Gone Girl

Gone Girl Information

Gone Girl is a 2014 American thriller film directed by David Fincher and adapted by Gillian Flynn from her 2012 novel of the same name. It stars Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, and Carrie Coon.

Set in the Midwestern United States, the story begins as a mystery about a man whose wife has gone missing and the suspicions pointing to him soon after. It examines dishonesty, the media, the economy's effects on marriage, and the way people perceive one another.

The film had its world premiere on opening night of the 52nd New York Film Festival on September 26, 2014. It had its nationwide theatrical release on October 3 and has been received well both critically and commercially.


The day of his fifth wedding anniversary, Nick Dunne returns home to find that his wife Amy is missing. Her disappearance receives heavy press coverage, as Amy was the inspiration for her parents' popular Amazing Amy children's books. Suspicions arise that Nick murdered her, and his awkward behavior is interpreted by the media as characteristic of a sociopath.

Flashbacks reveal that Nick and Amy's marriage has disintegrated; both lost their jobs in the recession and moved from New York City to Missouri. Nick has become lazy, distant, and unfaithful. Detective Rhonda Boney uncovers evidence of financial troubles and domestic disputes, a report indicating that Amy wanted to purchase a gun, and poorly concealed evidence of a struggle. She also finds a medical report indicating that Amy is pregnant, which Nick denies knowledge of.

Through clues left for Nick by Amy, it is revealed that Amy planned to frame Nick for her murder by ingratiating herself into local life, faking her pregnancy, and fabricating a diary describing her fear of her husband. She has changed her appearance and is hiding in a distant campground, believing Nick will be convicted and executed for her murder.

Nick hires Tanner Bolt, a defense attorney who specializes in defending husbands accused of killing their wives, to prove his innocence. Nick meets Amy's ex-boyfriend Tommy O'Hara, who claims Amy framed him for rape. He also approaches another ex-boyfriend, the wealthy Desi Collings - against whom Amy previously filed a restraining order - but Desi refuses to reveal any details.

When Amy's money is stolen, she calls Desi and convinces him that she ran away from Nick, fearing for her life. He agrees to hide her in his lake house, which is equipped with surveillance cameras. Nick convinces his twin sister, Margo, of his innocence. After Nick's student and mistress reveals their affair at a press conference, Nick appears on a talk show to apologize for his failures as a husband in the hope of luring Amy, swearing he is not a murderer. His performance improves his public image and rekindles Amy's feelings for him. She uses the lake house's cameras to her advantage, making it appear as though Desi kidnapped and abused her. She seduces and kills Desi during sex, then returns home covered in blood, naming Desi as her captor and rapist, clearing Nick of suspicion.

Amy tells Nick the truth, saying that the man she watched pleading for her return was the man she wants him to become again. Nick shares this with Boney, Bolt and Margo, but has no way to prove Amy's guilt. Nick intends to leave Amy and expose her lies, but Amy reveals that she is pregnant, having used Nick's sperm stored at a fertility clinic. Nick doubts the child is his and says he will undertake a paternity test.

Nick reacts violently to Amy's insistence that they remain married, but feels responsible for the child. Despite Margo's objections, he reluctantly decides to stay with Amy. They announce on television that they are expecting a baby.


  • Ben Affleck as Nick Dunne
  • Rosamund Pike as Amy Elliott-Dunne, Nick's missing wife
  • Neil Patrick Harris as Desi Collings, Amy's ex-boyfriend
  • Tyler Perry as Tanner Bolt, Nick's attorney
  • Carrie Coon as Margo "Go" Dunne, Nick's twin sister
  • Kim Dickens as Detective Rhonda Boney
  • Patrick Fugit as Officer James Gilpin
  • Casey Wilson as Noelle Hawthorne, Nick and Amy's neighbor
  • Missi Pyle as Ellen Abbott, a cable TV host
  • Sela Ward as Sharon Schieber, a network TV host
  • Emily Ratajkowski as Andie Fitzgerald, Nick's mistress and student
  • Kathleen Rose Perkins as Shawna Kelly, a search volunteer
  • Lisa Banes as Marybeth Elliott, Amy's mother
  • David Clennon as Rand Elliott, Amy's father
  • Scoot McNairy as Tommy O'Hara, a former classmate of Amy's
  • Boyd Holbrook and Lola Kirke as Jeff and Greta, a couple Amy meets
  • Cyd Strittmatter as Maureen Dunne, Nick and Margo's mother
  • Leonard Kelly-Young as Bill Dunne, Nick and Margo's father



Gone Girl is a film adaptation of Flynn's 2012 novel of the same name. One of the film's producers, Leslie Dixon, read the manuscript of the novel in 2011 and brought it to the attention of Reese Witherspoon in December of that year. Witherspoon and Dixon then collaborated with Bruna Papandrea to further develop the manuscript"?with Flynn's film agent, Shari Smiley, they met with film studios in early 2012.

Following the release of the novel in June 2012, the 20th Century Fox studio optioned the book in a northern autumn deal with Flynn, in which the author negotiated that she would be responsible for the first draft of the screenplay. By around October 2012, Flynn was engaged in the production of the first draft while she was also involved in the promotional tour for her novel. A first-time screenwriter at the time, Flynn later admitted: "I certainly felt at sea a lot of times, kind of finding my way through."

Flynn submitted her first draft screenplay to the Fox studio in December 2012, before Fincher was selected as the director for the project. However, Fincher had already expressed interest in the project and, after he completed Flynn's first draft, a meeting was scheduled between the director and author within days. Typically, authors are removed from film adaptations following the first draft and an experienced screenwriter takes over; but, on this occasion, Fincher agreed to work with Flynn for the entire project. Flynn later explained: "... he [Fincher] responded to the first draft and we have kind of similar sensibilities. We liked the same things about the book, and we wanted the same thing out of the movie."

As further preparation, Flynn studied screenplay books and also met with Steve Kloves, who wrote the screenplays for the Harry Potter series. Fincher also provided guidance and advised the author: "We don't have the ability to gift the audience with the characters thoughts, so tell me how they're behaving." During the production of the final screenplay, Fincher and Flynn engaged in an intensive back-and-forth working relationship: Flynn sent Fincher "big swaths" of writing, which he then reviewed, and Fincher would then discuss the swaths with Flynn by telephone. Eventually, some scenes were rewritten "a dozen times," while other scenes were unaltered.

Following the release of the film, Flynn spoke of an overwhelming adaptation process, in which she tackled a 500-page book with an intricate plot; however, she explained that her experience working for a magazine meant that she "wasn"?t ever precious about cutting." As a consequence of the distillation process, most of the parental storylines were lost, so the mother of the character of Desi Collings does not appear in the film, and it was not possible to include flashbacks of Nick Dunne's dead mother.

In terms of the film's ending, Flynn revealed that she experimented with a "lot of iterations". One of the aspects that she was certain of was the presence of the media, which she described as the "third player," alongside Nick and Amy. In Flynn's words: "Once we got to the ending, I wanted it to wrap up quickly. I didn't want 8 million more loop-de-loops ... I had no problem tossing stuff out and trying to figure out the best way to get there."

Flynn enjoyed the experience of making the film, and she expressed appreciation for Fincher's involvement, as he "really liked the book and didn"?t want to turn it into something other than what it already was," and he also reassured her, even when she second-guessed herself. Fincher described Flynn's screenwriting work as "very smart," "crafty" and "extremely articulate".


On September 11, 2013, the Gone Girl film crew began filming establishing shots. Principal photography began on September 15 in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, U.S., and was scheduled to last about five weeks. Some scenes were also filmed in Los Angeles, U.S.

According to producer Cen Chaffin, Fincher took, on average, as many as 50 takes for each scene, while Flynn has said that, while Fincher is a visual director, he is meticulous about veracity"?Fincher refused to include a scene in which Amy collects her own blood, as he thought it was unbelievable.

Fincher later called Affleck "extremely bright" in regard to the manner in which he drew on his own experience with the media for the character of Nick Dunne. Fincher explained that Affleck "has a great sense of humor and great wit about what this situation is and how frustrating it is." Fincher described the behavior of the media in the film as "tragedy vampirism," but clarified that "The New York Times and NPR are not in the flowerbeds of the Dunne house."


Template:Main article On January 21, 2014, Trent Reznor announced that he and Atticus Ross would provide the score, marking their third collaboration with Fincher, following The Social Network and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Fincher was inspired by music he heard while at an appointment with a chiropractor and tasked Reznor with creating the musical equivalent of an insincere facade. Reznor explained Fincher's request in an interview:

David [Fincher] was at the chiropractor and heard this music that was inauthentically trying to make him feel OK, and that became a perfect metaphor for this film "? The challenge was, simply, what is the musical equivalent of the same sort of faade of comfort and a feeling of insincerity that that music represented? [My primary aim was] to instill doubt [and] remind you that things aren"?t always what they seem to be.
The overall score is a combination of soothing sounds with staccato electronic noises, resulting in an unnerving, anxiety invoking quality. NPR writer Andy Beta concludes: "Reznor and Ross relish being at their most beauteous, knowing that it'll make the brutal moments of Gone Girl all the more harrowing."

Richard Butler of The Psychedelic Furs sang a cover version of the song "She," which was used in the film's teaser trailer. The soundtrack album was released on the Columbia label on September 30, 2014.


Box office

Gone Girl opened the 52nd New York Film Festival, receiving high profile press coverage and early positive reviews. ComingSoon.net predicted an opening weekend box office take of US$30-35 million, possibly higher, and that the film would be a $100 million hit. Fandango reported that Gone Girl accounted for 66% of its advanced sales and outpaced the sales for Annabelle (18%), and could land at number one at the box office during its opening weekend.

North America
The film was released on October 3, 2014 in North America in 3,014 theaters and earned $13,179,535 on its opening day (including the $1.3 million it earned from Thursday late-night showings). In its opening weekend, the film earned $37,513,109 ($12,446 per theater) from 3,014 theaters and debuted at number one at the North American box office after a neck-and-neck competition with the Warner Bros./New Line Cinema horror film Annabelle ($37,134,255). Commenting about the heat of the competition between Gone Girl and Annabelle, Phil Contrino, Vice President and chief analyst at BoxOffice.com said, "we were due for some breakout performances,"? and added, "The market has the ability to expand if there are two quality films in it, even if both are R-rated thrillers."? The film is the biggest debut of Fincher"?s, surpassing Panic Room's gross ($30 million). It is also the third biggest opening weekend for Affleck, behind Pearl Harbor ($59.1 million) and Daredevil ($40.3 million) and Rosamund Pike"?s second biggest opening behind Die Another Day ($47 million). The film is the tenth biggest October debut overall. The film played 60% female and 75% over-25 years old.

In its second weekend, the film earned $26.8 million, remaining in first place ahead of Dracula Untold ($23.5 million) and bringing its two week total to $78.3 million. In its third weekend the film earned $17.8 million and was pushed back to number two at the box office after staying at number one for two consecutive weeks behind newly released Fury ($23.5 million). In its fourth weekend, the film earned $11.1 million for a four week domestic total of $124.09 million.

Other territories
Gone Girl earned $24.6 million from 5,270 screens in 39 international markets on its opening weekend, higher than expected. The highest debut came from the United Kingdom ($6.9 million from 950 screens), Australia ($4.6 million from 350 screens), Russia ($2.95 million from 1,049 screens), and Germany ($2.85 million from 511 screens). In its second weekend, the film was released in 14 additional markets and earned $26.8 million from 6,391 screens in 52 markets for a two weekend international total gross of $63.16 million. The highest debut from the newly released market came from France ($3.65 million from 463 screens) and Spain ($1.65 million from 517 screens). Gone Girl opened in Spain at number two behind Sony"?s local film Torrente 5. In its third weekend, Gone Girl earned $20.23 million from 5,040 screens in 57 markets for a three week total of $97.4 million. The film showed a decrease in its fourth weekend earning $18.4 million. The film went number one in South Korea ($3.8 million) and Thailand ($414,000 from 170 screens) respectively. The film added another $15.3 million in its fifth weekend for an international total of $142.9 million. The film opened in India and earned $611,000 from 155 screens.

Critical response

Gone Girl received generally positive reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film an approval rating of 88%, based on 248 reviews, with a rating average of 8 out of 10. The site's consensus states: "Dark, intelligent, and stylish to a fault, Gone Girl plays to director David Fincher's strengths while bringing the best out of stars Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike." Metacritic gave the film a score of 79 out of 100, based on 49 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore gave the film a B grade. The Vulture website's critics praised the direction, script, editing, score, visual style, and performances, particularly from Pike, Affleck, Tyler Perry, Carrie Coon, and Missi Pyle.

Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times wrote: "Superbly cast from the two at the top to the smallest speaking parts, impeccably directed by Fincher and crafted by his regular team to within an inch of its life, Gone Girl shows the remarkable things that can happen when filmmaker and material are this well matched." The Economist called the film a "brilliantly glacial adaptation ... This may not be the perfect film"?but it is a perfect adaptation."

Joshua Rothman wrote in The New Yorker on October 8, 2014 that he enjoyed the film "in all its abstract, intellectual, postmodern glory" and that, similar to other post-modern narratives, the film adaptation is "decisively unreal ... [the] heroes and villains in Fincher"?s Gone Girl aren"?t people but stories." Rothman, who draws parallels between Gone Girl and Fincher's 1999 adaptation Fight Club, decides that the film is ultimately a farce and has resonated with filmgoers because it expresses "a creepy, confused, and troubling part of us".

Anthony Lane of The New Yorker wrote: "At first blush, Gone Girl is natural Fincherland ... so why doesn't the movie claw us as The Social Network did? Who could have predicted that a film about murder, betrayal, and deception would be less exciting than a film about a website?" Slant's Ed Gonzalez awarded the film two out of five stars, concluding:

Fincher and Flynn should have gone further and truly grappled with the real horror that, by giving his relationship with Amy another chance, Nick is indulging in one of the great myths of feminism: that it emasculates men. Rather than undermine that noxiousness, Fincher enshrouds it in funereal brushstrokes that cast his Gone Girl as a fashionable tumbling into an abyss of willful denial.

Gender issues

In a 2013 interview with Time Out writer Novid Parsi, who described the ending of the novel as "polarizing," Flynn explained that she wanted the Gone Girl novel to counter the notion that women are "naturally good" and show that women are "just as violently minded as men are." In a November 2014 interview, Flynn admitted that the critical gender-related response did affect her: "I had about 24 hours where I hovered under my covers and was like: 'I killed feminism. Why did I do that? Rats. I did not mean to do that.' And then I very quickly kind of felt comfortable with what I had written."

In an October 3, 2014, blog post for Ms. Magazine, Natalie Wilson argues that by not addressing Amy's social privilege"?whereby she possesses the "necessary funds, skills, know-how and spare time" to stage a disappearance"?Gone Girl is the "crystallization of a thousand misogynist myths and fears about female behavior." Alyssa Rosenberg wrote in the Washington Post on October 3, 2014, that, although she was initially "unconvinced" by the book, her fascination with the novel and film was partly due to her conclusion that "Amy Elliot Dunne is the only fictional character I can think of who might be accurately described as simultaneously misogynist and misandrist."

In an October 6, 2014, article titled "Gone Girl's Biggest Villain Is Marriage Itself", Jezebel's Jessica Coen wrote: "Movie Amy pales in comparison to the vivid character we meet in the book. Strip away Book Amy"?s complexities and you"?re left with little more than 'crazy fucking bitch.' That makes her no less captivating, but it does make the film feel a lot more misogynistic than the novel. Coen concedes that this did not negate her enjoyment of the film, "as we ladies are well accustomed to these injustices." Time's Eliana Dockterman wrote on the same date that Gone Girl is both "a sexist portrayal of a crazy woman" and a "feminist manifesto," and that this duality makes the film interesting.

Writing in The Guardian on October 6, 2014, Joan Smith criticized what she saw as the film's "recycling of rape myths", citing research released in 2013 which found that false allegations of rape in the UK were extremely rare. She wrote: "The characters live in a parallel universe where the immediate reaction to a woman who says she"?s been assaulted is one of chivalrous concern. Tell that to all the victims, here and in the US, who have had their claims dismissed by sceptical police officers." Writing for the Guardian on the following day, Emine Saner wrote that Smith's argument "wouldn't carry as much weight were this film set against a vastly wider range of women"?s stories, and characters in mainstream culture," but concluded with Dockterman's plea for the portrayal of "all sorts of women in our novels".

Coining the term 'Gone Girl' as a cultural moniker, Ken Choy compares "Gone Girls" to Mayella Ewell and Susan Smith, saying they are "the artillery for anti-feminists; their existence provides a foundation for true victims to be examined with a doubtful eye. Because, as the arena is staged, if there"?s one liar, they"?re all liars." As for the effects on men as well, he ponders, "What does someone have to do to inoculate against Gone Girls? Even with today"?s technology and video cameras in the palm of every hand, it"?s the ability to persuade someone that often supersedes video documentation."

Tim Kroenert, of the Australian Eureka Street website, wrote on October 8, 2014, that the film's predominant focus upon Nick's perspective "serves to obfuscate Amy's motives (though it is possible that she is simply a sociopath), and to amplify her personification of ... anti-women myths"; however, Kroenert concludes that Gone Girl is "a compelling rumination on the impossibility of knowing the mind of another, even within that ostensibly most intimate of relationships, marriage."

Awards and accolades

Award Date of Ceremony Category Recipient(s) and nominee(s) Result
Grammy Awards February 8, 2015 Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
Hollywood Film Awards November 14, 2014 Best Film
Screenwriter Award Gillian Flynn
Hollywood Music in Media Awards November 04, 2014 Best Original Score - Feature Film Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
National Board of Review Awards December 2, 2015 Top Ten Films of Year
Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards January 3, 2015 Breathrough Performance Award Rosamund Pike
Satellite Awards February 15, 2015 Best Film
Best Director David Fincher
Best Actress Rosamund Pike
Best Adapted Screenplay Gillian Flynn
Best Cinematography Jeff Cronenweth
Best Original Score Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
Best Sound Ren Klyce and Steve Cantamessa
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Awards December 8, 2014 Best Film
Best Director David Fincher
Best Actress Rosamund Pike
Best Adapted Screenplay Gillian Flynn
Best Editing Kirk Baxter
Original Score Trent Reznor e Atticus Ross

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