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Behind the Candelabra (2013)

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A chronicle of the tempestuous six year romance between megastar singer, Liberace, and his teenage lover, Scott Thorson.



(screenplay), (book) | 1 more credit »
1,227 ( 227)
Won 2 Golden Globes. Another 40 wins & 48 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Assistant Director
Tom Roach ...
Stunt Actor
Shamus Cooley ...
Camera Assistant
John Smutny ...
Sound Mixer
Rose Carracappa
Joe Carracappa
George Liberace
Dora Liberace


Scott Thorson, a young bisexual man raised in foster homes, is introduced to flamboyant entertainment giant Liberace and quickly finds himself in a romantic relationship with the legendary pianist. Swaddled in wealth and excess, Scott and Liberace have a long affair, one that eventually Scott begins to find suffocating. Kept away from the outside world by the flashily effeminate yet deeply closeted Liberace, and submitting to extreme makeovers and even plastic surgery at the behest of his lover, Scott eventually rebels. When Liberace finds himself a new lover, Scott is tossed on the street. He then seeks legal redress for what he feels he has lost. But throughout, the bond between the young man and the star never completely tears. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


"Too much of a good thing is wonderful"


TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 June 2013 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Liberace  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$23,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


In reality, Liberace was forty years older than Scott Thorson. See more »


Towards the end of the film, there is an exterior shot of Palm Springs city hall which shows a modern dome CCTV camera. See more »


Liberace: [after Scott passes out at an adult video store] I'm not ready for apologies, OK?
Scott Thorson: Apology? Fuck you! You are a well known star! Are you out of your mind, going to a place like that? I mean, what if someone would have recognized you? What if they had gone to the press?
Liberace: When a London paper said I was gay, I took them to court, and I won that law suit. They retracted the story and they paid for it.
Scott Thorson: Only because they didn't have a witness seeing you with a room full of dildos, with your dick hanging...
See more »


References The Beverly Hillbillies (1962) See more »


Tico Tico
Written by Zequinha de Abreu (as Zequinha Abreu) and Ervin Drake
Piano Performed by Liberace
Courtesy of Columbia Records
By arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Unexpectedly great performances!
26 May 2013 | by (Toronto Ontario) – See all my reviews

I decided to watch this film on HBO because I thought it would be a hoot - one of those catastrophic and pretentious productions which are so laughable. Within 20 minutes I realized that the film was rather important. Michael Douglas captures the late Liberace's mannerisms and voice with astonishing ease. He is quite stellar in his performance, and I see him now in a new light. Matt Damon is excellent as Scott, his protégé. The personages involved are deeply complex, even if one is only familiar with the contemporary "National Enquirer" reports one realizes their is something one can not quite understand about "Lee & Scott's" relationship. Douglas and Damon are brilliant in delving into these characters. They are unrecognizable, at times, from the familiar roles we all know of them. I think the film well worth watching. As a bonus, Matt Damon shows his bum on several occasions, for those who are interested; if not, one cannot help but be interested in the wonderful performances from two of Hollywood's great stars! A courageous undertaking well done indeed!!!

54 of 65 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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