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Notes on a Scandal (2006)

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A veteran high school teacher befriends a younger art teacher, who is having an affair with one of her 15-year-old students. However, her intentions with this new "friend" also go well beyond platonic friendship.

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(screenplay), (novel) (as Zoe Heller)
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Cate Blanchett Through the Years

Take a look back at Cate Blanchett's movie and TV career in photos.

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 15 wins & 68 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Barbara Covett
... Sheba Hart
Tom Georgeson ... Ted Mawson
... Sandy Pabblem
... Sue Hodge
... Bill Rumer
... Linda
Syreeta Kumar ... Gita
... Steven Connolly
... Brian Bangs
Wendy Nottingham ... Elaine Clifford
Tameka Empson ... Antonia Robinson
Leon Skinner ... Davis
... Richard Hart
... Polly Hart
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Storyline

The bitter, cynical and lonely Barbara Covett is a tough and conservative teacher, near to retirement, who is loathed by her colleagues and students. In the loneliness of her apartment, she spends her spare time writing her journal, taking care of her old cat Portia and missing her special friend Jennifer Dodd. When Sheba Hart joins the high-school as the new art teacher, Barbara dedicates her attention to the newcomer, writing sharp and unpleasant comments about her behavior and clothes. When Barbara helps Sheba in a difficult situation with two students, the grateful Sheba invites her to have lunch with her family. Sheba introduces her husband and former professor Richard Hart, who is about twenty years older than she; her rebellious teenager daughter Polly; and her son Ben that has Down's Syndrome. Barbara becomes close to Sheba, but when she accidentally discovers that Sheba is having an affair with the fifteen year-old student Steven Connolly, Barbara sees the chance to ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One woman's secret is another woman's power. One woman's fear is another woman's weapon. One woman's life is in another woman's hands.... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some aberrant sexual content | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

26 January 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escándalo  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,141,364 (United Kingdom), 4 February 2007, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,090, 24 December 2006

Gross USA:

$17,508,670, 20 May 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$26,196,359, 9 April 2007
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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cate Blanchett and Bill Nighy have both appeared in productions of The Lord of the Rings. Blanchett played Galadriel in the Peter Jackson films, while Nighy played Sam Gamgee in the BBC Radio broadcast. Both productions also featured Ian Holm. See more »

Goofs

Steven is stated as being fifteen years old and in Year 10. Pupils become fifteen during Year 10 (except in exceptional circumstances). Later in the film, Sheba states that he is going to be sixteen in May, i.e. he was already fifteen before entering Year 10. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Barbara Covett: [voiceover of Barbara writing in her diary] People trust me with their secrets. But who do I trust with mine? You, only you.
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Soundtracks

Fit But You Know It
Written by Mike Skinner (as M. Skinner)
Published by Universal/Pure Groove Music
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User Reviews

 
Brill, Dark, Witty....and "Marvelously Judi Dench/Cate Blanchett"
27 December 2006 | by See all my reviews

NOTES ON A SCANDAL is a Judi Dench "triumph" of brilliant wit, pain and a satanic passion for a woman out of reach in Cate Blanchett. Her "Judas" to her supposed friend and fellow teacher is an acting performance which will land Ms. Dench right back in "Oscar country". Too bad it is in the same year as Helen Mirren's magnificent "Queen" as Dench gives a show here in NOTES ON A SCANDAL that leaves you quite breathless to the last and final scene and fade out.

Patrick Marber delivers a deliciously wicked, witty and crisply written script in NOTES, and it only enhances his reputation for giving an audience a story well developed and with characters that you can't take your eyes off on the screen. His writing in CLOSER was so brilliant and clever, but in NOTES ON A SCANDAL he hands Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett words that are zingers and with a strong blend of anger, pain and humor. Please, Patrick, gives us another film quickly! The "teacher/student" romance was well developed and the chemistry between the two actors was believable and very sexual, and one could understand the youthful passion delivered by a young man with a strong mind and body. I did at times have to listen carefully to the young actor's lines, but he delivered them like a pro.

In the weeks ahead, I anticipate a "roar from the crowd" for this very dark and witty Judi Dench performance and who knows, she may upset "The Crown" in the end come Oscar time.


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