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The Descendants
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The Descendants (2011) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 93 | slideshow) Videos (see all 11)
The Descendants -- A land baron tries to re-connect with his two daughters after his wife suffers a boating accident.
The Descendants -- Clip: I Have Gotten My Act Together
The Descendants -- Go behind the scenes on the new Alexander Payne film starring George Clooney in this exclusive featurette.
The Descendants -- A TV spot for The Descendants
The Descendants -- With his wife Elizabeth on life support after a boating accident, Hawaiian land baron Matt King (Clooney), takes his daughters on a trip from Oahu to Kauai to confront the young real estate broker (Lillard) who was having an affair with Elizabeth before her misfortune.


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Up 4% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Alexander Payne (screenplay) and
Nat Faxon (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for The Descendants on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
9 December 2011 (USA) See more »
A land baron tries to reconnect with his two daughters after his wife is seriously injured in a boating accident. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Won Oscar. Another 76 wins & 113 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
The rare fuse of amazing direction and brilliant performances See more (421 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

George Clooney ... Matt King

Shailene Woodley ... Alexandra King

Amara Miller ... Scottie King

Nick Krause ... Sid

Patricia Hastie ... Elizabeth King
Grace A. Cruz ... Scottie's Teacher

Kim Gennaula ... School Counselor
Karen Kuioka Hironaga ... Barb Higgins
Carmen Kaichi ... Lani Higgins

Kaui Hart Hemmings ... Matt's Secretary Noe

Beau Bridges ... Cousin Hugh

Matt Corboy ... Cousin Ralph
Matt Esecson ... Cousin Hal

Michael Ontkean ... Cousin Milo
Stanton Johnston ... Cousin Stan
Jon McManus ... Cousin Six (as Jonathan McManus)
Hugh Foster ... Cousin Wink
Tiare R. Finney ... Cousin Connie

Tom McTigue ... Cousin Dave
Milt Kogan ... Dr. Johnston

Mary Birdsong ... Kai Mitchell

Rob Huebel ... Mark Mitchell

Laird John Hamilton ... Troy Cook (as Laird Hamilton)
Aileen 'Boo' Arnold ... Dorm Supervisor
Esther Kang ... Alex's Roommate
Melissa Kim ... Alex's Drunken Friend

Robert Forster ... Scott Thorson
Barbara L. Southern ... Alice 'Tutu' Thorson (as Barbara Lee Southern)

Celia Kenney ... Reina
Matt Reese ... Buzz
Zoel Turnbull ... Hotel Clerk

Matthew Lillard ... Brian Speer

Judy Greer ... Julie Speer
Linda Rose Herman ... Grief Counselor

Scott Michael Morgan ... Barry Thorson
Darryl K. Gonzales ... Tahiti Nui Singer (Kanak Attack)
Koko Kanealii ... Tahiti Nui Singer (Kanak Attack)
Romey 'Keola' Yokotake ... Tahiti Nui Singer (Kanak Attack)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Fileena Bahris ... Passenger (uncredited)

Paul Edney ... Bicyclist (uncredited)

Tom Holowach ... King cousin (uncredited)

Dane Justman ... Drunk Guy #2 (uncredited)

Jordan Kirkwood ... Troys Roaddog (uncredited)

John A Weaver ... King Cousin (uncredited)

Directed by
Alexander Payne 
Writing credits
Alexander Payne (screenplay) and
Nat Faxon (screenplay) &
Jim Rash (screenplay)

Kaui Hart Hemmings (novel)

Produced by
Tracy Boyd .... associate producer
Jim Burke .... producer
George Parra .... co-producer
Alexander Payne .... producer
Jim Taylor .... producer
Cinematography by
Phedon Papamichael (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Kevin Tent 
Casting by
John Jackson 
Production Design by
Jane Ann Stewart 
Art Direction by
T.K. Kirkpatrick  (as Timothy T.K. Kirkpatrick)
Set Decoration by
Matt Callahan 
Costume Design by
Wendy Chuck 
Makeup Department
Julie Hewett .... makeup department head
Karen Iboshi Preiser .... makeup artist
Debra Rego .... hair stylist (as Debra L. Rego)
Waldo Sanchez .... hair department head
Production Management
Renee Confair .... production supervisor (as Renee Confair Sensano)
Mads Hansen .... assistant production manager
George Parra .... production manager
Rick Reynolds .... post-production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Scott August .... second assistant director
Tracy Boyd .... second unit director
Richard L. Fox .... first assistant director
Joyce McCarthy .... first assistant director: second unit
Amy Wilkins .... second second assistant director (as Amy Wilkins Bronson)
Art Department
Kaanoi Cabrina .... assistant property master (as Kaanoi Cabrinha)
Alvin S. Cabrinha Jr. .... property master (as Alvin Cabrinha)
Jonah Chang .... carpenter
Brian Costa .... swing gang
Scott Ejercito .... assistant property master
Sidney Etrata .... swing gang
Justin Fischer .... swing gang
Serena Rios Flores .... art department coordinator
Stani Franklin .... researcher: set decoration
Jason Garner .... assistant art director
Quintin D. Gasper .... carpenter
Sean Hallock .... swing gang
Alexandra Hearn .... art department production assistant
Craig Hoffmann .... on-set dresser
Michael Kaahanni Jr. .... leadman
Michael Kaahanui III .... swing gang
Gerard Kaman .... construction carpenter
Derrick Kaupiko .... swing gang
Eric Kitaoka .... swing gang
Eric Knight .... standby painter
Nancy Z. Knight .... set painter (as Nancy Zahumensky Knight)
Robert E. Knight .... head painter (as Robert Ellison Knight)
Camille Komine .... set decorating buyer
Ivan M. Lizares .... carpenter
Butch Lum .... toolman
John Marano .... leadman
Edward Medeiros Jr. .... laborer (as Edward Medeiros)
Ace Newman .... swing gang
Shanna Norton .... set decorating buyer
Alvin Pittler .... construction foreman
Douglas Rasmussen .... carpenter
Sylvia K. Ringgold .... construction medic
Isaia Robins .... assistant greens
Josefa Robins .... construction medic
Kenneth K. Sato .... construction coordinator
Ben Shafer .... laborer (as Benjamin Shafer)
Sam Sternthall .... swing gang
Darrell Tachibana .... assistant greens
Kaleo Wong .... swing gang
Liloa Wong .... greensman (as C. Liloa Wong)
Ronn Wong .... swing gang
Sound Department
Derek Casari .... adr stage engineer
Patrick Cyccone Jr. .... sound re-recording mixer (as Patrick Cyccone)
Russell Farmarco .... sound editor (as Russ Farmarco)
Jonathan Fuh .... boom person (as Jonathan Lee Ger Fuh)
Frank Gaeta .... additional re-recording mixer
Frank Gaeta .... sound designer
Frank Gaeta .... supervising sound editor
Luis Galdames .... sound editor
José Antonio García .... production sound mixer
Patrick Giraudi .... sound editor
Brian Hackett .... production sound mixer: interviews
Matthew P. Hanson .... assistant sound editor (as Matt Hanson)
Kaspar Hugentobler .... re-recording engineer
Joe Iemola .... sound editor
James Moriana .... foley artist
Chris Navarro .... adr mixer
Justin Van Hout .... assistant v.o. engineer
Brett Voss .... foley mixer
Chris Wiecking .... sound utility (as Christopher Wiecking)
Jeffrey Wilhoit .... foley artist
John Soukup .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Salvatore Catanzaro .... compositor
Mark Dornfeld .... visual effects supervisor
Michele Ferrone .... visual effects producer
R.J. Harbour .... digital compositor
Nicholas Hasson .... compositor
Paulina Kuszta .... visual effects coordinator
Alex Romano .... compositor
Jose A. Alfonzo .... visual effects (uncredited)
Mikyoung Hahm .... titles designer & animator (uncredited)
Terry Ahue .... stunts
Todd Bradley .... stunts
Craig H. Davidson .... stunts (as Craig Davidson)
Errol Kane .... stunts
Brian L. Keaulana .... stunt coordinator
Keoni Keaulana .... stunts (as Keoni K. Keaulana)
Noland Martin .... stunts
Paul J. Merino .... stunts
James K. Miranda .... stunts
Aden Stay .... stunts
Marcus Young .... stunts
Titus Kinimaka .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Rylan Akama .... second assistant b camera
Norman Akau .... rigging grip (as Norman Akau III)
Mike Bacon .... playback: VTR
Matthew Berner .... first assistant camera: second unit
Troy Boggess .... electrician
Troy Boggess .... lighting technician
Richard J. Brock .... first assistant b camera
Gustavo Brum .... epk cinematographer
Cole Chetney .... company grip
Don Chong .... rigging electric
Shawn Christensen .... electrician
Rick Crum .... electrician
Rick Crum .... grip
Chuck Cullen .... electrician
Kanoa Dahlin .... camera loader
Drew Desjarlais .... electrician
Charles Ehrlinger .... best boy grip
Christian Franklin .... camera production assistant
Deena Frooman .... electrician
Vance Gage .... key rigging grip
Ray Garcia .... key grip
James Goldman .... second assistant a camera
Michael J. Gregg .... rigging grip (as Michael 'Jason' Gregg)
Jeffrey M. Hall .... gaffer (as Jeff Hall)
Patrick Hoeschen .... best boy electric
Tweed Johnston .... company grip
Keola Jones .... dolly grip
Lee Kaneakua .... company grip
Kevin Kersting .... key grip: second unit
Don King .... underwater camera operator
Scott Lisetor .... company grip
Trevor Loomis .... first assistant a camera
Brian Matsumura .... second assistant camera: second unit
Annie McEveety .... first assistant camera: second unit (as Ann McEveety Allen)
David Pearlberg .... dolly grip
Tom Penny .... best boy rigging grip
Tom Penny .... key grip: second unit
Radan Popovic .... director of photography: second unit
P. Scott Sakamoto .... a camera operator
P. Scott Sakamoto .... steadicam operator
Joe Sanchez .... first assistant a camera (as Joseph Sanchez)
Tuiaana Scanlan .... rigging grip
Keoki Smith .... rigging electric
Monte Swann .... playback: 24 frame video
Rafael E. Sánchez .... gaffer
Roger Thompson .... electrician
Brian Tilden .... gaffer
Don Tomich .... rigging gaffer
Raimar van den Bylaardt II .... best boy rigging electric (as Raimar 'Ray' Bylaardt)
Raimar van den Bylaardt II .... rigging electric best boy (as Raimar Bylaardt)
Warner R. Wacha .... second assistant camera: second unit
Mike Weisbrod .... rigging electric
Merie Weismiller Wallace .... still photographer
Curtis Wingert .... rigging electric
Michael Romano .... rigging electrician (uncredited)
Casting Department
Anna Fishburn .... additional extras casting
Wes Ford .... casting assistant
Barbara Harris .... adr voice casting
Andy Henry .... casting associate
Sherlan N. Koloi .... casting associate
John McAlary .... casting associate
Yesi Ramirez .... casting associate
Susanne Scheel .... casting assistant
Katie Taylor .... casting associate
Christian Kaplan .... executive in charge of casting (uncredited)
Rachel Sutton .... location casting (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Carmen Rodrigues Davis .... costume production assistant (as Carmen L. Rodrigues)
Dana Kay Hart .... costume supervisor (as Dana Hart)
Anne Hoss .... ager/dyer
Michelle Moder .... costume buyer
Ivy Chiem Rowan .... seamstress
Susan Strubel .... key costumer
Linda Vollert .... costumer
Robyn Zucker .... costumer
Editorial Department
Brian Bautista .... editorial production assistant
Christine Carr .... digital intermediate producer
Mindy Elliott .... assistant editor
Joe Finley .... digital intermediate colorist
Brian Gee .... dailies assistant
Nicholas Hasson .... smoke editor
Mikki Levi .... apprentice editor
Bryan Park .... film scanning operator: Modern VideoFilm
Jim Passon .... color timer
Alex Romano .... digital intermediate on-line editor
Kay Sievert .... colorist: high definition dailies
Music Department
Dondi Bastone .... music supervisor
Richard Ford .... executive music producer
Richard Ford .... music editor
Eugene Kulikov .... composer: additional music
Rebecca Morellato .... Music Production Exec
Transportation Department
Kelly Loo .... transportation co-captain (as Kelly Loo Jr)
Anna Reed .... transportation dispatcher
John Reed .... transportation coordinator
Aaron Torres .... transportation captain
Other crew
Coleen Aiello .... first assistant accountant (as 'Co-Co' Aiello)
Joseph Aikala .... production secretary (as Joseph Kaleo'onalani Aikala)
Laurie Arakaki .... production intern
Cameron Arguelles .... quality control
Deidre Backs .... assistant: J. Burke
Kelly Barnes .... set medic
John Brady .... craft service
Debra Burgess .... payroll accountant
Sean G. Burke .... production assistant: intern
Nathan Carlson .... title designer: art and graphic design
Gregory S. Carr .... production assistant (as Greg Carr)
Shawna Carver .... production assistant
Timmy Chinn .... location assistant
Kimberly Choi .... second assistant accountant
Katrin Chong .... key assistant location manager
Sanoe Damon .... production intern
Jeff Dash .... production accountant
Rebecca Davis .... studio teacher
Vincent Desrosiers-Nault .... production intern
Evan Endicott .... developement and production executive
Dinesh Fernando .... cook
Tal Fiala .... account executive
Todd Fink .... production intern
Jeff Fishman .... set production assistant: second unit
Max Garcia .... cook
Liz Georgoff .... production assistant
Dustin Goldstein .... key location assistant
Matt Goldstein .... assistant location manager
Linda Graham .... location assistant: second unit
Claudia Gray .... unit publicist
Karen Greenlee .... location scout
Jessica Caress Hamamoto .... production assistant
Nancy Honeycutt .... production coordinator
Jeremy Johnson .... production intern
Lee Johnson .... production intern
Leah Kaina .... production intern
Xanadu Kekuewa .... craft service
Mara Kerum .... chef
Tyler Kueffner .... production intern
Ryan Lam .... production intern
Josh Land .... production office intern
Lisa Lee Mitchell .... assistant production coordinator
Dagny Looper .... stand-in
Victor Lozano .... marine coordinator
Troy Manandic .... stand-in
Brad Dirk Martin .... boat captain
Larissa Martinez .... accounting clerk
Angel McConnell .... assistant: G. Clooney
Courtney McCrory .... assistant accountant: post production
Dana Ledoux Miller .... production assistant
Anna Musso .... assistant: A. Payne (as Anna Lauren Musso)
Nicole Nakamoto .... second assistant accountant
Karen Neasi .... clearances co-ordinator
Karen Neasi .... product placement coordinator
Anthony Ocasio .... post production assistant
Nicole Oudinot .... production assistant
Nick Ower .... production intern
Pablo Paz .... production intern
Stockton David Porter .... production assistant
Art Rivers .... location manager: second unit
Rebecca Robertson .... script supervisor (as Rebecca Robertson-Szwaja)
Darren Rodriguez .... craft service assistant
Andrew Rydzewski .... second unit factotum (as Andy Rydzewski)
Jason Skweres .... set decoration researcher
Ashley C. Smith .... travel and shipping coordinator
Cameron Spencer .... behind the scenes filmmaker
Gary Stone .... security: G. Clooney
Rachel Streater .... assistant: to G. Parra
Angela Tillson .... assistant location manager
Amber Joy Tomasello .... set production assistant: second unit
Jim Triplett .... location manager
Robert Wong .... marine coordinator (as Rob Wong)
Susan Wyshynski .... stand-in: female lead
Gavan Daws .... the filmmakers thank
Andy Lautenbach .... the filmmakers thank
Carri Morgan .... the filmmakers thank
John Morgan .... the filmmakers thank
Randall Roth .... the filmmakers thank
Julia Porter Steele .... the filmmakers thank

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Family Tree" - Japan (English title) (imdb display title)
See more »
Rated R for language including some sexual references
115 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Amara Miller wasn't cast until two weeks before production kicked off.See more »
Continuity: When Matt talks to Elizabeth alone in her hospital room, Elizabeth's mouth is open in the far shot, but closed in the close-up.See more »
[first lines]
Matt King:My friends on the mainland think just because I live in Hawaii, I live in paradise. Like a permanent vacation. We're all just out here sipping Mai Tais, shaking our hips, and catching waves. Are they insane?
See more »
Movie Connections:
'Ulili ESee more »


The movie is based on Kaui Hart Hemmings's debut novel. Have any other adaptations of debut novels had this much success?
See more »
80 out of 137 people found the following review useful.
The rare fuse of amazing direction and brilliant performances, 16 November 2011
Author: DonFishies from Canada

It has been quite some time since the Toronto International Film Festival, but I still have trouble coming up with something negative to say about The Descendants. It was a film I was immensely excited to see, and one that I think I just managed to squeak into on the second last day of the festival. I tried to not overhype myself, but with George Clooney teaming up with Alexander Payne, a filmmaker whose last film was made almost a decade ago, I could barely contain myself.

Matt King (Clooney) just found out that his wife is in a coma in the hospital. Matt has always been one to put things off, and has never really found time for his kids. But in this time of need, he finds that he is struggling to identify with older daughter Alexandra (Shailene Woodley) and younger daughter Scottie (Amara Miller). When he learns of a stunning secret about his wife, it thrusts him into an adventure alongside his daughters to find out the truth, while also finding himself.

From beginning to end, Payne has crafted an endearing film that is hilarious and devastating, often in the same sequence. This is a more calculated family-related effort than I originally thought it would be (with a bit too much emphasis placed on the extended family and land owning subplot), but it is the driving force of everything that happens on-screen. He never overindulges, and never gets too far ahead of himself. He lets the drama play out just as much as he does the comedy, and always keeps the film moving at a borderline ridiculous pace. This may be an indie, but it speaks more to the mainstream than Sideways ever even tried to. It is a truly spectacular work, and one that proves the worth of a talent that has been gone for far too long.

While he already solidified his leading man status years ago, Clooney quite simply knocks this one out of the park. It is not the typical role we are accustomed to seeing him in, and I think that is what sells it the most. This is a very mature role for Clooney, away from the playboys, the lotharios and the screwballs. He is out of his element, much like the character he is playing, thrust into a situation he never expected in a very adult way. He plays Matt in a very nuanced way, always hovering along the fine line of being a struggling parent and having a full blown emotional breakdown. Clooney has continually proved that he is willing to reinvent himself, and his work here is no different. From the moment he steps on-screen, you are simply enamoured by his presence. We can see the brief twinkle in his eye that suggests he is still the Clooney we all know and adore, but his hardened exterior suggests he is trying to camouflage that fact. I said years ago that Up in the Air was his strongest work. But his work here makes it look positively amateur in comparison.

For all of Clooney's brilliance, it is surprising to note that Woodley almost steals the movie entirely away from him. While she has had quite a lot of experience on television, this is her first real film role and is an immeasurable breakout. The trailer suggests she is a bit of a wild child, but seeing the heartbreak and pain in her face after she finds out what has happened to her mother is enough to make you want to weep uncontrollably. Lucky for her, she gets more than one scene to prove her emotional chops, and she nails each and every one. She holds her own against Clooney, and has just the right amount of charisma and angst to make her character above and beyond believable. Her struggle to find her place and to help her father on this adventure is the emotional crux of the film, and the real driving spirit. She may be extremely younger than Clooney is, but she is an old soul. Their relationship and chemistry is amazing, and should she have been acting against a less capable actor, I doubt she would be anywhere near as powerful as she is.

The supporting cast, made up of Beau Bridges, Judy Greer, Nick Krause, Robert Forster and an almost unrecognizable Matthew Lilliard, are all excellent in their small roles. All of them get some really memorable moments to shine, and help to make Clooney and Woodley's performances even greater. Special mention needs to go to both Patricia Hastie, who is confined to a hospital bed for all but about thirty seconds of her screen-time as Matt's wife Elizabeth, and newcomer Miller as Scottie. She is naive and innocent throughout, never once coming off as that annoying kid you try to forget exists. She has a lot of fun in the role, and strikes a real emotional chord at just the right moments. I can only hope directors continue to use her in the future for roles that are just as good, if not better.

It may have taken me practically two months to write about it, but I still find myself at a loss for words about The Descendants. It is finally rolling out into theatres now, and I cannot wait to see the film again. The cast is amazing, with Clooney coming out swinging. Payne may have taken his time finding a follow-up for Sideways, but what he has returned with is nothing short of amazing. Run, drive, fly – whatever you have to do, just make sure you do not miss it.


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novels like this?? Jettor
Hey Kamaainas scoochie9
Great movie if you're an adult lynfoster
2 queries: Raina, and Hawaii kolnoaMograbi
novels like this?? Jettor
Did anyone else think this was just plain terrible? Boing_Boing
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