Nancy Drew (2007 film)

Nancy Drew is a 2007 American mystery comedy film loosely based on the popular series of mystery novels about the titular teen detective of the same name by Edward Stratemeyer. It stars Emma Roberts as Nancy Drew, with Josh Flitter and Max Thieriot. Set in Los Angeles, it was directed by Andrew Fleming. The film was released in theaters on June 15, 2007, by Warner Bros. Pictures. Critical reactions were mixed, but the film grossed $30 million worldwide on a $20 million budget.

Nancy Drew
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAndrew Fleming
Produced byJerry Weintraub
Written byAndrew Fleming
Tiffany Paulsen
Based onNancy Drew
by Edward Stratemeyer
Music byRalph Sall
CinematographyAlexander Gruszynski
Edited byJeff Freeman
Distributed byWarner Bros. Pictures
Release date
  • June 15, 2007 (2007-06-15)
Running time
99 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$20 million[1]
Box office$30.7 million[1]


Nancy Drew, an amateur sleuth, and her widowed father, Carson Drew, move from their quaint hometown River Heights to California, where Carson has a temporary job. Carson encourages Nancy to focus on living like a normal teenager, instead of getting herself into trouble with crime- and mystery-solving. However, unbeknownst to Carson, Nancy chose their California house because of its famously unsolved mystery of the death of the movie star Dehlia Draycott. Nancy struggles to fit in at her new school, only befriending a younger boy, Corky. She wears 50's outfits and penny loafers, becoming subject to teasing from Corky's older sister and her best friend. After discovering many clues about the Draycott mystery, she begins secretly sleuthing behind her father's back. Nancy eventually finds Draycott's lost child, Jane Brighton, who turns out to be the sole beneficiary of Draycott's will, which has disappeared. Nancy contacts her father's business associate, Dashiel Biedermeyer, the lawyer of the Draycott estate, to assist her with the case.

Meanwhile, as an early birthday present, Ned Nickerson, Nancy's good friend with implied romantic interest, visits from River Heights. Corky becomes jealous of Nancy and Ned's close relationship and tries his best to get Nancy's attention. Nancy begins experiencing worsening attacks against her as she learns that someone does not want her to solve the case. One afternoon, a tearful Jane arrives on Nancy's doorstep and announces that her daughter has been taken away from her. While watching a Dehlia Draycott film, Nancy realizes that Draycott has hidden her will in a prop from one of her last movies. After retrieving the will, Nancy is kidnapped by the villain's henchmen. Nancy escapes with the will but gets into a car crash. Her father arrives and demands to know what is going on. After explaining her sleuthing, Biedermeyer offers them a ride home so he can finalize the legacy to Jane.

Nancy concludes that Biedermeyer was Dehlia Draycott's supposed love who stands to lose money if the will goes to Jane. However, when he questions Nancy about the will, she manages to jump out of the car. She is caught by Biedermeyer who threatens her; when Nancy asks him why he killed Dehlia, he replies that Dehlia went crazy after she put Jane up for adoption, and wanted to leave to be with her caretaker Leshing. Nancy escapes but is once again cornered. Leshing arrives and knocks the henchmen unconscious as Nancy reveals that she secretly recorded Biedermeyer's confession. While the police arrive to arrest Biedermeyer, Nancy reveals to Leshing that Jane is his daughter. The will is restored to Jane, who is able to get her daughter back and convert the Draycott mansion into a home for single mothers.

Back at River Heights, Nancy visits Ned as he repairs her car and they share a kiss. She receives a long-distance phone call regarding a new mystery in Scotland.


Several well-known actors make uncredited guest appearances in the film. Bruce Willis appears as himself, shooting a crime film in Los Angeles; Adam Goldberg plays Willis' director Andy; Chris Kattan plays one of the burglars Nancy catches in the opening sequence of the film; Lindsay Sloane plays a saleslady in a clothing boutique; Eddie Jemison appears as an adoption clerk; and Geraint Wyn Davies makes a brief appearance as a drama teacher.


The film was shot in Los Angeles from January 30, 2006, to April 3, 2006.[2] At that time, Emma Roberts did not have her driver's license. Though she was in possession of a permit, by law she was unable to drive the roadster for the car chase scenes all by herself. The movie was filmed in several California cities, including South Pasadena, Los Angeles, Santa Clarita, Long Beach, La Canada Flintridge and Burbank.[3]

Before Roberts was cast, actress Amanda Bynes was considered to portray Nancy, but her schedule prevented her from taking the role. Skye Sweetnam also auditioned for the role.[4]

Nancy's car in the film is a blue Nash Metropolitan convertible.[5]

Home media

Nancy Drew was released on DVD on February 11, 2008.

United States TV rights

U.S. cable networks, such as ABC Family and the Disney Channel, acquired the rights to the 2007 film version of Nancy Drew.


Box office

Opening at #7 in the U.S. box office, the film grossed $6,832,318 on its opening weekend and has since grossed $25,612,520 in the US and $5,054,410 internationally for a total $30,666,930 worldwide.[6]

Critical response

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 50%, with the site's consensuses reading, "Emma Roberts is bubbly and charming as Nancy Drew, the junior detective. But despite her best efforts, Nancy Drew still lacks excitement, surprise, and compelling secondary characters."[7] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 53 out of 100, based on reviews from 31 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[8] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A-" on an A+ to F scale.[9]

Sheri Linden of The Hollywood Reporter wrote: "The culture-clash procedural, which brings the small-town teen to big bad Hollywood, feels more perfunctory than inspired."[10] Lael Loewenstein of Variety magazine, said the film "serves up stale mystery-movie cliches and overcooked red herrings in a thoroughly wooden adaptation" and "the cast is as stiff as the dialogue".[11]

Plugged In said that "the film has all of the oversimplifications of a teen mystery novel with a little—but not enough—humorous self-awareness tossed in to make the story satisfying for adults".[12]

Book adaptations

A novelization of the movie was written by Daniela Burr the year of the film's release and published by Simon Spotlight.[13] Plus, books in the Nancy Drew, Girl Detective and Nancy Drew Clue Crew series both had movie-themed books.


  1. "Come to California" (Matthew Sweet)
  2. "Perfect Misfit" (Liz Phair)
  3. "Kids in America" (The Donnas)
  4. "Pretty Much Amazing" (Joanna)
  5. "Looking for Clues" (Katie Melua)
  6. "Hey Nancy Drew" (Price)
  7. "Like a Star" (Corinne Bailey Rae)
  8. "Nice Day" (Persephone's Bees)
  9. "Blue Monday" (Flunk)
  10. "We Came to Party" (J-Kwon)
  11. "All I Need" (Cupid)
  12. "Party Tonight" (Bizarre)
  13. "When Did Your Heart Go Missing?" (Rooney)
  14. "DARE" (Gorillaz featuring Shaun Ryder)


  • Nickelodeon Australian Kids' Choice Awards
  • 2008 – Favorite Movie Star for Emma Roberts
  • 2007 – Favorite Movie
  • Teen Choice Awards
  • 2007 – Choice Movie Actress: Comedy for Emma Roberts
  • 2007 – Choice Movie: Breakout Female for Emma Roberts
  • Young Artist Awards
  • 2007 – Best Family Feature Film (Comedy or Drama)
  • 2007 – Best Performance in a Feature Film – Leading Young Actress for Emma Roberts
  • 2007 – Best Performance in a Feature Film – Young Ensemble Cast for Emma Roberts, Josh Flitter, Amy Bruckner and Kay Panabaker


  1. "Nancy Drew (2007) – Financial Information". The Numbers.
  3. "Filming locations for Nancy Drew (2007)". Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  4. Sweetnam, Skye. "Reminds me of when I auditioned for #NancyDrew but I went to the audition w too much cleavage #Fail #WhoareweKidding". Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  5. "Nancy's Car is for Sale! (And Weekend Puzzle #300!)". Her Interactive. March 11, 2016. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  6. "Nancy Drew". Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  7. "Nancy Drew". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  8. "Nancy Drew". Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  9. Joshua Rich Updated June 18, 2007. "Fantastic Four debuts at No. 1". Entertainment Weekly. Nancy Drew (No. 7) drew a nice A- CinemaScore from an audience that was, not surprisingly, 77 percent female.
  10. "Nancy Drew". The Hollywood Reporter.
  11. Loewenstein, Lael (8 June 2007). "Nancy Drew". Variety (magazine).
  12. "Nancy Drew". Plugged In. Retrieved 2020-06-13.
  13. Burr, Daniela (2007). Nancy Drew Movie Novelization. pp. 128. ISBN 1416938990.
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