; a meek cubicle denizen (Jim Gaffigan) who apparently was in the Twin Towers that day so is in mandated counseling with therapist Tony Shalhoub that is surely inspired by similar scenes from "Miracle on 34th Street"; and a pair of Indian security guards (Naseeruddin Shah and Sharat Saxena). I kept expecting the last set to have perceived some increased tensions for being South Asian, but instead the two are coping in divergent ways.

What all the characters share is no control over their lives and dependence on other people's decisions. Each does takes an unpredictable step-- climaxes and catharses (whether violent, sexual or artistic) that vary in their credibility within the film. For most of the characters we see the build-up of their frustration and its aftermath but not their existential act-- like looking at that skyline before and after.

Some secondary characters work better than others. The only character at peace has Alzheimers and wonders how World War II will end. Edie Falco's business lunch with Gyllenhaal is a masterpiece of understated bitchy competition in its timing and politesse, but Will Arnett as the slacker husband does not add anything. Stephen Colbert, as always, is the master of the unctuous, here as the odd student's private school principal. Seth Gilliam is the opposite of his macho cop in "The Wire".

The film is full of very New York touches -- we see playwright Tony Kushner backstage at a Kevin Kline performance at The Public Theater, the residences reflect different neighborhoods, and there's lovely scenes of bedraggled Coney Island with a yet still beautiful Atlantic Ocean. Visual juxtapositions abound, such as a very effective scene as the camera backs up to gradually revealed to be taking place on Liberty Island.

The cinematography by Harlan Bosmajian is very washed out. One scene brightened up and I at first thought there was some symbolic importance about characters' growing emotional clarity towards the end, but then it seemed more of a brief accident.

While the score by Brett Boyett and John Swihart is effectively understated and helps to connect the segments, the pop song choices were just plain odd, with zero connection to New York, from Bob Seger singing about L.A., to a karaoke of Canadian Sarah McLaughlin's ode to ice cream, to New Zealand's Neil Finn over the credits.

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