By Paul Pflug, Universal Pictures
Apr 26, 2005, 16:05

Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn Star in Latest From Director Sydney Pollack

Universal City, CA -- Universal Pictures'/Working Title Films' thriller "The Interpreter" -- the latest from Academy Award(R)-winning director Sydney Pollack and Oscar(R) winners Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn -- came in first at the box office over the past weekend, opening with an impressive three-day total of $22,822,455. With 2,758 playdates, "The Interpreter" took in a strong $8,275 per screen average. From Universal Pictures, "The Interpreter" -- a Working Title Production in association with Misher Films and Mirage Entertainment of A Sydney Pollack Film -- is produced by Working Title's Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and Kevin Misher.

Outside of North America, the film continued its hold on first place as the number one film worldwide, with an international cumulative box office to date of $25,742,647. The past weekend saw the film grossing $12.6 million at 2,378 dates in 35 territories, with "The Interpreter" in the top spot in most of the markets, including the U.K., Australia, Germany, China and Brazil.

"With a performance such as this, it's clear that 'The Interpreter' was appreciated by a marketplace seeking an intelligent, mature motion picture," said Nikki Rocco, president, distribution, Universal Pictures. "We chose a tailor-made date for the movie and thanks to the great feat accomplished by our marketing and distribution teams, this adult thriller reached a mass audience. We are very pleased with this opening."

From Academy Award(R) winner Sydney Pollack, the director behind some of the most compelling and provocative thrillers of the last two decades ("Three Days of The Condor," "Absence of Malice," "The Firm"), comes a fresh take on contemporary suspense: an intricate, knife's-edge drama that unfolds against our 21st Century world of international terror and inside the United Nations' hidden corridors of power. Academy Award(R) winners Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn star in "The Interpreter," the story of two opposite people who unexpectedly collide within a maze of mounting paranoia, personal secrets and explosive global events.

Shot on location in Manhattan and Southern Africa, "The Interpreter" is the first motion picture in history to receive inside access to the United Nations' headquarters (which is officially international territory) in New York.

The escalating events begin when African-born U.N. translator Silvia Broome (Kidman) alleges that she has overheard a death threat against an African head of state, spoken in a rare dialect few people other than Silvia can understand. With the words "The Teacher will never leave this room alive," in an instant, Silvia's life is turned upside down as she becomes a hunted target of the killers. Placed under the protection of federal agent Tobin Keller (Penn), Silvia's world only grows more nightmarish. As Keller digs deeper into his eyewitness' past and her secretive world of global connections, the more suspicious he becomes that she herself might involved in the conspiracy. With every step of the way, he finds more reasons to mistrust her.

Universal Pictures Presents A Working Title Production In Association with Misher Films and Mirage Enterprises of A Sydney Pollack Film: Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn in "The Interpreter," starring Catherine Keener. The casting is by Juliet Taylor & Ellen Lewis. The music is by James Newton Howard. The co-producers are Liza Chasin and Debra Hayward. The costume designer is Sarah Edwards. The editor is William Steinkamp, A.C.E.; the production designer, Jon Hutman; and the director of photography, Darius Khondji, A.S.C., A.F.C. The executive producers are Sydney Pollack, Anthony Minghella and G. Mac Brown. The film is produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Kevin Misher. The story is by Martin Stellman & Brian Ward; the screenplay is by Charles Randolph and Scott Frank and Steven Zaillian. "The Interpreter" is directed by Sydney Pollack. (C)2004 Universal Studios.

Universal Pictures is a division of Universal Studios ( Universal Studios is part of NBC Universal. NBC Universal is one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. Formed in May 2004 through the combining of NBC and Vivendi Universal Entertainment, NBC Universal owns and operates the No. 1 television network, the fastest-growing Spanish-language network, a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, and world-renowned theme parks. NBC Universal is 80%-owned by General Electric, with 20% controlled by Vivendi Universal.


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