IMDb > Which Way Is Up? (1977)
Which Way Is Up?
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Which Way Is Up? (1977) More at IMDbPro »

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Which Way Is Up? -- Richard Pryor plays three roles--a farm worker named Leroy Jones; his father, Rufus; and the preacher Rev. Lenox Thomas--in this outrageous comedy about too many women and too little time.


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Up 4% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Lina Wertmüller (1972 screenplay Mimì metallurgico ferito nell'onore)
Carl Gottlieb (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for Which Way Is Up? on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 February 1979 (Denmark) See more »
Richard Pryor is playing three different roles here. The first being a poor orange picker named Leroy... See more » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Mr. Pryor did multiple characters FIRST! See more (10 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Richard Pryor ... Leroy Jones / Rufus Jones / Reverend Lenox Thomas

Lonette McKee ... Vanetta

Margaret Avery ... Annie Mae

Morgan Woodward ... Mr. Mann
Marilyn Coleman ... Sister Sarah
Bebe Drake ... Thelma (as BeBe Drake-Hooks)
Gloria Edwards ... Janelle
Ernesto Hernández ... Jose Reyes (as Ernesto Hernandez)

Otis Day ... Sugar
Morgan Roberts ... Henry
Diane Rodriguez ... Estrella Reyes
Dolph Sweet ... The Boss

Tim Thomerson ... Tour Guide (as Timothy Thomerson)
Daniel Valdez ... Chuy Estrada (as Danny Valdez)
Luis Valdez ... Ramon Juarez

Marc Alaimo ... Frankie
Tony Alvarenga ... Errand Boy

Victor Argo ... Angel
Pat Ast ... Hooker
Blair Burrows ... Goon
Kathy Cronkite ... Photographer
Ron Cummins ... Photographer
Julie Dorman ... Congregation Lady
Evelyn Dutton ... Receptionist (as Evelyn J. Dutton)
Carmen Filpi ... Wino
Darrell Giddens ... Man at Picnic
Cheryl Harvey ... Congregation Lady
Louise Johnson ... Congregation Lady
Sidney Lanier ... Rossi
Tanya Lynne Lee ... Althea (as Tanya Lee)
Terence Locke ... Assassin (as Terrence Locke)
Ted Markland ... Goon
Ralph Montgomery ... Goon

Paul Mooney ... Inspector Caine
Shane Mooney ... Alvin
Yvonne Mooney ... Congregation Lady

Harry Northup ... Chief Goon
Dennis O'Flaherty ... Reporter
Korla Pandit ... The Hindu
Clifford A. Pellow ... White Boss (as Cliff Pellow)
Mark Robin ... Reporter
Hank Robinson ... Goon
Eddie Smith ... Man at Picnic
Spo-De-Odee ... Cripple
Bob Terhune ... Goon
Carol Trost ... Ms. Collins

Joe Turkel ... Harry Boatwright (as Joseph Turkel)
Angela Wilson ... Dawn Minetta

Hank Worden ... The Flunky

Directed by
Michael Schultz 
Writing credits
Lina Wertmüller (1972 screenplay Mimì metallurgico ferito nell'onore) (as Lina Wertmuller)

Carl Gottlieb (screenplay) and
Cecil Brown (screenplay)

Sonny Gordon  uncredited

Produced by
Michael Chinich .... associate producer
Steve Krantz .... producer
Original Music by
Mark Davis 
Paul Riser 
Cinematography by
John A. Alonzo (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Danford B. Greene 
Production Design by
Lawrence G. Paull 
Set Decoration by
John M. Dwyer 
Makeup Department
Mark Reedall .... makeup artist
Robert L. Stevenson .... hair stylist (as Robert Stevenson)
Production Management
Michael S. Glick .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Scott Maitland .... first assistant director
Don Zepfel .... second assistant director (as Donald Zepfel)
Sound Department
Peter Berkos .... sound effects editor
Willie D. Burton .... sound
Robert L. Hoyt .... sound
Marvin E. Lewis .... boom operator
Alan Oliney .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
James Plannette .... gaffer
Chris Strong .... electrician
Music Department
John Caper Jr. .... music editor (as John Caper)
Transportation Department
Chris Haynes .... driver
Other crew
Mabel Collins .... production associate
H. Bud Otto .... script supervisor (as Bud Otto)

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
94 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

The character "Reverend Lennox Thomas" is named after Richard Pryor, using two of his middle names.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Small Change (1978)See more »
Which Way Is Up?See more »


Where can I view the scene from which 2 Live Crew's "Me So Horny" used a line sample from?
See more »
1 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
Mr. Pryor did multiple characters FIRST!, 12 December 2005

I saw this movie at the theater when I was 12 or 13 and it took me from a naive child-woman to an aware black woman through comedy! I never laughed so hard in all of my life! Richard Pryor not only portrays three different characters flawlessly, he spins a story that has a moral and a conscious. The great soundtrack featured music from a group named STARGUARD who sang the title "Which Way is Up" and it was a big hit on urban radio in the 1979-80! This movie is a must-see for any and all fans of Richard Pryor - just to see how his comic-acting genius was as unique as it was effective. I know more people may have seen "Silver Streak" or "Blazing Saddles" (which he co-wrote the screenplay) but WHICH WAY IS UP is by far his best movie! It is unforgettable!

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