Taglines: Twice the Fun, Double the Trouble.
Identical twins Annie and Hallie, separated at birth and each raised by one of their biological parents, later discover each other for the first time at summer camp and make a plan to bring their wayward parents back together.
Also Known As: Disney’s The Parent Trap.
Based on Lottie and Lisa by Erich Kästner
Creators: David Swift, Nancy Meyers, Charles Shyer
Director: Nancy Meyers
Star Cast: Lindsay Lohan, Dennis Quaid, Natasha Richardson
Producer (s): Charles Shyer
Cinematographer: Dean Cundey
Music: Alan Silvestri
Production House: Cinema Vehicle Services, The Meyers/Shyer Company, Walt Disney Pictures
Original network / Official Sites: Buena Vista Pictures Distribution
Release Year: 29 July 1998 (USA)
Runtime: 128 min
Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Family, Romance
Country: USA, UK
Language: English, French
In 1986, American winery owner Nicholas “Nick” Parker (Dennis Quaid) and British wedding gown designer Elizabeth James (Natasha Richardson) get married over the course of a transatlantic crossing on the Queen Elizabeth 2. However, shortly after the birth of their identical twin daughters, Annie and Hallie (both played by Lindsay Lohan), they get divorced and each has sole custody of one girl; Nick raises Hallie in Napa Valley, California and Elizabeth raises Annie in London, England.
Almost twelve years later in the summer of 1998, Nick and Elizabeth coincidentally send their daughters to the same summer camp, where they meet and take an immediate dislike to one another. They begin to pull a series of pranks on each other and after one prank goes too far, the two girls are isolated together as punishment until camp is over. One night they discover they are twin sisters and hatch a plan: to switch places in order to meet the parent they have never met and eventually reunite them. Hallie imitates Annie’s British accent and flies to London to meet their mother, maternal grandfather Charles, and the James’ butler Martin. Meanwhile, Annie imitates Hallie’s American accent and flies to Napa Valley to meet their father, Hallie’s nanny Chessy, and the family dog Sammy.
Upon arriving in Napa Valley, “Hallie” learns Nick has a new girlfriend Meredith (Elaine Hendrix), a child-hating gold digger, that he is planning to propose to. “Annie” sneaks out to call her sister from a phone booth but is discovered by Charles, who persuades her to reveal her identity to Elizabeth. Meanwhile, Chessy grows suspicious of “Hallie’s” odd behaviour, and “Hallie” confesses she is really Annie, but they do not tell Nick.
“Annie” tells Elizabeth that Nick wants to meet her in San Francisco in order to switch the girls back and the two of them, along with Martin, travel to do so. On the same weekend, “Hallie”, Nick, and Meredith travel to the same hotel to discuss wedding plans. Nick sees Elizabeth for the first time in years, and they both learn they have been tricked by their daughters into meeting again, as well as Nick discovering he’s had Annie in his care since the end of camp. Meanwhile, Chessy and Martin meet and grow romantically attracted to each other.
Hallie and Annie recreate the night their parents met by renting out a yacht for an evening, but ultimately fail to rekindle Nick and Elizabeth’s relationship. The twins resort to a last-ditch effort by demanding a three-day family camping trip, refusing to reveal which twin is which until after they return. Elizabeth tricks Meredith into taking her place on the camping trip at the last minute, much to the girls dismay. Over the course of the trip, Hallie and Annie play a number of harmless tricks on Meredith who becomes enraged and demands Nick chooses between her and them. Nick, finally seeing Meredith for who she truly is, chooses the girls over her, breaks off the engagement and calls off the wedding, much to Meredith’s dismay.
Back in Napa Valley, Nick shows Elizabeth his wine collection including the bottle from their wedding; they both realise they still have feelings for one another but decide it is better to go their separate ways. Elizabeth and Annie later board a flight for London, but when they arrive home, they find Nick and Hallie waiting for them (having taken a faster flight on the Concorde). Nick expresses his previous mistake of not going after Elizabeth when she left him the first time. They kiss, being watched by the girls who exclaim, “We actually did it.”
Photos during the credits show Nick and Elizabeth getting remarried aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2, with Annie and Hallie as bridesmaids, and Martin proposing to Chessy.