Burn After Reading


Synopsis Cast & Crew

Burn After Reading, is a new comedy thriller from Academy Award winners, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen (No Country for Old Men, Fargo, The Big Lebowski). At the headquarters of the Central Intelligence Agency in Arlington, Virginia, analyst Osborne Cox (John Malkovich) arrives for a top-secret meeting. Unfortunately for Cox, the secret is soon out: he is being ousted. Cox does not take the news particularly well and returns to his Georgetown home to work on his memoirs and his drinking, not necessarily in that order. His wife Katie (Tilda Swinton) is dismayed, though not particularly surprised; she is already well into an illicit affair with Harry Pfarrer (George Clooney), a married federal marshal, and sets about making plans to leave Cox for Harry. Elsewhere in the Washington, D.C. suburbs, and seemingly worlds apart, Hardbodies Fitness Centers employee Linda Litzke (Frances McDormand) can barely concentrate on her work. She is consumed with her life plan for extensive cosmetic surgery, and confides her mission to can-do colleague Chad Feldheimer (Brad Pitt). Linda is all but oblivious to the fact that the gym's manager Ted Treffon (Richard Jenkins) pines for her even as she arranges dates via the Internet with other men. When a computer disc containing material for the CIA analyst's memoirs accidentally falls into the hands of Linda and Chad, the duo are intent on exploiting their find. As Ted frets, "No good can come of this," events spiral out of everyone's and anyone's control, in a cascading series of darkly hilarious encounters.


George Clooney Harry Pfarrer
Frances McDormand Linda Litzke
Brad Pitt Chad Feldheimer
John Malkovich Osborne Cox
Tilda Swinton Katie Cox
Richard Jenkins Ted Treffon
Elizabeth Marvel Sandy Pfarrer
David Rasche CIA Officer
JK Simmons CIA Superior


Joel Coen Director/Writer/Producer
David Diliberto Associate Producer
Mary Zophres Costume Designer
Jess Conchor Production Designer
Roderick Jaynes Editor
Emmanuel Lubezki Director of Photography
Robert Graf Executive Producer
Tim Bevan Executive Producer
Eric Fellner Executive Producer
Ethan Coen Director/Writer/Producer
Carter Burwell Music

Burn After Reading tops the box office

15th September 2008

Burn After Reading tops the North American box office in its opening weekend.

Burn After Reading Opens Venice Film Festival

28th August 2008

Brad Pitt and George Clooney join the Coen Brothers in Italy for the world premiere of their new film.