Morning Glory is a 2010 American comedy film directed by Roger Michell and written by Aline Brosh McKenna. It stars Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton, with Patrick Wilson, John Pankow and Jeff Goldblum. The plot revolves around young and devoted morning television producer Becky Fuller (McAdams), who is hired as an executive producer on the long-running morning show DayBreak, at a once-prominent but currently failing station in New York City. Eager to keep the show on air, she recruits a former news journalist and anchor (Ford) who disapproves of co-hosting a show that does not deal with real news stories.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Roger Michell|
|Written by||Aline Brosh McKenna|
|Music by||David Arnold|
|Cinematography||Alwin H. KÃ¼chler|
Bad Robot Productions
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Box office||$60 million|
After some delays, the film was released in the United States on November 10, 2010, and abroad in 2011. This marked the first time that Bad Robot Productions produced a comedy film. Morning Glory received mixed reviews and had moderate success at the box office, grossing $60 million worldwide.
Aspiring news producer Becky Fuller (Rachel McAdams) has dreamed since childhood of working for the Today show, but her dedication to her career is off-putting to potential suitors. After being laid off from her job at the local Good Morning New Jersey, her mother advises her to give up her dream before it becomes an embarrassment. However, Becky perseveres, sending many different rÃ©sumÃ©s out. She finally receives a call from IBS, which is looking for a producer on its struggling national morning show, DayBreak.
After a discouraging job interview with Jerry Barnes (Jeff Goldblum), who dismisses both her and DayBreak as also-rans, Becky bumps into one of her heroes, veteran television journalist Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford) in an elevator. She is brushed off rudely, but is told by the other passenger that this is just typical of Mike. Seemingly against his better judgement, Jerry hires Becky to be DayBreak’s executive producer. On her first day, Becky realizes she has signed on to a show in turmoil, lacking in direction and money. After meeting the acerbic but long-suffering co-host Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton), who predicts Becky’s demise, she fires the conceited co-host Paul McVee (Ty Burrell), much to the delight of her co-workers. Becky chooses an unwilling Mike as Colleen’s new co-host. Mike is under contract to IBS, but has mostly managed to escape being utilized while still getting paid. Becky finds a clause in his contract by which he is obliged to accept an official job offer or lose his salary, so he is forced to comply.
Becky gets to know Adam Bennett (Patrick Wilson), another IBS producer who had worked with Mike previously. After initially teaming up to deal with Mike, they begin dating, and he is initially supportive of her dedication to her job. Mike proves to be hard going, throwing his weight about, trying to sabotage his debut on the show by getting drunk, refusing to banter with Colleen on air, and ensuring he only does serious news stories by making use of a clause in his contract that allows him to refuse certain assignments, like cooking segments, that he considers beneath him. Ratings continue to drop. Jerry shows Becky the figures in his office one afternoon. Becky tells Jerry that Mike is still getting up to speed, which Jerry dismisses. Jerry proceeds to inform Becky that IBS wants to cancel DayBreak and air game shows and syndicated talk instead. He further brings Becky down by blaming the perennial ratings slump and the show’s impending demise on her. Becky asks Jerry not to tell anyone that DayBreak will end its 47-year run in six weeks due to poor staff morale.
After a heated confrontation with Mike, Becky snaps and decides on a radical approach to save the show. She improves ratings by persuading Ernie (Matt Malloy), the DayBreak weatherman, to do the weather while doing stunts, such as riding a new Six Flags roller coaster. Colleen also expresses a keen interest in Becky’s campaign to rejuvenate the show, and appears on a number of colorful segments that help the show’s ratings. Jerry remains unconvinced that Becky can get the ratings up enough to stave off cancellation. Adam, not realizing what is on the line, teases Becky about how caught up she is in improving the ratings, but she sees it as a criticism that she has heard from previous men, and walks out. Mike tells her that he was once the same way, but ended up with no life outside of work.
During a staff meeting, Mike shows interest in doing a story, surprising colleagues. Becky goes along, but realizes that he is going to the Governor’s summer house instead of the destination she expected. At this point, the six-week deadline is approaching that Friday. Fearing embarrassment and not being able to land employment in the future, Becky informs Mike that the show will be replaced with soap operas and game shows if ratings do not increase by the end of the week. Mike ends up confronting the Governor on charges of racketeering, and breaks the story of his arrest on live television. This increases DayBreak‘s ratings enough to secure another year for the show. Due to DayBreak‘s rise in popularity, Becky receives a job interview from Today. During the interview, DayBreak is on. Between segments, Colleen tells Mike about the interview, and that his refusal to adapt has driven Becky away. He goes to the kitchen where food segments are done. Becky watches in shock as Mike tells the viewers how to make a good frittata. Becky runs back to the set and decides to remain at DayBreak.
- Rachel McAdams as Becky Fuller, the new executive producer of DayBreak, the fourteenth in eleven years, challenged with improving the show’s ratings.
- Harrison Ford as Mike Pomeroy, a serious news journalist and anchor who has worked in television for over forty years. He is unhappy at having to co-host a show that does not deal with real news stories.
- Diane Keaton as Colleen Peck, the host of DayBreak for the past eleven years, in which time she has gone through several co-hosts and executive producers.
- Patrick Wilson as Adam Bennett, another producer at IBS, who begins dating Becky.
- John Pankow as Lenny Bergman, the long-term senior producer of the show.
- Jeff Goldblum as Jerry Barnes, a network executive, he tasks Becky with turning the show’s ratings around.
- Matt Malloy as Ernie Appleby, the DayBreak weatherperson.
- Ty Burrell as Paul McVee, the co-host of the show at the beginning of the film. Becky immediately fires him because of his negative effect on staff morale.
- Patti D’Arbanville as Mrs. Fuller, Becky’s mother.
- Adrian Martinez as IBS Lobby Guard
- Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Lloyd Banks, and Tony Yayo as themselves.
- Chris Matthews, Morley Safer, Jonathan Bennett, Bob Schieffer, and Elaine Kaufman make cameo appearances.
The premise of the film was partially inspired by Neil Simon’s The Sunshine Boys, where Harrison Ford’s role was akin to Clark while Diane Keaton’s role was akin to Lewis and Rachel McAdams’ role was akin to Clark’s nephew Ben. Screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna and producer J. J. Abrams “dreamed of having Harrison Ford in the film” from the point of early script development. Shortly after Abrams cast Harrison Ford as Mike Pomeroy, Roger Michell took over as director.
Despite their long careers in Hollywood, Keaton and Ford had never met prior to Morning Glory. Harrison Ford explained: “We have been working in the same business, different branches of the business. She was in the intellectual branch and I was in the running, jumping and falling down branch. So, we never had the chance to work together. But it was a real pleasure to finally get that opportunity.”Morning Glory marked Keaton’s and McAdams’ second film together. They previously co-starred in the 2005 comedy drama The Family Stone. Billed as a starring vehicle for McAdams, she initially felt she was unsuited to the role because “I’m not funny. So I said, ‘if you need me to be funny, you might want to look somewhere else'”. Roger Michell, the film’s director, had a number of dinners with McAdams and persuaded her to join the cast.
The film’s theme song is “Strip Me” by Natasha Bedingfield. A song called “Same Changes” by The Weepies was recorded exclusively for the film. David Arnold also composed the film score. No official soundtrack was released, though the following songs were used in the film: