The Laykillers is a contemporary (despite
Hanks' appearance) remake of 1955 Ealing Comedy of the same
name starring Alec Guiness, Peter Sellers and Herbert Lom.
movie opened in US cinemas on March 26th 2004 and had it's European premiere at the 57th Cannes Film Festival on 18th May 2004.
character played by Irma P. Hall, Marva Munson, shares her name
with the female judge from Intolerable Cruelty.
is an interesting link between this movie and the Coen's debut
feature, Blood Simple. The original 1955 version has long been
a favourite of Joel and Ethan's, so much so that they borrowed
a line from it and used it in Blood Simple. The line is "Who
looks stupid now?" which was uttered by Loren Visser (M
Emmet Walsh) in Blood Simple.
it is common knowledge that directing and production duties
are shared by the brothers Coen, The Ladykillers marks the first
time that they both have a director and producer credit. Usually
Joel takes credit for direcing while Ethan takes the producer
tag. This initially started because during their debut movie
Blood Simple they were fed up of reading their names over and
over in the opening titles. This is the same reason that they
invented Roderick Jaynes as their editor when everyone knows
they edit themselves- it's good to see he has survived.
Hanks' character, Goldthwaite Higginson Dorr III Ph.D, is a huge fan of the work of Edgar Allan Poe and often launches into a heartfelt rendition of the poem, To Helen. You can read this poem by clicking here.
The Coens originally wrote the movie for Barry Sonnenfeld to direct but when he bowed out the Coens stepped in. But there was a moment of indecision when they were forced to think about the casting. "As we wrote it," Ethan says,"we didn't do our usual thing of thinking of actors who might do specific parts." And for some reason Hanks popped into their heads.
The movie came in $5m under budget and seven days early.
The bridge in the movie does not actually exist. It was created using a combination of miniatures and CGI, with the live action shot on a set.
Click here to read an article about the movie, including a short interview with Hanks.