Gulliver’s Travels

Something big is going down.

Emily as: Princess Mary
Genre(s): Comedy | Family | Adventure
Written by: Joe Stillman, Nicholas Stoller
Directed by: Rob Letterman
Other Cast: Jack Black, Jason Segel, Amanda Peet, Billy Connolly
Release Date: December 25, 2010
Production Budget: $112m
Total Worldwide Gross: $237.3m
Filming Locations: Oxfordshire, England, UK

Lemuel Gulliver (Jack Black) is a lowly mailroom clerk at a New York newspaper. After Gulliver bluffs his way into an assignment writing about the Bermuda Triangle, he goes there only to be transported to an undiscovered land, Lilliput. In this fantastical new world, Gulliver is, at last, a bigger-than-life figure — in size and ego – especially after he starts telling tall tales, taking credit for his world’s greatest inventions, and placing himself at the center of its most historic events. Gulliver’s position is enhanced even further when he leads his new friends in a daring battle against their longtime enemies. But when Gulliver loses it all and puts the Lilliputians in peril, he must find a way to undo the damage. Ultimately, Gulliver becomes a true giant among men only when he learns that it’s how big you are on the inside that counts.

Production Info

  • The film gives no screen credit to Jonathan Swift, who wrote the book of the same name from which it is loosely based.
  • Rob Letterman felt it was important for “Jack Black to interact with the other cast members, and for those interactions to feel natural-as if they all really were in the same room”. Thanks to the use of the DualMoCo camera, which was used extensively for the first time on this film, while Jack Black was in one area of the sound stage, performing against a green screen, the actors portraying the Lilliputians would be on another part of the stage, acting “opposite” Jack Black.
  • Taylor Lautner was originally cast as Horatio but was dropped after producers changed their minds and considered him too young. Jason Segel replaced him.
  • The Liliput palace is in reality Blenheim Palace, which is where former UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill was born.
  • Character Quotes

  • Oh, no. The Blefuscians. Do not kidnap me. Please do not kidnap me.
  • I’ve never been wooed with such unique passion.
  • I am unsure about things between us. It be not you, it be me, but I am very unsure.
  • I’m not an option. I’m a lady.
  • Princess Mary: It is too late.
    Blefuscian Captain: You are kidnapped.
    Princess Mary: I am kidnapped!
  • Gulliver: I’m not from a Kingdom, I’m actually from a democracy. You see, we elect a president every four years.
    Isabelle: You are so honorable and courageous. Were you the president?
    Princess Mary: Of course, he was, Mother. Look at him. He is the most powerful gentleman in all the land. [To Gulliver] I’m so sorry if Mother embarrassed you.
  • Horatio: You don’t have to be rich to be my girl. You don’t have to be cool to rule my world.
    Princess Mary: Horatio, these passionate words could get us into trouble.
    Horatio: There’s no particular sign that I’m more compatible with. I just want your extra time and your… kiss.
    Princess Mary: What beauty emanates from your lips!
  • Princess Mary: Why do you look so forlorn, noble protector?
    Gulliver: Me? Forlorn? No way.
    Princess Mary: You do look quite forlorn.
    Gulliver: Just for the record, what’s “forlorn” mean, again? Is it “sad”?
    Princess Mary: Basically, it’s just a bit more dramatic-sounding.
  • Princess Mary: Gulliver, I will miss you so much.
    Gulliver: I’m gonna miss you, too. Maybe I should stay.
    Princess Mary: Don’t you miss your subjects? And the White House? And the Millenium Falcon?
  • Princess Mary: What are you doing in my chambers?
    General Edward: I have come to court you as I always do at this time of day.
    Princess Mary: This is not the time of day for courting. You cannot just barge in.
    General Edward: I can court you when I wish to court you.
    Princess Mary: I am not in the mood to be courted. I have a headache.
  • General Edward: You are acting like a little princess.
    Princess Mary: I am a princess!
  • Quoting: Emily Blunt

    On her attraction to the role: It was really working with Jack Black and then I loved the script. I thought it was really charming and witty and definitely a more light-hearted version of the Jonathan Swift novel. So, I think that was an interesting take on it. I hadn’t really been a part of a family movie before and I hadn’t played anyone as girly as that before, so for those reasons I also wanted to do it.

    On Gulliver’s impact in Lilliputia: Gulliver comes to Lilliputia, and influences them. Kind of riles them up into a sort of modern frenzy and introduces new ways for them to see the world and sees that their ways might be rather stayed or rather old-fashioned. So he teaches them about love and about letting their hair down. As Gulliver sort of has more and more of an influence on them the costumes have been adapted into being more modern-looking.

    On filming on location: I shot at Blenheim [Palace] before when I did Young Victoria and when you’re surrounded by the paintings and the opulence of a place like that there’s something really transporting about it. So, I do find it helps… and the costumes and the hair. It just limits how much you can feel like yourself, because it’s so alien to you–everything about doing a period drama. So, it’s nice and I like it.

    On the changes and modernization of the story: Gulliver has an edgy, modern sensibility that Jack really brings to life. His Gulliver comes to our little world and gets everyone riled up, enabling them to see the world in a new way.

    On her first family film: I really enjoyed it. I’ve never done a family movie before and it’s a whole different genre. There’s a charm to it and a kind of sweetness and a lightheartedness. I think it’s really important to make those movies, because people want an escape.

    On working with Jack Black: He’s been incredibly generous and has been there for us every day to do off lines. He’s been there throughout the night shoots. He has a great essence about him and he obviously thoroughly enjoys himself.

    On working with Chris O’Dowd: It was very tough for me to get through a scene with him because he’s so funny in this role and he’d change it every time to the point where I was like: “Please just tell me what you’re doing to do this time and I’ll be able to handle it.” But then he’d be like: “This is what I’m going to do…” And then he’d still change it [laughs]. I really had trouble getting through scenes with him because he was so, so funny.

    Quoting: Cast and Crew

    Co-star Jason Segel: You can’t help but be around her and feel like she’s better than you. She is so beautiful, talented, smart, and so winning and so funny, you can’t help but feel intimidated.

    Critical Response

    Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: Emily Blunt, who proved such prickly fun in The Devil Wears Prada, is the tastiest small fry in this town.

    Anna Smith, Empire: Managing to bring both heart and humour to her performance, Blunt is the unexpected star of the show, while Jason Segel makes a surprisingly good English-accented suitor.