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SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE (1993)

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Discussion before

Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan became one of cinema’s top romantic teams with this film, despite only appearing on screen together for two minutes. The stars, director Nora Ephron and her co-writers, David S. Ward and Jeff Arch, do such a good job of linking the characters throughout the film that their pairing seems almost inevitable. Hanks stars as a widower whose son (Ross Malinger) puts him on a nationwide radio call-in show to discuss the devastating loss of his wife. Hearing the story of a man identified only as “Sleepless in Seattle,” newspaper writer Ryan becomes obsessed and sets out to meet him. Ephron wanted to do a movie about how movies shape our behavior, so she included references to An Affair to Remember (1957), starring Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr, throughout the film. She also connected the characters by cutting between similar movements between the two. At one point, she even transported a door from Seattle to Baltimore so the two stars could walk through it at different times. The resulting film was a huge hit that became a top date movie of its year and led to a Hanks-Ryan-Ephron reunion in 1998 for You’ve Got Mail. (d. Nora Ephron, 105m, DCP)

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