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Finding Neverland (2004)

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The story of J.M. Barrie's friendship with a family who inspired him to create Peter Pan.



(play), (screenplay)
1,111 ( 1,669)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 19 wins & 80 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
... Sir James Matthew Barrie
... Sylvia Llewelyn Davies
... Mrs. Emma du Maurier
... Mary Ansell Barrie
... Charles Frohman
... Peter Llewelyn Davies
... Jack Llewelyn Davies
Nick Roud ... George Llewelyn Davies
... Michael Llewelyn Davies
... Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
... 'Peter Pan'
... Mr. Jaspers - Usher
... Mrs. Snow
Jimmy Gardner ... Mr. Snow
Oliver Fox ... Gilbert Cannan


1903 London. Renowned playwright J.M. Barrie (James)'s latest effort has garnered less than positive reviews, something he knew would be the case even before the play's mounting. This failure places pressure on James to write another play quickly as impresario Charles Frohman needs another to replace the failure to keep his theater viable. Out for a walk with his dog in part to let his creative juices flow, James stumbles upon the Llewelyn Davies family: recently widowed Sylvia Llewelyn Davies (the daughter of now deceased author George L. Du Maurier) and her four adolescent sons. James and the family members become friends, largely based on he and the boys being able to foster in each other the imagination of children, James just being the biggest among them in this regard. Sylvia also welcomes James into their lives, he who becomes an important and integral part of it. Among the six of them, the only one who does not want to partake is Sylvia's third, Peter Llewelyn Davies, who is ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Unlock your imagination. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild thematic elements and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site




Release Date:

17 December 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

J.M. Barrie's Neverland  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£776,124 (United Kingdom), 31 October 2004, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$220,524, 14 November 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (DVD) (Encore print)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


In real life, Michael Llewelyn Davies was J.M. Barrie's inspiration for Peter Pan. Michael, not Peter, was said to be Barrie's favorite of the children. It's not certain why Barrie chose to name the main character Peter. One idea is because of his brothers, Peter behaved the most like an adult at a young age. Barrie wished he'd had more of a childhood, so he immortalized him as the symbol of youth. See more »


While they are watching the play in the Davies' home Michael goes from leaning onto his mother to sitting up straight to leaning on his mother again. See more »


[first lines]
Charles Frohman: Opening night. I love opening night. How are you? Did you see him?
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Crazy Credits

Very special thanks to ... The King Family ... See more »


Version of Peter Pan (1924) See more »


Medieval and Renaissance Fanfare No. 7
Composed by David Marshall (PRS)
Published by Studio G Ltd (PRS)
Courtesy of Promusic
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Finding Yourself
29 June 2009 | by See all my reviews

I am not one to warm up to movies centered around themes such as this film. This is not because the idea of adults finding their inner child is ridiculous or immature to me. Its a result of films facing that theme also face a very big challenge on managing to correctly portray a transformation of an adult by children. Also if it actually extremely benefits the adult character in many profound ways. Most of the times films never succeed at this and are done so irresponsibly promoting dangerous styles of living that could be just as hurtful to others around us. Now the major question that is posed then, is why does this film succeed where others do not? What makes this film so precise yet so open?

With Johnny Depp as the lead character, James Matthew Barrie, you know he will be ideal for the role of someone inspired by creativity considering the unique feeling Depp can bring to any film. At the outset of the Finding Neverland, Depp's character is in dire straits to not only find himself as a writer but flat out just find himself. Eventually he does succeed at both through the help of three children he befriends whose mother, played by Kate Winslet, is ill. Depp discovers what he had long been missing, imagination and open mindedness. The children bring him that which is throughout is so wonderfully conveyed. His new lifestyle in no way endangers the people around him rather it enables his decisions to be more enlightened and thought out. Yet it still brings him into question. The cast is filled with talent ranging from of course Depp and Winslet as well to Julie Christie and Dustin Hoffman. What the cast does not just play their characters, their characters are embodied by them all the way down to the performances of the kids.

Marc Foster takes on this challenge of an adult searching for himself with complete success. The writing and dialog is always engaging as well as the music and all the other technical aspects that go into making a movie. Still, remains the question what sets this film apart from others that attempted to be like it? Unlike other films this film is centered around youth equaling imagination and creativity. Not always is it a must to abide by the rules, maybe not the rule of law but the unwritten rules of being an adult, being a writer or any other sort of unwritten or written rule relating to anything. Nonetheless this must be done at a responsible and safe level which this film never fails to display. These rules can limit our creativity which limits the capabilities of our mind and ultimately drastically decreases the chances at happiness on any pure or genuine level.

Too often is youth simply associated with fun, stupidity and meaningless entertainment. It never falls into that trap. What this film shows is that we make meaning of our lives and this should start from our youth but not dissolve as our lives become further complex and self contradictory. Depp shows with his reclaimed youthfulness his life can only go up as does his happiness yet this is unjustifiably rejected by "responsible", "sensible" and "mature" adults. Depp's characters knows they are wrong through his writing and newfound appreciation of life but more importantly the people close to Depp know it and can see it to be true. In this way though, Finding Neverland may give us the key clue on how to find ourself.

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