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Six Degrees of Separation (1993)

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An affluent New York couple find their lives touched, intruded upon, and compelled by a mysterious young black man who is never quite who he says he is.



(play), (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Woody (as Osgood Perkins)
Doug (as Jeffrey Abrams)
Joe Pentangelo ...
Police Officer


New Yorkers Ouisa and Flan Kittredge are upper class private art dealers, pretentious but compassionate. Their prized possession is a double sided Kandinsky, one side that represents control, the other side chaos. They relay a story to their friends and acquaintances that over time becomes legendary. It is their encounter with a young black man who they had never met or heard of but who comes stumbling upon their front door one evening as they are courting an important investor, Geoffrey Miller, who could make them wealthy beyond what they could have dreamed. That black man is Paul Poitier, who has just arrived in the city, was just mugged outside their building and is sporting a minor knife wound to the abdomen. He is a friend of the Kittredge's children, who are attending Harvard, but more importantly is the son of actor/director Sidney Poitier. Tomorrow, Paul is meeting up with his father who is in town directing a movie of "Cats". Beyond the attraction of talking Paul into getting... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


For Paul, every person is a new door to a new world.


Comedy | Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 December 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Seis Graus de Separação  »

Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)


$6,410,676 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Paul is listing some of his "father's" movies, he mentions Lilies of the Field (1963), which had its music composed by Jerry Goldsmith who also wrote the music for this movie. See more »


Flan's hand hold the wine glass as Paul pours changes between shots. See more »


[first lines]
Flan: My God!
Ouisa: Is anything gone?
Flan: How can I look, I'm shaking!
Ouisa: I want to know if anything's gone!
Flan: Calm down.
Ouisa: We could have been killed! Oh, my God! The Kandinsky!
Flan: The Kandinsky!
Ouisa: It's gone, oh my God! Call the police!
Flan: Oh, no, there it is. Oh! The silver Victorian inkwell!
See more »


References The Defiant Ones (1958) See more »


The American
Quartet #6 in F major, Op. 96
by Antonín Dvorák (as Antonin Dvorak)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The pampered rich folk of Manhattan get skewered alive

The pampered rich folk of Manhattan get skewered alive in this elegant adaptation of John Guare's hit play. Based on an amazing true story, the film concerns a wealthy Manhattan couple (Stockard Channing and Donald Sutherland) whose lives are turned upside down when a young black man (Will Smith) who claims to be a friend of their children's drops in after having been attacked in the park. He says he's Sidney Poitier's son, cooks up a gourmet meal, quotes "Catcher in the Rye," and endears himself to this couple. As the film progresses, one stunning event after another occurs, culminating in a beautifully cathartic ending. Sutherland gives one of his best performances, but it is the luminescent Channing who steals the movie. It is so nice to see this gifted actress -- looking more beautiful than ever -- in the lead as opposed to playing someone's best friend. Her impeccable timing and innate charm elevate an already dazzling screenplay to heights unimaginable. "Six Degrees of Separation" is as witty, thoughtful, and relevant as any film made the entire decade.

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