AFI Catalog of Feature Films
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Title: The Descendants

Production Company: Ad Hominem Enterprises  
  Dune Entertainment  
  Little Blair Productions  
  Ingenious Film Partners  
Production Text:
Distribution Company: Fox Searchlight Pictures (A News Corporation Company)

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation 18 Nov 2011 PA1758395
Dune Entertainment III LLC 18 Nov 2011 PA1758395

Release Date: 16 Nov 2011
Premiere Information: Los Angeles and New York openings: 16 Nov 2011
Duration (in mins): 115
PCA NO: 45583
MPAA Rating: R
Country: United States
Language: English

Physical Properties: Sd: Dolby®; Datasat Digital Sound; SDDS Sony Dynamic Digital Sound in selected theatres
  col:
  Lenses/Prints: Filmed with Panavision® cameras & lenses; prints by deluxe®

Producer: Jim Burke (Prod)
  Alexander Payne (Prod)
  Jim Taylor (Prod)
  George Parra (Co-prod)
  Tracy Boyd (Assoc prod)
Director: Alexander Payne (Dir)
  Tracy Boyd (2d unit dir)
  George Parra (Unit prod mgr)
  Mads Hansen (Asst prod mgr)
  Richard L. Fox (1st asst dir)
  Joyce McCarthy (1st asst dir, 2d unit)
  Scott August (2d asst dir)
  Amy Wilkins Bronson (2d 2d asst dir)
Writer: Alexander Payne (Scr)
  Nat Faxon (Scr)
  Jim Rash (Scr)
Photography: Phedon Papamichael (Dir of photog)
  Radan Popović (Dir of photog, 2d unit)
  P. Scott Sakamoto (A cam op)
  Trevor Loomis (1st asst A cam)
  Joseph Sanchez (1st asst A cam)
  James Goldman (2d asst A cam)
  Richard J. Brock (1st asst B cam)
  Rylan Akama (2d asst B cam)
  Ann McEveety Allen (1st asst cam, 2d unit)
  Matthew Berner (1st asst cam, 2d unit)
  Brian Matsumura (2d asst cam, 2d unit)
  Warner R. Wacha (2d asst cam, 2d unit)
  Kanoa Dahlin (Loader)
  Christian Franklin (Cam prod asst)
  Rafael E. Sanchez (Gaffer)
  Jeff Hall (Gaffer)
  Brian Tilden (Gaffer)
  Patrick R. Hoeschen (Best boy elec)
  Troy Boggess (Elec)
  Drew Des Jarlais (Elec)
  Shawn Christensen (Elec)
  Roger Thompson (Elec)
  Chuck Cullen (Elec)
  Don Tomich (Rigging elec gaffer)
  Raimar "Ray" Bylaardt (Best boy rigging elec)
  Don Chong (Rigging elec)
  Mike Weisbrod (Rigging elec)
  Keoki Smith (Rigging elec)
  Curtis Wingert (Rigging elec)
  Ray Garcia (Key grip)
  Kevin R. Kersting (Key grip, 2d unit)
  Tom Penny (Key grip, 2d unit)
  Charles Ehrlinger (Best boy grip)
  David Pearlberg (Dolly grip)
  Keola Jones (Dolly grip)
  Cole Chetney (Company grip)
  Lee Kaneakua (Company grip)
  Tweed Johnston (Company grip)
  Scott Lisetor (Company grip)
  Vance Gage (Key rigging grip)
  Tom Penny (Best boy rigging grip)
  Norman Akau, III (Rigging grip)
  Tuiaana Scanlan (Rigging grip)
  Michael "Jason" Gregg (Rigging grip)
  Merie Weismiller Wallace (Still photog)
  Monte Swann (24 frame video playback)
  Mike Bacon (VTR playback)
Art Direction: Jane Ann Stewart (Prod des)
  Timothy T.K. Kirkpatrick (Art dir)
  Jason Garner (Asst art dir)
  Serena Rios Flores (Art dept coord)
  Alexandra Hearn (Art dept prod asst)
Film Editor: Kevin Tent (Film ed)
  Mindy Elliott (Asst ed)
  Mikki Levi (Apprentice ed)
  Brian Bautista (Ed prod asst)
Set Decoration: Matt Callahan (Set dec)
  Michael Kaahanui, Jr. (Leadman)
  John Marano (Leadman)
  Shanna M. Norton (Set dec buyer)
  Camille Komine (Set dec buyer)
  Craig Hoffman (On-set dresser)
  Brian Costa (Swing gang)
  Eric Kitaoka (Swing gang)
  Sidney Etrata (Swing gang)
  Ace Newman (Swing gang)
  Justin Fischer (Swing gang)
  Sam Sternthall (Swing gang)
  Sean Hallock (Swing gang)
  Kaleo Wong (Swing gang)
  Michael Kaahanui, III (Swing gang)
  Ronn Wong (Swing gang)
  Derrick K. Kaupiko (Swing gang)
  Jason Skweres (Set dec res)
  Stani Franklin (Set dec res)
  Alvin Cabrinha (Prop master)
  Scott Ejercito (Asst prop master)
  Kaanoi Cabrinha (Asst prop master)
  Robert Ellison Knight (Head painter)
  Nancy Zahumensky Knight (Set painter)
  Eric Knight (Standby painter)
  Kenneth K. Sato (Const coord)
  Alvin Pittler (Const foreman)
  Edward Medeiros (Laborer)
  Benjamin Shafer (Laborer)
  Butch Lum (Toolman)
  Jonah Chang (Carpenter)
  Quintin D. Gasper (Carpenter)
  Ivan M. Lizares (Carpenter)
  Douglas Rasmussen (Carpenter)
  C. Liloa Wong (Greensman)
  Isaia Robins (Asst greens)
  Darrell Tachibana (Asst greens)
Costumes: Wendy Chuck (Cost des)
  Dana Hart (Cost supv)
  Susan M. Strubel (Key cost)
  Robyn Zucker (Cost)
  Linda Vollert (Cost)
  Michelle Moder (Cost buyer)
  Ivy Chiem Rowan (Seamstress)
  Carmen L. Rodrigues (Cost prod asst)
Music: Dondi Bastone (Mus supv)
  Richard Ford (Exec mus prod)
Sound: Frank Gaeta (Supv sd ed/Addl re-rec mixer)
  Patrick Cyccone (Re-rec mixer)
  Jose Antonio Garcia (Prod sd mixer)
  Jonathan Lee Ger Fuh (Boom person)
  Christopher Wiecking (Sd utility)
  Ross 424 (Re-rec at)
  Matt Hanson (Asst sd ed)
  Luis Galdames (Sd ed)
  Joe Iemola (Sd ed)
  Russ Farmarco (Sd ed)
  Patrick Giruaudi (Sd ed)
  Brett Voss (Foley mixer)
  James Moriana (Foley artist)
  Jeffrey Wilhoit (Foley artist)
  Sound For Film (Sd editorial)
  Kaspar Hugentobler (Re-rec eng)
Special Effects: Nathan Carlson (Title art and graphic des)
  Modern Videofilm (Digital intermediate and visual eff by)
  Nicholas Hasson (Smoke ed and visual eff compositor)
  Alex Romano (Visual eff compositor)
  Salvatore Catanzaro (Compositor)
  Custom Film Effects (Visual eff by)
  Mark Dornfeld (Visual eff supv, Custom Film Effects)
  Michele Ferrone (Visual eff prod, Custom Film Effects)
  Right Lobe Design Group (Main and end titles by)
Make Up: Julie Hewett (Makeup dept head)
  Karen Iboshi Preiser (Makeup artist)
  Waldo Sanchez (Hair dept head)
  Debra L. Rego (Hairstylist)
Production Misc: John Jackson (Casting)
  Wes Ford (Casting asst)
  Anna Fishburn (Addl extras casting)
  Rebecca Robertson-Szwaja (Scr supv)
  Renée Confair Sensano (Prod supv)
  Jim Triplett (Loc mgr)
  Art Rivers (Loc mgr, 2d unit)
  Katrin Chong (Key asst loc mgr)
  Matt Goldstein (Asst loc mgr)
  Angela Tillson (Asst loc mgr)
  Linda Graham (Loc asst, 2d unit)
  Jeff Dash (Prod accountant)
  "Co-Co" Aiello (1st asst accountant)
  Kimberly Choi (2d asst accountant)
  Nicole Nakamoto (2d asst accountant)
  Debra Burgess (Payroll accountant)
  Larissa Martinez (Accounting clerk)
  Nancy Honeycutt (Prod coord)
  Lisa Lee Mitchell (Asst prod coord)
  Ashley C. Smith (Travel & shipping coord)
  Joseph Kaleo'onã lani Aikala (Prod secy)
  Greg Carr (Prod asst)
  Shawna Carver (Prod asst)
  Liz Georgoff (Prod asst)
  Jessica Caress Hamamoto (Prod asst)
  Dana Ledoux Miller (Prod asst)
  Nicole Oudinot (Prod asst)
  Stockton David Porter (Prod asst)
  Amber Joy Tomasello (Set prod asst, 2d unit)
  Jeff Fishman (Set prod asst, 2d unit)
  Rick Reynolds (Post prod supv)
  Anna Lauren Musso (Asst to A. Payne)
  Deidre Backs (Asst to J. Burke)
  Rachel Streater (Asst to G. Parra)
  Angel McConnell (Asst to G. Clooney)
  Gary Stone (Security to G. Clooney)
  Cameron Spencer ("Behind the scenes" filmmaker)
  Karen Neasi (Clearances & product placement coord)
  Rob Wong (Marine coord)
  Claudia Gray (Unit pub)
  Rebecca Davis (Studio teacher)
  John Reed (Transportation coord)
  Aaron Torres (Transportation capt)
  Kelly Loo, Jr. (Transporation co-capt)
  Anna Reed (Transportation dispatcher)
  Kelly Barnes (Set medic)
  Sylvia K. Ringgold (Const medic)
  Iosefa Robins (Const medic)
  Tony's Catering (Catering)
  Mara Kerum (Chef)
  Dinesh Fernando (Cook)
  Max Garcia (Cook)
  Xanadu Kekuewa (Craft services)
  Darren Rodriguez (Craft service asst)
  Andy Rydzewski (Factotum, 2d unit)
  Laurie Arakaki (Prod intern)
  Leah Kaina (Prod intern)
  Sanoe Damon (Prod intern)
  Tyler Kueffner (Prod intern)
  Vincent Desrosiers-Nault (Prod intern)
  Ryan Lam (Prod intern)
  Todd Fink (Prod intern)
  Nick Ower (Prod intern)
  Jeremy Johnson (Prod intern)
  Pablo Paz (Prod intern)
  Lee Johnson (Prod intern)
Stand In: Brian L. Keaulana (Stunt coord)
  Victor Lozano (Marine coord)
  Terry Ahue (Stunts)
  Todd Bradley (Stunts)
  Craig Davidson (Stunts)
  Errol Kane (Stunts)
  Keoni K. Keaulana (Stunts)
  Noland Martin (Stunts)
  Paul J. Merino (Stunts)
  James K. Miranda (Stunts)
  Aden Stay (Stunts)
  Marcus Young (Stunts)
Color Personnel: Joe Finley (Digital intermediate col)
  Christine Carr (Digital intermediate prod)
  Jim Passon (Col timer)

Music Text: "Kalena Kai," written by John Kalapana, performed by Keola Beamer and George Winston, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Paka Ua," written by Ozzie Kotani, performed by Ozzie Kotani and Daniel Ho, courtesy of Daniel Ho Creations; "Jean's Theme," written by Andrew Lein, performed by Steve Di Laudo and Andrew Lein, courtesy of Denmaster Studios; "An Artist's Vision," written and performed by Anthony Natividad, courtesy of Mountain Apple Company HAWAII; "Kalena Kai," written by John Kalapana, performed by Keola Beamer, courtesy of Starscape Music; "Auwe," written and performed by Ray Kane, courtesy of Cord International-Hana Ola Records; "Poli'ahu," written and performed by Keola Beamer, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Interlude with Ukelele," written and performed by George Kahumoku, Jr. and Richard Ford; "Imi Auia 'Oe," written by Charles E. King & Queen Lydia Lili'uokalani, arranged and performed by Keola Beamer, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Holoholo Ka'a," written and performed by Jeff Peterson, courtesy of Peterson Productions; "Pua Lani," written and performed by Jeff Peterson, courtesy of Peterson Productions; "Night Blooming Cereus," written and performed by Jeff Peterson and Riley Lee, courtesy of Hula Records; "Hawaiian Skies," written and performed by Jeff Peterson, courtesy of Peterson Productions; "Deep in an Ancient Hawaiian Forest," written and performed by Makana, courtesy of Makana Music LLC; "Miss Bea," written and performed by McCoy Tyner, courtesy of Chesky Records, by arrangement with Manhattan Production Music; "'Ulili E," written by Johnny Noble, Harry Naope and George Koahi, performed by Jeff Peterson, courtesy of Peterson Productions; "Wonderland," written and performed by Eugene Kulikov, courtesy of pigFACTORY USA; "Sanoe," written by Queen Lydia Lili'uokalani, arranged and performed by Danny Carvalho, courtesy of Lava Rock Music; "Hapuna Sunset," written and performed by Charles Michael Brotman, courtesy of Palm Records; "The Harshest Place on Earth," (from the motion picture March of the Penguins ), composed by Alex Wurman, courtesy of Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.
Song Text: "Ka Makani Ka'ili Aloha," written by Matthew Kane, arranged and performed by Gabby Pahinui, courtesy of Panini Records; "Hi'ilawe," traditional, arranged and performed by Sonny Chillingworth, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Ka Mele Oku'u Pu'uwai," traditional, arranged by Solomon Ho'opi'i, performed by Sol Hoopii's Novelty Trio, courtesy of Sony Music Entertainment, by arrangement with Sony Music Licensing; "Kaua'i Beauty," written by Henry Wai'au, arranged and performed by Gabby Pahinui, courtesy of Panini Records; "Papa Sia," written by Johnny Noble, performed by 'Elua Kane, courtesy of Hula Records; "Leahi," written by Mary Robins and Johnny Noble, performed by Gabby Pahinui, courtesy of Panini Records; "Hi'ilawe," traditional, arranged and performed by Gabby Pahinui, courtesy of Hula Records; "In Ya System," written by Don Kawaauhau, Shane Veincent and Caleb Richards, performed by Sudden Rush, courtesy of Sudden Rush LLC, by arrangement with Robert Sterling Music New York; "Wai O Ke Aniani," traditional, arranged and performed by Gabby Pahinui, courtesy of Panini Records; "Ka Loke," written by Mary Heanu and Johnny Noble, performed by Makaha Sons with Dennis Pavao, courtesy of Tropical Music; "'Ulili E," written by Johnny Noble, Harry Naope and George Koahi, performed by Rev. Dennis Kamakahi, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Pua Hone," written and performed by Rev. Dennis Kamakahi, courtesy of Dancing Cat Records; "Pine Tree Slack Key," written and performed by Pancho Graham, courtesy of Kaku Productions; "Nani Wai'ale'ale," written by Dan Pokipala, Sr., performed by Kanak Attack; "The Yodel Song," written by Gary Haleamau, performed by Kanak Attack; "Faith in Rain," written by Maureen Davis and Adam Daniel, performed by The Flutterbies featuring Maureen Davis, courtesy of Toaster Child Music; "Hummingbird Heart," written by Maureen Davis and Adam Daniel, performed by The Flutterbies featuring Maureen Davis, courtesy of Toaster Child Music; "He'eia," written by David Bray, Linda Bray and Johnny Noble, performed by Gabby Pahinui and Sons of Hawaii, courtesy of Hula Records; "Hi'ilawe," traditional, arranged by Bernie Ka'ai, performed by Ernest Tavares, courtesy of GNP Crescendo Records, by arrangement with Ocean Park Music Group; "Mom," written and performed by Lena Machado, courtesy of Cord International-Hana Ola Records.
Source Text: Based on the novel The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings (New York, 2007).
Source Authors: Kaui Hart Hemmings
Music Composer: Charles E. King
  Keola Beamer
  David Bray
  Linda Bray
  Charles Michael Brotman
  Adam Daniel
  Maureen Davis
  Pancho Graham
  Gary Haleamau
  Mary Heanu
  George Kahumoku, Jr.
  John Kalapana
  Rev. Dennis Kamakahi
  Matthew Kane
  Ray Kane
  Don Kawaauhau
  George Koahi
  Ozzie Kotani
  Eugene Kulikov
  Riley Lee
  Andrew Lein
  Queen Lydia Lili'uokalani
  Lena Machado
  Makana
  Harry Naope
  Anthony Natividad
  Johnny Noble
  Jeff Peterson
  Dan Pokipala, Sr.
  Caleb Richards
  Mary Robins
  McCoy Tyner
  Shane Veincent
  Henry Wai'au
  Alex Wurman

Cast:   George Clooney (Matt King)  
    Shailene Woodley (Alexandra King)  
    Beau Bridges (Cousin Hugh)  
    Robert Forster (Scott Thorson)  
    Judy Greer (Julie Speer)  
    Matthew Lillard (Brian Speer)  
    Nick Krause (Sid)  
    Amara Miller (Scottie King)  
    Mary Birdsong (Kai Mitchell)  
    Rob Huebel (Mark Mitchell)  
    Patricia Hastie (Elizabeth King)  
    Grace A. Cruz (Scottie's teacher)  
    Kim Gennaula (School counselor)  
    Karen Kuioka Hironaga (Barb Higgins)  
    Carmen Kaichi (Lani Higgins)  
    Kaui Hart Hemmings (Matt's secretary Noe)  
    Matt Corboy (Cousin Ralph)  
    Matt Esecson (Cousin Hal)  
    Michael Ontkean (Cousin Milo)  
    Stanton Johnston (Cousin Stan)  
    Jonathan McManus (Cousin Six)  
    Hugh Foster (Cousin Wink)  
    Tiare R. Finney (Cousin Connie)  
    Tom McTigue (Cousin Dave)  
    Milt Kogan (Dr. Johnston)  
    Laird Hamilton (Troy Cook)  
    Aileen "Boo" Arnold (Dorm supervisor)  
    Esther Kang (Alex's roommate)  
    Melissa Kim (Alex's drunken friend)  
    Barbara Lee Southern (Alice "Tutu" Thorson)  
    Celia Kenney (Reina)  
    Matt Reese (Buzz)  
    Zoel Turnbull (Hotel clerk)  
    Linda Rose Herman (Grief counselor)  
    Scott Michael Morgan (Barry Thorson)  
  Tahiti Nui singers [Kanak Attack] Darryl K. Gonzales    
    Koko Kanealii    
  [and] Romey "Keola" Yokotake    

Summary: Matt King, a wealthy Hawaiian real estate lawyer, sits at his wife Elizabeth's bedside in the hospital. The couple has barely spoken to each other in months and they can't speak at all now: Elizabeth lies in a coma following a tragic waterskiing accident. Meanwhile, Matt's youngest daughter, 10-year-old Scottie, has emotional problems and lashes out by sending vulgar text messages to a female classmate. Also, Matt must soon make a controversial decision whether or not to sell a large plot of land on the island of Kaua'i that his family has owned for generations. The poorer members of Matt's extended family are pressuring him to sell the land immediately to a developer. As Elizabeth's condition deteriorates, Matt is forced to have her taken off of life support. Before the plug is pulled, though, he brings home his teenage daughter Alexandra, who has been living at a boarding school for troubled girls. Although Matt spares Scottie the severity of the situation, when Alexandra hears that her mother is about to die she drops the bombshell that Elizabeth had been having an affair with a strange man. Devastated by the news, Matt runs to the nearby home of Kai and Mark, Elizabeth's best friends, to pry more information out of them. Kai initially refuses to talk about the affair. However, after Matt tells her Elizabeth is going to die, Kai exclaims that Elizabeth was deeply in love with this other man and was going to ask Matt for a divorce. From Mark, Matt learns the other man's name: Brian Speer. Back home, Alexandra insists to her father that Sid, a teenage male friend, come with them when they visit Elizabeth's parents, Scott and Alice. At his in-laws', Matt is berated by the crusty Scott, who also yells at his eldest granddaughter, for treating Elizabeth badly. Alice, however, is suffering from Alzheimer's and doesn't understand what's going on. When Alice thinks she's going to visit Queen Elizabeth, Sid bursts out laughing and Scott punches him in the face. On the ride home, Alexandra coerces Matt to drive by Speer's home, where she saw her mother with her lover. While the house provides no clues to Speer's identity, Alexandra spots the man's face on a real estate sign elsewhere in the neighborhood. At home, Matt calls the phone number on the sign under the pretense that he's interested in a house, but all he gets is an answering machine. The next day, Matt unleashes all of his fury on the unconscious Elizabeth. When Alexandra is equally cruel to her mother, Matt spanks her and forces her to say something nice. Then, while they're keeping Elizabeth company, Speer's office returns Matt's call. Alexandra answers, pretending to be her dad's assistant. She learns that Speer is away on Kaua'i for business. Later, at the house, Matt tells all of Elizabeth's friends that they should go visit her over the next few days before the plug is pulled. Privately, Matt comes up with the controversial plan to tell Speer as well. Alexandra is opposed to the plan, but ultimately suggests that she, Scottie and Sid accompany Matt on his mad crusade. At the Kaua'i airport, Matt, Sid and the girls run into Matt's cousin Ralph who takes them to the massive piece of land that the King estate owns. The cousins discuss how the land belongs to a family trust that is going to dissolve in seven years if Matt refuses to sell now. But, if he sells now, all the Kings will make a fortune. Once settled into their hotel, Matt has difficulty tracking down Speer on the island. Worse, he has even more difficulty getting his kids to show any respect toward his authority. The girls curse like crazy and discuss inappropriate sexual topics in front of him. Surprisingly, Sid shows off his sensitive side and reveals that his own father recently died in a drunk driving accident. While jogging on the beach the next morning, Matt runs right by Speer, whom he follows to his vacation cottage, which he is sharing with his wife, Julie, and two young sons. Later, Matt makes small talk with Julie on the same beach, pretending he doesn't know who Brian is. At a restaurant, Matt runs into his older cousin, Hugh, who actually owns the cottage that the Speers are renting. Hugh provides the shocking news that Brian Speer is the brother-in-law of the exact same developer whom Matt has been thinking of selling the family land to. So, if Matt sells out to this particular developer, then Speer will make a mint on real estate commissions. When Matt expresses hesitation at selling the land at all, Hugh is flabbergasted. Walking back to the hotel, Alexandra convinces Matt to stop at the Speers' cabin to confront Brian. While Julie gets drinks for the Kings, Matt bluntly tells Brian that Elizabeth is going to die in a few days and that he should go visit her. Then, stealing some extra minutes alone, Matt forces Brian to come clean. Brian explains that he was never in love with Elizabeth and that getting mixed up with the land deal was just a big coincidence. Then, just when he's about to leave for the night, Matt gives Julie a surprise, passionate kiss. Upon returning to the hospital, a child therapist finally breaks the news about pulling the plug on Elizabeth to Scottie. Alice, Scott and Elizabeth's brother Barry also make their final visit. Scott again berates Matt for treating Elizabeth badly, but Sid and Alexandra both proudly stand up for Matt. The next day, Matt has a meeting with all of his cousins to vote on the land sale. Via secret ballot, the majority agrees to sell to the developer. But, it's Matt who has the last word and he refuses to sell to anyone. He decides to keep the land and figure out how to keep it past the remaining seven years on the trust. As Matt, his daughters and Sid wait for Elizabeth to finally pass on, Julie Speer makes a surprise visit to the hospital with a huge bouquet of flowers. The kids leave the room so Julie can divulge to Matt that she knows everything that happened. Brian refuses to visit and Julie tells the unconscious Elizabeth that she forgives her, although her tears and angry tone belie her words. After Julie leaves, Matt gives Elizabeth a final kiss and says goodbye. Then, it's Scottie and Alexandra's turn to say goodbye privately. After their mother expires, the Kings spread her ashes in the Pacific Ocean from a canoe. At home, Matt sits on the couch with his daughters eating ice cream and watching March of the Penguins

 
Genre: Comedy-drama
 
Subject Major: Death and dying
  Family relationships
  Infidelity
  Inheritance
 
Subject Minor: Adolescents
  Beaches
  Boarding schools
  Coma
  Cousins
  Fathers and daughters
  Hawaii
  Heirs
  Hospitals
  In-laws
  Kauai (HI)
  Landowners
  Lawyers
  Real estate agents

Note: In the end credits, the filmmakers thank the following organizations and individuals: State of Hawaii and the Hawaii Film Office; County of Oahu and the Oahu Film Commission; County of Kauai and the Kauai Film Commission; County of Hawaii and the Big Island Film Commission; Hawaii Airlines; Dollar Rent A Car; Sheraton Waikiki Hotel; Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas; The St. Regis Princeville Resort; Tory Richards Clothing; Trustees of the Estate of Bernice Pauahi Bishop; Julia Porter Steele; Gavan Daws; Andy Lautenbach; John and Carri Morgan, and Randall Roth. End credits also contain the following statement: "Filmed on location on O'ahu, Kaua'i and Hawai'i with the assistance of Hawaiian Production Tax Credits." The following credits acknowledge other works used in the film: " March of the Penguins by Luc Jaquet, copyright 2005 Bonne Pioche Production/APC/Warner Independent; Footage from Dog the Bounty Hunter courtesy of A&E; Images from Better Orgasms for Women courtesy of Lifetime Productions International Ltd."
       In an 18 Nov 2011 HR article about the making of the film, Jay Fernandez writes that the project began in 2007 when two London-based agents gave galley proofs of the novel to producer Jim Burke. Pamela McClintock and Peter Gilstrap announced in DV on 16 May 2007 that Fox Searchlight had bought the film rights to Kaui Hart Hemmings' novel for Jim Burke, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor to produce through their company Ad Hominem under a three-year first-look deal between Ad Hominem and Searchlight.
       Because Payne was writing a screenplay for a film to be titled Downsizing , Jay Fernandez reported, Burke hired writers Jim Rash and Nat Faxon to adapt the novel. A 2 Sep 2009 article in DV indicated that director Stephen Frears had been "circling" The Descendants as a potential project before committing to do British film Tamara Drewe (2010). Payne later set Downsizing aside, and "by July 2009, he was working on his own adaptation." Although he was involved with the project as a producer, fellow producer Jim Burke disclosed that it was not certain that Payne would direct. In a 9 Dec 2011 DV interview, Burke stated that, "The biggest challenge was to get Alexander Payne to direct it. It's not that easy. It had been a while [since his previous film as a director, Sideways (2004, see entry)], and he's extraordinarily particular, as he should be."
       In his HR piece, Jay Fernandez noted that the film was budgeted at $20 million, and scheduled for a ten week shoot on the islands of Oahu and Kauai. Actresses Shailene Woodley and Amara Miller, who play the daughters in the film, flew to Oahu ten days in advance of the shoot so they could "develop a believable family dynamic with Clooney."
       In a 29 Nov 2011 LAT article about the music for the film, writer Steve Hochman revealed that music supervisor Dondi Bastone listened to "mountains of music" to find appropriate compositions for the fim and that musicologist, University of Hawaii ethnomusicology professor, Jay Junker, tutored Payne on the nuances of Hawaiian music, trying to discourage Payne ". . .from using, say a Big Island song over a scene [shot on the island of] Oahu," although Payne admitted he opted for "feeling, rhythm and emotion" over source-setting considerations.
       A Monday, 21 Nov 2011, LAT article by Amy Kaufman noted that the film opened in 29 theaters over the past weekend, starting Friday, and grossed $1.2 million for a $42,150.00 per-screen average. The piece also noted that the film had opened in five theaters the previous Wednesday in order to generate word-of-mouth, and as a result the total gross to date was $1.3 million. The article further stated that the film was scheduled to expand to 425 screens on Wednesday, 23 Nov, 2011.
       AFI named The Descendants one of its top ten movies of the year. The film was nominated for Academy Awards in the following categories: Best Picture; Best Actor in a Leading Role [George Clooney]; Best Directing [Andrew Payne]; Best Film Editing [Kevin Tent]; and Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay) [Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon & Jim Rash]. The film received Golden Globe Awards for: Best Picture (Drama) and Best Actor (Drama) [George Clooney].
 

Note Credits: Personal note credit: Stephen Frears
  Geographic location: Oahu Hawaii United States
  Geographic location: Kauai Hawaii United States

Source   Date   Page
Daily Variety   16 May 2007.   
Daily Variety   2 Sep 2009.   
Daily Variety   6 Sep 2011   p. 5, 14.
Daily Variety   9 Dec 2011.   
Hollywood Reporter   18 Nov 2011   pp. 51-53.
Los Angeles Times   16 Nov 2011.   
Los Angeles Times   21 Nov 2011.   
Los Angeles Times   29 Nov 2011   p. D3.
New York Times   16 Nov 2011   p. 1.

 
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