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The Sunshine Boys (1975)

The Sunshine Boys (1975)

aka The Sunshine Boys

"For the price of a movie, you'll feel like a million!"

Directed By: 
Written By: 
Details: 111 mins · English · PG (USA)


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Small Willy Clark
Small Al Lewis
Small Ben Clark
No_movie_poster Nurse in Sketch (Miss McIntosh)
No_movie_poster Mrs. Doris Green, Al's Daughter
No_movie_poster Odessa, Willy's nurse
Small Mechanic
Small Mr. Walsh, Commerical Director
No_movie_poster Mr. Schaeffer, TV Director
Small T.V. Floor Manager


Small Herbert Ross Director
No_movie_poster Ray Stark Production
No_movie_poster Neil Simon Writer


"For the price of a movie, you'll feel like a million!"


The Sunshine Boys is a 1975 American comedy film directed by Herbert Ross and produced by Ray Stark, released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and based on the play of the same name by Neil Simon, about two legendary (and cranky) comics brought together for a reunion and revival of their famous act. The cast included real-life experienced vaudevillian actor George Burns as Lewis, Walter Matthau as Clark, and Richard Benjamin as Ben, with Lee Meredith, F. Murray Abraham, Rosetta LeNoire, Howard Hesseman, and Ron Rifkin in supporting roles. This would be Matthau's last Neil Simon movie until 1982's I Ought to Be in Pictures with Ann-Margret and Dinah Manoff.

Woody Allen originally was asked to direct, but he was more interested in playing the role of Lewis and declined the offer. Twenty years later, he would be cast as Lewis in a television adaptation.

Initially, Bob Hope and Bing Crosby were proposed for the leads, but Simon was opposed to the idea, as he felt the roles required Jewish comedians. Several actors, including Groucho Marx and Phil Silvers were considered and the roles eventually were given to real-life vaudevillian veterans Red Skelton and Jack Benny.

Benny was forced to withdraw after being diagnosed with the pancreatic cancer that would soon kill him and recommended his friend and fellow real-life vaudevillian veteran Burns, who had not been in a film since 1939, for the role. Burns' Academy Award-winning role revived his career and redefined his popular image as a remarkably active old comedy star. When Skelton eventually dropped out as well, possibly because he considered the material too "blue", he was replaced by the younger Matthau.

Release Dates:

DVD : 2004-03-30