Long before he was tagging along with the Autobots, Shia LaBeouf was part of a cursed family and serving time at a juvenile detention camp. Holes was a star-studded live-action Disney comedy-drama that drew inspiration from Louis Sachar’s novel of the same name. Though Sigourney Weaver and Jon Voight took top billing for this 2003 adventure, the film follows LaBeouf’s Stanley Yelnats IV, his time at Camp Green Lake, and a mysterious treasure.
The award-winning film was written by Louis Sachar and directed by Andrew Davis, who’s career included The Fugitive. Joining LaBeouf, Weaver, and Voight were particularly recognizable actors and actresses including Patricia Arquette, Tim Blake Nelson, Dule Hill, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, and Michael Cavanaugh. Even Henry Winkler stepped in to portray LaBeouf’s father, Stanley Yelnats III.
You can follow Stanley Yelnats IV adventure at Camp Green Lake by finding Holes streaming on Disney+. Watch Holes online to catch an early 21st century Disney film that drew in a decent box office while wooing critics and audiences.
Here’s how to stream Holes right now:
How to Stream ‘Holes’ – Exclusively on Disney+
Holes is one of the popular live-action movies from the 2000s that will be streaming exclusively on Disney’s new subscription streaming service, Disney+.
You can sign up for a 7-day free trial of Disney+ HERE, which will allow you to stream Holes and hundreds of other movies and shows on your computer, phone, tablet, smart TV or streaming device. If you extend past the free trial, the service costs $6.99/month. You may also opt for this discount bundle of Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ for $12.99/month.
- 1. Sign up for Disney+ here
- 2. Go to Disneyplus.com or download the Disney+ app on your device
- 3. Log in using your information
- 4. Search for “Holes”
- 5. Tap on Holes
- 6. Tap the Play Button
- 7. Enjoy!
Disney+ also boasts a vast library of Disney-owned movies and series — plus several new original series coming soon. The service includes unlimited downloads so you can watch offline whenever and wherever you want. The list of compatible devices and smart TVs includes iPads, Apple TV, Amazon devices, Amazon Fire TV, Android, Chromecast, Roku, PS4, and Xbox One.
Release Date: April 18, 2003
Creators: Louis Sachar
Director: Andrew Davis
Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Sigourney Weaver, Jon Voight, Patricia Arquette, Tim Blake Nelson
When wrongfully convicted, a boy from a cursed family is sentenced to serve time in a desert detention camp where inmates are forced to dig holes for the evasive warden.
How Long Is ‘Holes’?
Holes has a runtime of 117 minutes.
Stanley Yelnats IV comes from a family said to be cursed by a fortune teller. That bad luck follows him and he finds himself convicted of a crime he didn’t commit. Sentenced to the Camp Green Lake detention camp, Stanley joins inmates as they dig holes in the desert for Warden Louise Walker. The longer Stanley remains in the camp, the more he and his new friend Hector “Zero” Zeroni uncover about its mysterious past, the strange lot of people who run it, and, most importantly, why the inmates are charged with digging holes all over the desert.
Holes is headlined by a cast of well-known actors and actresses, who help newcomer Shia LaBeouf find his footing in the movie that helped kick start his career.
Shia LaBeouf as Stanley Yelnats IV
The youngest member of the Yelnats family, Stanley is afflicted by his lineage’s string of bad luck. Stanley fits in with the other inmates but finds himself embarking on his own adventure that uncovers many secrets about the detention camp. When casting for Stanley, Andrew Davis sought a “young Tom Hanks.” At the time of filming, LaBeouf was already working with Disney on Even Stevens.
Sigourney Weaver as Louise Walker
The tough warden of Camp Green Lake, Louise Walker forces the inmates to dig holes all over the desert. Though no one knows why, it’s clear that she’s searching for something important. Weaver hoped to join the cast of Holes because Louis Sachar’s novel was among one of her daughter’s favorite books.
Jon Voight as Mario Sevillo
Also known as Mr. Sir, Mario Sevillo plays a role in Warden Walker’s bigger picture. He serves as Walker’s assistant and is known for his obsession with sunflower seeds. In the film, Mr. Sir is seen carrying a Smith & Wesson model 66, which isn’t a detail found in the novel.
Patricia Arquette as Katherine Barlow
Long before the events of the movie, Katherine “Kissin’ Kate” Barlow, was a school teacher that turned to crime. She was a legend in Camp Green Lake with a potential tie to Louise Walker and her obsession with digging holes. Arquette had to learn how to ride a horse for her role as Barlow.
Tim Blake Nelson as Dr. Kiowa Pendanski
The cruel doctor of Camp Green Lake, Pendanski is often seen picking on inmate Hector “Zero” Zeroni (Khleo Thomas). In Sachar’s novel, Pendanski is known as “Mr.” and isn’t referenced as being a doctor. This detail was added for the movie.
‘Holes’ Songs and Soundtrack
In the background of Holes was a score composed and conducted by Joel McNeely. The official soundtrack, however, was a bit more involved and featured tracks by artists like Moby, Shaggy, Eagle-Eye Cherry, and Fiction Plane. Grammy award winner Keb Mo’ provided the popular single “Just Like You.”
A different rendition of the track “Down to the Valley” was featured in O Brother, Where Art Thou?, which also starred Tim Blake Nelson.
‘Holes’ at the Box Office
Holes saw a moderate return at the box office, earning $16.3 million during its opening weekend. It released alongside Anger Management and fell short of surpassing the Adam Sandler comedy by nearly $30 million. The total take home was $71.4 million, which, without factoring in inflation, surpassed 102 Dalmatians and The Jungle Book (1994).
‘Holes’ Reviews – What the Critics Said
With Louis Sachar directly involved in the adaptation of his source material, critics found it easier to dig into the fun and drama of Holes. It received an average response, with many citing the film’s ability to stay true to the source material.
Where ‘Holes’ Fits in the Disney Movie Pantheon
After its release, Holes went on to win three awards – two COLA and one Sierra. Holes may not have had a lasting effect on Disney or its legacy, but the film has a devoted following that touts it as one of the studio’s best live-action films.
‘Holes’ Trivia: 5 Fast Facts
Before digging into the fun of this live-action comedy-drama, here are some fast facts to help you appreciate the production.
1. Cutting the Fat
In the novel, Stanley Yelnats IV starts out obese and slowly loses weight throughout the book. Since it would have been difficult to portray the weight loss in a live-action movie, the creators opted to drop this aspect of the book.
2. A Darker Take on Sachar’s Work
Before Disney landed on Louis Sachar’s adaptation of his novel, Richard Kelly (Donnie Darko) had written a darker, more violent adaptation. His version was set in a post-apocalyptic world and greatly deviated from Sachar’s source material. Disney ultimately deemed the script unfit for a children’s movie and rejected it.
3. A Dedicated Movie
Six months before the film’s release, Scott Chapman Plank (Charles “Trout” Walker) passed away in a car crash. To honor the late actor, Disney dedicated Holes in his memory. His final film role came two years later with the release of Guns Before Butter (2005).
4. A Forgotten Sequel
Three years after the release of Disney’s Holes, Sachar published a sequel and spin-off title by the name of Small Steps. The book veers away from Stanley Yelnats IV’s story and focuses on former Camp Green Lake inmates Theodore “Armpit” Johnson and Rex “X-Ray” Washburn. In Holes, Armpit and X-Ray are portrayed by Byron Cotton and Brenden Jefferson respectively. No plans for adapting the sequel into a movie were ever made.
5. The Many Hats of Louis Sachar
On top of writing Holes and adapting it to a feature film screenplay, Sachar also acted in the movie. His brief role was alongside his wife and daughter when Sam the Onion Man (Dule Hill) is selling his onion tonic to cure Sachar’s baldness.
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