- Grady Tripp (Michael Douglas) to James Leer (Tobey Maguire)
"I can't believe you made fun of my bathrobe."
Academy Awards 2000 -
Best Original Song: Bob Dylan
"...Witty and sophisticated....A gratifying entertainment of leisurely elegance and delicious nastiness..."
Rolling Stone - 03/16/2000
"Michael Douglas digs deep and delivers one of the best performances in WONDER BOYS--a comic dazzler of roguish wit and touching gravity..."
Entertainment Weekly - 12/22/2000 Ranked #8 in Entertainment Weekly's "Lisa Schwarzbaum's BEST MOVIES OF 2000"
Box Office - 04/01/2000
"...WONDER BOYS is an intelligent movie about real people. It has serious points to make but makes them in a witty and engaging way. What more could you ask'..." -- 4 out of 5 stars
Los Angeles Times - 02/23/2001
"...The film's Pittsburgh settings gleam like an eccentric urban fantasy. Hanson has also orchestrated uniformly excellent performances from his cast..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 02/23/2000
"...The movie is an unsprung screwball comedy, slowed down to real-life speed....This is a funny and touching story..."
Empire - 02/01/2009 3 stars out of 5 -- "Tobey Maguire shakes it up as the erratic student....A lot of smart dialogue is delivered by pros..."
Wall Street Journal - 03/08/2012
"[E]ver so adroitly, the film invests Grady's absurdity with humanity and his thwarted hopes with possibilities, while tracking his roundabout journey to true love."
In Curtis Hanson's WONDER BOYS, based on the novel by Michael Chabon, Michael Douglas delivers one of his most compelling performances as Grady Tripp, a disheveled, perpetually adolescent English professor amiably coasting toward a midlife crisis. On the inaugural day of his university's literary festival, Grady's third wife leaves him, and his mistress, university chancellor Sara Gaskell (Frances McDormand), announces that she's pregnant with their child. To further complicate matters, Grady's reckless editor, Terry Crabtree (Robert Downey Jr.), desperate to revive his flaccid career, arrives to pick up Grady's far-from-finished seven-years-in-the-making follow-up to his critically acclaimed first book. As if that weren't enough to keep him reeling, Grady soon becomes an unwilling accomplice to a canine homicide and the heist of a rare jacket once worn by Marilyn Monroe, both committed by his brightest student--the languid, slightly pathological James Leer (Tobey Maguire). Dressed in a ratty pink bathrobe and driving a stolen car with a dead dog in the trunk, Grady must now find a way to return Marilyn's coat, write the great American novel, nurture James's literary talents, discourage the advances of an amorous coed (Katie Holmes), avoid the wrath of a tiny James Brown look-alike (Richard Knox), and reconcile with Sara...all before the weekend is over.
Curtis Hanson directs this comedic coming-of-middle-age tale about Professor Grady Tripp, a man with a lot on his mind. His wife, Emily, has just left him. His mistress, Sara Gaskel, is pregnant. His beautiful young boarder, Hannah Green, has the hots for him. His quirky writing student, James Leer, wants to be him. And his editor, Terry Crabtree, has been desperately waiting for the follow-up to his extremely successful first novel for seven years. Throw a transvestite, a dead dog, stolen Marilyn Monroe memorabilia, and an irate James Brown look-alike into the mix and Grady's anxiety is understandable. As his worlds collide during Wordfest, a literary festival held at the university, Grady embarks on a seemingly endless weekend full of mistakes and mix-ups that ultimately lead him to self-discovery. A stellar cast--with standout performances from Michael Douglas, Tobey Maguire, and Robert Downey Jr.--brings this poignant story to life. Hanson tells the tale simply and effectively, with many scenes silent of background noise or music, trusting the audience to concentrate instead on the brilliant acting and writing.
Theatrical Release |
Theatrical release: February 25, 2000; November 8, 2000 (rerelease).
Filmed on location at Carnegie Mellon University and in and around Pittsburgh, PA.
Author Michael Chabon is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh. His first big success was THE MYSTERIES OF PITTSBURGH.
The film was rereleased with a new marketing campaign in November 2000.
Bob Dylan's song "Things Have Changed," for which he wrote the music and the lyrics, won the Golden Globe award for Best Original Song--Motion Picture. It was the first time Dylan had ever written a song specifically for a motion picture that he was not in. (He had previously written "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" for PAT GARRETT AND BILLY THE KID, in which he starred.) The film also features other Dylan songs: "Buckets of Rain," "Not Dark Yet," and "Shooting Star."
Tobey Maguire and Katie Holmes also appear together in Ang Lee's THE ICE STORM.
Roger Ebert and Richard Roeper (EBERT AND ROEPER AND THE MOVIES), Paul Tatara of cnn.com, Jack Matthews of the New York Daily News, Matt Zoller Seitz of the New York Press, Andrew Sarris of The New York Observer, Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Stephen Garrett of Time Out New York, Film Comment, the Dallas-Ft. Worth Film Critics Association, and the National Board of Review all voted WONDER BOYS one of the 10 best films of 2000.
The Chicago Film Critics Association nominated WONDER BOYS for Best Picture. It also nominated Michael Douglas for Best Actor and Steve Kloves for Best Screenplay.
The Broadcast Film Critics Association nominated WONDER BOYS for Best Picture and named Frances McDormand Best Supporting Actress. It also awarded Steve Kloves Best Adapted Screenplay.
The Boston Society of Film Critics named Frances McDormand Best Supporting Actress for ALMOST FAMOUS and WONDER BOYS and awarded Steve Kloves Best Screenplay.
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association voted WONDER BOYS its runner-up for Best Picture and named Michael Douglas Best Actor. It also named Frances McDormand Best Supporting Actress for both ALMOST FAMOUS and WONDER BOYS.
The Florida Film Critics Circle named Frances McDormand Best Supporting Actress for ALMOST FAMOUS and WONDER BOYS.
Michael Douglas was named Best Actor, Comedy or Musical by the Golden Satellite Awards presented by the International Press Academy.
WONDER BOYS was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture--Drama, Michael Douglas was nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture--Drama, Steve Kloves was nominated for Best Screenplay-Motion Picture.