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The Producers (1967)

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

Director:

Mel Brooks

Writer:

Mel Brooks
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Estelle Winwood ... Hold Me Touch Me
Renée Taylor ... Eva Braun (as Renee Taylor)
David Patch David Patch ... Goebbels
William Hickey ... The Drunk (as Bill Hickey)
Barney Martin ... Göring
Shimen Ruskin Shimen Ruskin ... The Landlord
Frank Campanella Frank Campanella ... The Bartender
Josip Elic Josip Elic ... Violinist
Madelyn Cates Madelyn Cates ... Concierge (as Madlyn Cates)
John Zoller John Zoller ... Drama Critic
Brutus Peck Brutus Peck ... Hot Dog Vendor
Anne Ives Anne Ives ... Lady
Amelie Barleon Amelie Barleon ... Lady
Lisa Kirk Lisa Kirk ... Lady (as Elsie Kirk)
Nell Harrison Nell Harrison ... Lady
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Storyline

Down-on-his-luck theatrical producer Max Bialystock is forced to romance rich old ladies to finance his efforts. When timid accountant Leo Bloom reviews Max's accounting books, the two hit upon a way to make a fortune by producing a sure-fire flop. The play which is to be their gold mine? "Springtime for Hitler." Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Once upon a time there was a Broadway producer...who met a "creative" but timid accountant. Together they concocted the most outrageous $1,000,000 scheme in the annals of Show Biz. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

10 November 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Springtime for Hitler See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$941,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,091, 9 June 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$111,866, 12 January 2003
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Pathécolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film Mister Ten Per Cent (1967), a British production starring Charlie Drake that was released in March 1967, has a similar plot about someone producing a play deliberately to lose money for tax reasons. See more »

Goofs

While playing the kitty game with the lady in blue, Max sits on the couch. Between shots, his position changes; he is first to the right and then to the left. See more »

Quotes

Lorenzo St. DuBois: I would like to sing this song, it's about love, and hate. Psychedelically speaking I am talking about the power.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits shows the actors full name and their picture. It only says "Zero" for Zero Mostel. See more »

Alternate Versions

Some prints eliminate the opening "Embassy Pictures" logo, as well as a few seconds of footage in the bar scene, including the drunk's dialogue "Let's have a toast...to toast! I love toast..." and the beginning of the song "By the Light of the Silvery Moon". Most prints just cut into the scene in the middle of the song verse. See more »


Soundtracks

Das Lied der Deutschen
(uncredited)
Music by Franz Joseph Haydn (1791)
Lyrics by August Heinrich Hoffman von Fallersleben (1841)
Sung by Kenneth Mars
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Before Broadway, There Was The Movie
13 December 2001 | by Gazzer-2See all my reviews

A down-on-his-luck Broadway producer, Max Biolystock (Zero Mostel), is reduced to funding his shows by romancing old ladies for cash. Enter neurotic accountant Leo Bloom (Gene Wilder), arriving at Biolystock's apartment to do his books. Upon discovering that Biolystock had extorted $2000.00 from his last Broadway flop, Bloom, simply on a whim, mentions to Biolystock that he could've made a fortune on the flop if he'd only gotten more money from the old ladies. Needless to say, this revelation gets Max's mind working---get the old ladies to invest $1,000,000 on what Biolystock knows will be a surefire flop, then run off with the excess cash! Max convinces the gullible Leo to join him on the scheme, and off the two men go, on a crusade to produce the biggest disaster Broadway has ever seen. They come across a god-awful work written by a former Nazi (Kenneth Mars) called "Springtime For Hitler," and decide to produce it. If it's a flop, Max & Leo will become rich. But if it's a hit, they'll go to jail....

If you're one of the infinite many who've been unable to secure any of those scorching-hot tickets to Mel Brooks' current Broadway phenomenon, "The Producers," there's always this, the original 1968 movie version to watch & enjoy. This Oscar-winner for Best Screenplay is a comedy classic, and easily Mel Brooks' masterpiece, a brilliantly funny film that hasn't aged a bit. Zero Mostel & Gene Wilder are hilarious & perfectly cast as the con-artist producers, with terrific chemistry between them (just their opening scene together, including the great bits about Leo's blue blanket, and Leo terrified of being jumped on by Max, is already one of the great filmed moments of comic acting). Kudos all around to the rest of the cast, too: Kenneth Mars as the deranged Nazi playwright of "Springtime For Hitler," Christopher Hewett as the no-talent gay director who only makes "Springtime" even more misguided than it already is, Dick Shawn in an outrageous performance as L.S.D., the hippie ham who lands the coveted role of Hitler (his audition song, "Love Power," is a major highlight), and the gorgeous Lee Meredith as Ulla, Max & Leo's dimwitted secretary. And then there's the "Springtime For Hitler" production number itself---yes, it's everything you've ever heard about it, a wonderfully hysterical "you gotta see it to believe it" moment in film comedy.

Mel Brooks' direction is spot on, and his hysterical screen writing here has never been better (though his co-writing with Gene Wilder on "Young Frankenstein" comes close). His Oscar win for the screenplay was very well deserved, indeed. "The Producers" is a timeless comedy classic, and the defining moment of Mel Brooks' long illustrious film career.


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