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Sinister (2012/I) More at IMDbPro »

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Sinister -- Ethan Hawke is a crime novelist who moves his family into a home with a horrific past. But when he uncovers a box of mysterious home movies that seem to point to unspeakable terrors, he unlocks a nightmare that threatens his entire family.
Sinister -- Found footage helps a true-crime novelist realize how and why a family was murdered in his new home, though his discoveries put his entire family in the path of a supernatural entity.
Sinister -- Found footage helps a true-crime novelist realize how and why a family was murdered in his new home, though his discoveries put his entire family in the path of a supernatural entity.


User Rating:
6.8/10   159,181 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Up 21% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Scott Derrickson (written by) &
C. Robert Cargill (written by)
View company contact information for Sinister on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
12 October 2012 (USA) See more »
Once you see him, nothing can save you. See more »
Washed-up true-crime writer Ellison Oswalt finds a box of super 8 home movies that suggest the murder he is currently researching is the work of a serial killer whose work dates back to the 1960s. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
5 wins & 11 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
It takes a lot to scare me... This did! See more (526 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Ethan Hawke ... Ellison Oswalt

Juliet Rylance ... Tracy

Fred Dalton Thompson ... Sheriff

James Ransone ... Deputy

Michael Hall D'Addario ... Trevor

Clare Foley ... Ashley
Rob Riley ... E.M.T.

Tavis Smiley ... Anchor
Janet Zappala ... Reporter

Victoria Leigh ... Stephanie

Cameron Ocasio ... BBQ Boy
Ethan Haberfield ... Pool Party Boy

Danielle Kotch ... Lawn Girl

Blake Mizrahi ... Sleepy Time Boy

Nicholas King ... Bughuul / Mr. Boogie (as Nick King)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lorraine Aceves ... BBQ Mom (uncredited)
Chester the Chihuahua ... Barking Dog (uncredited)

Vincent D'Onofrio ... Professor Jonas (uncredited)
Rachel Konstantin ... Mrs. Stevenson (uncredited)

Directed by
Scott Derrickson 
Writing credits
Scott Derrickson (written by) &
C. Robert Cargill (written by)

Produced by
Jason Blum .... producer
Jeanette Brill .... associate producer (as Jeanette Volturno-Brill)
Bailey Conway .... associate producer
Scott Derrickson .... executive producer
Gerard DiNardi .... line producer
Brian Kavanaugh-Jones .... producer
Charles Layton .... executive producer
Jessica Malanaphy .... associate producer (as Jessica Hall)
Rick Osako .... associate producer (as Rick A. Osako)
Original Music by
Christopher Young 
Cinematography by
Chris Norr (director of photography) (as Christopher Norr)
Film Editing by
Frédéric Thoraval 
Casting by
Sheila Jaffe 
Ruth Salen 
Production Design by
David Brisbin 
Art Direction by
John El Manahi 
Costume Design by
Abby O'Sullivan 
Makeup Department
Ozzy Alvarez .... special effects makeup: Mr. Boogie
Joe Amella .... special makeup effects artist
Adam Bailey .... special makeup effects artist
Sonia Castleberry .... hair stylist
Sarah Hindsgaul .... hair stylist
Satoko Ichinose .... hair department head
Karma Karel .... makeup department head: Los Angeles
Rich Krusell .... special effects makeup artist (as Rich Krussell)
Laura Lieffring .... makeup effects technician
Liliana Meyrick .... key hair stylist
Jason Milani .... special effects makeup artist
Lauzanne Nel .... key makeup artist
Danielle Noe .... special effects makeup supervisor
Björn Rehbein .... special effects makeup artist (as Bjoern Rehbein)
Terry Robbins .... hair department head: Los Angeles
Stayc St. Onge .... special effects makeup artist
Arielle Toelke .... makeup department head
Dawn Tunnell .... additional makeup
Production Management
Kaylene Carlson .... unit production manager
Phillip Dawe .... post-production executive
James K. Jensen .... post-production supervisor
Lior Vardi .... production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Nicholas R. Bell .... second assistant director
Adam Bernard .... second second assistant director
Gerard DiNardi .... first assistant director: Los Angeles
Erica Fishman .... second assistant director
Danny Giles .... second assistant director: Los Angeles (as Daniel A. Giles-Valera)
Eddie Griffith .... additional second second assistant director
Matthew Tibbenham .... second unit director (uncredited)
Art Department
Phil Beck III .... leadman
Aaron Becker .... main title design & graphic design
Sarah Berney .... scenic charge
Eric Bryant .... graphic artist
Peter Bundrick .... key carpenter
Jacqueline Canto .... assistant set decorator (as Jackie Canto)
Charles J. Coleman .... assistant property master
Roddy Cruz .... set dresser production assistant
Cortney Cunnane .... set decoration intern
Carmen Cárdenas .... assistant art director
Catherine Devaney .... assistant to production designer (as Cate Devaney)
Catherine Devaney .... storyboard artist
Doug Devine .... set dresser: Los Angeles
Richard Hebrank .... construction coordinator (as Richie Hebrank)
John Kennedy .... construction grip
Su Lee .... art department production assistant
Su Lee-Cruz .... art production assistant
Chris Leuzzi .... set dresser
Jackie Lipton .... set paintings
Nicolas Luna .... props
Mike Marzigliano .... on set dresser
David Newhouse .... art intern
John Paul .... scenic
Justin Price .... set dresser: Los Angeles
Ben Ross .... carpenter foreman
Cecilia Scarabello .... art intern
Benjamin Thomas Scarsbrook .... concept artist
Evan Seide .... additional on-set dresser
Andrew Settle .... leadman: Los Angeles
Darren Sharkey .... props
Lee Shevett .... key construction grip
Mike Spence .... set dresser
Thomas Spence .... property master
Thomas Spence .... property master: Los Angeles
Dennis Tillberg .... scenic
Omar Vaid .... property master
Rocio Valenzuela .... art intern
Amy Vuckovich .... set decorator: Los Angeles
Sound Department
Marc Aramian .... sound designer
Dane A. Davis .... sound designer
Dane A. Davis .... supervising sound editor
Mark DeSimone .... adr mixer
Fritz Francois .... additional boom operator
Paul Hackner .... co-supervising sound editor
Paul Hackner .... re-recording mixer
Jack Hutson .... sound mixer
Matthew Iadarola .... re-recording mixer
Thomas W. Jordan .... boom operator
Aaron Morgan .... additional foley mixer
Beauxregard Neylon .... adr mixer (as Beaux Neylon)
John Sanacore .... foley mixer
Ric Schnupp .... adr recordist
Alex Ullrich .... foley artist (as Alex Ullirch)
David A. Whittaker .... sound effects editor
Special Effects by
Peter Appold .... special effects technician
Phillip Beck .... special effects coordinator (as Phil Beck Jr.)
Robert Beck .... special effects technician
John DiClementi .... special effects technician
John Howell .... special effects technician
Ryan Senecal .... special effects coordinator: Los Angeles
Nick DeRosa .... special effects technician (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
David Altenau .... visual effects supervisor
Mike Bozulich .... compositor
Antonio Chang .... compositor
Adrian Colbert .... visual effects editor
Bruce Coy .... CG artist
Ryan Felix .... visual effects editor
Jason Fotter .... compositing supervisor
Ignacio Garcerón .... CG artist
Eric Hayden .... compositor
Tim Jacobsen .... visual effects producer
Benjamin Liu .... CG artist
Diane Macke .... visual effects coordinator
Matthew Massarella .... compositor (as Matt Massarella)
Josh Miyaji .... compositor
Kimberly Pepe .... compositor
Jason Piccioni .... visual effects producer
Aldo Ruggiero .... CG artist
Evan Underwood .... visual effects artist
Matt von Brock .... CG supervisor: FuseFX
Pablo Wang .... compositor
Jason Piccioni .... visual effects supervisor (uncredited)
Stanton Barrett .... stunts
Emily Brobst .... stunt double
Heidi Burger .... stunt performer
Scott Burik .... stunt performer
Chris Colombo .... stunt performer
Roy Farfel .... stunt rigger
Jim Ford .... stunt rigger
Tanner Gill .... stunts
Szilvia Gogh .... stunts
Greg Harvey .... stunt rigger
David Januzzi .... stunt rigger
Chris J. King .... stunt performer
Michael R. King .... stunts
Rob King .... stunt coordinator: Los Angeles
Jasi Cotton Lanier .... stunt double
Katie Letien .... stunt rigger (as Katie Leiten)
Victor Paguia .... stunt rigger (as Victoria Paguia)
Devin Sanchez .... stunt performer
David Shumbris .... stunt rigger
Manny Siverio .... stunt coordinator
Mark Stefanich .... stunts
Shawnna Thibodeau .... stunt performer (as Shawnna Thibodeaw)
Trampas Thompson .... stunt coordinator: New York
Aaron Vexler .... stunt double: Ethan Hawke
Katie Letien .... stunt double: Mrs.Stevenson (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Craig Addonizio .... electrician
George Bianchini .... steadicam operator
Ethan Borsuk .... camera first assistant
Kenith Bruzzo .... grip
Jenna Bush .... camera intern
Randolph Carty .... dolly grip (as Randolph 'Rudie' Carty)
Phillip V. Caruso .... still photographer (as Phil Caruso)
Carl Casano .... electrician
Scott DeAngelo .... grip
Will Dearborn .... first assistant camera: Los Angeles
Jack Donnelly .... b camera operator
Sean Feehan .... electrician
Daniel Feighery .... first assistant camera: "b" camera (as Danny Feighery)
Kenneth Fundus .... best boy grip
Justin W. King .... additional electrician
Alex Klabukov .... key grip: Los Angeles
Nina Kuhn .... chief lighting technician
Jeremy Launais .... chief lighting technician: Los Angeles
Scott Maguire .... additional camera operator
Scott Maguire .... camera operator
Daniel James McCabe .... best boy electric
Daniel C. McFadden .... still photographer: Los Angeles
Dan Merrill .... camera second assistant
Blaise Miller .... genny operator
Ryan Nethery .... additional electrician
Ross Neugeboren .... additional electrician
Mark Petronio .... grip
Brent Poleski .... key grip
Chris Reynolds .... additional b-camera operator
Steve Scammell .... motion control technician
Randy Schwartz .... b camera second assistant
Adam Smelin .... video playback operator
Jacob Stahlman .... media manager
Rob Tedeschi Jr. .... grip
Matthew Tibbenham .... b camera: supervisor
Casting Department
Susan Paley Abramson .... casting associate
Alexandra Franklin .... casting assistant
Alexandra Franklin .... casting assistant
Lee Genick .... extras casting: Sylvia Fay & Associates
Ronen Gevint .... extras casting: Sylvia Fay & Associates
Joseph Hicks .... extras casting: Los Angeles
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Lainie Anderson .... additional costumer
Safiyyah Fatin .... costume assistant
Jane Gerber .... additional wardrobe assistant
Shawnique Hill .... costume supervisor
Delvan James .... on set costumer
Alyssa Rodriguez .... additional costumer
Gina Ruiz .... assistant costume designer
Jessica Wenger .... costume supervisor: Los Angeles
Editorial Department
Reggie Diaz .... digital intermediate producer: Cinelicious
Christine Dougherty .... digital intermediate producer
Christine Dougherty .... digital intermediate producer: Technicolor
Tony Dustin .... digital intermediate colorist: Technicolor
Tyler Fagerstrom .... digital intermediate assistant: Cinelicious
Paul Korver .... post-production consultant: Super 8mm
Sarah C. Reeves .... first assistant editor
Steve Rodriguez .... digital intermediate colorist: Cinelicious
David E. Schneider .... digital intermediate editor: Technicolor (as Dave Schneider)
Brian Swanson .... additional assistant editor
Gilbert Carreras .... color timer (uncredited)
Location Management
Alex Dorman .... location assistant
Paul Lucero .... location assistant
Murray Miller .... location manager: Los Angeles
Michael Nickodem .... location manager
Gregory Routt .... location scout (as Greg Routt)
Music Department
Jason Acuna .... composer: additional music
Jason Acuna .... music sound designer
Jason Acuna .... synth programming
Marc Aramian .... composer: additional music
Marc Aramian .... music sound designer
Marc Aramian .... synth programming
Samantha Barker .... score music coordinator
Sebastian C. Besquet .... orchestrator (as Sebastian Cano Besquet)
Art Denissov .... music sound designer
Art Denissov .... synth programming
Silke Matzpohl .... score coordinator
Thomas Milano .... music editor
Rebecca Nunez .... score coordinator
Thomas Parisch .... orchestrator
Megumi Sasano .... orchestrator
Daniel Wehr .... composer: additional music
Daniel Wehr .... music sound designer
Daniel Wehr .... synth programming
Christopher Young .... orchestrator
Laurent Ziliani .... orchestrator
Max Blomgren .... additional synthesizer programming (uncredited)
Transportation Department
J. Tom Jones .... transportation captain: LA Unit (as Tom Jones)
Herb Lieberz .... transportation coordinator
Scott Lieberz .... driver
James Messersmith .... driver: Los Angeles
Gary O'Connell .... driver
Gary O'Connell .... driver
Harry Ycaza .... production driver
Stacy Robinson .... driver: Los Angeles (uncredited)
Other crew
Michael Andrews .... provider: film projector
Giuseppe Ardizzone .... set production assistant
Josh Bell .... payroll accountant
Stephen Belmont .... production assistant
Steve Berens .... animal wrangler
Steve Berens .... animal wrangler: Los Angeles
Mitchell Berkowitz .... set medic
Deborah Blake .... set medic
Keith Blomberg .... personal assistant to Mr. Blum
Charmaine Boos .... on-set teacher: Los Angeles
George Brassey .... key set production assistant
Blaine Chou .... set production assistant
Maryann C. Contrubis .... production accountant (as Maryann C. Fondulas)
Cortney Cunnane .... set production assistant
Olenka Denysenko .... script supervisor
Pete DiFolco .... assistant production coordinator
Minnie Duerr .... post-production accountant
Howard Fabrick .... legal counsel: production union
David Falicki .... lifeguard: Los Angeles
Alyssa Fannick .... production assistant
Erik Feig .... production executive
David Formentin .... production office assistant
Emmanuelle George .... production secretary
George Gotischalk .... projectionist
Richard Green .... epk producer
Avalonne Hall .... set production intern
Brian Havens .... chef: Star Struck Catering
Parker Haynes .... production assistant: Los Angeles
Cathy Heskin .... set medic
Matt Hill .... set production assistant: Los Angeles (as Matthew Hill)
Gary A. Hirsch .... production legal counsel
Joseph Hui .... craft service: Los Angeles (as Joe Hui)
Kerri Hundley .... production coordinator
Natalie Jones .... production assistant
Natalie Jones .... set production assistant (as Natali Jones)
Elliott Kerman .... tax credit accountant
Greg Knapp .... set medic: Los Angeles
Daniel Kopulos .... snake wrangler
Eric Ladd .... end credits
Timothy LaFleur .... set production assistant
Duke Lee .... snake wrangler
Jackie Lipton .... provider: set paintings
Charles Loguidice .... dog wrangler
Jesse A. Magan .... projectionist
Nino Mancuso .... set production assistant: Los Angeles
Nino Mancuso .... set production assistant
Nat McCormick .... International Sales
Thomas Meyer .... office intern
Mike Mitchell .... production assistant
Sarah Nadeau .... office intern
Amy Paquette .... legal counsel: Alliance Films
Daniel A. Parker .... production coordinator: Los Angeles (as Dan Parker)
Christopher L. Perez .... production legal counsel (as Chris Perez)
Christopher L. Perez .... production legal counsel
Chelsea Stardust Peters .... assistant: Mr. Blum (as Chelsea Peters)
Andi Polland .... stand-in
Anthony Rigual .... production assistant
Javier Rojas .... craft service
Shatirah Rolle .... production assistant
Stacy Rowe .... script supervisor
Christine Rudakewycz .... educator: on set
Baltimore Russell .... stand-in
Alex Saks .... assistant: Mr. Kavanaugh-Jones
Michael Schaefer .... production executive
Windi See Vianello .... first assistant accountant
Evan Seide .... snake wrangler
Adam M. Stone .... product placement coordinator: Stone Management, Inc. (as Adam Stone)
Cat Stone .... product placement coordinator: Stone Management, Inc.
Matthew Tibbenham .... assistant to director
Roger R. Velilia .... on-set craft service (as Roger Velilla)
Lisa Walker .... set medic
Brian Wiggins .... production assistant
Angie Conners .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Diego Fernando Coronel .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Jonathan Deckter .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Alex Demetriades .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Stuart Ford .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
W.B. Kirby Hill .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contributions and support to the making of this movie
Sammy Janowitz .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Stephen Kempser .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Richard Kuhnla .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Julie Mandelbaum .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Dror Mohar .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Miguel Palos .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Frank Prugo .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Michael Roban .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Tavis Smiley .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contributions and support to the making of this movie
Lauren Valenti .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Bonnie Voland .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Rebecca Weis .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution
Cornel West .... the filmmakers wish to extend their personal thanks for their contribution (as Dr. Cornel West)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Footage" - Japan (English title) (imdb display title)
See more »
Rated R for disturbing violent images and some terror
110 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Bughuul from the Sinister franchise has a strong resemblance to Mearth, the antagonist to the obscure fiction novel Smog City (ISBN: 150246974X). Like Bughuul, Mearth creates horrific super 8 films, and is also able to travel through film and radio signals as well, as revealed in Smog City's sequel, Super 8. Mearth also enjoys driving people insane and possessing them to do terrible things, like Bughuul. However, Smog City was written in 2011. Sinister was released a year later, in 2012, and its sequel in 2015.See more »
Continuity: (at around 16 mins) When Ellison first watches the film of the family being hung, Bughuul does not appear in the bushes but he does later on when Ellison watches it on his computer and prints it out (at around 49 mins).See more »
[first lines]
Tracy:Just one box?
Ellison Oswalt:It's for my office. It's fragile.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Spoofed in A Haunted House 2 (2014)See more »
CineTronic BloodSee more »


How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
What is "Super 8"?
Does Bughuul really exist in Babylonian mythology?
See more »
125 out of 192 people found the following review useful.
It takes a lot to scare me... This did!, 14 October 2012
Author: Maz Murdoch (asda-man) from United Kingdom

Ever since the very first trailer came out I thought, "now this looks good!" However, some quite poor reviews came in so my dreams were shattered slightly. But then suddenly some rave reviews came out, even from my favourite critic, Chris Tookey who gave it 5 stars! My faith was suddenly re-installed and I was incredibly excited to see it. It didn't disappoint!

With "The Cabin in the Woods" and now "Sinister", 2012 is restoring my faith in modern horror. It's a truly outstanding film that had me gripped for its entire 115 minutes. The film doesn't dawdle about too much either, it opens with a highly unsettling clip of found footage and then we get a beautiful swooping shot of a man and his family moving in to a new house. It's a standard set-up that we've even seen a few months ago in the surprisingly fun horror, "The Possession" but it's a clever one because we're mostly focused on our hero and in a sense that is what the film is about. His obsession with himself and trying to be re-ignite his fame after writing a highly successful debut true crime novel, followed by several duds.

I was quite surprised as to how much exposition was given to the main character and it only makes the film even more compelling than it is. He's also played brilliantly by Ethan Hawke, who makes up for the lack of acting skills his wife possesses. It reminded me a little of "The Shining" with the egotistical novelist stumbling upon a certain ghostly history, and it certainly contains the same amount of creepy moments. Ethan stumbles upon the super 8 films quite quickly which I was surprised and pleased about, as all too often there's a belated exposition before anything remotely frightening happens.

These super 8 films are masterpieces in themselves. It's a sort of car crash effect, as you don't really want to see them, but you can't stop watching. They're all incredibly creepy, unsettling and sinister (like what I did there?) They are also set-up perfectly with the horrible grainy picture, silence as well as highly unsettling music that all adds to the creepiness. All of them are engaging and compelling to watch. They're also very chilling and are sure to engrave themselves into your mind for a long time after the film has finished.

From then on it's an intriguing and creepy mystery as more and more disturbing information is uncovered. It's also clever how it's unclear if some of what Ethan's seeing is actually real or not. Is he really hearing noises or is it just the whisky talking? I liked the whole family element as well, showing the protagonist as not just some perfect hero, but also as a flawed character. The whole strained relationship with his wife is a fantastic element on top of the central ghost story. Although the woman who plays her is incredibly wooden!

There's a strong, unsettling atmosphere that underlies through the whole film. The demon man is also quite frightening and not too much is explained about him which certainly adds to scare factor. I've heard people call this a boring film and a bad film, but it's none of these things. It's a genuinely horrifying horror film with fantastic writing and directing. It's the type of film that gets under your skin and leaves its print in your mind for a long time after the credits have rolled. The ending is one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen in a horror film and I've seen many!

"Sinister" is a ghost story of Japanese proportions. By the end, I was actually terrified and had chills all down my back, which is something that doesn't happen too often. I never get scared watching films, but after this and seeing "Noroi: The Curse" which also frightened me, I was starting to think that I was becoming soft! But then I thought no. These are just brilliantly scary films that are high on atmosphere and don't solely rely on jump scares like too many American ghost films. "Sinister" is one of the best horror films this year. It has a relentless sense of dread throughout and is also incredibly effective and compelling. I can't wait to see it again, and also can't urge you enough to go and see it for yourself! Although, I'd recommend a night light for when you sleep.

Please read my weird and wonderful horror movie review blog!

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Recent Posts (updated daily)User
6.8?! Matt-Canalcon
Sinister vs. The Ring vhoundfvr
A missed opportunity magnusmidtbo
Shining endomorphx-525-162380
why doesnt ellison ever use lights? forcetimes-38173
Reminds me of The Ring HeidiSchwoerer
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