Film Info
Section:World Cinema
Running Time:97
Director:Stephen Frears
Producer:Steve Coogan
Tracey Seaward
Gabrielle Tana
Screenwriter:Steve Coogan
Jeff Pope
Cinematographer:Robbie Ryan
Editor:Valerio Bonelli
Cast:Judi Dench
Steve Coogan
Charlie Murphy
Simone Lahbib
Sophie Kennedy Clark
Sean Mahon


View Trailer HERE

US Premiere

Judi Dench and Steve Coogan star in this poignant and bracingly funny tale of friendship and a mother’s enduring love. In 1950s Ireland, teenaged Philomena Lee was forced to give up her three-year-old son for adoption and further atone for her sin of sex outside of marriage by spending her youth in a convent. Fifty years later, Philomena (Dench) has never given up hope of a reunion, but her search remains fruitless until she meets Martin Sixsmith (Coogan, who also cowrote the screenplay), a political journalist who’s down on his luck. Sixsmith reluctantly agrees to take on a human-interest story and the two strangers set off on a journey that leads them to America and to a deep and unexpected friendship as they unravel the mystery of what became of Philomena’s boy. Adapted from Sixsmith’s account of this true story, Philomena is the heartfelt new film from Academy Award–nominated director Stephen Frears (The Queen, MVFF 2006).

—Pam Grady

Additional Information

English director Stephen Frears was born in 1941 and studied law at Cambridge before becoming a highly successful filmmaker. His films include The Hit (1984), My Beautiful Laundrette (1985), Prick Up Your Ears (1987), Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (1987), Dangerous Liaisons (1988), The Grifters (1990), High Fidelity (2000) and The Queen (2006).