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The Giver

Rosemary | 2014

The Giver is a 2014 Canadian-American-South African social science fiction film directed by Phillip Noyce. It is based on the 1993 novel of the same name by Lois Lowry. In the film, Taylor portrays Rosemary, the previous Receiver of Memory and the daughter of the titular Giver.
The Giver is based on the novel by Lois Lowry, which takes place in a society where the emotions of the population are suppressed to maintain order. This stops people from feeling depressed or unhappy, but it also removes happiness and love too. The story follows Jonas, a young boy selected to become the next Receiver of Memory, who holds all the memories of the past and struggles with the new emotions the role brings with it.
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Background and Release

Following the success of the 2012 blockbuster The Hunger Games (for which Taylor wrote two songs; “Safe & Sound” and “Eyes Open“), Hollywood greenlit a large number of YA properties. This includes The Maze Runner trilogy and The Divergent series. The Giver joined this line-up in 2014, with a great cast that included Jeff Bridges, Alexander Skarsgård, and Meryl Streep. Bridges also produced the movie and had previously tried to mount an adaptation during the 1990s, where he wanted his father Lloyd to play the title role. Jeff Bridges himself would ultimately play the part while Brenton Thwaites played Jonas, his young protege.

Principal photography began on October 7, 2013 in Cape Town and Johannesburg. The filming was completed on February 13, 2014 in Utah. The Giver premiered on August 11, 2014 and was released theatrically in the United States on August 15, 2014.

Taylor as Rosemary

Taylor’s role in The Giver is short but important. During Jonas’ lessons, he gradually learns about emotions like love, grief, and joy. The Giver teaches him about music and reveals his daughter Rosemary (Taylor) was once his protege. She taught him how to play the piano, which includes a theme heard a few times throughout The Giver. Rosemary also insisted on experiencing every type of memory but after two months of training, she became overwhelmed by the emotions she experienced.

The Giver then reveals Rosemary asked to be “released,” which in the community means death by lethal injection. Taylor does well in the role, with the character of Rosemary haunting the story and the Giver himself. Her story also underlines the importance of emotion to Jonas and inspires him to break out of his repressive society by the end.

Critical Reception and Commercial Performance

While The Giver was greeted with a lukewarm critical response, with criticism focused on its dreary pacing and tone, it was a modest box-office success. The film earned $67 million on a $25 million budget. It also received a People’s Choice Award nomination for “Favorite Dramatic Movie”.

Watch Taylor's Scene in "The Giver"

General Information
DirectorPhillip Noyce
StarringJeff Bridges
Meryl Streep
Brenton Thwaites
Alexander Skarsgård
Katie Holmes
Taylor Swift
Cameron Monaghan
Odeya Rush
Emma Tremblay
Music byMarco Beltrami
Release DateAugust 15, 2014
Length97 minutes
Distributed byThe Weinstein Company
CountryUnited States
Taylor as Rosemary
Official Trailer
Behind the Scenes