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The King of Comedy (1982)

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Aspiring comic Rupert Pupkin attempts to achieve success in show business by stalking his idol, a late night talk-show host who craves his own privacy.

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Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Ed Herlihy ...
Lou Brown ...
Band Leader
Loretta Tupper ...
Stage Door Fan
Peter Potulski ...
Stage Door Fan
Vinnie Gonzales ...
Stage Door Fan
Whitey Ryan ...
Stage Door Guard
Doc Lawless ...
Chauffeur
...
Young Girl
Katherine Wallach ...
Autograph Seeker
Charles Kaleina ...
Autograph Seeker
Richard Baratz ...
Caricaturist
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Storyline

Rupert Pupkin is obsessed with becoming a comedy great. However, when he confronts his idol, talk show host Jerry Langford, with a plea to perform on the Jerry's show, he is only given the run-around. He does not give up, however, but persists in stalking Jerry until he gets what he wants. Eventually he must team up with his psychotic Langford-obsessed friend Masha to kidnap the talk show host in hopes of finally getting to perform his stand-up routine. Written by Andrew Hyatt <dres@uiuc.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's no laughing matter. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 December 1982 (Iceland)  »

Also Known As:

King of Comedy  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,500,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jerry Lewis played a character with the same first name as his own. Jerry Langford was originally named Bobby Langford in the script. But Lewis suggested that the character be named after him, so that they could film reactions from real passersby who recognized him. None of the other people in that scene were actors or actresses except for the cabbie, and the woman on the payphone. See more »

Goofs

In Rupert's fantasy of Jerry inviting him out to his house, Jerry replaces Rupert's audition tape into its envelope twice in successive shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ed Herlihy: And now, from New York, The Jerry Langford Show! With Jerry's guests Tony Randall, Richard Dreyfuss, Rodney Dangerfield, Dr. Joyce Brothers, Lou Brown and the orchestra, and little old me Ed Herlihy. And now say hello to Jerry!
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in The Venture Bros.: Hate Floats (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Come Rain or Come Shine
Written by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer
Performed by Ray Charles
Also performed by Sandra Bernhard (uncredited) to Jerry Langford during dinner
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Scorsese's forgotten masterpiece
23 August 1999 | by See all my reviews

From Jerry Lewis's subtle, deeply personal performance, to Robert DeNiro's amazing interpretation of a neurotic nerbish whose fantasy world collides with reality on late night talk TV, "The King of Comedy" is a true original that guts the glamour from showbiz and finds it cold and empty inside. Then there's the media, always ready to create another celebrity, even if he's an autograph hound and hack comic turned kidnapper who believes he's earned a shot in the spotlight. Cynical and melancholy, at times hilarious, it bombed when first released, but has been surprising video treasure hunters ever since.


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