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The Ghost Writer (2010)

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A ghost writer, hired to complete the memoirs of a former British Prime Minister, uncovers secrets that put his own life in jeopardy.

Director:

Roman Polanski

Writers:

Robert Harris (screenplay), Roman Polanski (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
3,323 ( 293)
33 wins & 54 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ewan McGregor ... The Ghost
Jon Bernthal ... Rick Ricardelli
Tim Preece Tim Preece ... Roy
Jim Belushi ... John Maddox (as James Belushi)
Timothy Hutton ... Sidney Kroll
Anna Botting Anna Botting ... SKY TV Newsreader
Yvonne Tomlinson Yvonne Tomlinson ... Stewardess
Milton Welsh ... Taxi Driver
Alister Mazzotti Alister Mazzotti ... Protection Officer #1
Tim Faraday ... Barry
Kim Cattrall ... Amelia Bly
Kate Copeland Kate Copeland ... Alice
Soogi Kang Soogi Kang ... Dep
Lee Hong Thay Lee Hong Thay ... Duc
Olivia Williams ... Ruth Lang
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Storyline

An unremarkable ghost-writer has landed a lucrative contract to redact the memoirs of Adam Lang, the former UK Prime Minister. After dominating British politics for years, Lang is campaigning for his foundation with his wife in the USA. He lives on an island, in luxurious, isolated premises complete with a security detail and a secretarial staff. Soon, Adam Lang gets embroiled in a major scandal with international ramifications that reveals how far he was ready to go in order to nurture UK's "special relationship" with the USA. But before this controversy has started, before even he has closed the deal with the publisher, the ghost-writer gets unmistakable signs that the turgid draft he is tasked to put into shape inexplicably constitutes highly sensitive material. Written by Eduardo Casais <casaise@acm.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Read between the lies.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, brief nudity/sexuality, some violence and a drug reference | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

France | Germany | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 March 2010 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ghost Writer See more »

Filming Locations:

Berlin, Germany See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$183,009, 21 February 2010

Gross USA:

$15,541,549

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$60,222,298
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Roman Polanski was arrested September 2009 in Switzerland, post-production was never put on hold. He saw every step of the film and made all of the artistic decisions. He finished editing the movie while in a Swiss prison. In December 2009, Polanski was released on bail, but placed under house arrest, where he remained when this movie was released. See more »

Goofs

The investigation of a UK ex-Prime Minister by the ICC would be precluded by a cooperating British government (which implies, inter alia, the conduct of a British investigation). Article 17 of the Rome Statute states that cases are admissible only when a state's own court system is genuinely unable or unwilling to investigate or prosecute an alleged crime. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Ghost: You realize I know nothing about politics.
Rick Ricardelli: You voted for him, didn't you?
The Ghost: Adam Lang? Of course I did, everyone voted for him. He wasn't a politician, he was a craze.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits are written as black-on-white with a typewriter font, like the manuscript shown throughout the movie. See more »

Alternate Versions

US version was cut for language to secure a PG-13 rating (the usage of the words "fuck" and "shit" was severely toned down). See more »

Connections

Featured in Maltin on Movies: Eat Pray Love (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Marcia Funebre
Allegro Assai from Beethoven's Symphony No. 3
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performed by Symphony Nova Scotia
Conducted by Georg Tintner
Courtesy of Naxos of America, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Well-crafted thriller, but some loose ends in the plot
2 May 2010 | by yris2002See all my reviews

No doubt Roman Polansky knows how to build a gripping movie, with craft and wit, in this case a political thriller, where references to Blair and Bush are no so much explicit, but subtle enough to be perceived somehow. Reviews underlined a style resembling Hitchcock: indeed, the story proceeds, creating suspense, thrill, without appealing to excessive action or shock, although never reaching Hitchcock's subtlety of insight and mystery, both in characters and situations. Mostly, the plot proves some loose ends as the craftily prepared intrigue seems to come to a hasty ending, leading to a finale which does not appear up to the great potential and high expectations of its previous development.

Convincing and well-focused performances by the whole cast, especially by Ewan McGregor who keeps a high-level performance, never abusing his intriguing role, but thoroughly contained, Pierce Brosnan proves good in his part, although his past stereotyped roles make it difficult to see him credible as a former prime minister, Olivia Williams as his wife Ruth delivers a smart and talented performance. Quite interesting are some minor characters, such as the members of the service, or the old man living on the island, who enhance, despite or probably thanks to their more silent presence, the mysterious atmosphere of the story.


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