202 user 49 critic

Waiting for Guffman (1996)

R | | Comedy | 31 January 1997 (USA)
2:02 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

An aspiring director and the marginally talented amateur cast of a hokey small-town Missouri musical production go overboard when they learn that someone from Broadway will be in attendance.


2,349 ( 1,237)
2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

A Mighty Wind (2003)
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Mockumentary captures the reunion of 1960s folk trio the Folksmen as they prepare for a show at The Town Hall to memorialize a recently deceased concert promoter.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Michael McKean
Best in Show (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A colorful array of characters compete at a national dog show.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Fred Willard, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Three actors learn that their respective performances in the film "Home for Purim," a drama set in the mid-1940s American South, are generating award-season buzz.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Catherine O'Hara, Parker Posey, Christopher Guest
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/11 X  

Spinal Tap, one of England's loudest bands, is chronicled by film director Marty DeBergi on what proves to be a fateful tour.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: Rob Reiner, Michael McKean, Christopher Guest
Mascots (2016)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A look into the world of competitive mascots.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Zach Woods, Wayne Wilderson, Sarah Baker
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Film school grad Nick Chapman thought his career was made after his award winning short film, but discovered Hollywood wasn't as easy as it seems.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Kevin Bacon, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Emily Longstreth
Family Tree (TV Series 2013)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Centers on 30-year-old Tom Chadwick who, after losing his job and his girlfriend, begins exploring his family heritage after inheriting a mysterious box from a great aunt he never met. ... See full summary »

Stars: Chris O'Dowd, Tom Bennett, Nina Conti
Almost Heroes (1998)
Adventure | Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A road comedy about 2 guys whose mission is to beat Lewis and Clark.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Chris Farley, Matthew Perry, Bokeem Woodbine
The Producers (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Producers Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom make money by producing a sure-fire flop.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Zero Mostel, Gene Wilder, Estelle Winwood
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A legend in his own mind, as well as a few other places, actor Eugene Levy's (American Pie, Best in Show) eyebrows alone deserve a place in the hallowed halls of national treasures. Join ... See full summary »

Director: Robin Neinstein
Stars: Eugene Levy
The Thick of It (TV Movie 2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A put-upon member of Congress is harassed by inept politicians. Based on the BBC series, "The Thick of It."

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Carrie Aizley, Priya Ayyar, Alex Borstein
D.O.A. (TV Movie 1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Christa Campbell, Thomas Garner, Christopher Guest


Cast overview, first billed only:
Scott Williamson ...
James McQueen ...
Singing Auditioner (as Jim McQueen)
Jerry Turman ...


A town of Blaine, Missouri is preparing for celebrations of its 150th anniversary. Corky St.Clair, an off-off-off-off-off-Broadway director is putting together an amateur theater show about the town's history, starring a local dentist, a couple of travel agents, a Dairy Queen waitress, and a car repairman. He invites a Broadway theater critic Mr. Guffman to see the opening night of the show. Written by Piotr Zembrowski <zembrows@astro.utoronto.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


There's A Good Reason Some Talent Remains Undiscovered See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

31 January 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Christopher Guest Project  »

Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$37,990 (USA) (31 January 1997)


$2,892,582 (USA) (18 July 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| | (uncredited)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joseph T. Garrity: In the western-wear shoot at the end of the film, the film's production designer appears as the commercial's director. See more »


During the last scene in the play, a tuba can clearly be heard playing, but there is no tuba in the orchestra. See more »


Corky St. Clair: I was shopping for my wife Bonnie. I buy most of her clothes and Mrs Pearl was in the same shop! And it just was an accident you know, we started talking... about panty hose, she was saying... whatever that's not the point of the story but what the point is is that through this accidental meeting... it's like a Hitchcock movie you know where you're thrown into a rubber bag and put in the trunk of a car, you find people. You find them. Something, is is it karma? Maybe. But we found him, that's ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the end credits Christopher Guest's character shows us some of the fun memorabilia that he sells in his store. See more »


Followed by A Mighty Wind (2003) See more »


Colors Of America
Written by Lee Campbell-Towell
Courtesy of Southern Music Company (ASCAP)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Funny and deceptively authentic
21 October 2006 | by (Hellfudge, Pennsylvania) – See all my reviews

The current climate of cinematic comedy is comparable, to an extent, to the trend in horror: everything is geared toward pull-out-all-stops excess that is more disgusting than entertaining. We should thank our lucky stars for Christopher Guest, a consistently surprising filmmaker (he directed "Best in Show" and wrote "This is Spinal Tap") who makes 'mockumentaries' that play like actual documentaries. "Waiting for Guffman" follows Corky St. Clair (Guest), a flamboyant stage director who gathers a group of 'eclectic' locals (a cross-eyed dentist; a husband-and-wife travel agent team; a Dairy Queen employee) for a production about the sleepy town in which they live (its claim to fame being home of the footstool). There is a hilarious authenticity to the behind-the-scenes footage, but the film never laughs at its subjects--as viewers, we share Corky's (admittedly delusional) passion with bittersweet good humor. The supporting cast--consisting of Guest regulars Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Parker Posey, Fred Willard, Bob Balaban, and Larry Miller--is in top form here. "Waiting for Guffman" is a quiet comedy gem about a dull, quiet town. And it's also ridiculously rated "R" for two quick instances of F-word usage (way to call it, MPAA!).

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The funniest parts... osiris1979
Rated R for brief strong language? erinw91
Funniest Part to Me... stupidgirl2003
Remains of the Day lunchbox Molly_Smengy
Bill Murray? erikisonfire
Remains of the Day Lunchbox hitchcockfan60
Discuss Waiting for Guffman (1996) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page