Behind the Candelabra (2013)

TV Movie  |  TV-MA  |   |  Biography, Drama, Romance  |  7 June 2013 (UK)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 30,413 users  
Reviews: 151 user | 252 critic

Based on the autobiographical novel, the tempestuous 6-year relationship between Liberace and his (much younger) lover, Scott Thorson, is recounted.



(screenplay), (book), 1 more credit »
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Won 2 Golden Globes. Another 38 wins & 44 nominations. See more awards »



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


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 <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


"Too much of a good thing is wonderful"


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 June 2013 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Liberace  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Liberace Foundation (in Las Vegas) owns many of the original portraits from the pianist's famous home. However, the paintings which appear in the film are all recreations, with the original facial features altered to resemble Michael Douglas. See more »


The wheels on the Mercedes 450SL that Bob drives in 1977 were not introduced until 1986 on the 560SL. See more »


Scott Thorson: [on the phone] You scumbag piece of shit! Fairy! You fucking queen cocksucker! How dare you? How fucking dare you, Lee? I could kill you! I could fucking kill you!
See more »


Referenced in Chelsea Lately: Episode #7.165 (2013) See more »


I Feel Love
Written by Pete Bellotte (as Peter Bellotte), Giorgio Moroder, and Donna Summer
Performed by Donna Summer
Courtesy of The Island Def Jam Music Group
Under license from Universal Music Enteprises
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

They have no idea he's gay.
26 May 2013 | by (Leesburg, FL) – See all my reviews

The big studios passed on this film despite the fact that it is directed by Steven Soderbergh (Ocean's Eleven, Twelve, and Thirteen, Traffic), and would star Matt Damon and Michael Douglas. They thought is would be "too gay."

Well, thank goodness for HBO, as they jumped in and green-lighted the film, which is in competition for the Palme d'Or at Cannes.

All the action took place in the seventies and eighties. Liberace was about 40 years older than his new lover, Scott. Michael Douglas was fantastic as Liberace, and Matt Damon was also brilliant in the role of Scott.

Rob Lowe and Dan Ackroyd supplied outstanding support to the story.

Just the right amount of music; maybe there could have been a little more. This was a fascinating story about a man who was in love with himself far more than he could have been with Scott or anyone else.

65 of 78 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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