IMDb > Lovely by Surprise (2007)
Lovely by Surprise
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

Lovely by Surprise (2007) More at IMDbPro »

Lovely by Surprise -- A truly unique and visually stunning take on meta-fiction, Lovely By Surprise follows the journey of novelist Marian Walker as she attempts to finish her first novel.


User Rating:
6.5/10   156 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Down 2% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
View company contact information for Lovely by Surprise on IMDbPro.
A truly unique and visually stunning take on meta-fiction, Lovely By Surprise follows the journey of novelist Marian Walker as she attempts to finish her first novel. | Add synopsis »
1 win See more »
(9 articles)
Savage County DVD Giveaway
 (From AreYouScreening. 9 June 2011, 10:08 AM, PDT)

Paper Man DVD Review
 (From AreYouScreening. 4 February 2011, 4:11 PM, PST)

Eiff 2010: A look ahead to the festival
 (From Den of Geek. 15 June 2010, 10:42 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Caught an early screening of this gem at the Core Club... See more (7 total) »


  (in credits order)

Carrie Preston ... Marian

Michael Chernus ... Humkin

Austin Pendleton ... Jackson

Dallas Roberts ... Mopekey

Reg Rogers ... Bob

Kate Burton ... Helen

Richard Masur ... Dave
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jimmy Crothswait ... Milkman

Glenn Fitzgerald ... Customer #2

Boyd Gaines ... Customer #1
Ron Gephart ... Car Salesman
Angel Gunn ... Mimi's Teacher

Jonathon Lamer ... Car Salesman
Lena Lamer ... Mimi
Donald Meyers ... Customer in Car

Jason Perry ... Car Salesman
Wink Rush ... Car Salesman
Markus Seaberry ... Diner Patron
Arnita Williams ... Diner Patron

Directed by
Kirt Gunn 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Kirt Gunn 

Produced by
Jake Abraham .... producer
Kirt Gunn .... producer
Michael Hilliard .... producer
Jon Kamen .... executive producer
Marco Londoner .... producer
Frank Scherma .... executive producer
Justin Wilkes .... executive producer
Original Music by
Shelby Bryant 
Cinematography by
Steve Yedlin (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Jim Helton 
Casting by
Will Cantler 
Bernard Telsey 
David Vaccari 
Production Design by
Timothy Whidbee 
Art Direction by
Jeanelle Marie 
Set Decoration by
Eric Brice Swartz  (as Eric Swartz)
Costume Design by
Eden Miller 
Makeup Department
Leilani Bacon .... second makeup
Janice Byrd .... key hair stylist
Elizabeth Harris .... key makeup artist
Cherie Holly .... additional hair stylist
LeDiedra Richard-Baldwin .... additional makeup artist
Production Management
Zhana Londoner .... production supervisor (as Zhana Kushnir)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Nicholas Owen Langholff .... first assistant director
Peter J. Olsen .... second second assistant director
Robert Saba .... second assistant director
Art Department
Aaron Dale .... carpenter
Aaron Dale .... construction coordinator
Will E. Drummond .... carpenter
Frank Gray III .... property master
Victor Halters .... carpenter
Ronny Kent .... painter
Jake Meeks .... prop assistant
Eric Brice Swartz .... set dresser (as Eric Swartz)
Sound Department
Gioia Birkett-Foa .... boom operator
Shaun Brennan .... foley artist
Benjamin Cheah .... sound designer
Benjamin Cheah .... supervising sound editor
Gerald Donlan .... dialogue editor
Dan Flosdorf .... additional audio recordist
Anton Gold .... sound mixer
Jim Helton .... sound designer
Joshua L. Pearson .... additional sound effects
Matt Snedecor .... foley recordist
Gregg Swiatlowski .... assistant sound editor
Peter Waggoner .... sound re-recording mixer
Visual Effects by
Peter Heady .... digital effects artist
Markus Janner .... digital opticals
Alex Shum .... digital opticals
Mitch Herron .... stuntman
Max Maxwell .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Peter Budd .... grip
Trey Clark .... still photographer
Christopher Crowther .... electrician
Robert Duke .... key grip
Christian Hawkins .... best boy
Gray Hemphill .... additional loader
Josh Malloy .... electrician
Ryan McCoy .... gaffer
Trevor Doyle Nelson .... film loader (as Trevor Nelson)
Nicholas Ross .... grip
Geoffrey Brent Shrewsbury .... second assistant camera
Ernie Wann .... best boy grip
Wade Whitley .... first assistant camera
Casting Department
Forrest Pruett .... extras casting
Sarah Tackett .... local casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Meriwether Nichols .... wardrobe supervisor
Marissa Pincus Fuller .... wardrobe intern (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Cy Christiansen .... assistant editor
Nick Dibeneditto .... negative cutter
John Dowdell .... digital intermediate colorist
Peter Heady .... digital intermediate finishing artist
Jean Lane .... digital intermediate producer
Joshua L. Pearson .... additional editor
Dave Pultz .... color timer (as David Pultz)
Tim Spitzer .... digital intermediate supervisor
Transportation Department
Monte Emery .... driver
Wende Martin .... transportation captain
Steve Moffit .... transportation coordinator
Hall Prewitt .... picture car coordinator
Other crew
Sharon Bicks .... production coordinator
Nalla Black .... intern
Alex Borys .... location manager
Andrew Cesana .... script supervisor
Jayson Dancy .... stand-in
James Denham .... production assistant
Noah Derks .... production assistant
Hugh Edwards .... world sales agent
Ben Feldman .... production legal services
Sarah Fleming .... key production assistant
E.J. Friedman .... production assistant
Shellie Gillespie .... accountant
Shelly Gillette .... location assistant
Cesar Mylo Hernandez .... technician: Arriscan
Erik Morrison .... production assistant
Cort Percer .... assistant production coordinator
Benjamin Rednour .... production assistant
John R. Whitehead .... assistant location manager
Learyn Wilde .... stand-in

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

98 min
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Austin Pendleton was offered the role of Bob but asked to audition for Jackson after Frank Langella turned it down.See more »
[first lines]
Marian:Hey, I was writing this thing, and I believe in it. It can be good.
Jackson:Of course.
Marian:And I just couldn't get over the hugeness of writing a novel. I mean, the enormity of it. And I didn't feel this way until I got to this hard moment in the book. And now I can't seem to recover it. I keep shutting down when I try to write. It's scary.
Jackson:That's not a new problem for writers, of course, you know.
Marian:But it passes, and books are written, and life resumes again. Right?
Jackson:Only if you write.
Marian:Sounds so easy.
See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
8 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Caught an early screening of this gem at the Core Club..., 2 June 2009
Author: longcoolwoman-1 from United States

Lovely by Surprise (2009), the picturesque film by writer-director Kirt Gunn, is a delight for the senses that made me want to go home and tell my family I love them.

Marian (Carrie Preston) is a writer struggling with the creative process and so confides in her former professor, lover and mentor, Jackson (Austin Pendleton). Her novel begins as a post-modern version of Plato's Allegory of the Cave. Marian is writing the story of two underwear-clad brothers, Humkin (Michael Chernus) and Mopekey (Dallas Roberts) who reside on a boat in no particular time or space. Mopekey is complacent in this world Marian has created, whereas Humkin eventually becomes curious about the world outside of the boat.

Jackson convinces Marian she has no choice but to kill Humkin, her beloved, inquisitive protagonist. But, chaos ensues when Humkin takes control of his own fate, escaping this chapter of her novel and writing himself into the pages of her past.

Humkin leaves his world behind and becomes a newfound companion to Bob (Reg Rogers), a philosophical car-salesman. Bob turns the superficial relationship between a car salesman and his clients, into an intimate connection on a very personal level. Unfortunately, he is unable to get through to his unresponsive young daughter Mimi, who cannot bring herself to speak.

Lovely by Surprise should be seen for its variation from other films. The film has been compared to Stranger than Fiction (2006) in the sense it is a story involving the power and the unpredictability of the creative process. However, it is more similar to its other association, Adaptation (2002) as it's evident the script hasn't been weakened in any way — resulting in an original and provocative story for a smart audience with eccentricities galore.

The vague familiarity of this talented cast serves the tone, which blurs the lines between reality and fiction. Their performances are brilliant and distinct, a little more organic, a little less stylized than say, a Hal Hartley film. Carrie Preston, who plays the lead, Marian, has been featured in a myriad of popular TV shows and feature films including most recently Duplicity (2009), "True Blood" and Doubt (2008). Austin Pendleton who has been cast in everything from Catch-22 (1970) to Finding Nemo (2003)--with My Cousin Vinny (1992) somewhere in between--provides a hilarious contrast for Marian's anxieties. Michael Chernus and Dallas Roberts perfectly execute the pure, child-like sense of wonderment as the brothers on the boat. Reg Rogers steals every scene as the oxy-moron that is a charming car salesman and vulnerable father.

Lovely by Surprise is comprised of heart-warming scenes making the audience care for the characters in a way that reflects how deeply Marian feels for the personalities she has created. The peculiar behavior and interaction between these endearing characters keeps the viewer engaged until finally their stories come together in a gratifying culmination at very the end of the film.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (7 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Lovely by Surprise (2007)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Delayed release and name change GUARDIANofZION
release dates? jason-romaneck
song in end credits dyross
film fest premiere mcalter
See more »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Prozac Nation Love Actually Everything Is Illuminated The Savages Broken Flowers
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 Comedy 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.