79 user 149 critic

Twenty Feet from Stardom (2013)

2:16 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

Backup singers live in a world that lies just beyond the spotlight. Their voices bring harmony to the biggest bands in popular music, but we've had no idea who these singers are or what lives they lead, until now.


Morgan Neville
Won 1 Oscar. Another 20 wins & 26 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

More Like This 

Documentary | History | News
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A documentary on the series of televised debates in 1968 between liberal Gore Vidal and conservative William F. Buckley.

Directors: Robert Gordon, Morgan Neville
Stars: Gore Vidal, William F. Buckley, Dick Cavett
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and other international artists of The Silk Road Project discuss their philosophies on music and culture.

Director: Morgan Neville
Stars: Yo-Yo Ma, Kinan Azmeh, Kayhan Kalhor
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A celebration of the musical work of a group of session musicians known as "The Wrecking Crew", a band that provided back-up instrumentals to such legendary recording artists as Frank Sinatra, The Beach Boys and Bing Crosby.

Director: Denny Tedesco
Stars: Denny Tedesco, Brian Wilson, Dick Clark
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

This candid New York love story explores the chaotic 40-year marriage of famed boxing painter Ushio Shinohara and his wife, Noriko. Anxious to shed her role as her overbearing husband's assistant, Noriko finds an identity of her own.

Director: Zachary Heinzerling
Stars: Ushio Shinohara, Noriko Shinohara, Alex Shinohara


Cast overview, first billed only:
Lou Adler ... Himself
Stephanie 'Stevvi' Alexander ... Herself (as Stevvi Alexander)
Patti Austin ... Herself
Chris Botti ... Himself
Todd Boyd Todd Boyd ... Himself (as Dr. Todd Boyd)
Carole Childs Carole Childs ... Herself
Amy Christian Amy Christian ... Herself
Greg Clark Greg Clark ... Himself
Kyliyah Clayton Kyliyah Clayton ... Herself
Merry Clayton ... Herself
Susan Collins Susan Collins ... Herself
Charlotte Crossley Charlotte Crossley ... Herself
Sheryl Crow ... Herself
Chris Darrow Chris Darrow ... Himself
Paul Epworth ... Himself


The backup singer exists in a strange place in the pop music world; they are always in the shadow of the feature artists even when they are in front of them in concert while they provide a vital foundation for the music. Through interviews with veterans and concert footage, the history of these predominately African-American singers is explored through the rock era. Furthermore, special focus is given to special stand outs who endeavored to make a living in the art burdened with a low profile and more personal career frustrations, especially those who faced the very different challenge of singing in the spotlight themselves. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Meet the unsung heroes behind the greatest music of our time.


Documentary | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language and sexual material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

26 July 2013 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A 20 pasos de la fama See more »


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$54,596, 16 June 2013, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The film was a financial success, grossing over $5 million internationally on a $1 million budget. See more »


Featured in The Oscars (2014) See more »


"That's Life (uncredited)
Written by Dean Kay (uncredited) and Kelly Gordon (uncredited)
Performed by Frank Sinatra (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

First Sugar Man and Now Stardom
11 July 2013 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

20 Feet from Stardom (2013)

**** (out of 4)

Whereas SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN was one of the best films of 2012, this year has another musical documentary that turns out to be a masterpiece. Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Stevie Wonder, Lou Adler, Sheryl Crow, Bette Midler and Mick Jagger are just a few of the well-known singers who talk about some back-up singers who everyone will know from certain hit songs yet it's highly unlikely that you'll know their names. Merry Clayton, Darlene Love, Claudia Lennear, Lisa Fischer, Tata Vega and Judith Hill get their shot in the spotlight as they talk about why they are highly respected inside the business yet they never managed to become "stars" or lead singers on their own. Some of their reasons include them not wanting to but there are some darker ones dealing with race as well as Phil Spector simply hiding one from being famous. 20 FEET FROM STARDOM is a masterpiece in regards to music documentaries and it ranks right up there with some of the greatest ever made. It was rather amazing sitting back and hearing these stories and when you realize some of the music that these women have been involved with you certainly see why so many sing their praises. This includes Clayton who was pregnant and wearing rollers in her hair when she got a phone call in the middle of the night to help The Rolling Stones with what would become the chorus for Gimme Shelter. The film is full of wonderful and touching stories dealing with either high praise or simply hard luck. The fact that so many great songs are so memorable because of something that background singers are doing is a subject that seems to be long overdue. This film certainly makes it a very fascinating subject and it makes you wonder how many others are out there just waiting to get some credit that they deserve. The film features some terrific music from all of the artists mentioned so music fans will have a blast hearing songs from the 50s up through the 90s. 20 FEET FROM STARDOM is certainly one of the best films of 2013.

15 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 79 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed