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Man on the Moon (1999)

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The life and career of legendary comedian Andy Kaufman.

Director:

Milos Forman
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4,535 ( 658)
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jim Carrey ... Andy Kaufman (as Tony Clifton)
Gerry Becker ... Stanley Kaufman - Andy's Father
Greyson Erik Pendry ... Little Michael Kaufman (as Greyson Pendry)
Brittany Colonna ... Baby Carol Kaufman
Leslie Lyles Leslie Lyles ... Janice Kaufman - Andy's Mother
Bobby Boriello ... Little Andy Kaufman
George Shapiro ... Mr. Besserman
Danny DeVito ... George Shapiro
Budd Friedman ... Budd Friedman
Tom Dreesen ... Wiseass Comic
Thomas Armbruster Thomas Armbruster ... Improv Piano Player
Pamela Abdy Pamela Abdy ... Diane Barnett
Wendy Polland Wendy Polland ... Little Wendy
Cash Oshman Cash Oshman ... Yogi
Matt Price ... Meditation Student
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Storyline

A biographical film on the late comedian Andy Kaufman. Kaufman, along with his role on Taxi (1978), was famous for being the self-declared Intergender Wrestling Champion of the world. After beating women time and time again, Jerry Lawler (who plays himself in the movie), a professional wrestler, got tired of seeing all of this and decided to challenge Kaufman to a match. In most of the matches the two had, Lawler prevailed with the piledriver, which is a move by spiking an opponent head-first into the mat. One of the most famous moments in this feud was in the early 80s when Kaufman threw coffee on Lawler on Late Night with David Letterman (1982), got into fisticuffs with Lawler, and proceeded to sue NBC. Written by Eli Boorstein <uahp@rocketmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"Hello, my name is Andy and this is my Banner" [Web Banner Ads] See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and brief sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Germany | Japan | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 December 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Andy Kaufman See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$82,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,515,585, 26 December 1999

Gross USA:

$34,607,430

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$47,434,430
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film ended Carrey's much publicized streak of films that grossed $100 million at eight in a row. See more »

Goofs

During his 1979 Carnegie Hall show ("Milk and cookies for everyone!") Andy presents an old movie clip and says, "We have with us the last surviving cowgirl from that 1931 film." However, the clip shown is from a 1942 movie, The Forest Rangers. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Andy Kaufman: Hello. I am Andy and I would like to thank you for coming to my movie. I wish it was *better*, you know, but... it is so stupid! It's terrible! I do not even like it. All of the most important things in my life are changed around and mixed up for dramatic purposes. So, I decided to cut out all of the baloney! Now the movie is much *shorter*.
[pause]
Andy Kaufman: In fact, this is the end of the movie. Thank you very much.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits lists Tony Clifton as himself. Tony Clifton was a character created by Andy Kaufman, and was portrayed by Andy or Bob Zmuda in real life (and by Jim Carrey in the movie). See more »

Alternate Versions

Several scenes were shot but cut. These include:
  • The cast of Taxi rehearsing with a stand-in substituting for Andy.
  • Andy responding to fan mail from some attractive girls.
  • Andy taking a girl out on a date and acting so weird she asks to go home.
  • After the Tony Clifton fiasco on the Taxi set, Andy calling Ed Weinberger and thanking him for playing along so convincingly.
  • A scene backstage after Andy "hurts" his neck at the wrestling match where his worried parents come to see if he is okay.
  • A scene towards the end of the movie at the Improv Club where Andy resurrects his Foreign Man routine and is "heckled" by Zmuda posing as an audience member.
See more »

Connections

References Saturday Night Live (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

One More Song for You
(1979)
Written by Michael Omartian (as Michael O'Martian) and Stormie Omartian (as Stormie O'Martian)
Performed by Andy Kaufman
Courtesy of Soundstage WTTW/Chicago
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Man on The Moon, indeed.
2 March 2000 | by jaycer1See all my reviews

"Man on The Moon", indeed. I remember seeing Andy Kaufman's act on TV as a teenager, and I admit, I wrote him off as another comedian, with an incredibly expressive face and a flair for silliness. Years later, I'm watching him on "Taxi" reruns. I admired the easiness where he could go from loving Latka to malicious Vic with ease, and I thought, "Wow, this guy really loves what he does". And then I watch "Man on The Moon". Reality check.

This picture, I believe, redeems Andy Kaufman. He endured five grueling years in "Taxi" just so he could get some laughs out of people. He did wrestling stints just for the heck of it. He came real close of hitting rock bottom just to save himself at the end. He died of cancer at the age of 35, ridiculously young, and even then his own family didn't buy it. He lived misunderstood, and died misunderstood. And years later, he gets a biopic. Just what he deserves. It is sad that many people will know Andy's talent and understand him only after watching this film. But still, let's face it, at the end he did get the last laugh.

The true cornerstone in this film is Jim Carrey. Yes, you've heard endless reviews about him immersing himself into Andy, not just playing him. But this is acting beyond your dreams, trust me. Especially when he plays Andy's foreign character, Carrey lived and breathed Kaufman air. This is the movie where his silly-putty face comes handy, as it seems to help Jim turn into Andy. (If only we could do something about those teeth...) NEWSFLASH FOR THE ACADEMY: Jim Carrey can act!!! I remember Tom Hanks beginning with the same kind of movies that Jim did: loud, colorful, goofy and silly (films like "Bachelor Party" come to mind). Then he did "Big", then came "Philadelphia". When is Carrey's "Philadelphia" coming along? I can't wait to see him at the Academy Awards this year.

Man on the moon, indeed.


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