After Queen Elizabeth I commands him not to grow old, a young nobleman struggles with love and his place in the world.


Sally Potter


Sally Potter, Virginia Woolf (novel)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 15 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Tilda Swinton ... Orlando
Quentin Crisp ... Queen Elizabeth I
Jimmy Somerville ... Falsetto / Angel
John Bott ... Orlando's Father
Elaine Banham ... Orlando's Mother
Anna Farnworth ... Clorinda
Sara Mair-Thomas ... Favilla
Anna Healy Anna Healy ... Euphrosyne
Dudley Sutton ... King James I
Simon Russell Beale ... Earl of Moray
Matthew Sim ... Lord Francis Vere
Jerome Willis ... Translator
Viktor Stepanov ... Russian Ambassador (as Victor Stepanov)
Charlotte Valandrey ... Princess Sasha
Mary MacLeod ... First Older Woman


Young nobleman Orlando is commanded by Queen Elizabeth I to stay forever young. Miraculously, he does just that. The film follows him as he moves through several centuries of British history, experiencing a variety of lives and relationships along the way, and even changing sex. Written by Phythian

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Jessica Swinton, who played Orlando's daughter, is Tilda Swinton's real life niece. See more »


Orlando: A man must follow his heart.
See more »


Referenced in Some Are Born (2015) See more »


Composed by Sally Potter, Jimmy Somerville, David Motion
Published by Copyright Conrtol/ Virgin Music
Performed by Jimmy Somerville
Courtesy of London Records
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User Reviews

One of a kind
23 May 2010 | by Gloede_The_SaintSee all my reviews

What in the world do we gather from this film. Tilda Swinton plays the never aging male/female lord/lady Orlando. Queen Elizabeth I is also played by the "wrong" sex.

When the young lord Orlando inherits the queens estate it's on the promise that he will always stay young and he does. What follows is a biography covering about 400 years and a sex change.

This is indeed a fun look at the roles held by the two sexes during the course of these centuries. Though it does play more or less as a drama it has large shades of comedy as well. For one we have Orlando often throwing a few comments to the viewers about the plot + the ridiculousness of the whole set-up.

Swinton is most certainly up for the challenge here. Portraying the ever changing lord/lady through this most strange journey. With wits and elegance this film comes off as one of the kind and something which should be experienced.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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UK | Russia | Italy | France | Netherlands


English | French

Release Date:

9 June 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Orlando See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$107,030, 13 June 1993

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR


Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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