The Skeleton Key


1h 44m 2005

Brief Synopsis

Strong-minded Caroline Ellis is a driven young woman with no time for local tales of witchcraft and black magic. The young hospice worker is determined to make enough money to attend nursing school, even if it means taking a job as a live-in caretaker for the elderly owner of an isolated plantation

Film Details

Also Known As
Skeleton Key, porte des secrets
MPAA Rating
Release Date
2005
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures
Location
Los Angeles, California, USA; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 44m

Synopsis

Strong-minded Caroline Ellis is a driven young woman with no time for local tales of witchcraft and black magic. The young hospice worker is determined to make enough money to attend nursing school, even if it means taking a job as a live-in caretaker for the elderly owner of an isolated plantation house an hour's drive outside of New Orleans, deep in the atmospheric Louisiana delta renowned for the locals' mystical practices and powerful ceremonies. The decrepit Terrebonne Parish mansion is home to born-and-bred Southerners Violet and Ben Devereaux and both the house and its occupants seem weighted with somber histories. But for Caroline, the setting is unimportant--she's there to do her job, caring for Ben after a stroke has left him nearly paralyzed and mute. To make maneuvering throughout the large home an easier task, Violet entrusts the new live-in with a skeleton key that unlocks every door--including one that Caroline discovers obscured by a bookcase at the back of the house's attic. Seemingly forgotten, the room holds an intriguing mix of antiques, mirrors oddly banished from the rooms below and artifacts apparently connected to the practice of a strange kind of magic--a folk magic that conflicts directly with Caroline's common sense and pragmatic way of thinking. And yet, small instances of the unexplainable begin to occur. The mansion--and the strange couple who inhabit it--are rife with secrets. The more Caroline explores, the deeper she is drawn into a darkening mystery in the attic room at the very heart of the house--towards a terrifying and sinister legacy that threatens to take vengeance on anyone who comes to believe in its power. As Caroline begins to question her own convictions, she comes ever closer to opening the door and crossing the threshold to where simple belief becomes deadly reality.

Crew

Michael Alvarado

Plasterer

Tim Alverson

Editor

Colin Anderson

Camera Operator

Colin Anderson

Steadicam Operator

Dale E. Anderson

On-Set Dresser

Scott M. Anderson

On-Set Dresser

Keith Anthony

Adr

Steve Apostolina

Adr

Fred Arbegast

Sculptor

Gordon Ard

Grip

Ed Arter

Transportation Coordinator

Christopher Assells

Sound Effects Editor

Kenneth Au

Digital Effects Artist

Tom Bahr

Coordinator

Heather Baker

Digital Effects Artist

Ron Baratie

Greensman

Bruce Barns

Song Performer

Bruce Barns

Song

John Beard

Production Designer

Mary Pat Bentel

Assistant

Michael Betz

Production Assistant

David Bilow

Assistant Editor

Georges Bizet

Song

Josh Bleibtreu

Director Of Photography

Josh Bleibtreu

Other

Kathryn Blondell

Hair Stylist

Daniel Bobker

Producer

Martin Bosworth

Rigging Gaffer

Drew Boughton

Art Director

Stephen Bourgeois

Special Effects

Justin Bourret

Assistant Editor

Walter Breaux

Song

Walter Breaux

Song Performer

June Brickman

Makeup Artist

Rick Broderman

Painter

W. Earl Brown

Song

Maya Browne

Assistant

Martha Bryan

Location Assistant

Richard Buden

Storyboard Artist

Richard Buden

Illustrator

Jenna Buffaloe

Production

Gary Burritt

Negative Cutter

Eluard Burt Ii

Song

Eluard Burt Ii

Song Performer

James Burt

Music Editor

David Byrne

Production Assistant

Bryan Carrigan

Music

Javier Carrillo

Foreman

Javier Carrillo

Foreman

Kevin Cerchiai

Boom Operator

Terry P Chapman

Special Effects Technician

Liz Chiz

Art Department

June Christopher

Adr

Peter C Clarke

Property Master

Rudy Coblentz

Accounting Assistant

Harry Cohen

Sound Designer

Lisa Cohen

Stunts

John T Connor

Assistant Camera

Todd Constantine

Digital Effects Artist

Larry Cottrill

Lighting Technician

Elizabeth Coulon

Extras Agent/Coordinator

David Cowgill

Adr

Brandon Cox

Loader

Beth W Crookham

Location Assistant

Alex Cruz

Best Boy Grip

Mary Elizabeth Cuccia Smith

Production Assistant

Mick Cukurs

Set Designer

Michael Cutler

On-Set Dresser

Wendy Cutler

Adr

William R Davidson

Props

Theodore M Davila

Accounting Assistant

Sandy De Crescent

Music Contractor

Dave Deever

Video

Dave Degaetano

Construction Coordinator

Dan Deleeuw

Visual Effects Supervisor

Helio Deoliveira

Location Assistant

Matt Derksen

Character Animation

Peter Devlin

Sound Mixer

David Diamond

Best Boy Electric

Louis Dinson

Transportation Captain

Tracy Dixon

Extras Agent/Coordinator

Sharon Donovan

Assistant

Holly Dorff

Adr

Julie Drach

Production Assistant

Mitch Dubin

Camera Operator

Frank Duffy

Medic

Thom Ehle

Consultant

Martin Elfalan

Accounting Assistant

Robert Elhai

Original Music

Annie Ellis

Stunts

Jimmy Ellis

Electrician

Christopher Elly

Music Scoring Mixer

Jann Engel

Assistant Art Director

David L Falconer

Plasterer

Zach Fannin

Graphic Designer

Johnny Farmer

Song Performer

Johnny Farmer

Song

Michael Fauntleroy

Assistant Camera

Lisa Jean Felski

Post-Production Accountant

Ralph J Fierro

Props

Mark Figueroa

Assistant Camera

Craig Fincannon

Location Casting

Lisa Mae Fincannon

Location Casting

Amy Finkle

Assistant

Katie Fitch

Assistant

Dustin Fleetwood

Song

Andy Flores

Painter

George Flores

Sound

Rosalyn Flot

Song

Michael J Flynn

Greensman

Chris Fogel

Music Producer

Chris Fogel

Music Scoring Mixer

Chris Fogel

Score Recording

Keith Frazier

Song

Philip Frazier

Song

Stephanie Frey

Art Department Coordinator

Louise Frogley

Costume Designer

Laurel Frushour

Set Costumer

Don Fullilove

Adr

Conrad Gamble

Stunts

Miranda Garrison

Choreographer

Rod Garvin

Painter

John Gathright

Props Assistant

Rickie Joe Gee

Construction

Susan Germaine

Hair Stylist

Nerses Gezalyan

Foley Mixer

Dominic Gibbs

Sound Design

Tom Gibson

Key Grip

Beniamino Gigli

Song Performer

Zoila Gomez

Production Coordinator

Jeff Gomillion

Adr Mixer

Mario Rolando Gonzalez

Caterer

Kerry Michele Gutierrez

Adr

Tim Hammond

Extras Agent/Coordinator

Larry Haney

On-Set Dresser

Mark Hannibal

On-Set Dresser

Andrew Harrington

Production Assistant

Anthony Harris

Color Timer

Fawn Lohnee Harris

Song

Fawn Lohnee Harris

Song Performer

Laura Harris

Adr/Dialogue Editor

Adam Harrison

Gaffer

Roderick Harrison

Song

Barbara Hawkins

Song

Rosa Lee Hawkins

Song

Fontaine Beauchamp Hebb

Set Decorator

John Heller

Digital Effects Artist

Gregory D Hemstreet

Production Accountant

Karl Herbst

Cg Supervisor

John K Hill

Foreman

Jennifer Ho

Art Department

Patrick R. Hoeschen

Electrician

Elita Hoffpauir

Song Performer

Ella Hoffpauir

Song Performer

Mary Hoffpauir

Song Performer

Neil Holcomb

Best Boy Electric

Buddy Joe Hooker

Stunt Coordinator

Joe Horrigan

Consultant

Joe Hutshing

Editor

Rif Hutton

Adr

Andrew Jablonski

Accountant

William Jackson

Production Assistant

Craig Jaeger

Foley Editor

Nancy James

Craft Service

Kathy Jarvis

Stunts

Blind Willie Johnson

Song

Blind Willie Johnson

Song Performer

Joan Marie Johnson

Song

Robert Johnson

Song Performer

Robert Johnson

Song

Tom H. Johnson

Assistant

Trent Johnson

Colorist

Walter Jones

Adr

Daryl Kell

Music Editor

John Kennedy

Best Boy Electric

Cynthia Kershaw

Production Assistant

Karen Klein

Rotoscope Animator

Jay Kleinhesselink

Gaffer

Hilary Klym

Rigging Grip

Jahmila Knell

Production Assistant

Joyce Kogut

Costume Supervisor

Selma Kora

Assistant Property Master

Ronna Kress

Casting

Kyle Krogh

Software Engineer

Ehren Kruger

Screenplay

Ehren Kruger

Song

Eliza Ladensohn

Casting Assistant

Michael Lambert

Generator Operator

Mary Etta Lang

Tailor

Suttirat Larlarb

Art Director

Tim Lauber

Score Recording

Polly Leach

Assistant

Donna Lynn Leavy

Adr

Scot Leczel

Props

Barrett J Leigh

Assistant Production Coordinator

Lisa Lengyel

Assistant Camera

Julia Levine

Set Designer

Jason Lloyd

Score Recording

Jennifer Lobban

Accounting Assistant

Alan Lomax

Music Arranger

Film Details

Also Known As
Skeleton Key, porte des secrets
MPAA Rating
Release Date
2005
Distribution Company
Universal Pictures
Location
Los Angeles, California, USA; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 44m

Quotes

Trivia

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States on Video November 15, 2005

Released in United States Summer August 12, 2005

Based on a spec script by Ehren Kruger (part of his two-picture deal at Universal worth seven figures).

Project is part of a two-picture, seven-figure deal Kruger signed with Universal.

Universal Pictures paid Kate Hudson $7 million to star in the film.

Universal Pictures pushed back the project's start date from fall of 2003 to spring of 2004 due to Kate Hudson's pregnancy.

Released in United States Summer August 12, 2005

Released in United States on Video November 15, 2005