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Definition (arts)One who supervises and controls the finances, creation, and public presentation of a play, film, program, musical recording or similar work. [Feb 2006]
Definition (economics)One that produces, especially a person or organization that produces goods or services for sale. --AHD
The Producers (1968) - Mel Brooks
- The Producers (1968) - Mel Brooks [Amazon.com]
The Producers is a 1968 feature length comedy film set in New York City in which two con-men attempt to cheat theatre "angels" (investors) out of their investment money. Max Bialystock (Zero Mostel) is a failed, aging Broadway producer who encounters nebbish accountant Leo Bloom (Gene Wilder).
The film was adapted by its writer/director, Mel Brooks, into The Producers, a Broadway musical in 2001. The Producers, a film based on that musical was released on December 25, 2005.
Max and Leo Bloom's plan is to oversell shares in a show, then flee to Brazil with the money. They set out to purposely make a flop, so that no one will ever audit its books, and to avoid a payout. Springtime for Hitler, a musical comedy about Adolf Hitler, is the result.
Unfortunately for the con artists, their attempt to make an unwatchable play backfires as the audience finds the inept production so funny that they misinterpret it as an over the top satire on Nazism and hail it as a hit. Franz Liebkind (the writer, played by Kenneth Mars), who really believed they were producing a tribute to Hitler, is insulted by the audience's laughter. He and the producers blow up the theatre to end the production. The producers see it as a final — yet futile — plan to reap their ill-gotten gains. However, the producers end up in prison where they cast a new show amongst the prisoners while running the same scam as before. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Producers_%281968_film%29 [Mar 2006]
Mel Brooks's directorial debut remains both a career high point and a classic show business farce. Hinging on a crafty plot premise, which in turn unleashes a joyously insane onstage spoof, The Producers is powered by a clutch of over-the-top performances, capped by the odd couple pairing of the late Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder, making his screen debut.
Truly startling during its original 1968 release, The Producers does show signs of age in some peripheral scenes that make merry at the expense of gays and women. But the show's nifty cast (notably including the late Dick Shawn as LSD, the space cadet that snags the musical's title role, and Kenneth Mars as the helmeted playwright) clicks throughout, and the sight of Mostel fleecing his marks is irresistibly funny. Add Wilder's literally hysterical Bloom, and it's easy to understand the film's exalted status among late-'60s comedies. --Sam Sutherland for amazon.com
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