Bullets Over Broadway is a 1994 crime-comedy film written by Woody Allen and Douglas McGrath and directed by Woody Allen. It stars an ensemble cast including John Cusack, Dianne Wiest, Chazz Palminteri, and Jennifer Tilly.
The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards including Allen and co-writer Douglas McGrath for Original Screenplay, Allen for Director and Tilly and Palminteri for Supporting Actress and Actor respectively. Wiest won Best Supporting Actress for her performance.
In February 2012, it was announced that Woody Allen was taking 'Bullets Over Broadway' to Broadway as a musical. Allen, who co-wrote the film with Douglas McGrath, will pen the book himself. The score will feature existing period music.
In 1928, David Shayne (John Cusack) is an idealistic young playwright newly arrived on Broadway. In order to gain financing for his play, God of Our Fathers, he agrees to hire Olive Neal (Jennifer Tilly), the actress/girlfriend of a gangster. She is demanding and talentless, but her gangster escort Cheech (Chazz Palminteri) turns out to be a genius, who constantly comes up with excellent ideas for revising the play.
As the players prepare for opening night, Shayne is soon in over his head claiming Cheech's rewrites as his own, cheating on his partner Ellen (Mary-Louise Parker) with the show's seductive, alcoholic leading lady Helen Sinclair (Dianne Wiest), and facing his leading man, a compulsive eater (Jim Broadbent), beginning an affair with Olive.
- John Cusack as David Shayne
- Dianne Wiest as Helen Sinclair
- Jennifer Tilly as Olive Neal
- Chazz Palminteri as Cheech
- Mary-Louise Parker as Ellen
- Jack Warden as Julian Marx
- Joe Viterelli as Nick Valenti
- Rob Reiner as Sheldon Flender
- Tracey Ullman as Eden Brent
- Jim Broadbent as Warner Purcell
- Harvey Fierstein as Sid Loomis
- Stacy Nelkin as Rita
- Edie Falco as Lorna
- Debi Mazar as Violet
- Małgorzata Zajączkowska as Lili
- Tony Sirico as Rocco
- Tony Darrow as Aldo
The film's locales include the duplex co-op on the 22nd floor of 5 Tudor City Place in Manhattan.
The film's title may have been an homage to a lengthy sketch of the same title from the 1950s television show Caesar's Hour; one of Allen's first jobs in television was writing for Sid Caesar specials after the initial run of the show.
Allen is adapting the film as a stage musical to be directed by Susan Stroman, produced by Julian Schlossberg and Letty Aronson, with a score from the American songbook.
Bullets Over Broadway currently holds a 96% 'Fresh' rating on review aggregate website Rotten Tomatoes, with the consensus "Some of Allen's sharpest, most inspired late-period comedy."
Awards and nominations
- Best Supporting Actress - Dianne Wiest
- Best Supporting Actor - Chazz Palminteri
- Best Supporting Actress - Jennifer Tilly
- Best Director - Woody Allen
- Best Original Screenplay - Woody Allen and Douglas McGrath
- Best Art Direction-Set Decoration - Santo Loquasto and Susan Bode
- Best Costume Design - Jeffrey Kurland
American Film Institute
- AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs - Nominated
- AFI's 10 Top 10 - Nominated Gangster Film
- Bullets Over Broadway at AllRovi
- Bullets Over Broadway at Box Office Mojo
- Bullets Over Broadway at Rotten Tomatoes
- Where's Woody? in Boston Review: article discussing the Nietzschean influences in Bullets Over Broadway
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