King of the Gypsies (film)
|King of the Gypsies|
|Directed by||Frank Pierson|
Dino De Laurentiis (executive producer)|
Federico De Laurentiis
Peter Maas (book)|
Frank Pierson (screenplay)
|Music by||David Grisman, Stephane Grappelli|
|Edited by||Paul Hirsch|
Dino De Laurentiis Company
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Box office||$7,325,177 (USA)|
Several technical advisors, bit players and extras who worked on the movie were real gypsies. David Grisman composed the score, which prominently featured legendary jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli; both men also appeared onscreen as gypsy musicians. Future actress Rachel Ticotin was one of the gypsy dancers.
The film deals with the criminal ways and violent lives of a group of modern-day Gypsies based in New York City. Whilst on his deathbed their "king", Zharko Stepanowicz (Sterling Hayden), passes his position of leadership on to his unwilling grandson, Dave (Eric Roberts). In spite of Dave's reluctance to become the Gypsies' new leader, Dave's father, Groffo (Judd Hirsch), is sufficiently insecure and resentful over not winning the title himself that he attempts to have his own son killed. This leads to a major confrontation, and the film ends with the implication that Dave may finally accept his legacy with his voiceover musings about somehow bringing the rest of the tradition-bound Gypsies forward in time into the world of 20th Century customs and lifestyles.
- Eric Roberts as Dave
- Sterling Hayden as King Zharko Stepanowicz
- Shelley Winters as Queen Rachel
- Susan Sarandon as Rose
- Brooke Shields as Tita
- Annette O'Toole as Sharon
- Judd Hirsch as Groffo
- Annie Potts as Persa
- Michael V. Gazzo as Spiro Giorgio
- Antonia Rey as Danitza Giorgio
- Matthew Laborteaux as Middle Dave
- Danielle Brisebois as Young Tita
Dave's sister, Tita, is played by Brooke Shields, and his girlfriend, Sharon, is played by Annette O'Toole. This was the second consecutive film in which Susan Sarandon and Brooke Shields played mother and daughter, following Pretty Baby. Six years after the release of the film, on June 20, 1984, Shelley Winters and Annie Potts appeared as guests on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson. Miss Winters had no memory of working with Potts and the conversation brought the house down. A clip of this segment was replayed on several Tonight Show anniversary specials.
The casting director was future producer Scott Rudin; it is his first screen credit in any capacity.
- King of the Gypsies at the Internet Movie Database
- King of the Gypsies at the TCM Movie Database
- King of the Gypsies at AllMovie
- King of the Gypsies at Rotten Tomatoes