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Me and Orson Welles (2008)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 18 December 2009 (USA)
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In 1937, a teenager is cast in the Mercury Theatre production of "Julius Caesar", directed by a young Orson Welles.

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(based on the novel by), (screenplay by) (as Holly Gent Palmo) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins & 26 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Richard Linklater, James Goodwin, Dan Kratochvil
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Orson Welles
... Richard Samuels
... Gretta Adler
... Evelyn Allen
... Walter Ash
... Grover Burgess
Shane James Bordas ... Conspirator
... Conspirator
... Conspirator
Rhodri Orders ... Conspirator
... Joseph Cotten
Thomas Arnold ... George Duthie
... Martin Gabel
Simon Nehan ... Joe Holland
... Sonja Jones
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Storyline

In November 1937, high school student and aspiring thespian Richard Samuels takes a day trip into New York City. There, he meets and begins a casual friendship with Gretta Adler, their friendship based on a shared love and goal of a profession in the creative arts. But also on this trip, Richard stumbles across the Mercury Theatre and meets Orson Welles, who, based on an impromptu audition, offers Richard an acting job as Lucius in his modern retelling of Julius Caesar, which includes such stalwart Mercury Theatre players as Joseph Cotten and George Coulouris. Despite others with official roles as producer John Houseman, this production belongs to Welles, the unofficial/official dictator. In other words, whatever Welles wants, the cast and crew better deliver. These requests include everything, even those of a sexual nature. Welles does not believe in conventions and will do whatever he wants, which includes not having a fixed opening date, although the unofficial opening date is in ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

All's fair in love and theater

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual references and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

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Language:

Release Date:

18 December 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Me & Orson  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$63,638, 29 November 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,186,957, 21 February 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Zac Efron and Imogen Poots would later star together in "That Awkward Moment" (2014) See more »

Goofs

A common mistake in movies and TV, fire sprinklers are activated individually - a match held to one would only cause that particular sprinkler head to open, and not all of the sprinklers as shown in the movie. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dr. Mewling: By the year of 1592, Shakespeare was already an actor, and a playwright. Records of how his stage career began have not survived. We do know that in 1594 he joined a theater troupe. Called... anyone remember? Not everyone at once now. The Lord Chamberlain's Men.
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Crazy Credits

Gilson Lavis is listed as "Drumer" instead of "Drummer". See more »

Connections

References The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

One O'Clock Jump
Written by Count Basie
Performed by Count Basie & His Orchestra
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd.
Courtesy of The Verve Music Group
Under License from Universal Music Enterprises
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User Reviews

 
A beautifully crafted film
8 December 2009 | by See all my reviews

I have seen a couple of good reviews of Me and Orson Welles, so decided to go and see whether they were merited. I'm pleased to report that the film certainly impressed me.

The film focuses on the rehearsals and opening of the play Caesar starring Orson Welles in 1937. Nominally Zac Efron plays the lead as Richard Samuels who is almost 18 and yearning to become an actor. A chance encounter with Orson Welles outside the Mercury theatre leads to Richard being cast as Lucius. Welles was one of those larger than life characters who had so much talent that they could get away with having a rather inflated ego.

This is the first time I have seen Zac Efron on screen and I have got to say he played the role of the star struck teenager very nicely. The character is full of dreams and it certainly resonates long after the film has finished.

If Christian McKay does not get a supporting actor Oscar nomination for his Orson Welles portrayal it will be a travesty. He is quite simply superb. I've always found Claire Danes very engaging and she is also very good in this as are a number of the supporting cast including Ben Chaplin and Zoe Kazan.

If you are after traditional blockbuster fare from your movies then you are probably well advised to skip Me and Orson, but if you like an intelligent film that is well scripted, well directed (by Richard Linklater) and well acted then it's a must see.


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