Two Weeks Notice

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Two Weeks Notice
A smiling man wearing a suit and tie, standing beside a woman who is pulling on his tie.
Theatrical release poster
Directed byMarc Lawrence
Written byMarc Lawrence
Produced bySandra Bullock
CinematographyLászló Kovács
Edited bySusan E. Morse
Music byJohn Powell
Distributed byWarner Bros. Pictures
Release date
  • December 20, 2002 (2002-12-20)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$60 million
Box office$199 million

Two Weeks Notice is a 2002 American romantic comedy film written and directed by Marc Lawrence and starring Hugh Grant and Sandra Bullock. Although critical response was mixed, the film was successful at the box office.


The "Coney Island community center" Lucy wants to preserve was actually the Childs Restaurant location on Coney Island's Riegelmann Boardwalk. It was declared a New York Landmark a month after the film's premiere. It closed later (as in this 2013 picture) and, after renovation, became part of the Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island.

Lucy Kelson is an intelligent, highly competent liberal lawyer who specializes in historic preservation, environmental law, and pro bono causes in New York City. George Wade is an arrogant, needy billionaire real estate developer and stylish womanizing playboy, who is also quite naïve. Lucy's hard work and devotion to others contrasts sharply with George's childish recklessness and greed.

Lucy meets George in an attempt to stop the destruction of the Coney Island community center from her childhood. Discovering she graduated from prestigious Harvard law school, he offers to hire her to replace his old Chief Counsel, overlooking their opposing views of real estate development. She decides the benefits he offers for discretionary funding for community causes she espouses outweighs the negatives, especially as he promises to protect the community center.

She finds what he really requires is advice in all aspects of his life. She regretfully becomes his indispensable assistant and he calls her for every little thing at all hours. After Lucy is disrupted at a friend's wedding by George's latest "emergency" (what to wear to an event he is attending), she gives him two weeks' notice of resignation.

Lucy looks for work at other firms, but George has called in advance asking them not to hire her, so he can keep her on. Eventually he admits defeat and she offers to help him find a replacement, but unaware of how close and interdependent they have become. They act like an old married couple at a restaurant, able to simultaneously carry out a conversation while involuntarily exchanging food out of habit from knowing each other's food preferences.

When potential interviewee June Carver shows up without an appointment seeking the position, Lucy speaks to her, but is concerned June lacks real estate experience. When George sees June he is immediately attracted and is ready to hire her on the spot and seemingly disregards Lucy's concerns. Lucy becomes increasingly concerned and competitive with her replacement. When George invites June to business events that Lucy would normally go on, she starts to get increasingly jealous.

Lucy finds out that despite George's promise, the community center is going to be knocked down and challenges him on his apparent betrayal. She arrives at his hotel to confront him and finds June and George in his apartment in lingerie during a game of "strip chess". George confronts her the next day (her last day) where Lucy reminds him he promised her to spare the community center and storms out.

After she is gone, George realizes his time with her has demonstrated he needs to change. Meanwhile, in her new job, Lucy finds she misses him. He goes in search for her and reveals he decided to keep his promise to her. Lucy initially rebuffs him but then returns and they declare their feelings.

In the DVD version of the film, an unreleased wedding scene of George and Lucy was featured. George and Lucy were married at the community center attended by family and friends.


In addition, Jason Antoon portrays Norman and Sharon Wilkins plays Polly St. Clair, while Donald Trump, Norah Jones and Mike Piazza make cameo appearances as themselves.


Director Marc Lawrence suffered headaches, sinus infections, a root canal, and a slipped disc, while making the film. Lawrence previously wrote the films Forces of Nature and Miss Congeniality, which starred Bullock, and it was on the latter film where he asked her to look at his unfinished script. Bullock liked it enough to star in and produce the film. Grant was first choice for the part, he and Bullock had already wanted to work together. Lawrence hoped the film would be different enough for Grant, not the same as his Notting Hill character, but not as unpleasant as his Bridget Jones's Diary character.[1] Filming took place in New York City, and was noted as the first Hollywood production to take place after the September 11 attacks.[2]


Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 42% of 124 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 5.3/10. The website's consensus reads: "Though Two Weeks Notice has nothing new to add to the crowded genre, Hugh Grant and Sandra Bullock make the movie a pleasant, if predictable, sit."[3] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 42 out of 100, based on 30 critics, indicating "mixed or average" reviews.[4] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale.[5]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 out of 4 and wrote: "… some of the dialogue has a real zing to it. There were wicked little one-liners that slipped in under the radar and nudged the audience in the ribs."[6] Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly wrote that it "Knows what it needs to do for both its stars, does it, and doesn't make a federal case about it. I'd watch these two together again in a New York minute."[7] David Rooney of Variety called it: "An affable but undernourished romantic comedy that fails to match the freshness of the actress-producer and writer's previous collaboration, "Miss Congeniality.""[8]

Box office[edit]

Two Weeks Notice opened at number 2 domestically, behind The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, and spent its first five weeks in the Top 10 at the box office.[9] It grossed $93.4 million in the United States and Canada, and $105.7 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $199.0 million, against a budget of $60 million.[10]


The soundtrack music to Two Weeks Notice was released on 28 January 2003.[11]

1."Love Theme"John Powell1:38
2."Divorce"John Powell1:24
3."Take Away"John Powell2:41
4."Trying to Get Fired"John Powell1:31
5."Helicopter Ride"John Powell2:31
6."In the Limo"John Powell0:51
7."Bobcat Pretzel"John Powell3:15
8."Protest"John Powell1:26
9."Interviews"John Powell0:44
10."Emergency"John Powell1:40
11."Absolutely Beautiful"John Powell2:41
12."Sad Bowels"John Powell2:51
13."George's Speech"John Powell2:44
14."Finale"John Powell3:41
15."Epilogue"John Powell0:41
Total length:30:19[11]

Punctuation issue[edit]

In the best-selling book on punctuation Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation, the author Lynne Truss points out that the spelling of the film's title is grammatically incorrect because it is missing an apostrophe (Two Weeks' Notice). The book's original hardcover edition featured Truss in her author's photo, glaring at the poster and holding a marker where the apostrophe should be.[12][13]


  1. ^ "Two Weeks Notice". Entertainment Weekly. 19 August 2002. Retrieved 8 August 2020.
  2. ^ Rowe, Brian (9 September 2018). "The Sandra Bullock Files #33: Two Weeks Notice (2002)". Medium. Archived from the original on 18 November 2019. Retrieved 2 January 2021.
  3. ^ "Two Weeks Notice". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 20 August 2023. Edit this at Wikidata
  4. ^ "Two Weeks Notice". Metacritic. Fandom, Inc. Retrieved 23 August 2023.
  5. ^ "Home". CinemaScore. Retrieved 23 August 2023.
  6. ^ Ebert, Roger (2002). "Two Weeks Notice movie review (2002)". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 8 August 2020 – via
  7. ^ Schwarzbaum, Lisa (20 December 2002). "Two Weeks Notice". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 8 August 2020.
  8. ^ Rooney, David (15 December 2002). "Two Weeks Notice". Variety. Retrieved 8 August 2020.
  9. ^ "Two Weeks Notice | Domestic Weekly". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved 20 August 2023.
  10. ^ "Two Weeks Notice". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved 20 August 2023.Edit this at Wikidata
  11. ^ a b Two Weeks Notice at AllMusic Edit this at Wikidata
  12. ^ Truss, Lynne (3 April 2015). "'Eats, Shoots, & Leaves' - New York Times". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 3 April 2015. Retrieved 23 September 2017.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  13. ^ "Reviews: Eats, Shoots and Leaves". Archived from the original on 25 December 2003. Retrieved 23 September 2017.

External links[edit]