IMDb > The Secret Life of Bees (2008)
The Secret Life of Bees
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

The Secret Life of Bees (2008) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 69 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
The Secret Life of Bees -- A drama, set in Southern U.S. in 1960's, revolving around teenager Lily Owens (Fanning) and her nanny, Rosaleen (Hudson), who flee their hometown to escape their harsh upbringing and uncover  the mysteries of Lily's later mother.
The Secret Life of Bees -- This is the first theatrical trailer for The Secret Lives of Bees, directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood.


User Rating:
7.3/10   18,574 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Down 30% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Gina Prince-Bythewood (screenplay)
Sue Monk Kidd (novel)
View company contact information for The Secret Life of Bees on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 October 2008 (USA) See more »
Bring Your Girlfriends, Sisters, Mothers and Daughters
Set in South Carolina in 1964, this is the tale of Lily Owens, a 14 year-old girl who is haunted by the memory of her late mother... See more » | Full synopsis »
12 wins & 16 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Welcome to the family! See more (54 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Dakota Fanning ... Lily Owens

Queen Latifah ... August Boatwright

Jennifer Hudson ... Rosaleen Daise

Alicia Keys ... June Boatwright

Sophie Okonedo ... May Boatwright

Paul Bettany ... T. Ray Owens

Hilarie Burton ... Deborah Owens

Tristan Wilds ... Zach Taylor

Nate Parker ... Neil

Shondrella Avery ... Greta
Renee Ford Clark ... Doll (as Renée Clark)

Sharon Conley ... Violet (as Sharon Morris)

Nicky Buggs ... Cressie

Jasmine Burke ... Sugar Girl
Emma Sage Bowman ... Young Lily

Emily Alyn Lind ... Young Lily

Addy Miller ... Young Lily

Taylor Kowalski ... Teenager

Bob Hungerford ... Frank Posey
Richard Todd Sullivan ... Mechanic
Chris Moore ... Posey's Buddy

Bill Oberst Jr. ... Sheriff Gaston

Cullen Moss ... Young White Policeman (as Cullen Dean Moss)
Walt Elder ... Driver
Dan Beene ... Mr. Kirven

Joe Chrest ... Mr. Forrest

Robin Mullins ... Miss Lacy
Tom Conder ... White Man #1

Jay Pearson ... White Man #3
Dan Cox ... Sheriff Brooks

Quentin Kerr ... Police Officer

Kimberly Bailey ... (voice)

Doug Burch ... (voice)

Cathy Cavadini ... (voice) (as Catherine Cavadini)

Lanei Chapman ... (voice) (as Lanai Chapman)
Barbara Harris ... (voice) (as Barbara Iley)

Amad Jackson ... (voice)
Thomas Lambert ... (voice)
Terence Mathews ... (voice)

Jeremy Maxwell ... (voice)

Alan Oppenheimer ... (voice)

Richard Penn ... (voice) (as Richard W. Penn)
Noreen Reardon ... (voice)
Cheryl Tyre Smith ... (voice) (as Cheryl Tyre-Smith)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Chevy Lamont Cofield ... Townsmen (uncredited)
Linwood Mooring ... Onlooker (uncredited)
Lindsey Sherrin ... Teen (uncredited)
Matthew Landon Sparks ... Teen 2 (uncredited)

Directed by
Gina Prince-Bythewood 
Writing credits
Gina Prince-Bythewood (screenplay)

Sue Monk Kidd (novel)

Produced by
Ed Cathell III .... co-producer
James Lassiter .... producer
Ewan Leslie .... co-producer
Joe Pichirallo .... producer
Jada Pinkett Smith .... executive producer
Aldric La'auli Porter .... co-producer (as Aldric Porter)
Lauren Shuler Donner .... producer
Will Smith .... producer
Original Music by
Mark Isham 
Cinematography by
Rogier Stoffers (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Terilyn A. Shropshire 
Casting by
Aisha Coley 
Craig Fincannon 
Lisa Mae Fincannon 
Mark Fincannon 
Production Design by
Warren Alan Young 
Art Direction by
William G. Davis 
Alan Hook 
Set Decoration by
James Edward Ferrell Jr. 
Costume Design by
Sandra Hernandez 
Makeup Department
Shutchai Tym Buacharern .... key makeup department head (as Tym Shutchai Buacharen)
Kari Delaney .... assistant hair stylist
Camille Friend .... hair department head
Lumas Hamilton Jr. .... hair stylist: Queen Latifah (as Lumas Hamilton)
Julie Kristy .... makeup: Queen Latifah
Rick Pour .... assistant makeup
Joy Zapata .... hair stylist: Dakota Fanning
Kelly E. Marlow .... additional hair stylist (uncredited)
Jason Willis .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Victoria Wood .... wig maker: Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson (uncredited)
Production Management
Ed Cathell III .... unit production manager
Elizabeth Fox .... post-production supervisor
Preston L. Holmes .... unit production manager (as Preston Holmes)
Dale Williams .... assistant unit production manager
Mike Crawford .... unit production manager (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Brian Avery Galligan .... second second assistant director
Aldric La'auli Porter .... first assistant director (as Aldric Porter)
Joe Roddey .... second assistant director
Art Department
Kip Bartlett .... on-set dresser (as Kip A. Bartlett)
Charles Bibbs .... creator: Black Madonna artwork
Charles Biting .... propmaker (as Charles Bitting)
Tracy Breyfogle .... art department production assistant (as Tracey Breyfogle)
John Bromell .... set dresser (as John T. Bromell)
Danielle Couture .... art department coordinator
Peter Durand .... scenic painter
Thurston Edwards .... buyer
Craig Gilmore .... illustrator
George W. Harding III .... key greens (as George Harding III)
Carl Hector .... greensman (as Carl F. Hector)
Chester Lee Henderson Jr. .... set dresser
Chris Holcombe .... scenic painter
Margie McLamb Holowaty .... buyer (as Margie Hallowaty)
Vincent E. Immordino .... greensman (as Vincent Immordino)
Tom Jones Jr. .... construction coordinator
Doug Kelejian .... set dresser (as Douglas Kelejian)
Randy Kenan .... foreman
Gerard Kern .... gang boss
Andy Krish .... greensman
Alicia Lowe .... construction buyer
David Lyons .... standby greens
Michael Marcelli .... greensman
Alex McCarroll .... set designer
James D. Nelson .... set dresser (as James D. Nelson)
Paul Oliver .... lead scenic (as Paul W. Oliver)
James F. Oñate .... paint foreman (as James Oñate)
John C. Powell .... gang boss
Steve Roberts .... greensman
John Sanders .... property master
Jason Scruggs .... propmaker
Roger Scruggs .... construction foreman (as Roger Scruggs Sr.)
Barbara Seinfeld .... standby painter
Chris Shader .... property assistant (as Christopher 'Shady' Shader)
Michael Shapiro .... greensman (as Michael A. Shapiro)
'Jungle Jim' Shaughnessy .... on-set dresser (as James Shaughnessy)
'Polar Bear' Shaw .... leadman (as Polar Bear Shaw)
Larry C. Shepard .... paint gang boss
Bob Smith .... set dresser
Greg Spencer .... foreman (as Greg W. Spencer)
Michael H. Ward .... assistant art director (as Mike Ward)
Ernie Watson .... propmaker
John Weeks .... sculptor
Eric West .... set dresser (as Eric B. West)
Dana White .... greensman
Jesse Williams .... propmaker
Duane Williamson .... assistant property master
James Gambino .... typesetting (uncredited)
Michael Williamson .... props (uncredited)
Sound Department
Robert Althoff .... sound re-recordist
Julie Altus .... adr recordist
Jeremy Balko .... foley mixer
Jeremy Balko .... sound editor
Bridget Devaney-Nierenberg .... sound intern
Jenny Elsinger .... cable person
Marc Fishman .... sound re-recording mixer
Sean Foye .... foley mixer
Matthew Iadarola .... sound re-recording mixer
Tony Lamberti .... sound re-recording mixer
Jay Nierenberg .... sound designer
Jay Nierenberg .... sound supervisor
Todd Niesen .... sound editor
Angelo Palazzo .... sound editor
James Peterson .... boom operator
Shelley Roden .... foley artist
Carl Rudisill .... production sound mixer (as Carl S. Rudisill)
Dean St. John .... adr mixer
Phillip Young .... assistant sound editor (as Phillip J. Young)
Nick Foley .... adr mixer (uncredited)
Cameron O. Galloway .... adr recordist (uncredited)
Larry Hopkins .... layback sound mixer (uncredited)
Hugo Jeffreys .... adr recordist (uncredited)
Linda Lew .... foley recordist (uncredited)
John Soukup .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Ross Wissbaum .... adr recordist (uncredited)
Special Effects by
David Beavis .... special effects technician
Phil H. Fravel .... special effects technician
Stephen Lanier .... special effects coordinator
William Purcell .... special effects technician
Morgan McMath Rogers .... special effects technician (as Morgan M. Rogers)
Visual Effects by
Casey Allen .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Ian Backer .... production assistant: Hammerhead Productions
Daniel Chuba .... executive producer: Hammerhead Productions (as Dan Chuba)
Trent Claus .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Aliza Corson Chameides .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Victor DiMichina .... visual effects producer: Pixel Magic
Jamie Dixon .... visual effects supervisor
Kevin Fisher .... 2d artist: Pixel Magic
Gilbert Gonzales .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Deborah Hiner .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Les Hunter .... visual effects producer: Hammerhead Productions
Chris Ingersoll .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Justin Jones .... compositing supervisor: Hammerhead Productions (as Justin Other Jones)
Kelly Rae Kenan Green .... visual effects coordinator: Hammerhead Productions (as Kelly Kenan)
Benjamin Kutsko .... inferno artist: Lola VFX (as Ben Kutsko)
Didier Levy .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Jeff Mailes .... 2d artist: Pixel Magic
Shira Mandel .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Richard Matsushita .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Mamie McCall .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Ray McIntyre Jr. .... visual effects supervisor: Pixel Magic
Daniel Mellitz .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Joel Merritt .... artist: Hammerhead Productions
Fatima Mojaddidy .... system administrator: Hammerhead Productions
Paolo Moscatelli .... cg supervisor: Hammerhead Productions
Thomas Nittmann .... visual effects producer: Lola VFX
Brian Nugent .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Clark Parkhurst .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Sean Wallitsch .... inferno artist: Lola VFX
Edson Williams .... visual effects supervisor: Lola VFX
Manny Wong .... animation supervisor: Hammerhead Productions
Ryan Zuttermeister .... visual effects associate producer: Lola VFX
Ryan Beadle .... digital i/o (uncredited)
Samuel M. Dabbs .... lead title designer (uncredited)
Michele Ferrone .... visual effects producer (uncredited)
Shaina Holmes .... digital compositor (uncredited)
Paulina Kuszta .... visual effects coordinator (uncredited)
Tina Mckissick .... stunts
Dean Mumford .... stunt coordinator
Valerie N. Robinson .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Steven Allen .... dolly grip: "b" camera
Sidney Ray Baldwin .... still photographer (as Sidney Baldwin)
Troy Blischok .... first assistant camera: "b" camera
Michael Bonsignore .... dolly grip: "a" camera
George Bozeman II .... company grip
Joe D'Alessandro .... camera operator (as Joseph C. D'Alessandro)
Michael A. Jones .... best boy electric
Charles Laughon .... video assist (as Charles 'Chaz' Laughon)
Jordan Lindsay .... assistant video assist
Matt Malloy .... company electric (as Matthew Malloy)
Nicole Jannai Martinez .... loader (as Nicole Martinez)
John McIntyre .... second assistant camera
Cristiano Palermi .... company electric
Brian Powell .... company electric
Robert M. Powell .... company grip
Bob Shober .... company grip (as Robert N. Shober)
Steve Skinner .... best boy grip
Tommy Ray Sullivan .... gaffer
Dascious Thomas .... key grip
Dan Turek .... first assistant camera (as Daniel Turek)
Jack Vollers .... company electric
Jessica Ward .... second assistant camera: "b" camera
Bo Webb .... camera operator: "b" camera
Jamie Baglio .... electrician (uncredited)
Neil Boone .... additional grip (uncredited)
Matt Doll .... steadicam operator (uncredited)
Casting Department
Kim Coleman .... additional casting
Tara Feldstein .... extras casting
Barbara Harris .... voice casting
Jackie Sollitto .... casting associate
Meredith Young .... extras casting
Amy Cohen .... casting assistant (uncredited)
Christian Kaplan .... executive in charge of casting (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Leigh Leverett .... costume supervisor
Joyce Marling .... key set costumer
Natalie Nye .... seamstress (as Natalie J. Nye)
Anne K. Osborne .... seamstress (as Anne K. Osbourne)
Alice Powell .... tailor
Dawn M. Williams .... set costumer
Jessica Williamson .... set costumer
Eulyn Womble .... set costumer (as Eulyn C. Hufkie-Womble)
Jeanie Baker .... costume supervisor (uncredited)
Natasha Konowalow .... costume assistant (uncredited)
Nina Schelich .... assistant costume designer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
David Todd Davies .... digital conforming and opticals: PostWorks Los Angeles
Elizabeth Fox .... post supervisor
David Friedman .... editorial production assistant
Scott Gregory .... digital film colorist: PostWorks Los Angeles
Michael L. Holland .... digital intermediate producer: PostWorks Los Angeles
Kenneth Marsten .... associate editor (as Kenny Marsten)
Heather J. Morrison .... assistant editor (as Heather Morrison)
Harry Muller .... color timer
Tim Safarik .... colorist: dailies
Tahj Gautier .... post-production assistant (uncredited)
Faust Pierfederici .... digital preview colorist (uncredited)
Music Department
Johnny Britt .... vocalist
Linda Cohen .... music supervisor
Laura Epstein .... cello coach: New York
John Fee .... music preparation
Isobel Griffiths .... orchestra contractor
Mark Isham .... musician: piano solos
Lewis Jones .... assistant music engineer
Zoe Keating .... musician: cello
Philip Klein .... music preparation
Kathy Meyer .... cello coach: North Carolina
Shawn Murphy .... score mixer
Jennifer Nash .... temp music editor
Cindy O'Connor .... assistant to composer
Tyler Parkinson .... assistant music engineer
Tyler Parkinson .... electronic pre-recordist
Conrad Pope .... supervising orchestrator
Simon Rhodes .... score recordist
Curtis Roush .... supervising music editor
L. Jimmy Sneed .... musician: guitar (as L.J. Sneed)
Jill Streater .... music preparation
Erik Swanson .... score recordist
Clifford J. Tasner .... orchestrator
Rosemary Warren-Green .... orchestra leader (as Rose Warren-Green)
Mark Berrow .... musician: violin (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Lance Owens .... driver: Queen Latifah (as Lancelot Owens)
Scott Siler .... transportation captain (as Russell Scott Siler)
Tim J. Walters .... transportation coordinator
Russell l Byrd .... driver: cast (uncredited)
Linda Pickett .... driver (uncredited)
Kim Smallwood .... transportation (uncredited)
Other crew
Mark A. Alcala .... security: Queen Latifah
Ryan Bennett .... production assistant (as Ryan 'Flash' Bennett)
LaWanda Black .... executive assistant: Queen Latifah (as La Wanda Black aka 'LB')
Jen Brett .... production secretary
Cassandra Butcher .... unit publicist
Jan Cerwonka .... studio teacher
Michele Cusick .... production assistant
Jack Dubnicek .... assistant: Lauren Shuler Donner
Philippe Gallichet .... caterer: Cinema Catering (as Phillipe Gallichet)
Reva Grantham .... craft service
Casey Grimes .... bee assistant
Bass Hampton .... location manager
Barbara Efthymiou Harris .... assistant production coordinator
Brian Hicks .... assistant: Joe Richirallo
Meg Lansaw .... location production assistant (as Margaret W. Lansaw)
Vikki Lewis .... craft service
Kathy Liska .... executive assistant: Lauren Shuler Donner
Richard Lyons .... theatrical consultant: Queen Latifah
Natalie Mathes .... post-production accountant
Jenna Mazer .... accounting clerk
Shaun M. McGovern .... production accountant (as Shaun McGovern)
Shaun M. McGovern .... production auditor (as Shaun McGovern)
Tim Monich .... dialect coach
Natasha Parker .... assistant: Gina Prince-Bythewood
Thomas Parris .... assistant location manager (as Thomas Paris)
Thom Rainey .... script supervisor
Michael Ray .... craft service
Nicholas Raynor .... catering assistant: Cinema Catering
Matthew Richards .... catering assistant: Cinema Catering
Valerie N. Robinson .... production assistant (as Valerie Robinson)
Jeremy Sanchez .... post-production accounting assistant
Jonathan Stanley .... production assistant
Kelly Stultz .... payroll accountant (as Kelly Brett Stultz)
Rachael Tartell .... assistant location manager (as Rachael Tartel)
Lena Waithe .... assistant: Gina Prince-Bythewood
Pamela Williamson .... assistant auditor
Caleb Womble .... production coordinator (as J. Caleb Womble)
Julian I. Wooten .... bee keeper
Carolyn Barrett .... photo double (uncredited)
John Calvin Byrd .... assistant publicist (uncredited)
Jessica Drake .... dialect coach: adr (uncredited)
Ava DuVernay .... production publicist (uncredited)
D.R. Farquharson .... project manager: Deluxe Digital Cinema (uncredited)
Gary Glushon .... assistant: James Lassiter (uncredited)
Will Griffin .... production assistant additional (uncredited)
Kasey Kiser .... production assistant (uncredited)
Katarzyna 'Kait' Malec .... additional set production assistant (uncredited)
Meredith McIvor .... assistant production coordinator (uncredited)
Thurston Pope .... stand-in (uncredited)
Megan Stas .... production assistant (uncredited)
Johnny Griffin .... the producers wish to thank: for their assistance
Bill Lewis .... the producers wish to thank: for their assistance
Guy J. Louthan .... the producers wish to thank for their assistance
Paul Sanchez .... the producers wish to thank for their assistance
Bill Vassar .... the producers wish to thank: for their assistance
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG-13 for thematic material and some violence
USA:114 min (director's cut) | Canada:110 min (Toronto International Film Festival)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
DTS | Dolby (as Dolby Stereo) | SDDS
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Brazil:12 | Canada:PG (Alberta/British Columbia/Manitoba) | Canada:14A (Ontario) | Canada:G (Québec) | Finland:K-11 | Germany:12 | Ireland:15A | Japan:PG12 | Mexico:B | Netherlands:12 | New Zealand:M | Norway:11 | Philippines:PG-13 (MTRCB) | Singapore:PG | South Korea:12 | Spain:7 | UK:12A | USA:PG-13 (certificate #44411)

Did You Know?

Jennifer Hudson said in an interview that director Gina Prince-Bythewood had sent her to a store to get several items and while she was there, the staff and the customers verbally and racially abused her. The incident was, in fact staged by actors under Bythewood's direction in order for Hudson to get the feel of a racially tense environment, the time and setting of the film, and to help her with her characterization.See more »
Anachronisms: The action in the movie took place in July, 1964. When we first meet Zach, he is singing The Four Tops' "Baby, I Need Your Loving," which was not released until August 15, 1964. A few scenes later, the characters are listening to The Supremes' "Come See About Me," which was not released until November, 1964.See more »
Lily Owens:[First lines] I killed my mother when I was four years old. She was all I ever wanted and I took her away.See more »
Movie Connections:
O SusannaSee more »


How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
Aren't the Bee sisters in their 60's?
Is "The Secret Life of Bees" based on a novel?
See more »
55 out of 64 people found the following review useful.
Welcome to the family!, 18 October 2008
Author: reelinspiration from United States

Writer/Director Gina Prince-Bythewood, winner of the Independent Spirit Award for Sundance hit, "Love & Basketball," has now brought the beloved, acclaimed best-seller, "The Secret Life of Bees" to the screen.

1964, South Carolina. Lily Owens (played with open-eyed honestly by Dakota Fanning) is raised in a loveless home by her cruel, distant father. Fourteen year old Lily longs for a mother she never knew. When her only friend, their black maid Rosaleen, is assaulted in a racist incident, the girls are forced to go on the run.

Lily and Rosaleen end up on the doorstep of the Boatwrights, the black sisters who own a successful honey farm. Lily concocts an elaborate lie to persuade the maternal August Boatwright (played with warm dignity by Queen Latifah) to temporarily take them in. They are met with some resistance from the guarded June (Alicia Keys), a classical cellist and civil rights activist. But they are welcomed enthusiastically by the open-hearted May (played with touching vulnerability by Sophie Okonedo). They soon find that hyper-sensitive May is moved to tears by the mention of anything sad.

August teaches Lily how to tend the bees, and May whole heartedly embraces both girls. They are soon accepted as part of the family. But Lily still needs to find the truth of why her mother left her.

This is a coming of age story and parable about how to cope with the painful truth and find forgiveness. As Lily's young love interest puts it, "It's not just about the truth. It's about what you do with it." The two sisters illustrate different ways to deal with the hard truths of life. June has closed her heart and built a protective wall to keep out hurtful emotions. While May has completely opened her heart and feels everyone's pain. Her heart is open to joy but it is also an open wound.

I loved being in this world and a part of this loving family - so much that I stayed for a second screening. This is due in part to Gina Prince-Bythewood's excellent adaptation and the wonderful acting of Dakota Fanning, Queen Latifah, and especially Sophie Okonedo - who is literally the heart of the film.

If you're looking for a sweet way to spend the afternoon, "The Secret Life of Bees" will supply the honey.

Movie blessings! Jana Segal reel inspiration dot blogspot dot com

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (54 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Secret Life of Bees (2008)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Seriously? No love for T Ray? JBMovies123
Did anyone else love May Boatwright? reminiscent00
The Reason why this movie failed..... edess
Queen Latifah. kayleewheat
Dakota's first on screen kiss hal_111091
Love it! gaia_eve
See more »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The Human Stain Gone with the Wind Introducing Dorothy Dandridge Eve's Bayou The Kite Runner
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.