Robert Townsend

Hollywood Shuffle

Hollywood Shuffle

This debut feature by Robert Townsend is an ingenious guerrilla satire that takes riotous aim at the typecasting of Black actors in 1980s Hollywood. The writer-director-star’s megawatt charisma propels Hollywood Shuffle, the hilarious tale of a struggling actor attempting to break into an industry where the only roles available to Black performers seem to be hustlers, butlers, slaves, and “Eddie Murphy types”—forcing him to choose between selling out and maintaining his self-respect. Lampooning everything from film noir to zombie flicks to Siskel and Ebert, Townsend and cowriter Keenen Ivory Wayans cannily turn the frustrations of the Black artist into a subversively funny pop-culture critique.

Film Info

  • United States
  • 1987
  • 81 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.85:1
  • English
  • Spine #1173

DIRECTOR-APPROVED BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

  • New, restored 4K digital transfer, approved by writer-director-actor Robert Townsend, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • New audio commentary featuring Townsend
  • New interviews with actors Rusty Cundieff, Anne-Marie Johnson, and Bobby McGee
  • Radio program featuring Townsend in conversation with film critic Elvis Mitchell
  • Trailer
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Aisha Harris

    New cover by Rachelle Baker

Purchase Options

Coming soon, available Feb 28, 2023

DIRECTOR-APPROVED BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

  • New, restored 4K digital transfer, approved by writer-director-actor Robert Townsend, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • New audio commentary featuring Townsend
  • New interviews with actors Rusty Cundieff, Anne-Marie Johnson, and Bobby McGee
  • Radio program featuring Townsend in conversation with film critic Elvis Mitchell
  • Trailer
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Aisha Harris

    New cover by Rachelle Baker
Hollywood Shuffle
Cast
Robert Townsend
Bobby Taylor
Anne-Marie Johnson
Lydia
Starletta DuPois
Bobby’s mother
Helen Martin
Bobby’s grandmother
David McKnight
Uncle Ray
Craigus R. Johnson
Stevie, Bobby’s brother
Domenick Irrera
Manvacum
Mr. Paul Mooney
NAACP President
Lisa Mende
Producer
Robert Shafer
Commercial director
John Witherspoon
Mr. Jones
Ludie Washington
Tiny
Keenen Ivory Wayans
Donald
Steven Fertig
Agent
Brad Sanders
TV actor
Credits
Director
Robert Townsend
Produced by
Robert Townsend
Executive producer
Carl Craig
Written by
Robert Townsend
Written by
Keenen Ivory Wayans
Director of photography
Peter Deming
Associate producer
Richard Cummings Jr.
Music
Patrice Rushen
Music
Udi Harpaz
Editor
W. O. Garrett
Art director
Melba Katzman Farquhar
Casting
Brown & Livingston
Sound
William Shaffer
Production manager
Carl Craig
Script supervisor
Kerry Lyn McKissick
Hair and makeup
Deborah Fleming
Hair and makeup
Tara Posey
Wardrobe
Andre Allen
Postproduction supervisor
Jim Heinz
Still photographer
Nathaniel Bellamy
Special photography
Paul Slaughter
Chief lighting technician
Michael LaViolette
Special effects
Howard A. Anderson Co.
Choreographer
Donald Douglass
Stunt coordinator
Steve W. James