8.0/10
62,682
315 user 127 critic

Being There (1979)

PG | | Comedy, Drama | 26 May 1980 (Denmark)
Trailer
2:46 | Trailer
A simpleminded, sheltered gardener becomes an unlikely trusted advisor to a powerful businessman and an insider in Washington politics.

Director:

Hal Ashby

Writers:

Jerzy Kosinski (novel), Jerzy Kosinski (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
4,021 ( 174)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Sellers ... Chance
Shirley MacLaine ... Eve Rand
Melvyn Douglas ... Benjamin Rand
Jack Warden ... President 'Bobby'
Richard Dysart ... Dr. Robert Allenby
Richard Basehart ... Vladimir Skrapinov
Ruth Attaway Ruth Attaway ... Louise
David Clennon ... Thomas Franklin (as Dave Clennon)
Fran Brill Fran Brill ... Sally Hayes
Denise DuBarry ... Johanna Franklin
Oteil Burbridge ... Lolo
Ravenell Keller III Ravenell Keller III ... Abbaz
Brian Corrigan Brian Corrigan ... Policeman by White House
Alfie Brown Alfie Brown ... Old Woman asked for lunch (as Alfredine Brown)
Don Jacob Don Jacob ... David (as Donald Jacob)
Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Young, rich, and obsessed with death, Harold finds himself changed forever when he meets lively septuagenarian Maude at a funeral.

Director: Hal Ashby
Stars: Ruth Gordon, Bud Cort, Vivian Pickles
Coming Home (1978)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A woman whose husband is fighting in Vietnam falls in love with another man who suffered a paralyzing combat injury there.

Director: Hal Ashby
Stars: Jane Fonda, Jon Voight, Bruce Dern
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Inspector Jacque Clouseau (Peter Sellers) is put on the case when the Pink Panther diamond is stolen, with the Phantom's trademark glove the only clue.

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Peter Sellers, Christopher Plummer, Catherine Schell
The Party (1968)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A clerical mistake results in a bumbling Indian film star being invited to an exclusive Hollywood party instead of being fired.

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Peter Sellers, Claudine Longet, Natalia Borisova
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Charles Dreyfus (Herbert Lom), who has finally cracked over Inspector Jacques Clouseau's (Peter Sellers') antics, escapes from a mental institution and launches an elaborate plan to get rid of Clouseau once and for all.

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Peter Sellers, Herbert Lom, Lesley-Anne Down
Shampoo (1975)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Lovers undo a hairdresser from Beverly Hills around Election Eve in 1968.

Director: Hal Ashby
Stars: Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, Goldie Hawn
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

To prove that he still is strong and powerful, Philippe Douvier decides to kill Clouseau. Once news of his "death" has been announced, Clouseau tries to take advantage of it and goes undercover with Cato to find out who tried to kill him.

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Peter Sellers, Herbert Lom, Burt Kwouk
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The bumbling Inspector Clouseau travels to Rome to catch a notorious jewel thief known as "The Phantom" before he conducts his most daring heist yet: a princess' priceless diamond with one slight imperfection, known as "The Pink Panther".

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: David Niven, Peter Sellers, Robert Wagner
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Two Navy men are ordered to bring a young offender to prison, but decide to show him one last good time along the way.

Director: Hal Ashby
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Randy Quaid, Otis Young
Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Inspector Jacques Clouseau investigates the murder of Mr. Benjamin Ballon's driver at a country estate.

Director: Blake Edwards
Stars: Peter Sellers, Elke Sommer, George Sanders
Network (1976)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A television network cynically exploits a deranged former anchor's ravings and revelations about the news media for its own profit.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Peter Finch
The Player (1992)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A Hollywood studio executive is being sent death threats by a writer whose script he rejected, but which one?

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Tim Robbins, Greta Scacchi, Fred Ward

Photos

Edit

Storyline

Simple-minded gardener Chance has spent all his life in the Washington D.C. home of an old man. When the man dies, Chance is put out on the street with no knowledge of the world except what he has learned from television. After a run-in with a limousine, he ends up a guest of Eve and her husband Ben, an influential but sickly businessman. Now called Chauncey Gardner, Chance becomes friend and confidante to Ben, and an unlikely political insider. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A story of chance See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Every contract that Peter Sellers signed included a clause which stipulated that his accommodations must have the bed facing East-West. Chance says: "I like to sleep with my head facing North". The attorney he's with says "But this bed is facing West!" See more »

Goofs

When Eve enters Chance's room as he is eating breakfast in bed, the napkin beneath his chin changes position back and forth between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Chance the Gardener: Good morning, Louise.
Louise: He's dead, Chance. The old man's dead.
Chance the Gardener: I see.
[Chance goes back to watching TV]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Under the end titles of the theatrical release are outtakes of Peter Sellers as Chance recounting the encounter with Abbaz. Sellers breaks character and laughs during each attempt. The lines do not appear in the movie. Certain versions of the film have credits with white text on a black background without the outtakes. See more »

Alternate Versions

There are two known versions of the closing credits. One features outtakes from the film featuring Sellers during the scene where Chance is getting his leg examined. And the second version, added in at the behest of Peter Sellers who was not happy with its inclusion, features the credits rolling over static, accompanied by the film's theme and sound clips from various television programs, and closed by a clip from a Gatorade commercial from the era. Most prints on television and home video use the first version of the credits. Version #2 was used on the general theatrical release, and in the 1980 MGM/CBS Home Video release of the film. Version #1 was reinstated when the film was reissued on video by CBS/FOX Video in 1983. See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood: The Gift of Laughter (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Bacchanale
(uncredited)
from "Samson and Delilah"
Written by Camille Saint-Saëns
See more »

User Reviews

 
Sellers a work of Art.
13 December 2003 | by tbonea28See all my reviews

Being There is a film about a simple and mildly retarded gardener, played by Peter Sellers who's entire adult life was gardening for an elderly gentleman and watching television. When the old man dies, Chancey is left homeless and on his own. Due to his past recluse surroundings he is unaware of the every day technology, such as telephone, elevators etc., which leads to some comical situations. He is saved from the streets, by a wealthy woman, Eve Rand, played by Shirley MacLean. When her limo backs into him she takes him home to be treated by her dying husbands physician Dr Allenby played by Richard Dysort. Everyone mistakes Chancey's simple mutterings as profound insight and wisdom. Benjamin Rand played by Melvin Douglas is a wealthy influential business tycoon who is well connected in politics and a personal friend of the President, played by Jack Warden. They also mistake the simple utterance's as insightful.

Although the film is comical at times, it is also very sad, as Chancey lacks awareness of what's going on around him most of the time. He has no reaction, even when Eve Rand, tries to seduce him, which is one of the many humourous scenes.

The filming and directing is good and the film moves along with a good pace, and is very entertaining and a must see for all Peter Sellers fans. Once again Sellers shows the incredible talent, that he was so well known for.


18 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 315 user reviews »

Videos

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

West Germany | USA

Language:

English | Russian | Italian

Release Date:

26 May 1980 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

Being There See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$30,177,511

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$30,177,511
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed