My Salinger Year

Joanna dreams of being an author. But in 1990s New York, that is a difficult path to take. So, when she gets a job as assistant to literary agent Margaret, she is only too aware that she must seize this opportunity with both hands. She stays calm when the phones don’t stop ringing and deals confidently with her old-fashioned and stubborn boss. In any case, everything in the agency seems to revolve around just one person – the ageing cult author J.D. Salinger, whose fan mail Joanna answers. While in her private life she distances herself more and more from her socialist “boyfriend”, this young woman does makes inroads towards her vocation through Salinger, of all people, who has become something of a phantom. Films that approach writing and literature and our relationship to them in a serious but moving way still exist. Based on Joanna Rakoff’s coming-of-age memoir, My Salinger Year is transformed by newcomer Margaret Qualley and film star Sigourney Weaver into a wonderful portrait of the different generations and their ambitions – and the grande dame that is literature.
by Philippe Falardeau
with Margaret Qualley, Sigourney Weaver, Douglas Booth, Seána Kerslake, Brían F. O’Byrne, Colm Feore, Théodore Pellerin, Yanic Truesdale, Hamza Haq, Leni Parker
Canada / Ireland 2020 English 101’ Colour World premiere


  • Margaret Qualley (Joanna)
  • Sigourney Weaver (Margaret)
  • Douglas Booth (Don)
  • Seána Kerslake (Jenny)
  • Brían F. O’Byrne (Hugh)
  • Colm Feore (Daniel)
  • Théodore Pellerin (Boy from Winston-Salem)
  • Yanic Truesdale (Max)
  • Hamza Haq (Karl)
  • Leni Parker (Pam)


Written and Directed by Philippe Falardeau based on the book by Joanna Rakoff
Cinematography Sara Mishara
Editing Mary Finlay
Music Martin Léon
Sound Design Fionan Higgins
Sound Claude La Haye
Production Design Élise de Blois
Costumes Patricia McNeil
Make-Up Joan-Patricia Parris
Assistant Director Michel Marrec
Casting Billy Hopkins, Ashley Ingram, Rosina Bucci, Nadia Rona
Production Manager Michelle Quinn
Line Producer Claude Paiement
Producers Luc Déry, Kim McCraw
Executive Producers Philippe Falardeau, Joanna Rakoff, Mary Jane Skalski, Hussain Amarshi, Émilie Georges, Naima Abed, Celina Haddad
Co-Producers Ruth Coady, Susan Mullen
Co-Production Parallel Films Dublin

Philippe Falardeau

After studying politics, the French-Canadian writer and director made his debut feature film, La moitié gauche du frigo, in 2000. The film went on to screen at numerous festivals around the world. His second feature, Congorama, was selected for Cannes in 2006, while Monsieur Lazhar won the Variety Piazza Grande Award at Locarno and was nominated for a Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. In 2014, he directed The Good Lie starring Reese Witherspoon in the leading role. His film Chuck was inspired by the life of boxer Chuck Wepner.


1993 La course destination monde; Short Film 1995 Surprise sur prise; TV-Show 1997 Pâté Chinois; Documentary 2000 La moitié gauche du frigo 2001 Ça c’est Laurence; Short Film · Jean Laliberté; Short Film 2002 Boulevard St-Laurent; Documentary Series 2004 La méthode Morin; Documentary 2006 Congorama 2008 C’est pas moi, je le jure 2011 Monsieur Lazhar 2014 The Good Lie 2015 Guibord s’en va-t-en guerre 2016 Chuck 2020 My Salinger Year

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2020