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The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004)

7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 11,703 users  
Reviews: 132 user | 60 critic

The feature adaptation of Roger Lewis' book about the actor best remembered as Inspector Clouseau in the Pink Panther movies.

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(book), (teleplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004)

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Won 2 Golden Globes. Another 18 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Anne Sellers
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Peg Sellers
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Bill Sellers
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...
...
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Dennis Selinger
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Casting Agent
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Ted Levy
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Dr. Lyle Wexler
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Spike Milligan (as Edward Tudor Pole)
...
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Storyline

The professional and personal life of actor and comedian Peter Sellers was a turbulent one. His early movie fame was based primarily on his comic characterizations, often of bumbling and foreign-accented persons, characters which he embodied. As his movie fame rose, he began to lose his own personal identity to his movie characters, leading to self-doubt of himself as a person and a constant need for reassurance and acceptance of his work. This self-doubt manifested itself in fits of anger and what was deemed as arrogance by many. In turn, his personal relationships began to deteriorate as his characterizations were continually used to mask his problems. His first wife, Anne Howe, left/divorced him and his relationships with his parents and children became increasingly distant. His relationship with his second wife, Swedish actress Britt Ekland, was based on this mask. In his later life, he tried to rediscover himself and his career with what would become his penultimate film role, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

actor | clouseau | death | peter sellers | fame | See more »

Taglines:

I love me...I love me not. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

1 October 2004 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The Life and Death of Peter Sellers  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£125,748 (UK) (1 October 2004)

Gross:

£259,663 (UK) (8 October 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rob Brydon played Dustin Hoffman in a deleted scene, which took place at the 1980 Academy Awards and involved Sellers losing the Oscar for Best Actor (for his performance in Being There (1979)) to Hoffman (for his performance in Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)), during his acceptance speech Hoffman declared "I refuse to believe that I beat Peter Sellers". Though the Academy Awards scene was deleted, the framing scene of Sellers watching it on TV is still in the picture. It has merely been reedited so what's playing on the TV has been changed to the scene from Being There (1979) that he filmed. The look on Sellers' face as he watches was originally his expression while rewinding the tape of Hoffman saying "I beat Peter Sellers" and playing it over and over again. Stephen Hopkins says on the DVD commentary that the scene was altered because his dramatic point got lost in the exposition of showing Sellers lose the Oscar. See more »

Goofs

Sellers, along with some ladies, is seen riding in a stretch limousine version of a late-1980s Mercury Grand Marquis. This scene is supposed to be set sometime between Sellers' divorce from Britt Ekland in 1968 and the filming of The Pink Panther Strikes Again in 1976, and Sellers died in 1980, years before this car was was in production. See more »

Quotes

[Peter is telling his wife and children that he's leaving them]
Sarah Sellers: Do you still love us?
Peter Sellers: Of course I do sweetheart. Just... not as much as I love Sophia Loren.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The frame freezes and the end credits start. After some informations about the last part of life of Peter Sellers have scrolled up the screen, the credits stop and the camera suddenly pulls back, revealing Geoffrey Rush watching the end titles sitting in front of a monitor on a studio set. He turns toward the camera, waves, gets up, leaves the set and walks to a trailer. The camera tries to follow him inside, but he turns and says "You can't come in here". The door closes, and the camera zooms in on the sign with the name "Peter Sellers". The film again fades to black and we see the rest of the end credits. See more »

Connections

References What's New Pussycat (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Little Bo(p) Peep
Written by Ray Ellington
Performed by Lance Ellington
Arranged and conducted by James Seymour Brett
See more »

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User Reviews

Rush is brilliant but it's a tough movie.
29 August 2004 | by (Fremantle, Australia) – See all my reviews

I'm a sap when it comes to movie watching so the peeling away of the character of Peter Sellers made the film a hard watch for me. That in no way implies anything derogatory about this wonderful film, just that Seller's life as depicted on the screen made me uncomfortable watching it as it unfolded before me.

Intellectually I can understand the forces driving Sellers but I find it difficult when these forces begin to devour the personality behind them as happened to Sellers throughout the film. You're left with those timeless questions about the price of greatness and with this movie you're left with even more than the viewer might be expected to deal with.

It was not pretty watching the Greek tragedy that was the life of Peter Sellers and now, having seen the movie only several hours ago, I have great respect for Rush and the director for having crafted such a brilliant film. I can't imagine another actor who could have brought Sellers to life so accurately. The film was far from straight forward-it pulsed and entwined itself around Seller's life such that the viewer was challenged constantly to involve themselves with the characters rather than being a dumb waiter between screen and viewer.

A tough, excellent film not to be missed.


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