Musical dancer on the way out (at 36) Paula McFadden had it swell with actor Tony DeSanti, but instead of taking her to Hollywood he gets a European movie part. He even sublets their (his) ... See full summary »
Eugene and Stanley Jerome try to break into show biz as comedy writers while their parents' marriage ends. When the boys' material is broadcast on radio, the family hears their private life played for laughs.
Eugene, a young teenage Jewish boy, recalls his memoirs of his time as an adolescent youth. He lives with his parents, his aunt, two cousins, and his brother, Stanley, whom he looks up to ... See full summary »
Both this tele-movie and Broadway Bound (1992) and their respective source Neil Simon plays are considered companion pieces as they reflect Simon's early writing career. See more »
There are a few brief inserts of The Lawrence Welk Show, and Lawrence Welk's voice is heard saying "thank you, Myron" after a voice-over introduction. The announcer's voice was not that of Myron Floren, a band member who often provided transitions between musical numbers, but that of the regular announcer who opened each show. See more »
[NBC plans on putting a "spy/observer" onto Max's show]
If he's REALLY observant, he's gonna observe me getting upset! And then he's gonna observe me very quietly, and very politely, putting my fist through his fucking face!
[Max then punches a hole in the wall]
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What happened to the play? Elevator did not reach floor 23...
Neil Simon's play "Laughter on the 23rd Floor" centered on the relationship between a 1950s television comic (based on Sid Caesar and his staff of writers, who worked out of the 23rd floor of a midtown building in Manhattan. This group would talk, confide, fight, and go for each others' throats if the situation - however absurd - warranted it. Underneath the zaniness, hostility or any dilemna, however, was a shared love and talent for creating sketch comedy. And it was this talent that bonded writers and comic together and, when all smoke cleared, made them realize that they did in fact care for what they did, and for each other. Max Prince (the Sid Caesar model), and his writers. The writers and Max Prince. He needed them, they needed him. Together they needed comedy. This play was indeed a fine ensemble. Every character is defined. None are short-changed in depth. Would have been a novel approach for the film. Understandably, a film version of a stage script needs some change and adaptation so as to not be a confined, filmed play. When this transition goes so far afield, however, changing the intention and focus of the original piece, there seems to be no point in adapting it to film at all. The film "Laughter on the 23rd Floor" plays like a sequel to an original that was never made (like maybe the play?) The film focuses on Max Prince's relationships with virtually everyone (including his dead parents in a cemetary scene), EXCEPT the writers. Characters who were not even in the play become the main supporting cast, while the writers are left as incidental characters. Considering those who are playing the writers - Victor Garber, Mark Linn-Baker, Saul Rubinek, Dan Castellaneta, among others - a fine pool of talent is genuinely squandered, with nothing to do except occassionally react to and comment on the changing state of The Max Prince show. As a result, when Max makes the heartfelt statement that his writers mean everything to him, the point is lost, because there has been little interaction with them A more fitting title for this film would be "The Travels and Travails of Max Prince". Why this instead of "Laughter on the 23rd Floor"? Because Max hardly spends any TIME on the 23rd floor!
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