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Starring: 
Colin Firth ....  Colin Ware 
Minnie Driver ....  Vera 
Chad Faust ....  Rob 
Frank Collison ....  Fisher 
Heather Graham ....  Mandy 
Oliver Platt ....  Doug Reed 
Mary Steenburgen ....  Joanie Fisher 
Candace A. Cole ....  Extra (uncredited) 
Ken Kramer ....  Mr. Peterson (uncredited) 

Director:    Mark Herman 
Producer:    Barnaby Thompson 
Screenwriter:    Mark Herman 

Executive Producer:    Uri Fruchtmann 

Source Writer:    Charles Webb  (from his novel New Cardiff)

Original Music by 
John Altman 

Release Date (USA): TBA 2003/2004 

U.K. Release Date: May 9th, 2003 (pushed back a month from April 18th, 2003) The UK premiere benefitted Oxfam Int'l.

Production Companies
Buena Vista Pictures [us]
Fragile Films
Mumbo Jumbo Productions
Prominent Features
Scala Films [uk]
Touchstone Pictures [us]

Distributors
Buena Vista International [ar] (Argentina)
Buena Vista International [nl]
Buena Vista Pictures [us]
Touchstone Pictures [us]

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Plot summary

In this charming romantic comedy, British artist Colin Ware (COLIN FIRTH) discovers that his fiancée, Vera (MINNIE DRIVER), the love of his life, is going to marry another man. Distraught and despondent, he gets on a plane for America and ends up in the tiny town of Hope in New England. At first, Colin is depressed, but he soon finds more than a shoulder to cry on when his innkeepers introduce him to Mandy (HEATHER GRAHAM), a beautiful nurse. All's going well and Colin has almost forgotten his old flame… until Vera suddenly shows up with a surprise of her own. "Hope Springs" is about finding happiness where you least expect it.

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General Comments

Premise: This "fish out of water" romantic comedy, set in New Cardiff, Vermont, tells the story of a British artist, Colin (Firth), recuperating from being recently dumped by his fiancee (Driver) (who sent him an invite to her wedding to someone else), doing sketches of the locals. His plight catches the attention of the woman (Steenburgen) who runs the rundown hotel he's staying in, who introduces him to a local girl (Graham), with whom he soon finds the sparks of romance, but his fiancee soon comes back looking to reunite... (it seems the invite was a joke) 

The movie was filmed in British Columbia, and promises to have some lush cinematography along with the potential for some very fine performances. Here's hoping the quality is there and we see Disney give it a nice push come awards time. (Kim Hollis/BOP) 
 
 

MPAA Rating: PG-13 (for sexual content and language) 

Distributor: Touchstone Films (Disney) 

Production Company: Fragile Films (Valiant, The Importance of Being Earnest, High Heels and Low Lifes), Buena Vista Int'l (financing) 

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Trivia 

Release Date Note: (1/16/03) Disney's original target release was sometime in the fall of 2002. (3/7/03) There had been unconfirmed reports that Touchstone might be releasing this on April 4th, but it appears they're looking for a date later in the year (or maybe even in 2004) after the U.K. opening. 

Other credits for Mark Herman director and screenwriter of Brassed Off, Little Voice, Purely Belter, Blame it on the Bellboy.

Filming: Production started on October 15th, 2001 in Vancouver, British Columbia, subbing for the (fictional) small Vermont town of the title. (2/6/02) Filming wrapped up in mid-January, 2002. 

Locations:

Fort Langley Community Hall, Fort Langley, Langley Township, British Columbia, Canada 

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada 

Colin Firth worked with Minnie Driver once before, in the film Circle of Friends and in the stage play Chatsky
 
 

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Comments on Colin 

An incredibly attractive and undeniably talented British actor who has kept to the periphery of American film productions, Colin Firth most recently captured the attention of the movie-going public as the swoon-worthy Mark Darcy in Bridget Jones' Diary. An actor who almost seems to specialize in literary adaptations, he has also appeared in the 1997 adaptation of Nick Hornby's novel Fever Pitch, the Academy Award®-winning film translation of Michael Ondaajte's The English Patient, and Oscar Wilde's popular play The Importance of Being Earnest. Possibly his most famous performance, though, is his BAFTA-nominated turn as Mr. Darcy in the BBC miniseries Pride and Prejudice, based on Jane Austen's wonderful novel first published in 1813. 

It seems only logical, then, that Firth's next role would be in another book-to-film adaptation, this one based on Charles Richard Webb's first novel in over two decades. Most famous for writing The Graduate, the author's recently published New Cardiff was adapted for the screen by director/writer Mark Herman (Little Voice), and recommended to Firth by his friend - you guessed it - Nick Hornby, who wrote High Fidelity and About a Boy, in addition to the aforementioned Fever Pitch.
 
 












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Ratings 

LW "rating system"



 

*****
Superb/breathtaking/heartstopping/etc
*****
Excellent
*****
Very pleasing
*****
Still lovely, but . . .
*****
Bad hair day

RPP "rating system"



 
 
 
 
 
 
 


 

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Unless otherwise noted, info from HS presskit. 
Photos from The Times-on-Line, the HS presskit
 

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For its theatrical release, the movie will be renamed Hope Springs, and is a romantic comedy about a British artist named Colin (yes, Colin) whose fiancée (Minnie Driver) dumps him by sending him an invitation to her upcoming wedding…to someone else. Broken-hearted and despondent, he boards a plane for the United States and winds up in a tiny New England town called Hope. Though he is depressed, Colin soon finds an attractive shoulder to cry on when the innkeeper (Mary Steenburgen) introduces him to Mandy, a local nurse (Heather Graham). As he begins to find happiness again, his scheming ex-girlfriend shows up with reconciliation on her mind and a surprising story to tell.