The story of the controversial Brian Clough's 44-day reign as the coach of the English football club Leeds United.


Tom Hooper


Peter Morgan (screenplay), David Peace (novel)
5 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Colm Meaney ... Don Revie
Henry Goodman ... Manny Cussins
David Roper David Roper ... Sam Bolton
Jimmy Reddington Jimmy Reddington ... Keith Archer
Oliver Stokes Oliver Stokes ... Nigel Clough
Ryan Day Ryan Day ... Simon Clough
Michael Sheen ... Brian Clough
Mark Bazeley ... Austin Mitchell
Timothy Spall ... Peter Taylor
Maurice Roëves ... Jimmy Gordon
Stephen Graham ... Billy Bremner
Peter McDonald ... Johnny Giles
Mark Cameron ... Norman Hunter
Frank Skillin Frank Skillin ... Younger Nigel Clough
Dylan Van Hoof Dylan Van Hoof ... Younger Simon Clough


Taking over England's top football club Leeds United, previously successful manager Brian Clough's abrasive approach and his clear dislike of the players' dirty style of play make it certain there is going to be friction. Glimpses of his earlier career help explain both his hostility to previous manager Don Revie and how much he is missing right-hand man Peter Taylor who has loyally stayed with Brighton & Hove Albion. Written by J-26

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


"They love me for what I'm not... ...they hate me for what I am." See more »


Biography | Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Part of this was filmed in Scarborough in Yorkshire where they pretended it was Brighton by using computer graphics to show the pier. In one scene filmed there they forgot to cover the machine to pay for parking which did not exist at that time. See more »


The sequence showing the penalty spot being re-painted during a game at the Baseball Ground did happen, but in reality it didn't take place until April 30th 1977 in a game against Manchester City , almost four years after Brian Clough had left Derby as Manager. Colin Murphy was Derby Manager during that game (after he replaced Dave Mackay in the autumn of 1976). Also John Motson was the real commentator at the game not Tony Gubba as shown in the movie. See more »


Peter Taylor: Brighton's a small club, I'll give you that.
Brian Clough: Bloody midgets!
Peter Taylor: But at least we'd be together! You and me, Brian. We can build them up. Make them our own, like we did with Hartlepools, like we did with Derby...
Brian Clough: And then what? Bottle again soon as it comes to the big time? That's always been the trouble with you, Pete. No ambition.
Peter Taylor: That's the trouble with you, Brian. Too much ambition. Too much greed, too much everything!
Brian Clough: Yeah, you knock it, but it's done you proud over the years, hasn't it? My ambition...
See more »


Referenced in There's Something About Movies: Episode #1.5 (2019) See more »


Man of the World
Performed by Fleetwood Mac
Written by Peter Green
(c) Published by Crosstown Songs (UK) Ltd administered by Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd
An original immediate recording / Courtesy of Sanctuary Records Group Ltd
Under license from ApS and Universal Music Operations Ltd
See more »

User Reviews

Sheen is Clough
28 March 2009 | by lee-1031See all my reviews

Having read the book, I did expect a darker film, however, it is not to the detriment of the film that it attempts to give the interpretation a 'feel good factor. Sheen is utterly brilliant as Clough and captures the ego, charisma and above all weakness of the man. The support cast are excellent, although Spall did struggle to look comfortable in a sporting film (Taylor was en ex goalie and poor Tim's got 10 to 2 feet etc). There are a lot of factual inaccuracies, but it is based on a 'faction novel' so one should not allow this to spoil a memorable film and if it does nothing else it does make you feel extremely nostalgic to this era.

28 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 92 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »






Release Date:

27 March 2009 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Damned United See more »


Box Office


$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$32,065, 11 October 2009

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed