Wild Child (film)

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Wild Child
Wild child poster.jpg
Promotional film poster
Directed by Nick Moore
Produced by Tim Bevan
Eric Fellner
Diana Phillips
Written by Lucy Dahl
Starring Emma Roberts
Alex Pettyfer
Natasha Richardson
Linzey Cocker
Aidan Quinn
Shirley Henderson
Music by Michael Price
Cinematography Chris Seager
Edited by Simon Cozens
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release dates August 15, 2008 (2008-08-15)
Running time 98 minutes
Country United States
United Kingdom
Language English
Budget $20 million
Box office $21,972,336

Wild Child is a 2008 British-French-American teen romantic comedy-drama film starring Emma Roberts, Alex Pettyfer and Natasha Richardson. Wild Child is Richardson's last film appearance.


Poppy Moore (Emma Roberts) is a seemingly spoiled teenager living in Malibu, California with her father Gerry (Aidan Quinn). In a wild prank with all her friends, she ruins/gives away her father's girlfriend's belongings. Her father returns home and angrily informs her that she is going to an English boarding school to straighten her out.

Arriving at Abbey Mount, Poppy argues with head girl Harriet (Georgia King) and does not get along with the girls in her room. She does not abide by the school rules and sneaks out after lights out. There is a fire drill before she can get back to the room and unknowingly meets the headmistress's son, Freddie (Alex Pettyfer). Later, Poppy and Harriet get into a fight and Freddie flirts with Poppy, making Harriet jealous.

Poppy eventually makes friends with roommate Kate (Kimberley Nixon) and the other girls in the room, who agree to help put together a plan for Poppy to be expelled. After a series of pranks don't get recognition from the headmistress Mrs. Kingsley (Natasha Richardson), the girls decide that the best way to get Poppy expelled is for her to snog Freddie, who is off limits to any of the girls at the school.

After attending a shopping trip - where Poppy changes her hair from blonde to its natural brunette - and a school disco with the girls in her room, they accept Poppy into their group. The morning after the disco, with the girls hungover, Poppy discovers her talent at lacrosse and is made captain of the school team. She goes on a date with Freddie and realizes that he is more than just a scapegoat. However, her emails were hacked and rewritten by Harriet, then given to the girls and Freddie. She loses her friendships and relationship.

Feeling alone and upset, Poppy plays with her lighter after a phone-call back to Malibu. After hearing footsteps, she accidentally starts a fire, but quickly puts it out. When she returns to her room, she sees the building in flames, supposing the flames were not originally extinguished. She and Kate get everyone out of the school, but Jennifer "Drippy" Logan (Juno Temple) is missing. Poppy remembers Drippy's cravings for ice-cream and runs into the building - forgetting her own safety - and rescues Drippy from the freezer.

Freddie finds Poppy's lighter after the fire brigade extinguish the building and returns it to her, still angry. After an assembly with Mrs. Kingsley, Poppy confesses that she started the fire. After confessing, she sits alone looking at past photos from the school. She notices one picture on the wall and gets upset when she realizes that her deceased mother attended the school as well. Freddie and Poppy apologise to one another and make-up. The honour court is called into session, and the girls realise that it was actually Harriet who wrote the emails. They sabotage the court and Harriet is found out to be the actual cause of the fire, and the cause of the footsteps Poppy heard earlier.

The film ends with Poppy and the lacrosse team in the finals. Poppy's father comes to visit and is taken back by how much she looks like her mother. They win the finals and Poppy celebrates with her father, who is proud of the person she has returned to.

The credits show her friends and Freddie in Malibu with her, declining a call from her Malibu friend, deciding her school friends were better anyway.



The boarding school in the film was filmed at Cobham Hall in Kent.[1]


Wild Child was released in the United Kingdom on August 15 taking fifth place at the box office with $2,196,366[clarification needed] from 359 cinemas with an average of $6,118[clarification needed]. In its fourth weekend, it dropped to twelfth place. As of November 2, 2008, Wild Child has made an unexpected $8,235,794[clarification needed]. In Australia, Wild Child was released September 18 taking fourth place with only 93 cinemas, making $315,114.[2] The following week, it made a 60% increase with $566,918[3] but still slipped to 6th place. On October 16, Wild Child fell to 11th. As of November 14, 2008, Wild Child's release in Australia has yet again surprised officials with its success making US$3,268,424[3] (A$4,236,579.[4] The film has been released in many other countries, proving popular in some: the Netherlands ($1,553,825[clarification needed]) and not so popular in others. As of January 4, 2008, the film had grossed $19,786,125[clarification needed] worldwide but was expected to reach $20 million[clarification needed] once released in bigger markets: France, Germany and Russia around December or January. Universal had planned a North American release in the summer of 2009, but canceled it and chose to release the movie directly to DVD.

Wild Child has a 42% "rotten" rating at Rotten Tomatoes, based on 21 reviews with the consensus that "More mild than wild. This tween comedy mess falls flat on its face due to poor characters, poor direction and poor jokes".[5] The Sun Online gave the film 2/5 saying "WILD? More like mild, unless you think short skirts and “horse face” put-downs are outrageous." Though Urban Cinefile gave Wild Child a much more favourable review stating "The film has an energy and honesty about it: it's lively, funny and smart and the characters are appealing."

DVD release[edit]

Wild Child was released on DVD in the United Kingdom on December 8, 2008. In Australia, it was released on January 15, 2009. In the United States, it was released directly to DVD on November 17, 2009.


The "Movie Soundtrack Party Album" is the soundtrack for the film of the same name. The soundtrack was available in the United Kingdom and Australia on August 18, 2008. In the United States, the soundtrack has not been released and it was expected for early 2009.

Track listing
  1. "Shut Up and Drive" - Rihanna
  2. "Let Me Think About It" - Ida Corr feat. DJ Fedde le Grand
  3. "About You Now" - Sugababes
  4. "Say It Right" - Nelly Furtado
  5. "I Know UR Girlfriend Hates Me" - Annie
  6. "If This Is Love" - The Saturdays
  7. "Heartbreaker" - will.i.am feat. Cheryl Cole
  8. "Sweet About Me" - Gabriella Cilmi
  9. "Can't Speak French" - Girls Aloud
  10. "Murder on the Dancefloor" - Sophie Ellis-Bextor
  11. "Ice Cream" - New Young Pony Club
  12. "Kiss with a Fist" - Florence and the Machine
  13. "Foundations" - Kate Nash
  14. "You Think I Don't Care" - Jack McManus
  15. "Come Around" - Timbaland ft. M.I.A.
  16. "Tambourine" - Eve
  17. "Real Wild Child" - Sarah Harding
  18. "Wild Child" - The Cat Eat Cat Dog Game
Other songs

The following songs appeared in the movie and in trailers, although they were not included on the soundtrack for the film.


External links[edit]