The ProducersDirector: Mel Brooks
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Theatrical producer Max Bialystock (Zero Mostel) was once the toast of Broadway. Now he lives in his seedy office, cadging cash contributions from wealthy old ladies in exchange for sexual favors. Even worse, he's reduced to wearing a cardboard belt. Max's new accountant, Leo Bloom (Gene Wilder), the soul of honesty, suggests that Max produce a hit to try to recoup his losses, but Max knows that it's too late for that. Offhandedly, Leo muses that, if Max found investors for a flop, he could legally keep all the extra money. Suddenly, Max's eyes light up -- and in that moment, Leo Bloom is gloriously corruptible. "I want everything I've ever seen in the movies!" cries Leo as Max embraces him. Together, Max and Leo conspire to select the worst play, the worst playwright, the worst director, and the worst actor to collaborate on their guaranteed flop. That play is Springtime for Hitler, "a delightful romp...with Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun." The playwright is Franz Liebkind (Kenneth Mars), an unreconstructed Nazi who, in drunken delirium, insists that Hitler was a better painter than Churchill -- "He could paint an entire apartment in one afternoon, two coats!" The director is pompous transvestite Roger De Bris (Christopher Hewett), who is preparing to go to a costume party garbed as Marie Antoinette when Max and Leo come calling ("Max, Max, he's wearing a dress"). And the star, selected after extensive auditions, is hippie-freak Lorenzo St. DuBois (Dick Shawn) -- "L.S.D." for short. At the end of several weeks, Max has sold 25,000 percent of the show; and, as a finishing touch, Max bribes the opening-night critics for a favorable review, knowing full well that such a gesture is the kiss of death. The curtains part, and Springtime for Hitler opens with perhaps the most tasteless production number in the history of films. At the end of this extravaganza, the audience sits in dumbfounded silence. Gleefully, Max and Leo repair to a corner bar to celebrate their failure. But then.... The first directorial effort of Mel Brooks, The Producers didn't do so well on its first release, but since that time it has taken its place as one of the all-time great movie comedies.
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- Original Release:
- Shout Factory
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- [Wide Screen]
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Cast & Crew
|Zero Mostel||Max Bialystock|
|Gene Wilder||Leo Bloom|
|Kenneth Mars||Franz Liebkind|
|Estelle Winwood||Old Lady|
|Renee Taylor||Eva Braun|
|Christopher Hewett||Roger De Bris|
|Andréas Voutsinas||Carmen Giya|
|David Evans||Lead Dancer|
|Barney Martin||German Officer in Play|
|Madelyn Cates||Woman at Window|
|Michael Davis||Production Tenor|
|William Hickey||Drunk in Theater Bar|
|Gene Coffin||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|James Dalton||Set Decoration/Design|
|Brian Morris||Musical Direction/Supervision|
|John Morris||Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision|
|Charles Rosen||Art Director|
1. Opening [10:16]
2. Creative Accounting [11:34]
3. The Courtship of Leo Bloom [4:02]
4. The Worst Play Ever Written [8:51]
5. Little Old Ladyland [8:28]
6. A Little Peculiar [6:27]
7. "That's Our Hitler!" [7:35]
8. Springtime for Hitler [16:21]
9. The Show Must Not Go On [9:38]
10. Closing Argument [6:01]
Dolby Digital Mono
Dolby Digital 5.1
The Making of The Producers
Mel and His Movies: The Producers
Peter Sellers' Ad in Variety
American Masters': Mel Brooks: Make a Noise
The Incredible Mel Brooks: An Irresistible Collection of Unhinged Comedy: Chapters
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When Mel Brooks' 'The Producers' first appeared on film it was somewhat revolutionary in both plot and approach to comedy. I will never forget the visual shock and hilarity of the opening to "Springtime for Hitler" when I viewed the movie as a teenager. Since then the formula has been duplicated and sometimes improved, most often by Brooks himself. And the sixties references are no longer as amusing, even to those of us who were around then. One aspect that will always stand the test of time is the performances by Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder. These are performances for the ages that define their characters perfectly. Dick Shawn's performance as 'LSD' is less convincing, perhaps because his role is a caricature, but still well done. I would recommend this movie to anyone but also urge fans to look at the updated musical version, which is surprisingly good.
'The Producers' is absolutely my favorite of Mel Brooks' comedies. This story about two shyster theatrical producers will have you on the floor.
I love this movie! Gene Wilder is superb and Mostel is brilliant. They work so well together. my favorite song in this film is "Love Power" I love it so much! grooovy man :)
I am going to have to adopt now as I can no longer have children of my own after watching this.
I'm a huge Mel Brooks fan. His movies are hilarious and The Producers (1968) is one of his funniest and the cast is great, especially Gene Wilder, Zero Mostel and Kenneth Mars.
They REALLY don't make 'em like this any more! ¿The Producers¿ is proof that perfection can be achieved by human beings. It has provided me 40+ years of laughter, and will continue to do so. Even though it is primarily a broad farce, its humor ages well and will delight even the most high-seriousness teenagers. It is perfectly cast (Zero Mostel and a very young Gene Wilder are the great standouts), well shot, and fabulously well written. Best of all, its humor is in delightfully bad taste and completely un-PC¿this movie could never, ever be made today, which is all the more reason for seeing it. Young people who have been raised in our current nothing-is-funny culture need to see ¿The Producers¿ to learn that in the end, funny or not, even the most evil things can be laughed to scorn...
''Did you ever think you'd love a play called 'Springtime for Hitler'?'' asks a Broadway patron to the dismay of scam artists extrodinare Mostel and Wilder. Its one of a hundred great scenes that proved Mel Brooks a genius his first time behind the camera. This was one of 1968's best films, winning an Oscar for best original screenplay (Brooks). The original is better than the stage version 30 years later.
HAHAHAHHAHAAHA!(Choke)HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!(Gulp)HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!(Sniff)HAH AHAHAHAHAHA!(Sob) HAHAHAHAHAHAHA...
You've read all the other synopses, so I won't repeat the plot. What I find most exhilarating about this film is watching anarchists in front of and behind the camera working at the peak of their craft. Many moments of sheer hilarity. Competes with Young Frankenstein as the greatest of all Brooks's films, which (from me) is high praise indeed.
Some of the most creative satire ever written. Zero Mostel has a rubber face that can show more expression than any other actor could. You will laugh until it hurts. Its my favorite movie of all time
there was ''The Producers''. Parker and Stone (South Park creators) are not the Beginning and End of Humor that can Offend. If you're looking for a comedy from the sixties, thinking it will be mild and innocent, get something else. This is Mel Brooks' first (and arguably finest)film. Jokes about gays, Nazis and lechery abound and the amazing thing is that Bialystock and Bloom (Mostel and Wilder), while contemptable, are played with such joyous performances, you can't help but like 'em. PC? Feh. I recall something Mel Brooks said: Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.
This IS one of the funniest movies of all time. Our hero, the down-on-his-luck, bombastic Producer Zero Mostel, has been reduced to unorthodox methods of fund raising for his upcoming show. An innocent Gene Wilder enters his life as a faceless accountant sent to audit his books. Wilder discovers a ''problem'' which Mostel siezes upon as a potential way out of his financial straits. Mostel brow beats Wilder into co-producing with him ''the worst show ever'' in order to make a fortune. The idea takes on a life of its own and almost works to perfection. The internal logic and basic human emotions such as greed and self confidence make the plot twists totally believable with zany cosequences. Having just seen the current Broadway production, I can say that while seeing the show live adds to the experience and the added scenes are great, no one beats the original cast & pacing of the movie. Don't miss it!
This is one of my all time favorite movies. The plot is simple, but very well developed, and the cast is excellent.