Hollywood Shuffle

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Hollywood Shuffle

DVD cover
Directed by Robert Townsend
Produced by Robert Townsend
Written by Dom Irrera (uncredited)
Keenen Ivory Wayans
Robert Townsend
Starring Anne-Marie Johnson
Craigus R. Johnson
Dom Irrera
Helen Martin
John Witherspoon
Keenen Ivory Wayans
Robert Townsend
Roy Fegan
Starletta DuPois
Grand L. Bush
Music by Udi Harpaz
Cinematography Peter Deming
Editing by W.O. Garrett
Distributed by The Samuel Goldwyn Company
Release date(s) October 17, 1987
Running time 78 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $100,000 (estimated)
Gross revenue $5,228,617[1]

Hollywood Shuffle is a comedy film released in 1987 that satirizes the stereotyping of African Americans in both film and television. It was directed and produced by Robert Townsend, and written by Robert Townsend, Keenen Ivory Wayans, and Dom Irrera (uncredited). Comedians featured in this film include Robert Townsend, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Damon Wayans, Dom Irrera, Don Reed, and John Witherspoon. Many of the cast and crew later became involved in the Fox TV sketch comedy series In Living Color (1990–1994), and the style of humor is similar.

Contents

[edit] Storyline

The movie focuses on Bobby (Townsend) and his quest to succeed as a Hollywood actor. He is stuck working at a fast-food stand with some hilarious and demented characters who consistently try to destroy his plans for the future.

When he finally gets a break, he is forced to question his own morality. Should he join the system and play stereotypical roles? Or should he refuse, risking his dream of becoming an actor?

As he travels, he frequently has terrifying visions of the consequences of playing stereotypes. In one vision, Bobby is a detective pursuing a murderer with a Jheri curl. In another, he is Uncle Tom with an angry mob after him. Yet another vision shows Bobby in an audition for an Eddie Murphy type, while a final vision shows Bobby playing a King in a Shakespearean play.

One of the film's vignettes involves a parody of Siskel and Ebert's television show, Sneakin' in at the Movies. Featured are two African-Americans, Speed and my homie, Tyrone who bump into each other at a movie theater. They review movies using street dialect; while reviewing Amadeus and Salerius, Speed's entire review consists of yelling "Bullshit" at the screen. When the two disagree about the movie Chicago Jones and the Temple of Doom, Tyrone threatens Speed with the words, "Im'o bust yo' ass". They disapprove of Dirty Larry; instead of giving it a thumbs-down, the two give it the finger. Finally, the duo give lavish praise and a high five to the film Attack of the Killer Street Pimps. The vignette ends when Speed and Tyrone are caught sneaking into the theater and ejected.

[edit] Production

Hollywood Shuffle was produced on a very tight budget. Townsend personally financed the movie with his own credit cards, and, in order to avoid obtaining permits, he asked his crew to wear college sweatshirts to pose as students.

The film's trailer (included on the MGM DVD release), which is hosted by Townsend, jokes about the lack of funds. As the trailer ends, Townsend begs the audience to see the film as the set's furniture is repossessed. The trailer ends as Townsend is forced to use a disposable lighter when the electricity is turned off.

[edit] Awards and nominations

1987 Deauville Film Festival

1988 Independent Spirit Awards

[edit] See also

[edit] References

[edit] External links

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