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Never Let Me Go
Directed by Mark Romanek
Produced by Allon Reich
Alex Garland
Richard Hewitt
Andrew Macdonald
Mark Romanek
Tessa Ross
Written by Alex Garland
Kazuo Ishiguro (novel)
Starring Keira Knightley
Carey Mulligan
Andrew Garfield
Sally Hawkins
Charlotte Rampling
Cinematography Adam Kimmel
Distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures
Release date(s) November, 2010
Country United Kingdom Great Britain
Language English

Never Let Me Go is a 2010 sci-fi, drama, thriller film based on a novel of same name written by Kazuo Ishiguro. It is directed by Mark Romanek and stars Academy Award nominee Keira Knightley, Golden Globe winner Sally Hawkins and Golden Globe nominee Carey Mulligan. Alex Garland wrote the screenplay for the film. The film is produced by DNA Films and Film4. It will be distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures for the United States of America.[1]



An alternate history story of a woman who, as she reflects on her private school years in the English countryside, reunites with her two friends to face the dark secrets buried in their communal past. With no contact or knowledge of the outside world during their years at the boarding school, they discover they are clones, born and raised for the sole purpose of providing organs for transplants.[1]


Main Cast


On March 1, 2009 Daily Variety reported that Knightley was involved in the project and was signed.[2] Mulligan and Garfield were mentioned not much later. The names Hawkins, Rampling, Richard and Riseborough were announced in April by Screen Daily.[3] Keira Knightley previously worked with two other actress in two different movies. With Charlotte Rampling most recently in the 2008 film The Duchess, and with Carey Mulligan in the 2005 Jane Austen based novel Pride & Prejudice. Sally Hawkins also previously worked together with one of the actresses. Andrea Riseborough and Hawkins worked in the same film called Happy-Go-Lucky in 2008.


Before the book was published in 2005 Alex Garland had already written a script for a possible movie and gave the screenplay to two producers, Andrew Macdonald and Andrew Reich. Development started at that moment: "We are delighted to be shooting this special project, which Alex Garland first brought to us before the book's publication in 2005", says Macdonald and Reich.[4] The director Mark Romanek was first originally attached to the movie The Wolf Man but was dropped for an unknown reason and then was attached to Never Let Me Go and accepted the offer.[5] Romanek said about getting the change to shoot this movie: "From the moment I finished the novel, it became my dream to film it. Ishiguro's conception is so daring, so eerie and beautiful. Alex Garland's adaptation is sensitive and precise. The cast is perfect, the crew superb."[4] Production started in April 2009 and lasted at least nine weeks. Production Design is done by Mark Digby who also was involved in the 2008, Academy Award winning film Slumdog Millionaire. Adam Kimmel takes care of the cinematography. Commercial director is Duncan Reid, who works for Ingenious Media.[6]

Mulligan had to learn how to drive for the film. She doesn't have her driving licence yet. She did a two-week intensive course to eventually do the work, but still she didn't manage that well. She failed the driving test. The production team had to shoot the scene on a private road, where she was allowed to get behind the wheel, according to herself.[7]


The film is based on the book Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. Alex Garland, novelist, screenwriter and one of the producers of this movie, also wrote the screenplay for the movie. Even before the original book was published in 2005.[4] The script appeared on the 2008 Brit List, a film-industry-compiled list of the best unproduced screenplays in British film. Never Let Me Go received six votes.[8]


On May 8, 2009 the production moved to Norfolk for filming as stated by an article. Many of the scenes in the movie features a certain tree, and according to Location Manager Josh Yudkin this tree will be a famous tree. "Wait until you see the movie". The beach is also featured in the movie. Knightley previously shot scenes at the same place (at Norfolk Hall) for her 2008 film The Duchess.[9] Another location is Clevedon in Somerset where shot were taking place on April 24. The pier at the beach was one of the locations were scenes were shot. Owner of the pier says: "The pier is a great location for films as it is the only Grade I-listed pier in the country and has remained unspoilt".[10] A large property on Bexhill-on-Sea seafront is being used on 12 and 13 May 2009 to film some scenes. Andrew Melville Hall in the University of St Andrews was used as the Dover Recovery Centre [11]. London and Bath, all in England in the United Kingdom also includes as one of the locations.[1]


The film will be released in 2010, but no exact date is known about the release date. In October 2009 there was a special screening for selected guests including Rachel Abramowitz, a critic, known in the book-to-film genre. The first sceening still could change a lot with the final production.[7] In January 2010, the Times reported that Never Let Me Go will have a November release, stated in their article about films to look out for in 2010..[12]


  1. ^ a b c several writers (2009-04-13). "Never Let Me Go". IMDB (International Movie Database). Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  2. ^ "Keira Knightley set for 'Never'". Variety (Reed Business Information). 2009-03-01. Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  3. ^ Brevet, Brad (2009-04-14). "Keira Knightley set for 'Never'". Screen Daily (Mark Romanek's ‘Never Let Me Go’ Gains Four New Names as Filming Begins in the UK). Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  4. ^ a b c Brad Brevet (2009-04-14). "Mark Romanek's 'Never Let Me Go' Gains Four New Names as Filming Begins in the UK". Retrieved 2009-07-08.  
  5. ^ Cybergosh (2008-12-18). "Mark Romanek Will Never Let It Go". Movie Blog. Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  6. ^ Geoffrey Macnab (2009-05-14). "The UK private film funds". Retrieved 2009-07-08.  
  7. ^ a b Rachel Abramowitz (2009-10-12). "'Never Let Me Go' comes to the screen -- and Carey Mulligan learns to drive". Retrieved 2009-10-09.  
  8. ^ Thomas, Archie (2008-10-03). "Brit List brings scripts to light". Variety (Reed Business Information). Retrieved 2008-10-09.  
  9. ^ Hill, Chris (2008-05-08). "Keira Knightley back in Norfolk for filming". EDP 24. Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  10. ^ "Keira Knightley Films "Never Let Me Go"". Gossip Girls. 2009-04-23. Retrieved 2009-05-11.  
  11. ^ "University of St Andrews: Photo of the Week". 2009-06-16.,34281,en.html. Retrieved 2009-06-16.  
  12. ^ Kevin Maher (2010-04-01). "2010: a look ahead at the year in film". Retrieved 2010-04-01.  

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