109 user 53 critic

Fame (1980)

A chronicle of the lives of several teenagers who attend a New York high school for students gifted in the performing arts.


Alan Parker

On Disc

at Amazon

Won 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Eddie Barth ... Angelo
Irene Cara ... Coco
Lee Curreri ... Bruno
Laura Dean ... Lisa
Antonia Franceschi ... Hilary
Boyd Gaines ... Michael
Albert Hague ... Shorofsky
Tresa Hughes ... Mrs. Finsecker
Steve Inwood Steve Inwood ... François Lafete
Paul McCrane ... Montgomery
Anne Meara ... Mrs. Sherwood
Joanna Merlin ... Miss Berg
Barry Miller ... Ralph
Jim Moody ... Farrell
Gene Anthony Ray ... Leroy


At the New York City High School for the Performing Arts, students get specialized training that often leads to success as actors, singers, etc. This movie follows eight students from the time when they audition to get into the school, through graduation. Among these are the brazen Coco Hernandez, shy Doris Finsecker, sensitive gay Montgomery MacNeil, and brash, abrasive Ralph Garcy. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Remember my name... See more »


Drama | Music | Musical


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Spanish | French | Russian

Release Date:

16 May 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hot Lunch See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$118,160, 18 May 1980, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$21, 2 January 1981
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby (as Dolby Stereo)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)


Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Original title for the movie was to be "Hot Lunch," however one day Alan Parker was walking past a porn film cinema on 42nd street which was showing a film called "Hot Lunch" starring 'Al Parker'. Parker decided this was too close to reality and opted to change the title to Fame. See more »


When Ralph auditions for the music teacher, the music teacher's actions with his pen are not continuous between shots. See more »


Mrs. Finsecker: Doris! We're in!
See more »

Alternate Versions

Runs 133 minutes long on Capacitance Electronic Disc (CED), also commonly known as RCA Selectavision Videodisc. See more »


Spoofed in Brief Affair (1982) See more »


Red Light
Music by Michael Gore
Lyrics by Dean Pitchford
Sung by Linda Clifford
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Entertaining musical drama that could have been better
11 August 2014 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Fame is, at least to me, not a flawless film and it is easy to see why people wouldn't like or connect with it, but I found it to be a good, entertaining film. It is true that Ralph is given too much prominence and he is never really likable while some of the other characters are barely fleshed out and that the ending is far too abrupt and riddled with loose ends that were crying out to be tied up. Some of the dialogue is also a little rambling in places and with a structure that could have been tighter than it was. Fame, while very of the time, is very competently made with the style of filming appropriate for the type of film and what themes are explored, that some of the song and dance numbers are shot like a music video didn't come across as that much of a problem personally. The songs are terrific, the timeless title song, the infectiously catchy Hot Lunch Jam and the poignant Out Here on My Own are the highlights though the ending number I Sing the Body Electric is fun enough too. The score also won an Oscar along with the title song and deserved it thoroughly. The choreography is toe-tapping and spirited, especially in I Sing the Body Electric. The story captures the high school performing arts atmosphere really well, how fulfilling and fun yet punishing and competitive it is and has themes that anyone would relate to, ones that were relevant then and while not as much reasonably relevant now. While the characterisation is not perfect, there are a few good characters like Leroy and Coco. The performances show the actors very into their roles and enjoying them, Barry Miller does overact but if there was a favourite in the cast it would be Irene Cara, who had the best singing voice of the cast and the one with the best songs. In conclusion, has some imperfections in the writing department but musically especially the film while an acquired taste was personally entertaining. 7/10 Bethany Cox

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