Simon Birch

Last Updated on: June 26th, 2024

Simon Birch (Hollywood Pictures Movie)

“Simon Birch” is a comedy-drama film released in 1998, directed by Mark Steven Johnson. The movie stars Ian Michael Smith as Simon Birch, Joseph Mazzello as Joe Wenteworth, and Ashley Judd as Rebecca Wenteworth.

The story is loosely based on the novel “A Prayer for Owen Meany” by John Irving. It follows the life of Simon Birch, a 12-year-old boy with a rare genetic condition that stunts his growth, making him much smaller than his peers.

Despite his small size, Simon possesses a big heart and a strong determination to find meaning and purpose in his life. He believes that he is destined for greatness and is convinced that God has a special plan for him.

Simon’s best friend is Joe Wenteworth, a boy struggling with his own family issues and searching for his biological father. The two friends share a bond that is both heartwarming and humorous, as they navigate the challenges of adolescence and the mysteries of life.

Throughout the film, Simon’s unwavering faith and optimistic outlook inspire those around him, and he becomes an unlikely hero when a tragic accident occurs.

“Simon Birch” is known for its heartfelt and emotional storytelling, as well as the outstanding performances of its young actors. Ian Michael Smith’s portrayal of Simon Birch received particular praise for its authenticity and depth.

The movie received mixed reviews from critics but was appreciated for its touching narrative and poignant messages about friendship, faith, and the power of believing in oneself.

“Simon Birch” serves as a touchstone for viewers seeking a heartwarming and thought-provoking coming-of-age story that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the extraordinary impact one individual can have on the lives of others. It remains a touching and inspiring film that reminds audiences of the value of friendship, compassion, and believing in the impossible.

Additional Details


  • Ian Michael Smith: Simon Birch
  • Joseph Mazzello: Joe Wenteworth
  • Jim Carrey: Adult Joe Wenteworth / Narrator
  • Ashley Judd: Rebecca Wenteworth
  • Oliver Platt: Ben Goodrich
  • David Strathairn: Reverend Russell
  • Dana Ivey: Grandmother Wenteworth
  • Beatrice Winde: Hilde Grove
  • Jan Hooks: Miss Agnes Leavey
  • Cecilley Carroll: Marjorie
  • Sumela-Rose Keramidopulos: Ann
  • Sam Morton: Stuart
  • John Mazzello: Simon Wenteworth
  • Holly Dennison: Mrs. Birch
  • Peter MacNeill: Mr. Birch


  • Director: Mark Steven Johnson
  • Producers: Roger Birnbaum and Laurence Mark
  • Screenplay: Mark Steven Johnson

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About the Author

Craig Smith
I am founder and editor of My passion for all things Disney goes pretty far back to my first trip to Walt Disney World in the mid-80's. I have since returned to the magical place more than 20 times. I started this site when I came to the realization that I spent a significant portion of my day reading articles about Disney and watching Disney content with my 8-year old, so it made sense that I would start sharing some of what I read and see and building a little community around it. Other interests include 80's nostalgia, vintage toys, video games, LEGO, Star Wars and tech gadgets. Other site isDMR.