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Surrogates theatrical poster
Directed by Jonathan Mostow
Produced by David Hoberman
Todd Lieberman
Max Handelman
Elizabeth Banks
Written by John Brancato
Michael Ferris
Robert Venditti (story)
Starring Bruce Willis
Radha Mitchell
Rosamund Pike
Boris Kodjoe
Jack Noseworthy
James Cromwell
Ving Rhames
Music by Richard Marvin
Cinematography Oliver Wood
Editing by Kevin Stitt
Barry Zetlin
Distributed by Touchstone Pictures
Release date(s) September 25, 2009
Running time 89 min.[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $80 million[2]
Gross revenue $117,289,884 (worldwide)[3]

Surrogates is a 2009 science fiction film, based on the 2005–2006 comic book series of the same name. Directed by Jonathan Mostow, it stars Bruce Willis and Radha Mitchell. The film revolves around the mysterious murder of a college student linked to the man who helped create a high-tech surrogate phenomenon that allows people to purchase unflawed robotic versions of themselves. These fit, good-looking, remotely controlled machines ultimately assume their life roles, enabling people to experience life vicariously from the comfort and safety of their own homes. Surrogates was released on September 25, 2009[4]. Rosamund Pike, James Cromwell, Jack Noseworthy, Ving Rhames, and Boris Kodjoe co-star.



In 2017, use of remotely-controlled androids called "surrogates" allows everyone to live in idealized forms in the safety of their own homes. Because damage done to a surrogate is not felt by its owner, surrogate use is safer and near-universal. FBI agent Tom Greer investigates the death of two individuals who died when their surrogates were destroyed, one of them being the son of Dr. Lionel Canter, the inventor of surrogates. Greer and his partner Jennifer Peters determine that an anti-surrogate "Dread" named Miles Strickland used a unique weapon that disables the fail-safe mechanisms that shield an operator from harm, thus killing them. Greer pursues Strickland into a Dread reservation until his surrogate is destroyed, forcing him to interact in the world without one. The Dread leader, the Prophet, kills Strickland and takes the weapon.

Peters is then killed and her surrogate hijacked by an unknown party, who then informs Greer that Andrew Stone, their boss, supplied Strickland with the weapon and ordered the hit on Canter. The Prophet orders that the weapon be delivered to Peters before a stray bullet from military raid on the Dread reservation reveals that he is also a surrogate.

Peters's surrogate takes the weapon to a central hub in the FBI headquarters and Greer heads to the house of Dr. Canter, who has been controlling both the Prophet and Peters. Canter uses the weapon to kill Stone and proceeds to upload its virus to all surrogates, which will kill their operators. Believing that his plan is unstoppable, Canter disconnects from controlling Peters's surrogate and swallows a cyanide pill. Greer then takes control of the surrogate and, with the assistance of the network's system administrator, insulates the virus so the operators will survive but lets the virus upload, permanently shutting down every surrogate worldwide. The surviving operators are forced to revert to using only their real bodies again.


  • Bruce Willis as Agent Tom Greer, an FBI agent who investigates the murder of others' surrogates[5]
  • Radha Mitchell as Agent Jennifer Peters, Agent Greer's partner[6]
  • Rosamund Pike as Maggie Greer, Agent Greer's wife[6]
  • Ving Rhames as The Prophet, a cult figure who disdains surrogates and plans an uprising later to be revealed as a surrogate controlled by Dr. Lionel Canter[6]
  • Boris Kodjoe as Andrew Stone, Peters and Greer's supervisor at the FBI[7]
  • Jack Noseworthy as Miles Strickland, a man hired to kill Canter.[7]
  • James Cromwell as Dr. Lionel Canter, the inventor of the surrogates
  • Michael Cudlitz as Colonel Brendan
  • Cody Christian as Boy Canter


In March 2007, Disney acquired feature film rights to the 2005–2006 comic book series The Surrogates with the intent to distribute under Touchstone Pictures. The project was conceived by Max Handelman and Elizabeth Banks (Handelman's wife who is better known for her acting), and they enlisted producer Todd Lieberman to move it forward. Under Disney, Jonathan Mostow was attached to direct the film based on an adapted screenplay by Michael Ferris and John Brancato.[8] The following November, Bruce Willis was cast to star in the lead role. Filming was scheduled to begin in February 2008 in Lynn, Massachusetts.[5] It was delayed,[9] beginning on April 29, 2008 in Woburn.[7] Filming took place in the Massachusetts cities Worcester,[10] Milford, Hopedale, Taunton,[11][12] Lawrence,[13] and Wayland.[14][15] Visual effects were handled by Sandbox FX, Brickyard VFX,[16] Industrial Light and Magic and Moving Picture Company.


The film was released in cinemas on September 25, 2009 by Touchstone Pictures. The DVD & Blu-ray was released on January 26, 2010. The Blu-ray version features four deleted scenes, a commentary by director Johnathan Mostow, and 2 featurettes.



Critical reception

Surrogates received mixed reviews from Rotten Tomatoes, Based on 105 reviews, the film has an overall rating of 39% (41 "fresh", 64 "rotten"), while the "Top Critics" gave it a rating of 45% with a consensus that "Though it sports a slick look and feel, Surrogates fails to capitalize on a promising premise, relying instead on mindless action and a poor script".[17] Metacritic gives the film an average score of 47, based on 19 reviews. Yahoo! Movies currently reports a grade of "C+" based on 10 reviews.[18]

Box office

On its opening day, Surrogates grossed about $6 million and its opening weekend grossed to $14,902,692 in 2,992 theaters, ranking #2 at the box office, behind Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. To date, the film has grossed $38,577,772 in the US domestic market and $78,712,112 in other markets for a total of $117,289,884 worldwide.[3]


  1. ^ "Surrogates (2009)". BBFC. Retrieved 2009-09-08. 
  2. ^ Movie projector: 'Surrogates' and 'Fame' arrive on what looks to be a slow weekend, LA Times, September 24, 2009
  3. ^ a b "Surrogates (2009)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2009-12-09. 
  4. ^ "The Surrogates". Coming Soon Media, L.P. Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  5. ^ a b Fleming, Michael (2007-11-18). "Bruce Willis to star in 'Surrogates'". Variety (Reed Business Information). Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  6. ^ a b c "Three Cast Alongside Willis in 'Surrogates'". Entertainment Weekly (Time Inc). 2008-04-04.,,20188617,00.html. Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  7. ^ a b c "Film: In production". The Hollywood Reporter. Nielsen Company. Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  8. ^ Fleming, Michael (2007-03-14). "Disney wins rights for 'Surrogates'". Variety (Reed Business Information). Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  9. ^ Fleming, Michael (2008-04-03). "Mitchell, Pike join 'Surrogates'". Variety (Reed Business Information). Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  10. ^ Sheehan, Nancy (2008-04-25). "Hollywood heads to Worcester". Telegram & Gazette. Retrieved 2009-06-19. 
  11. ^ "Hollywood sign war grips Milford". Boston Herald (Herald Media Inc.). 2008-06-29. Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  12. ^ "Actor Willis In Bay State To Film Movie". (WCVB-TV). 2008-07-03. Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  13. ^ "‘Armageddon’ in Lawrence: Willis films at city mills". (The Eagle-Tribune). 2008-06-15. Retrieved 2009-05-23. 
  14. ^ "First Leo, Now Bruce". Taunton Daily Gazette (The Taunton Gazette). 2008-06-03. Retrieved 2008-08-02. 
  15. ^ "Movie crew descends on Wayland — Framingham, MA". The MetroWest Daily News. 2008-05-08. Retrieved 2009-04-04. 
  16. ^ Brokaw, Leslie (2008-06-29). "Film boom's special effect". The Boston Globe (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2008-07-28. 
  17. ^ Surrogates at Rotten Tomatoes Retrieved on 2009-09-25.
  18. ^ "Surrogates (2009)". Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved 2009-10-27. 

External links


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