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Bugsy (1991)

The story of how Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel started Las Vegas.

Director:

Barry Levinson

Writers:

James Toback, Dean Jennings (book)

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 41 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Warren Beatty ... Bugsy Siegel
Annette Bening ... Virginia Hill
Harvey Keitel ... Mickey Cohen
Ben Kingsley ... Meyer Lansky
Elliott Gould ... Harry Greenberg
Joe Mantegna ... George
Richard C. Sarafian ... Jack Dragna (as Richard Sarafian)
Bebe Neuwirth ... Countess di Frasso
Gian-Carlo Scandiuzzi Gian-Carlo Scandiuzzi ... Count di Frasso
Wendy Phillips ... Esta Siegel
Stefanie Mason Stefanie Mason ... Millicent Siegel
Kimberly McCullough ... Barbara Siegel
Andy Romano ... Del Webb
Robert Beltran ... Alejandro
Bill Graham ... Charlie Luciano
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Storyline

New York gangster Ben Bugsy Siegel takes a brief business trip to Los Angeles. A sharp-dressing womaniser with a foul temper, Siegel doesn't hesitate to kill or maim anyone crossing him. In L.A. the life, the movies, and most of all strong-willed Virginia Hill detain him while his family wait back home. Then a trip to a run-down gambling joint at a spot in the desert known as Las Vegas gives him his big idea. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Glamour Was The Disguise.

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 December 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bagsis See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$140,358, 15 December 1991

Gross USA:

$49,114,016

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$49,114,016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended edition)

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | Dolby (as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The Tropicana Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas (which was previously owned by Siegel's associate, Frank Costello) has a museum and tour called "The Mob Experience". In the museum, there is a set featuring the furniture from Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel and Virginia Hill's suite, along with a film projector playing home movies of the real Bugsy and his family. See more »

Goofs

After Bugsy's house has been sold to finance the Flamingo Club, he takes another look at his "screen test". He's at Virginia Hill's mansion, but he looks at the film in the projection room of his old house. See more »

Quotes

"Bugsy" Siegel: Got a light?
Virginia: The way you were looking at me, I thought you were going to ask for something more interesting.
"Bugsy" Siegel: Like what?
Virginia: Use your imagination.
"Bugsy" Siegel: I'm using it.
Virginia: ...Let me know when you're finished.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The 2006 DVD features fifteen minutes of extra footage that Barry Levinson had to cut from the 1991 theatrical version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Last Action Hero (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

FOOLS RUSH IN (WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD)
(1940)
Music by Rube Bloom
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Performed by Tommy Dorsey & His Orchestra (as Tommy Dorsey and His Orchestra)
Courtesy of The RCA Records Label of BMG Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Interesting and violent story about rise and fall of the famous gangster in Las Vegas
27 February 2013 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This is an exciting tale of how Bugsy Siegel started Las Vegas . As New York gangster Ben 'Bugsy' Siegel takes a brief business trip to Los Angeles. A violent and tough Siegel (Warren Beatty) doesn't hesitate to kill or maim anyone crossing him . Bugsy meets George Raft (Joe Mantegna) while is making a film (it is ¨Manpower¨ which co-starred Edward G. Robinson) and the scene being shot where George gets into a bar fight and hands a broken chair to an actress really does appear in the actual movie . In L.A. the life , the motion pictures , and most of all a second-range actress named Virginia Hill (Annette Bening) detain him while his wife (Wendy Phillips) wait back home . Then a journey to a run-down gambling joint at a spot in the desert gives him his big idea , the Hotel Flamingo construction .

Enjoyable film based on the famous mobster that contains drama , real events , thrills and lots of violence . The picture relies heavily on the relationship between Bugsy and his lover Virginia Hill , and about the luxurious Hotel Flamingo building in Las Vegas . Nice acting from protagonist duo as Warren Beatty playing the sharp-dressing womaniser with a foul temper and Annete Bening as the strong-willed actress . After working on this film, Warren Beatty and Annette Bening were married . They'd met several years before when she auditioned for another Beatty production ; they met again when she was seriously considered for the role of Tess Trueheart in Dick Tracy . This is one of three movies released in 1991 that featured Bugsy Siegel as a character , the other two were ¨The Marrying Man¨ and ¨Mobsters¨ . Good production design by Dennis Gassner , most of the Las Vegas scenes of the Flamingo construction were filmed near Palm Desert and La Quinta, California, where a full-sized replica of the Flamingo was built . Emotive and sensitive musical score by the great Ennio Morricone . Colorful and evocative cinematography by Allen Daviau . The picture was professionally directed by Barry Levinson .

The flick was well based on real deeds , these are the followings : During adolescence, Siegel befriended Meyer Lansky (Ben Kingsley) , who was forming a small crew whose criminal activities expanded to include gambling and car theft . In 1930, Lansky and Siegel built close ties to Charles "Lucky" Luciano and Frank Costello (Caridi), both future bosses of the Genovese (Carrara) crime family. Bootlegger Siegel was also associated with Albert "Mad Hatter" Anastasia. Siegel was also heavily involved in bootlegging operations in various cities . During the so-called Castellammarese War in 1930-1931, they fought the gang of Sal Maranzano ; Siegel reputedly had a hand in Maranzano's murder and later in the formation of Murder , Inc . Lansky and Siegel assisted with Luciano's (Bill Graham) brief alliance with Dutch Schultz and killed rival loan sharks Amberg . In 1937, the East Coast mob sent Siegel to California to develop syndicate gambling rackets with Los Angeles mobster Jack Dragna (Richard C Sarafian) . Once in L.A. , Siegel recruited gang boss Mickey Cohen (Harvey Keitel) as his lieutenant. Siegel used syndicate money to set up a national wire service to help the East Coast mob quicken their returns . With the aid of actor friend George Raft (Joe Mantegna) , Siegel gained entry into Hollywood's inner circle . Siegel soon started an affair with Virginia Hill . The Alabama-born Hill lived in a mansion in Beverly Hills that she rented from Metropolitan Opera baritone Lawrence Tibbett . Siegel, Whitey Krakow, and two other gang members killed Harry "Big Greenie" Greenberg (Elliot Gould) . Greenberg had become a police informant, and Louis "Lepke" Buchalter, boss of Murder, Inc., ordered his killing. Siegel was arrested and tried for the Greenberg murder. Whitey Krakower was killed before he could face trial. Siegel was acquitted on the Greenberg murder, but his reputation was in ruins.


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