Capote (film)

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
German title Capote
Original title Capote
Country of production Canada , USA
original language English
Publishing year 2005
length 110 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
JMK 14
Director Bennett Miller
script Dan Futterman
production Caroline Baron ,
Michael Ohoven ,
William Vince
music Mychael Danna
camera Adam Kimmel
cut Christopher Tellefsen

Capote [ kəˈpoʊti ] is the US director Bennett Miller's debut feature film from 2005 . The drama film is based on the biography Capote: A Biography by Gerald Clarke and was a. a. produced by the film studio United Artists . The film is generally assigned to the independent film and describes the research work of Truman Capote on his factual novel in cold blood , which he published in 1966. The German theatrical release was on March 2, 2006. The DVD release date in Germany was on August 22, 2006.


USA, November 1959: Truman Capote, author of the novel Breakfast at Tiffany's and a member of the international party scene soon to be known as the jet set, comes across an article in the New York Times . This reports of the brutal murder of four members of a respected farming family, the Clutters, in Holcomb , Kansas. Many of these stories can be found in the newspapers every day, but the writer cannot let go of them. For him there is an opportunity to substantiate his long-held thesis that non-fictional literature can be just as vivid as fiction in the hands of the right author . What impact are the murders having on this small town on the wind-stricken prairie?

Although it is unimportant for Capote's purpose whether the killers are ever convicted, he can warm the New Yorker magazine to the subject, which gives Capote the order to travel to Kansas and write a report on the murders. He is accompanied by a friend he has known since childhood in Alabama - Harper Lee , who a few months later will draw attention to herself as the author of the novel Who the Nightingale Disturbs and who will win the Pulitzer Prize .

Although his childlike voice, endless mannerisms, and bohemian style of dress also conjure hostility in an area that counts itself Old West , Capote is quickly gaining the trust of Holcomb's people, including Alvin Dewey , a detective with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, who coordinates the hunt for the perpetrators. In fact, Dewey's work was soon crowned with success, and the two perpetrators, Perry Smith and Dick Hickock , were caught in Las Vegas, transferred to Kansas and sentenced to death. Capote visits Smith and Hickock in Lansing Prison and learns their life stories. He is particularly interested in Perry. He is of half-Indian descent and describes Capote's difficult childhood, which reminds him of his own. Capote tells Perry that he will structure the book so that Perry is not portrayed as the monster the newspapers made of him. Perry opened up to Capote, but did not tell him about the night of the murder. In order to manipulate him, Capote constantly lies to him, telling him that he has not started writing yet. In fact, work on Cold Blood is well advanced. Capote is reading from his draft in New York and the press is enthusiastic. His publisher tells him that he is about to create a revolutionary masterpiece. When Perry learns from the newspaper that Capote has already written several chapters and will name the book in cold blood , he confronts Capote. He continues to lie to him so as not to lose the relationship of trust. Capote absolutely needs Perry's testimony to the murder itself in order to complete his novel.

Shortly before the execution, Perry describes how he murdered the family, but the motive is still unclear. After Perry has delivered what Capote needs, Capote breaks off contact with him. He no longer reacts to letters and calls from Perry. The egocentric Capote sees himself as a victim of the delinquents and describes himself as a wreck. Even when his girlfriend Harper Lee celebrates enormous success with Who the Nightingale Disturbs , he doesn't care. Only immediately before the execution does Capote visit Perry and assure him that he will be present when he is executed by hanging . In their last conversation, Capote seems to realize that he was acting immorally. Capote witnesses the execution, which shocks him and plunges him into depression.

More than six years of research resulted in the work in cold blood , one of the first documentary novels that became a bestseller when it appeared in 1966 and set off a media avalanche.

History of origin

The film is based on the Truman Capote authorized biography Capote: A Biography by Gerald Clarke , which he published in 1988, four years after Truman Capote's death. Clarke had written numerous articles on famous people for Time Magazine , including portraits of Mae West , Elizabeth Taylor , Joseph Campbell and Susan Sontag , when he was commissioned to write a biography of Truman Capote. The planned two to three years of work turned into thirteen years in which Clarke also interviewed the famous writer several times, as well as Capote's companion Harper Lee, Detective Alvin Dewey and his wife Marie, William Shawn, editor of the New York and Jack Dunphy, Truman Capotes longtime partner.

Clarke's research also took him to Holcomb, Kansas. Among the few the biographer could not interview were Perry Smith and Dick Hickock, both of whom had been sentenced to death in 1965. Clarke met her through more than forty letters that the two killers had written to Truman Capote. Truman Capote himself handed Clarke the letters, which often ran to several pages. The letters were later used by screenwriter Dan Futterman , who wrote the script for Capote . Futterman is the only one Clarke allowed to see the letters. The dialogue in the film mostly reflected word for word what Smith and Hickock were actually saying. To prepare for the role of Truman Capote, main actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was used on tapes on which Clarke had recorded the interviews with Capote.

The shooting of Capote began on 25 October 2004 and were in just 36 days in Winnipeg , Manitoba ( Canada ) turned off. Production costs are estimated at $ 7 million.


Bennett Miller's drama premiered on September 2, 2005 at the Telluride Film Festival . After another screening at the New York Film Festival, the film officially opened three days later, on September 30, 2005, in twelve selected US cinemas and grossed 324,857 US dollars on the opening weekend. By October 16 of the same year, the film had already recouped about a fifth of its production costs at 1.4 million US dollars. The German theatrical release of Capote was on March 2, 2006.

At the 78th Academy Awards on March 5, 2006, Philip Seymour Hoffman was awarded the Oscar for Best Actor for his role as Capote .


  • The lexicon of international films saw Capote as a “brilliantly played film biography” and as an “elegant production with a penchant for melodrama”.
  • "Philip Seymour Hoffman crowns a decade of brilliant work on stage and screen with the lead role in 'Capote' ... he and the film are great." ( Time Magazine )
  • “Not only does Mr. Hoffman achieve an impressive physical and vocal transformation ... but he also conveys, with clarity and delicacy, the intricacies of Capote's temperament ... Ms. Keener plays the high-contrast role with particular grace. With her careful, witty playing she builds a bridge between Capote and the audience. ” ( The New York Times )
  • "A brilliant performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman." ( Los Angeles Times )
  • "Philip Seymour Hoffman, (Heath) Ledger's presumed competitor for a Leading Actor Oscar, brilliantly captures Capote's endless charm and manipulation ability as he alludes to the demons that will eventually lead him into self-destruction." ( San Francisco Chronicle )
  • "Two thumbs up." ( Ebert & Roeper )
  • "A fascinating character study ... Hoffman creates a capote that is complex and real, in a film that is unforgiving about the way a journalist views the story of his life." ( Chicago Sun-Times )
  • "Philip Seymour Hoffman captures the high-pitched lisp and, more importantly, the deep enigmatic character of the writer Truman Capote during the creation of his groundbreaking factual crime novel 'In Cold Blood'." ( Chicago Tribune )
  • The writer John le Carré described Philip Seymour Hoffmann's portrayal of Truman Capote as the best acting performance he had seen in his entire life.



Philip Seymour Hoffman was named Best Actor in a Drama at the Golden Globe Awards ceremony on January 16, 2006 . Previously, he had a. a. Can win the National Board of Review Award and a Satellite Award . At the British Academy Film Award ceremony , Capote received five nominations including in the categories of Best Film and Director, but only Philip Seymour Hoffman was able to prevail against the competition as Best Actor. The drama was nominated in the same categories at the 2006 Academy Awards , but had to admit defeat to Paul Haggis ' ensemble film LA Crash and was only awarded in the category Best Actor.

Oscar 2006

Golden Globe Awards 2006

British Academy Film Awards 2006


Boston Society of Film Critics Awards 2005

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
  • Best Supporting Actress (Catherine Keener)
  • Best script

Dallas-Forth Worth Film Critics Association Awards 2005

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
  • Best Supporting Actress (Catherine Keener)

Chlotrudis Awards 2006

  • Best movie
  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
  • Best Supporting Actress (Catherine Keener)
  • further nominated: Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Director

Directors Guild of America 2006

  • nominated in the category Best Director

Gotham Awards 2005

Independent Spirit Awards 2006

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
  • Best script
  • Producer price
    • nominated in the categories
      • Best movie
      • Best camera

Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards 2005

National Board of Review 2005

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)

National Society of Film Critics 2006

  • Best movie

New York Film Critics Circle Awards 2005

  • Best first work

Satellite Awards 2005

  • Best Actor - Drama (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
    • nominated in the categories
      • Best film - drama
      • Best director
      • Best Supporting Actor - Drama ( Chris Cooper )
      • Best adapted script

Screen Actors Guild Awards 2006

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)

Southeastern Film Critics Association Awards 2005

  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)

Toronto Film Critics Association Awards 2005

  • Best first work
  • Best Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman)
  • Best Supporting Actress (Catherine Keener)

Writers Guild of America 2006

  • nominated in the Best Adapted Screenplay category

Online Film Critics Society Awards 2006


  • Gerald Clarke: Capote: A Biography . Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2005, ISBN 0-7867-1661-4 (English).
  • Dan Futterman, Gerald Clarke: Capote . New York: Newmarket Press, 2006, ISBN 1-55704-723-5 (English).
  • Truman Capote: Cold-blooded . Rowohlt Tb, Reinbek near Hamburg 1969, ISBN 3-499-11176-4 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Certificate of Release for Capote . Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry , January 2006 (PDF; test number: 104 906 K).
  2. Age rating for Capote . Youth Media Commission .
  3. Capote. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed March 2, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  4. Staring at the Flame: John le Carré on Philip Seymour Hoffman The New York Times , July 17, 2014