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Cheaper by the Dozen

Promotional poster
Directed by Shawn Levy
Produced by Michael Barnathan
Robert Simonds
Written by Craig Titley
Sam Harper
Joel Cohen
Alec Sokolow
Starring Steve Martin
Bonnie Hunt
Hilary Duff
Piper Perabo
Tom Welling
Alyson Stoner
Ashton Kutcher
Music by Christophe Beck
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date(s) December 25, 2003 (2003-12-25)
Running time 98 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $40 million
Gross revenue $190,212,113
Followed by Cheaper by the Dozen 2

Cheaper by the Dozen is a 2003 American comedy film about a family with twelve children (seven boys and five girls). The film takes its title from the 1948 biography of Frank Bunker Gilbreth and Lillian Moller Gilbreth and their twelve children, but other than the title and the concept of a family with twelve children, the film bears no resemblance to the book. The film was directed by Shawn Levy, who also helped produce the sequel Cheaper by the Dozen 2. It was released on Thursday, December 25, 2003 by 20th Century Fox.



The Baker family is a happy and large family with 12 children who reside in Midland, Indiana. One day Tom Baker gets an offer for his dream job: Become the coach of the Stallions. Tom returns home with the new job and promotion in the urban, near-north Chicago suburb of Evanston, Illinois with education advantages and a new vehicle; although Kate approves, his children overhear and object to his proposed actions in a family conference. Even though the children vote about what they would rather do, Tom decides to accept the job and move to the city, many miles away from their current countryside home.

One day, aspiring author Kate receives a call, telling her that her new book is perfect and she should go on a promotion tour, so she makes the decision to leave, and leaves her husband alone with the 12 children. Problems soon erupt, but everything comes to a halt when, after being grounded, the Baker kids sneak out and wreck their friend's birthday party. (Well, not just all the kids, but one of the boys grab a present from the middle causing the snake to come out of the box.) Kate ends the book tour and returns home, angry at Tom for not telling her that he could not handle it.

The state of the family's condition seriously comes to light after Kate discovers a disturbing note on Mark's bed and Mark has gone missing. The family begins searching, but after calling the police, Tom realizes that Mark's favorite place has always been the Midland house, and frantically makes his way to the railway station. He soon finds Mark, on a train heading towards Midland. They ride the train together to Midland and are greeted by the family at the railway station the next morning. They apologize to each other and Tom decides to quit his football career to find a job which would provide more time for him to spend with his family. While they return to the city and begin to adjust to their new life, Kate's book is published and stays at number one on the bestseller's list for 12 months.

Cast and crew

  • Steve Martin as Tom Baker, the father of the twelve children and husband of Kate Baker
  • Bonnie Hunt as Kate Baker, the mother of the twelve children and wife of Tom Baker
  • Piper Perabo as Nora Baker, the oldest child and first daughter of the Bakers. Nora is frequently in love with Hank and while she's away, her younger siblings begin to play.
  • Tom Welling as Charlie Baker, the second oldest child and first son of the Bakers
  • Hilary Duff as Lorraine Baker, the third child and second daughter. Lorraine loves putting on makeup.
  • Kevin G. Schmidt as Henry Baker, the fourth child and second son. In some of the moments, Henry is a little capable in playing the clarinet.
  • Alyson Stoner as Sarah Baker, the fifth child and middle daughter. Sarah intends to be the leader of the siblings with her plans. She has a dark gift for soaking Hank's underwear in meat. As she tells her mom to come home instantly on the phone, her siblings fight over it causing it to break making her angry. She fancies pigtails as her favorite hairstyle.
  • Jacob Smith as Jake Baker, the sixth child and third son.
  • Forrest Landis as Mark "FedEx" Baker, the seventh child and middle son. This boy is very interested in animals especially frogs.
  • Morgan York and Liliana Mumy as Kim and Jessica Baker, twin girls, the eighth and ninth child and youngest two daughters
  • Blake Woodruff as Mike Baker, the tenth child and fifth son
  • Shane Kinsman and Brent Kinsman as Kyle and Nigel Baker, twin boys, the eleventh and twelfth child and youngest two sons
  • Ashton Kutcher as Hank, Nora's boyfriend. He is the victim of Sarah's plot to soak his underwear in meat. He hates kids, even Nora's siblings probably due to them having once set his pants on fire.
  • Paula Marshall as Tina Shenk, Dylan's mom who thinks that the Baker kids will land on milk cartons.
  • Steven Anthony Lawrence as Dylan Shenk, Tina's son. Dylan is the boy that Tom crashes on with injury when his birthday party's foiled.
  • Richard Jenkins as Shake McGuire, Tom Baker's superior


Cheaper By The Dozen has been nominated and won several awards. The following is a list of these:

Result Type of award Category Year
Nominated Teen Choice Award Choice movie blush (Hilary Duff) , Choice breakout movie star (male) (Tom Welling), Choice movie liplock 2004
Won Young artist award Best Ensemble Cast 2004
Nominated Young artist award Best performance in feature film (Alyson Stoner and Forrest Landis) 2004[1]

Critical reception of the film was generally mixed to negative, only receiving a score of 23% on Rotten Tomatoes. At the U.S. box office, the film opened at #2 raking in $27,557,647 USD in its first opening weekend and got stuck at the runner up position the following week being held off the top spot by The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.


External links



Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Cheaper by the Dozen is a 2003 American comedy film starring Steve Martin about a family with twelve children. The story is unrelated to the book of the same title.

Directed by Shawn Levy, Written by Craig Titley, Sam Harper, Joel Cohen, & Alec Sokolow


  • You soaked his underwear in meat. That is so wrong. Funny, but wrong.


Tom: You were checking me out, weren't you?
Kate: Yes, I was. You got a problem with that?
Tom: Twelve kids later and we still got the heat!
Kate: Woo!

Kate: Sarah, your suspension from lacrosse for excessive force has been lifted, so you're going today.
Sarah: Yeah!
Kate: Henry, you have band practice, all right? I cleaned your clarinet. Please don't play with your food in your mouth again. Kim and Jessica, your teacher called and has made a request that you do not correct her in front of the class. Mike, you have show-and-tell today. And please, honey, remember that body parts do not count. Kyle and Nigel, you have a dentist appointment at 3:00, so you're going to work with Dad.
Nigel and Kyle: Yeah! [yell]
Tom: [yells]

Tina Shenk: Is Jake your only child?
Kate: Oh, no. We have 12.
Tom: I couldn't keep her off me.

Charlie: Did I mention I don't like you very much?
Tom: Yeah, you mentioned that.
Charlie: Then I'm good.

Hank: It's getting so as I can hardly go out in public any more. I mean, really, between the autograph hounds and the paparazzi...
Kate: Autographs and everything? I mean, just the one commercial, and you have paparazzi?
Hank: Yeah. I've never actually seen them, but, you know, they hide in the bush and they get their shot.

Mark: Have you seen my frog, Dad?
Tom: Sorry, Charlie... er, Nigel... Kyle.
Mark: It's Mark.
Tom: I knew that.

Nora: Oh, honey, they're just welcoming you into the family.
Hank: They just set me on fire.
Nora: Just your pants.
Hank: Sure, last time, it was my pants, but what if next time it's my face? This is how I get the jobs!

External links


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