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Bullets Over Broadway (1994)

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In New York in 1928, a struggling playwright is forced to cast a mobster's talentless girlfriend in his latest drama in order to get it produced.

Director:

Woody Allen
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 20 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Cusack ... David Shayne
Dianne Wiest ... Helen Sinclair
Jennifer Tilly ... Olive Neal
Chazz Palminteri ... Cheech
Mary-Louise Parker ... Ellen
Jack Warden ... Julian Marx
Joe Viterelli ... Nick Valenti
Rob Reiner ... Sheldon Flender
Tracey Ullman ... Eden Brent
Jim Broadbent ... Warner Purcell
Harvey Fierstein ... Sid Loomis
Stacey Nelkin ... Rita
Malgorzata Zajaczkowska ... Lili (as Margaret Sophie Stein)
Charles Cragin Charles Cragin ... Rifkin
Nina von Arx Nina von Arx ... Josette (as Nina Sonya Peterson)
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Storyline

1920s Broadway. Playwright David Shayne considers himself an artist, and surrounds himself with like minded people, most struggling financially as they create art for themselves, not the masses. David, however, believes the failure of his first two plays was because he gave up creative control to other people who didn't understand the material. As such, he wants to direct his just completed third play, "God of Our Fathers", insider scuttlebutt being that it may very well make David the toast of Broadway. With David having no directing history, David's regular producer, Julian Marx, can't find any investors,... until a single investor who will finance the entire production comes onto the scene. He is Nick Valenti, a big time mobster, with the catch being that his dimwitted girlfriend, non-actress Olive Neal, get the lead role. A hesitant David and Julian, who are able to talk Nick into them giving Olive one of the two female supporting roles instead, go along with the scheme hoping ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A killer comedy! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 February 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Coups de feu sur Broadway See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$13,383,737
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 »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to John Baxter's biography of Woody Allen, Jennifer Tilly was the only member of the cast allowed to ad-lib or add to her lines, an acting impulse which Allen otherwise routinely crushed. She also claims that Allen actually advised her not to allow any other actors to slip into ad-libs but to interrupt them or talk over them instead. See more »

Goofs

Helen gives David a gift on his birthday, and calls him a Scorpio. Two scenes later, it is September 24th. The sun enters the sign of Scorpio at the end of October. David is a Virgo or a Libra. See more »

Quotes

[Cheech is helping Olive rehearse a scene]
Olive: Can't you see? You're living out the exact same pattern your mother lived out with your father.
Cheech: I am? Pray tell.
Olive: In some way you're trying to relive it and in the process of reliving it, correct it. As if that were possible. HA.
Cheech: It don't say "ha."
Olive: I know it don't say "ha," I added that.
Cheech: Are you allowed to do that? I don't think you're allowed to do that.
Olive: We're allowed to add things. It's called ad-libbing.
Cheech: Well, I think the whole thing stinks.
Olive: Well, I ...
[...]
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Connections

References The Rose Tattoo (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

When the Red, Red Robin Comes Bob, Bob Bobbin' Along
By Harry M. Woods
Performed by The Three Deuces Musicians
See more »

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User Reviews

A Strong Supporting Cast Dominates the Action
28 June 2000 | by tfrizzellSee all my reviews

A Woody Allen written and directed film that does not include him in a single frame. It may seem strange, but it's true. Allen's "Bullets Over Broadway" deals with a struggling stage writer (John Cusack) who is so desperate to get one of his plays on Broadway in the 1920s that he reluctantly enlists the help of the local mafia crime lord to fund the play. Of course there is a large stipulation. The crime lord's girl must be in the play (hilariously played by Jennifer Tilly in an Oscar-nominated role). Needless to say she's terrible and Cusack struggles with her in the play. However, he has booked A-list actress Dianne Wiest (in her second Oscar-winning role) who is an alcoholic who has seen better days in her career. Tilly's bodyguard (Chazz Palminteri, also in an Oscar-nominated role) sees the play rehearsed firsthand and gives Cusack some directions on the project that Cusack cannot refuse. Palminteri is street smart and knows how people really talk, while Cusack is so educated that his words make no sense to the normal audience. This film is what "The Godfather" would have been like if Allen had directed it. The screenplay is outstanding and Allen's direction has rarely been better. Cusack is fun and hilarious, but it is the supporting cast that makes the movie work. Other than the aforementioned Oscar-nominated actors, there are great turns by several others. Mary-Louise Parker, Tracy Ullman, Jim Broadbent, Jack Warden, Rob Reiner, Harvey Feinstein, and Joe Viterelli are all superb in well-calculated supporting roles. 4 out of 5 stars.


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