Paul Mazursky - Rotten Tomatoes

Paul Mazursky

Highest Rated:   96% Antz (1998)
Lowest Rated:   7% Faithful (1996)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Brooklyn, New York, USA
Although actor/director Paul Mazursky enjoyed a lengthy and successful career spanning several decades, he rose to his greatest prominence during the 1970s, an era during which his films probed with uncommon insight and depth. Born Irwin Mazursky on April 25, 1930, in Brooklyn, NY, he studied literature at the nearby Brooklyn College. There he began acting, winning acclaim for a leading role in a 1950 campus revival of Leonid Andreyev's He Who Gets Slapped. His performance caught the eye of scenarist Howard Sackler, who introduced the young actor to an aspiring filmmaker named Stanley Kubrick. Mazursky then took a leave of absence from his studies to travel to California to appear in Kubrick's little-seen debut feature, Fear and Desire, for which he changed his first name to Paul. Upon graduating in 1951, he migrated to Greenwich Village, where he studied method acting under Lee Strasberg. He also appeared in a number of stock productions, ranging from Death of a Salesman to The Seagull. In 1955, Mazursky returned to the screen, appearing as a juvenile delinquent in Richard Brooks' The Blackboard Jungle. Major success continued to elude him, however, and he spent the next several years regularly appearing in small roles on television and both on and off-Broadway. He also appeared as a standup comic, first performing with fellow comedian Herb Hartig in an act billed as "Igor and H" and later touring the nation as a solo act. In 1959, Mazursky relocated to Los Angeles, forging a collaboration with fellow struggling performer Larry Tucker while working with the U.C.L.A. repertory company. In 1963, he and Tucker were both signed as writers for television's Danny Kaye Show, and two years later they penned the pilot for The Monkees. In 1966, Mazursky also appeared in Vic Morrow's low-budget Deathwatch, making his first return to film in over a decade. With the short subject Last Year at Malibu -- a parody of the Alain Resnais masterpiece Last Year at Marienbad -- Mazursky made his directorial debut, and in 1968 he and Tucker wrote the screenplay for the feature I Love You, Alice B. Toklas. Strong reviews allowed Mazursky the leverage to direct the duo's next script, 1969's Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice; a frank comedy about the "new morality" of the sexual revolution, the film was a massive hit, earning close to 20 million dollars. Its success offered Mazursky the freedom to make movies according to the wishes and demands of no one but himself, and he responded with 1970's Alex in Wonderland, the clearly autobiographical tale of a young filmmaker pondering his future. The picture was an unmitigated critical and financial disaster, however, and injured by its reception, he traveled to Europe to take stock of his career. Upon returning to Los Angeles, Mazursky ended his partnership with Larry Tucker and began work on his first solo screenplay, Harry and Tonto. Finding no takers for the project, he instead turned to 1973's Blume in Love, a return to reviewers' good graces. After securing the backing of 20th Century Fox, he finally made Harry and Tonto in 1974, directing star Art Carney to an Academy Award. Next, he again turned reflective, going back to his youth for the inspiration behind 1976's Next Stop, Greenwich Village, followed by an appearance in the 1976 Barbra Steisand remake of A Star Is Born. Mazursky's next directorial effort, 1978's An Unmarried Woman, remains the most highly regarded of his pictures, scoring an Oscar nomination for Best Picture as well as a Best Actress nod for star Jill Clayburgh. The 1980 Willie and Phil -- an homage to Francois Truffaut's masterpiece Jules et Jim -- met with a mixed reception, as did its follow-up, 1982's Tempest, an update of the Shakespeare drama. He then helmed the 1984 culture-clash comedy Moscow on the Hudson, a vehicle for Robin Williams which restored some of his critical and box-office lustre, and in 1986 Mazursky scored his biggest success in years with the satire Down and Out in

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
72% Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles
  • Actor
$9.3k 2014
94% Casting By
  • Actor
$14.5k 2013
No Score Yet Show Me The Magic
  • Actor
2012
81% Kung Fu Panda 2
  • Musician Bunny
$165.3M 2011
75% Tales From the Script
  • Actor
2010
No Score Yet Nick Nolte: No Exit
  • Actor
2009
No Score Yet The Anatomy Of Vince Guaraldi
  • Actor
2009
No Score Yet Cattle Call (National Lampoon's Cattle Call)
  • Judge Mendel
2006
73% I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With
  • Charlie
2006
No Score Yet Searching for Orson
  • Actor
2006
77% A Decade Under the Influence
  • Actor
2003
20% Big Shot's Funeral
  • Studio Boss
2003
42% The Majestic
  • Studio Executive
2001
85% Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures
  • Actor
2001
30% Crazy in Alabama
  • Walter
1999
No Score Yet A Slight Case of Murder
  • Brant
1999
80% Winchell
  • Director
  • Winchell's Father
1998
96% Antz
  • Psychologist
1998
54% Why Do Fools Fall In Love
  • Morris Levy
1998
75% Bulworth
  • Himself
1998
33% Touch
  • Artie
1997
No Score Yet Weapons of Mass Distraction
  • Dr. Cummings
1997
59% 2 Days in the Valley
  • Teddy Peppers
1996
7% Faithful
  • Dr. Susskind
1996
45% Miami Rhapsody
  • Vic Marcus
1995
31% Love Affair
  • Herb
1994
20% The Pickle
  • Producer
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Butch Levine
1993
80% Carlito's Way
  • Judge Feinstein
1993
7% Man Trouble
  • Lee MacGreevy
1992
32% Scenes from a Mall
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
  • Dr. Hans Clava
  • Director
1991
29% Taking Care of Business
  • Executive Producer
1990
No Score Yet First Works
  • Actor
1989
80% Scenes from the Class Struggle in Beverly Hills
  • Sidney Lipkin
1989
91% Enemies, a Love Story
  • Leon Tortshiner
  • Director
1989
50% Punchline
  • Arnold
1988
42% Moon over Parador
  • Producer
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1988
84% Down and Out in Beverly Hills
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Sidney Waxman
  • Producer
1986
41% Into the Night
  • Bud Herman
1985
90% Moscow On The Hudson
  • Director
  • Dave
1984
71% Tempest
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Producer
  • Terry Bloomfield
1982
62% History of the World---Part I
  • Roman Officer
1981
No Score Yet Coast to Coast
  • Director
  • Stanely Tarlo
1980
No Score Yet Willie & Phil
  • Director
  • Producer
  • Screenwriter
1980
No Score Yet A Man, a Woman and a Bank
  • Norman
1979
89% An Unmarried Woman
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
  • Hal
1978
31% A Star is Born
  • Brian
1976
73% Next Stop, Greenwich Village
  • Producer
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1976
88% Harry and Tonto
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
1974
No Score Yet Blume in Love
  • Director
  • Producer
  • Blume's Partner
  • Screenwriter
1973
No Score Yet Alex in Wonderland
  • Screenwriter
  • Hal Stern
  • Director
1970
91% Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1969
17% I Love You, Alice B. Toklas
  • Screenwriter
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
1968
No Score Yet Deathwatch
  • Maurice
1966
76% Blackboard Jungle
  • Emmanuel Stoker
1955
83% Fear and Desire
  • Sidney
1953

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet Femme Fatales
2011-2012
  • Warden
  • 2011
98% Curb Your Enthusiasm
2000-2011
  • Norm
  • 2009
  • 2004
No Score Yet Lass es, Larry!
2000
  • Norm
  • 2009
  • 2004
No Score Yet Frasier
1993-2004
  • Guest
  • 1995
No Score Yet The Twilight Zone
1959-1964
  • Policeman Frank Orderly
  • 1963
  • 1962
  • 1960

Quotes from Paul Mazursky's Characters