IMDb > A Piece of the Action (1977)
A Piece of the Action
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A Piece of the Action (1977) More at IMDbPro »

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Release Date:
27 February 1978 (Denmark) See more »
A delightfully delicious dilemma!
Dave Anderson and Manny Durrell are two high-class sneak thieves who have never been caught. Joshua... See more » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
A Piece of the Action provides an enjoyable final teaming of Poitier and Cosby See more (14 total) »


  (in credits order)

Sidney Poitier ... Manny Durrell

Bill Cosby ... Dave Anderson

James Earl Jones ... Joshua Burke

Denise Nicholas ... Lila French
Hope Clarke ... Sarah Thomas

Tracy Reed ... Nikki McLean

Titos Vandis ... Bruno
Frances Foster ... Bea Quitman

Jason Evers ... Ty Shorter

Marc Lawrence ... Louie

Ja'net DuBois ... Nellie Bond
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Larry Beecham ... Percy 'Bubba' Watkins
Thomas Benjamin ... Anthony
Tamu Blackwell ... Cheryl
Jack Brami ... Jesus
Gammy Burdett ... Emma McLean
Gloria Delaney ... Secretary

Rudy Diaz ... Stosh
Dianne Oyama Dixon ... Denise Orville (as Dianne Dixon)
Estelle Evans ... Alberta Ballard
Kurt Grayson ... Dirk

Eric Laneuville ... Gerald
Edward Love ... Willie Mangum
Bryan O'Dell ... Roscoe
Cyril Poitier ... Mr. Theodore
Sherri Poitier ... Cookie

Sheryl Lee Ralph ... Barbara Hanley
Albert Reed ... Randolph Ballard
Pat Renella ... Nikos

Angus Scrimm ... Monk (as Lawrence Guy)

Karole Selmon ... Sheila Moran
Essex Smith ... Maintenance Man
Wonderful Smith ... Daniel McLean

Ernest Thomas ... John
Theoris Usher ... Malcom Pomeroy
Steve Vignari ... Cesar
Bill Walker ... Clair Hurst
Candy Ward ... Hedda Champion

James Wheaton ... Voisin Waiter
Frances E. Williams ... Naomi Chamberlain
Gammy Singer ... Mrs. McLean (uncredited)
Charles Walker ... Parking lot attendant (uncredited)

Directed by
Sidney Poitier 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Charles Blackwell 
Timothy March  story

Produced by
Pembroke J. Herring .... associate producer
Kris Keiser .... associate producer
Melville Tucker .... producer
Original Music by
Curtis Mayfield 
Cinematography by
Donald M. Morgan 
Film Editing by
Pembroke J. Herring 
Casting by
Karen Rea  (as Karen Grossman)
Production Design by
Alfred Sweeney 
Set Decoration by
Bill McLaughlin  (as William J. McLaughlin)
Makeup Department
Eddie M. Barron .... hair stylist
Monty Westmore .... makeup artist
Production Management
Mickey McCardle .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Malcolm Atterbury Jr. .... second unit director (as Malcolm Atterbury)
Craig Huston .... second assistant director
Kalai Strode .... dga trainee
Dwight Williams .... assistant director
Art Department
Pat O'Connor .... property master
Stan Cockerell .... set dresser (uncredited)
Carey Harris Jr. .... swing gang (uncredited)
Leon Harris .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Harry R. Kemm .... set designer (uncredited)
William Ladd Skinner .... set designer (uncredited)
Fritz Strasser .... leadman (uncredited)
Greg F. Thomas .... swing gang (uncredited)
Richard Valdez .... swing gang (uncredited)
Sound Department
Willie D. Burton .... production sound mixer
William L. McCaughey .... sound (as William McCaughey)
John Riordan .... sound editor
Marvin E. Lewis .... boom operator (uncredited)
Tony Brubaker .... stunt double
Henry Kingi .... stunts
Julius LeFlore .... stunts (uncredited)
Bob Minor .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Chris Schwiebert .... camera operator
Larry Boelens .... gaffer (uncredited)
John Brewer .... second assistant camera (uncredited)
Doug Byers .... electrical best boy (uncredited)
Don Chase .... grip (uncredited)
Richard Dow .... dolly grip (uncredited)
William W. Gillohm .... still photographer (uncredited)
Gregg Guellow .... best boy (uncredited)
Ron Kenyon .... rigging gaffer (uncredited)
Robert D. McBride .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Allen J. Pettebone .... electrical best boy (uncredited)
Calvin Sterry .... key grip (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Marie Brown .... wardrobe
David Rawley .... wardrobe
Winnie D. Brown .... costumer: women (uncredited)
Ermon Sessions .... set man (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Richard Lane .... assistant film editor (as Dick Lane)
Location Management
Harry Zubrinsky .... location manager (uncredited)
Music Department
Gil Askey .... conductor
Gil Askey .... music arranger
Curtis Mayfield .... lyrics
William Saracino .... music editor
Mavis Staples .... music performer: songs
Transportation Department
Jerry Cipperly .... assistant transportation captain (uncredited)
Gene Clinesmith .... driver (uncredited)
Henry Compton .... driver (uncredited)
John Conte .... driver (uncredited)
Nick Falco .... driver (uncredited)
Dave Kupp .... driver (uncredited)
Jack Lietzke .... transportation captain (uncredited)
Other crew
Wendy Atterbury .... script supervisor
Arthur Mitchell .... choreographer
Vincent Tubbs .... unit publicist
Claire Mactague .... production secretary (uncredited)
Micki Z. McMillan .... executive secretary to producer and director (uncredited)
Reginald Poitier .... personal valet: Sidney Poitier (uncredited)
Sioux Richards .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Arlene Sieja .... publicity secretary (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
135 min
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Iceland:L | UK:A (original rating) | UK:15 (video) | USA:PG
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Sheryl Lee Ralph's film debut.See more »
Continuity: (at around 39 mins) The position of Manny's hand changes between shots.See more »
Movie Connections:
'Til Blossoms BloomSee more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
4 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
A Piece of the Action provides an enjoyable final teaming of Poitier and Cosby, 26 February 2008
Author: tavm from Baton Rouge, LA

In reviewing films involving African-Americans in chronological order for Black History Month, we're now at 1977 with A Piece of the Action. This is the third and last teaming of Sidney Poitier and Bill Cosby and the fifth directorial effort of Poitier. Before I go on, I'd just like to note that this movie takes place and is filmed in Chicago, Ill., which was where I was born and lived for the first six years of my life. The music composer, Curtis Mayfield, himself was a Windy City native. Also, since I'm now a Louisiana resident, I'd like to mention that one cast member-Eric Laneuville-is from New Orleans. Okay, here's the premise: Both Cosby and Poitier, separately since they don't know each other in the beginning, have taken large amounts of money from the bank and the mob, respectively. James Earl Jones, as a retired police detective, blackmails them to work at a community center to avoid going to jail. I'll stop there and say while there's plenty of laughs from both of the leads and some of the characters that surround them (love the parents and relatives of Poitier's girlfriend Nikki, one of whom is played by "Good Times" Ja'net DuBois), this was also a pretty serious movie about getting ghetto kids to get honest jobs with Poitier acting like his teacher role from To Sir, With Love with good results. Also loved Cosby's flirtations with Denise Nicholas and the way she laughs at his lines and faces. Oh, and the janitor, Mr. Theodore is played by Sidney's older brother Cyril. While the film is pretty long and some scenes are short-cut with a line, this was a pretty enjoyable movie that made me a little sad that Poitier choose to concentrate on directing at the expense of his performing career for the next 11 years. When he did come back, however, he did manage to still entertain in various features and TV movies though he hasn't been in anything since 2001. If what he did then was the last of his work, then at least he has a wonderful legacy. As for Dr. Cosby, his peak of success was to come with "The Cosby Show" which was one of the last enjoyable family sitcoms to come on network TV. For anyone wanting to see Poitier and Cosby as a team however, Uptown Saturday Night, Let's Do It Again, and A Piece of the Action provide plenty of enjoyment for fans of both.

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