One Day (2011 film)

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One Day[1]
One Day Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Lone Scherfig
Produced by Nina Jacobson
Written by David Nicholls
Starring Anne Hathaway
Jim Sturgess
Tom Mison
Jodie Whittaker
Rafe Spall
Joséphine de La Baume
Patricia Clarkson
Music by Rachel Portman
Cinematography Benoît Delhomme[2]
Editing by Barney Pilling[2]
Studio Random House Films
Film4 Productions
Color Force
Distributed by Focus Features
Release dates
  • 19 August 2011 (2011-08-19)
Running time 108 minutes
Country United States
United Kingdom
Language English
Budget $15 million[3]
Box office $56,706,628[4]

One Day is a film directed by Lone Scherfig. It was adapted by David Nicholls from his 2009 novel of the same name. It stars Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess. Focus Features released the film theatrically in August 2011.[2]


Emma Morley (Anne Hathaway) and Dexter Mayhew (Jim Sturgess) meet after their graduation from the University of Edinburgh on 15 July 1988. They spend the night together but agree to be friends. The film reconnects with Emma and/or Dexter on 15 July (one day) over the next 23 years.

Then one year later, Emma is working as a waitress in a Mexican restaurant in London and Dexter is travelling the world, drinking and promiscuously going through several girlfriends. Eventually Dexter becomes a wealthy and highly successful television presenter on a raucous late-night show. Although meeting once in a while throughout the years, Emma meets Ian (Rafe Spall), a comedian whom she doesn't find funny but the two start dating anyway during which time Emma qualifies to be and becomes a school teacher.

Dexter's once-glamorous mother (Patricia Clarkson), now diagnosed with cancer, is unimpressed with the nature of his TV show. Upon a visit to see his terminally sick mother at the family home whilst still under the influence from heavy partying the previous night and drinking alot throughout his visit, his father (Ken Stott), disappointed with him for his obvious drink and drug use tells Dexter he will ban him from the family house if he ever visits his mother in the same intoxicated state again. Meanwhile Emma is growing steadily more irritated with Ian, so she and Dexter organize a meeting over dinner. Dexter gets high from cocaine, insults Emma, flirts with a blonde down the hall and generally ignores her most of the time. After making a public scene Emma storms off and outside she decides that they must break off their friendship entirely due to them out-growing each other, she tells hims that she does love him but no longer likes him, before she runs off crying into the night.

A few years later, Emma's former university room mate and Dexter's old friend gets married and both are invited to the wedding. There Emma discovers that Dexter now has a new fiancée, Sylvie (Romola Garai), and is on the way to becoming a father. She tries to hide the fact that she is upset and they share a very brief but meaningful kiss. Dexter later learns that Sylvie is actually having an affair with an old friend of his and they divorce.

Emma and Ian split up and she becomes a published author. Emma moves to Paris, where Dexter visits on 15 July 2003, in the hope that they will get together again. By this time, despite another one-night-stand after his marriage broke down, Emma now has a new boyfriend (Sébastien Dupuis), who plays piano in a jazz band. Smitten and taken aback by this knowledge, Dexter decides to leave. Emma, having second thoughts, chases after him, tells him that he must never hurt, lie to or cheat on her resulting a passionate kiss and finally the start of a full relationship together.

Over the next few years, they become engaged and marry, Dexter runs his own cafe in England which proves to be very lucrative, and they start trying to have their own baby. They're unsuccessful and frustrated. While riding her bike out of a blind alley on 15 July 2006, Emma is hit by a truck and dies.

Dexter becomes inconsolable and self destructive, becoming particularly desolate on each 15 July. Over the years he gets support from his ex-wife Sylvie, their daughter Jasmine, his father, and even from Emma's old boyfriend, Ian.

Dexter remembers details of 15 July 1988 and their original meeting in Arthur's Seat, while returning there on 15 July 2011 with his daughter, Jasmine.



The film is a co-production between Random House Films and Focus Features. Film4 Productions is co-financing.[2]

Actress Anne Hathaway said she was clandestinely given the script as the film was set in the United Kingdom and director Scherfig wasn't looking for any American actresses for the part. Hathaway flew to London for a meeting with Scherfig to explain why she should get the part. Hathaway later said it was "the worst meeting of my life... I was just inarticulate", but on leaving Hathaway wrote out a list of songs for Scherfig to listen to, saying, "I clearly didn't communicate to you what I needed to today. But I think these songs can do it for me." Scherfig did listen to them, which led to Hathaway getting the part.[5]

Principal photography commenced in July 2010. Filming took place on location in Scotland, England and France.[2] The production filmed in Edinburgh, the city where Dexter and Emma first meet, in August 2010.[6] Various landmark locations, including Arthur's Seat, were used.[7] Production then moved to London. Parliament Hill Lido in north London was used for scenes in which Emma, of varying ages, swims.[8] Filming took place inside a house in Granville Road in Stroud Green for scenes involving Jim Sturgess and Romola Garai.[9] Scenes in the shop and cafe were filmed at Leila's shop and cafe on Arnold Circus, close to Brick Lane in the East End.[10] UK railway Station filming took place at Ridgmont Station on the Bedford to Bletchley Marston Vale Line.[11] Filming in France took place in Dinard, a town close by to St. Malo, in the Brittany region. A seaside club was turned into the Café Paradis, designed to ape Greek themes.

Critical reception[edit]

The film is ranked as "rotten" on Rotten Tomatoes with a 36% positive approval rating (only 51 out of 140 critics gave positive reviews), with the consensus stating "Despite some fresh narrative twists, One Day lacks the emotion, depth, or insight of its bestselling source material".[12] CinemaScore polls reported that the average grade moviegoers gave the film was a "B-minus" on an A+ to F scale.[13]

Betsey Sharkey of the Los Angeles Times called it a "heartbreaking disappointment of a film"[14] while Peter Howell of the Toronto Star said "Long before the credits roll, you may find yourself wishing your life could flash before your eyes, to end the monotony of this relentless turning of calendar pages."[15] In contrast, Roger Ebert said "One Day has style, freshness, and witty bantering dialogue."[16] Anne Hathaway's Yorkshire accent in the role of Emma has been widely regarded as subpar. Newspaper columnist Suzanne Moore, reviewing the film on BBC Radio 4's Front Row, said the accents were "all over the shop". Moore went on to say, "Sometimes she's from Scotland, sometimes she's from New York, you just can't tell".[17]


  1. ^ One Day | A Focus Features Film | Movie Overview
  2. ^ a b c d e "One Day, starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess, begins production" (Press release). Focus Features. 15 July 2010. Archived from the original on 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  3. ^ Kaufman, Amy (18 August 2011). "Movie Projector: 'Conan' may not conquer 'The Help'". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. Retrieved 19 August 2011. 
  4. ^ "One Day (2011)". Box Office Mojo. 2011-08-02. Retrieved 2011-09-05. 
  5. ^ Slotek, Jim (2011-08-14). "'One Day' with Hathaway". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 14 August 2011. 
  6. ^ "Anne Hathaway Spends 'One Day' in Scotland". OK!. 2 August 2010. Archived from the original on 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  7. ^ "Author Nicholls set for Edinburgh Book Festival". 19 August 2010. Archived from the original on 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  8. ^ Akbar, Arifa (6 August 2010). "The Diary: Anne Hathaway; Edinburgh Fringe Festival; Jonathan Miller; Jane Austen; Cineroleum". The Independent. Archived from the original on 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  9. ^ "Anne Hathaway movie crew takes over house". Tottenham, Wood Green and Edmonton Journal (Archant). 18 August 2010. Archived from the original on 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  10. ^ Leila's, Calvert Avenue, London | Shopping/Food and Drink Shops in |
  11. ^
  12. ^ "One Day (2011)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster, Inc. Retrieved 29 August 2013. 
  13. ^ Finke, Nikki (21 August 2011). "'Conan', 'Fright Night', 'Spy Kids 4D' Flatline; 'The Help' Needs No Help At #1, 'Apes' #2". Retrieved 31 August 2011. 
  14. ^ Sharkey, Betsey (2011-08-19). "'One Day' doesn't live up to its promise: movie review". Los Angeles Times (Tribune Co). ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 
  15. ^ Howell, Peter (2011-08-18). "One Day: Beware the ides of July". Toronto Star. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 
  16. ^ Ebert, Roger (2011-08-17). "One Day". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 
  17. ^

External links[edit]