The Hoax

The Hoax

Lasse Hallström (2006)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Director Lasse Hallström and screenwriter William Wheeler's smart and playful account of one of the greatest literary scams of all time benefits from a brace of great performances in the shape of Richard Gere and Alfred Molina. In 1971, failing author Clifford Irving persuaded publishers McGraw-Hill that he was working on an authorised biography of eccentric recluse Howard Hughes, and thus banked a gargantuan advance. Gere is well cast as the charismatic Irving, conveying the slightly seedy charm he employed in American Gigolo, and the always watchable Molina plays his nervy best friend and collaborator, Dick Suskind. The fabrications soon mount up, and what results is a desperate race to fake the necessary evidence, with Irving betting that Hughes won't come out of hiding to reveal the truth. The film is pacey, funny and often enjoyably tense. The real Irving was less impressed, though - cheekily objecting to the movie playing fast and loose with the facts. He described it as "a hoax about a hoax".


Drama set in the 1970s, based on the true story of Clifford Irving, a struggling author who managed to convince a publisher that business magnate Howard Hughes had personally hired him as a biographer. Banking on the reclusive billionaire being too publicity shy to contradict his claims, Irving offered the rights to the book for $1million. But keeping up the deception demanded an ever more complex web of lies. With Richard Gere, Alfred Molina, Hope Davis and Marcia Gay Harden.

Cast & Crew

Clifford Irving Richard Gere
Dick Suskind Alfred Molina
Edith Irving Marcia Gay Harden
Nina Van Pallandt Julie Delpy
Andrea Tate Hope Davis
Shelton Fisher Stanley Tucci
Noah Dietrich Eli Wallach
Ralph Graves Zeljko Ivanek
Harold McGraw John Carter
Albert Vanderkamp Christopher Evan Welch
Director Lasse Hallström
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Momentum PicturesGuidance: Contains swearing and nudity.Released on: 3 Aug 2007