Life in a Year

Last updated
Life in a Year
Life in a Year poster.jpeg
Promotional poster
Directed by Mitja Okorn
Written by
  • Jeffrey Addiss
  • Will Matthews
Produced by
  • Marc Bienstock
  • Clarence Hammond
  • Caleeb Pinkett
Cinematography Quyen Tran
Edited by Matthew Friedman
Music by Photek
Distributed by Amazon Studios
Release date
  • November 27, 2020 (2020-11-27)
Running time
107 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$43,862

Life in a Year is a 2020 American romantic drama film directed by Mitja Okorn, from a screenplay by Jeffrey Addiss and Will Matthews. The film stars Jaden Smith, Cara Delevingne, Cuba Gooding Jr., and Nia Long. Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith serve as executive producers under their Overbrook Entertainment banner.


Life in a Year was released on November 27, 2020, by Amazon Studios.


Daryn, who is being groomed to get into Harvard by his father Xavier, meets Isabelle one night while trying to sneak into a rapper’s concert and develops an instant liking to her. He courts her and eventually falls in love with her but when he confesses his love, it is revealed that she has cancer and hasn't got much time left.

Then, Daryn makes a plan to live a life in a year. Isabelle recognises his potential as a rapper and helps him to make his first demo CD. He decides to let Isabelle meet his parents. His father, not liking Isabelle, uses the moment to fire questions at Isabelle and concludes by saying that it is his responsibility to protect his son from distractions and girls; especially those like Isabelle. Feeling offended and rejected, Isabelle leaves and Daryn is left alone and depressed.

A few days later, Daryn is shortlisted at Harvard and he attends his interview with his father. When he is asked of what skills and abilities he has, he loses himself to memories of Isabelle, to his father's disappointment, he ends up saying worthless things and excuses himself. Later at home, Daryn quarrels with his father and is almost punched by his father but his mother intervenes and the fight stops. Daryn goes to Isabelle and apologizes, he decides to abandon his family and leaves town with Isabelle. The two spend days together, and one day Daryn trying to surprise her, drives her to her mother. He convinces her to meet her mother but when she does, her mother recognizes her but tells her to leave. Feeling rejected, Isabelle asks Daryn to drive away from her mother's house. While driving, Isabelle in anger, starts yelling and shouting at Daryn who gets distracted and crashes into a bush near the beach. Isabelle gets out but passes out. Daryn calls for help, and manages to take Isabelle to the hospital.

A few days after Isabelle is discharged, her mother comes to visit her but soon leaves. Daryn's mother discovers that he is back in town and decides to see him. Isabelle suggests that Daryn should take a break from taking care of her just for a day since his mother is around. Daryn uses the opportunity to record his second song. When he gets back, he finds his mother panicking and Isabelle on the floor, unconscious and bleeding through her mouth. They get her to the hospital and there, it is revealed that Isabelle's cancer has spread and her organs are shutting down. The nurse concludes by saying that Isabelle's got only a few weeks left.

Soon after she is discharged, she surprises him with a wedding, they get married and consummate their love. Isabelle passes away a few days later and Daryn reconciles with his father and moves to New York City to pursue a career in music after graduating.



In March 2017, it was announced Cara Delevingne and Jaden Smith had joined the cast of the film, with Mitja Okorn directing from a screenplay by Jeffrey Addiss and Will Matthews. Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith will serve as executive producers via their Overbrook Entertainment banner. [1] In April 2017, Terrence Howard, Stony Blyden, Nia Long, RZA and JT Neal joined the cast of the film. [2] [3] [4] In May 2017, Chris D'Elia and Cuba Gooding Jr. joined the cast of the film, with Gooding Jr. replacing Howard. [5] [6]


Principal photography began in April 2017, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. [7]


The film was released on November 27, 2020, by Amazon Studios. [8]

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