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Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2015: #38. Tom Tykwer’s A Hologram for the King

A Hologram for the King

Director: Tom Tykwer// Writer: Tom Tykwer

Primarily known for his famed 1998 title Run, Lola Run, which shot actress Franka Potente into international stardom, German director Tom Tykwer’s been involved with a variety of international co-productions since, each seeming to find a minor cult following, such as Perfume: The Story of a Murderer (2006), The International (2009), and most infamously, Cloud Atlas (2012), which he co-directed with Andy and Lana Wachowski (however, we were most impressed with his less discussed return to Germany with 2010’s well performed Three). Now, Tykwer’s adapated David Eggar’s (screenwriter for Away We Go and Where the Wild Things Are) novel, A Hologram for a King, a political allegory set in an up-and-coming Saudi Arabian city. The comedy-drama tells the story of an American businessman who makes a last-ditch attempt to stave off bankruptcy and finally accomplish something big. He wants to present his project to the king, who, unfortunately, does not grace him with his presence. In the blistering heat, the manager and his IT team continue waiting for days, weeks and even months. As you can see, it features a trio of famous Toms, including Tykwer, Hanks, and Skeritt.

Cast: Tom Hanks, Tom Skerritt, Sarita Choudhury

Producers: X Filme Creative Pool’s Stefan Arndt and Uwe Schott (Amour), Primeridian’s Arcadiy Golubovich and Timothy D. O’Hair (99 Homes), Playtone’s Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman (Ithaca).

U.S. Distributor: Rights available

Release Date: Cloud Atlas premiered in Toronto shortly before it’s theatrical run, and the nature of this latest project may follow in a similar route.


Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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