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The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004)

Not Rated | | Biography, Comedy, Drama | 1 October 2004 (UK)
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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Won 2 Golden Globes. Another 29 wins & 34 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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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

Taglines:

Never judge a man by his cover. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

1 October 2004 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A Vida e Morte de Peter Sellers  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$211,647 (Australia) (27 August 2004)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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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 television, is still in the movie. It has merely been re-edited, so what's playing on the television 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' losing the Oscar. See more »

Goofs

During filming of Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. Sellers is in his dressing room practicing one of Group Captain Mandrake's lines, saying, "I can assure you, Major Bat Guano, if that is indeed your name." In the film Bat Guano was a colonel, not a major. See more »

Quotes

Peter Sellers: I'm under a lot of pressure, I could use your support.
Anne Sellers: You've always had my support, Peter. It's my patience that I'm no longer sure about.
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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 Where Does It Hurt? (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

Big Spender
Written by Cy Coleman & Dorothy Fields
Performed by Shirley Bassey
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User Reviews

 
Lows and Lowers among Highs and Highers
30 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Biopics are a devilish thing. Is as if the subject himself boycotted the operation from beyond the grave. The ultimate breach of privacy, isn't it? One feels like a voyeur, compelled and revolted at the same time. Goeffrey Rush's brilliant portrayal makes things even worse, I mean better, no I meant worse. A life of massive ups and downs for public consumption. Peter Sellers with a Cary Grant complex and a talent bigger than himself told in bits and pieces. To the ones who know about Sellers is a rather frustrating experience. Dr.Strangelove yes but not Lolita? The relationship with Blake Edwards deserves a movie of its own. The first massive heart attack was during Billy Wilder's "Kiss Me Stupid" but there is no mention of that. I know that to compress such a life without a structure within a two hour film it's an impossible task so what we're left with is a courageous attempt at tell us the sickly existence of one the greatest that ever was, a superlative performance by Goeffrey Rush, an astonishing Charlize Theron as Britt Eckland and very little else. I suppose that should be enough. Yes, it should, shouldn't it?


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