Is Anybody There?

Is Anybody There? is a 2008 British drama film starring Michael Caine and directed by John Crowley. It was written by Peter Harness and produced by David Heyman, Marc Turtletaub and Peter Saraf. The film premiered at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival under its original title Is There Anybody There? It garnered a nomination from the London Film Critics' Circle for Bill Milner as the Young British Performer of the Year.

Is Anybody There?
Is anybody there poster.jpg
United Kingdom theatrical poster
Directed byJohn Crowley
Produced byDavid Heyman
Written byPeter Harness
StarringMichael Caine
David Morrissey
Anne-Marie Duff
Bill Milner
Music byJoby Talbot
CinematographyRob Hardy
Edited byTrevor Waite
Distributed byOptimum Releasing
Release date
  • 7 September 2008 (2008-09-07) (TIFF)
  • 1 May 2009 (2009-05-01) (UK)
Running time
95 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box office$3,252,671


In 1987 Edward (Bill Milner) is a ten-year-old boy who lives at an old people's home run by his parents (David Morrissey and Anne-Marie Duff). Surrounded by death and dying, he becomes obsessed with finding evidence for the afterlife, often using a tape recorder to capture his "encounters". He is helped in his search by Clarence (Michael Caine), an elderly ex-magician in the early stages of dementia who has recently entered the home. The film follows their quest and their friendship, which ultimately allows both Edward and Clarence to come to terms with their respective situations.



Shot on location in Hastings and Chalfont St Giles.[1]Folkestone Central railway station doubled as a Yorkshire station as Clarence and Edward take a trip on the train for a day out. The sea-shelter on Princes Parade in Hythe was used as a bus shelter in Hull. St Peter's Church of England Primary school in Folkestone was used as Edward's school in the film.[2]

The ethereal music throughout the film was performed by David Coulter on a musical saw.


The film premiered at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival under the title Is There Anybody There?[3] It was released in the United States on 17 April 2009 and in the United Kingdom on 1 May 2009.

Review site Rotten Tomatoes gives the film an overall score of 66%, with an average critic rating of 6.2/10. (July 2018)


  1. ^ Pollard, Chris (25 October 2007). "Michael Caine visits Hastings". Hastings & St Leonards Observer.
  2. ^ "Is Anybody There? (2009)". Kent Film Office. 4 February 2009.
  3. ^ "TIFF'08 – Is There Anybody There?". Toronto International Film Festival. Archived from the original on 5 January 2009. Retrieved 21 March 2009.

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