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The Visitor Details


A lonesome widower and college economics professor finds his mundane existence suddenly shaken up when he befriends a pair of illegal immigrants, one of whom has recently been threatened with deportation by U.S. immigration authorities, in the sophomore feature from director Tom McCarthy. Years after losing his wife, 62-year-old Walter Vale (Richard Jenkins) has also lost his passion for writing and teaching. In an effort to fill the empty void that his life has become, Walter makes a half-hearted attempt to learn to play classical piano. Later, when Walter's college sends him to a conference in Manhattan, he is surprised to discover that a young couple has moved into his seldom-used apartment in the city. Tarek (Haaz Sleiman) and his Senegalese girlfriend Zainab (Danai Gurira) have fallen victims to an elaborate real-estate scam, and as a result they no longer have a place to call home. When Walter reluctantly allows the couple to remain in his apartment, talented musician Tarek insists on repaying his host's kindness by teaching him to play the African drum. Over the course of Walter's lessons, the ageing academic finds his spirits revitalized while gaining a newfound appreciation for New York jazz clubs and Central Park drum circles. Later, Tarek is arrested in the subway and threatened with deportation after police learn that he is an undocumented citizen. Suddenly, in his attempt to help his new friend, Walter's passion for life is unexpectedly awakened. When Tarek's radiant mother Mouna (Hiam Abbass) arrives in the city in search of her son, that passion turns to romance -- something that Walter had previously thought he would never experience again. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

  • Release date:April 11, 2008


Awarded by
Screen Actors Guild Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Utah Film Critics Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Broadcast Film Critics Association Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Chicago Film Critics Association Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards Richard Jenkins Best Actor 2008 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards Richard Jenkins Spotlight Award 2008 Nominee
San Diego Film Critics Association Tom McCarthy Best Original Screenplay 2008 Winner
Independent Spirit Awards Tom McCarthy Best Director 2008 Winner
Writers Guild of America Tom McCarthy Best Original Screenplay 2008 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards Haaz Sleiman Best Supporting Actor 2008 Nominee


Richard Jenkins
as Walter Vale
Hiam Abbass
as Mouna
Haaz Sleiman
as Tarek
Danai Gurira
as Zainab
Marian Seldes
as Barbara
Richard Kind
as Jacob
Michael Cumpsty
as Charles
Maggie Moore
as Karen
Bill McHenry
as Darin
Tzahi Moskovitz
as Zev
Amir Arison
as Mr. Shah
Neal Lerner
as Martin Revere
Ramon Fernandez
as Cop #1
Frank Pando
as Cop #2
Waleed Zuaitor
as Omar
Deborah Rush
as Upper Eastside Woman
Ashley Springer
as Student
Laith Nakli
as Nasim
Walter T. Mudu
as Ronald Cole
Yevgeniy Dekhtyar
as Slavic Man
Earl Baker, Jr.
as Lester James


Tom McCarthy
Michael London
Mary Jane Skalski
Tom McCarthy
Oliver Bokelberg
Mary Ramos
Musical Direction/Supervision
Tom McArdle
John Paino
Production Designer
Len X. Clayton
Art Director
Chris Salvaterra
Executive Producer
Ricky Strauss
Executive Producer
Omar Amanat
Executive Producer
Jeff Skoll
Executive Producer
Melissa Toth
Costume Designer
Damian Canelos
Sound/Sound Designer
Mariela Comitini
First Assistant Director
Billy Hopkins
Rafal Paczkowski
Sound Mixer
Paul Schnee
Stephane Foenkinos
Suzanne Crowley
Kerry Barden
Leah Rial
Key Make-up
Patty Long
Line Producer
Wolfgang Held
Second Unit Camera
Jamie Segschneider
Second Assistant Camera
John McCoombs
Chris Yager
Set Production Assistant
Daniel Triller
Assistant Editor
Ricardo Andino
Andy Hutchinson
Set Production Assistant
John Sember
Boom Operator
Marek Szpakiewicz
Musical Performer
Meg Schrock
Generator Operator
Kirk Huston
Joel Jaspan
Key Grip
Dana Pinrod
Set Production Assistant
Paul Hsu
Re-Recording Mixer
Jared Goldman
Unit Production Manager
Sylvia Fay
Extra Casting
Jeff Cadmus
Elena Roulenko
Additional Hair Stylist
Jamie Arbuckle
Set Dresser
Walter Stafford
Key Grip
Don Ciana
Color Timing
Carter Bissell
Best Boy Electric
Collin Smith
Location Manager
Mike Reeves
Best Boy Electric
Ian Bloome
Leah P. Katznelson
Assistant Costume Designer
Ludovic Littee
First Assistant Camera
Sara Stern
Assistant Sound Editor
Jonathan Ferrantelli
Post Production Supervisor
George Holtzer
Transportation Captain
Chandra Cummin
Personal Assistant
Stacey Panepinto
Glenn Lloyd
Art Department Coordinator
Kami Steele
Assistant Makeup
Ron Dulin
Assistant Editor
Yi-Huan Zhao
Musical Performer
Bergen Swanson
Line Producer
Chris Menges
Assistant Location Manager
Nicolas Mazet
Boom Operator
Adam Lukens
Best Boy Grip
Manny Siverio
Stunts Coordinator
Courtney Schmidt
Assistant Properties
Casey Wooden
Matthew Chamberlain
Location Manager
Craig Charland
Second Unit Camera
Anthony Blanco
Second Second Assistant Director
Ali Muney
Assistant Editor
James Jorty
Theodore Hellmuth
Dolly Grip
Heather Gross
Assistant Editor
Will Pangman
Set Dresser
Melissa Toth
Line Producer
Lewis Goldstein
Re-Recording Mixer
James McFayden
Andrew Graybill
Musical Performer
Jay Vigil
Transportation Captain
Kate Abernathy
First Assistant Editor
Ryan McGuffin
Lara Safire
Set Production Assistant
Luke Maurer
Musical Performer
Elizabeth Stern
Lucie Bourgeau
Production Secretary
Joy Weber
Jennifer Stuart
Second Unit Camera
Richard Shedden
Bernard Bayer
Musical Performer
Joe Facey
Craft Service/Catering
Rafal Paczkowski
Eric Friedewald
Rebecca McCabe
Costumes Supervisor
Smokey Nelson
Paul Bode
First Assistant Camera
Lora Scrignoli
Key Hairstylist
Frank Kern
Assistant Editor
Alex Engel
Vivian Tong
Set Production Assistant
Jessica Kelly
Casting Assistant
Roger Sasson
Cate Montana
Assistant Editor
Jamie Rush
Set Production Assistant
Mariusz Glabinski
Music Editor