June 16, 2006 (NY; LA release: June 23; national release: June 30)
Studio: IFC Films, The Weinstein Company
Director: Patrick Creadon
Screenwriter: Not Available
Starring: Jon Stewart, Will Shortz, Bill Clinton, Bob Dole, Ken Burns, Mike Mussina, Ellen Ripstein
MPAA Rating: PG (for some language and mild thematic elements)
Official Website: WordPlaymovie.com
Review: 9/10 rating
DVD Review: Not Available
DVD: Click here to buy!
Movie Poster: View here
Production Stills: View here
Plot Summary: "Wordplay" is a journey into the world of Will Shortz, the crossword puzzle editor at The New York Times. Known to millions as National Public Radio's "Puzzle Master," Shortz has spent his entire lifetime studying, creating, and editing puzzles, and has built a huge following along the way. Meet Shortz's die-hard fans -- including President Bill Clinton, Senator Bob Dole, "The Daily Show's" Jon Stewart, filmmaker Ken Burns, the Indigo Girls, and Yankee's ace pitcher Mike Mussina -- and discover why over 50 million Americans do crosswords every week.
"Wordplay" also introduces us to several world-class crossword solvers and follows them to Stamford, CT, as they compete at the 28th annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament (ACPT). Hosted and directed by Shortz, the tournament is the nation's oldest and largest crossword competition. Competitors travel from all over the world to attend, and vary in age from teenagers to octogenarians. Over the course of one long, snowy weekend, almost five hundred competitors will battle it out for the title "Crossword Champ." The competition is based on both speed and accuracy, and one wrong (or blank) square guarantees that someone else will be taking home the trophy.
Catch all the action at what Shortz calls "the most exciting competition in tournament history!" Explore the madness and the mirth, the comedy and the drama that is our national obsession with these puzzles. Whether you're a Monday-only solver (the easiest day of the week) or a Saturday "brain-busting" wizard, you're sure to enjoy your very own "A-ha!" moment when you experience "Wordplay."
QuickTime/Windows Media Player, Various
Clip 1 - 'Mussina':
Clip 2 - 'Pencil-Pen':