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Bird

(1988)

PLOT | AUDIO | TRIVIA | CAST | CREDITS | PURCHASE


Plot

This film is a tribute to the life and genius of saxophonist great Charlie Parker. Bird is a collage of passages from Parker's remarkable life, from his childhood in Kansas City, through his tumultuous interracial relationship with Chan Richardson, to his tragic death at the age of 34.


Audio
Play RealAudio Clip

Listen as Clint Eastwood expresses his thoughts about this film as well as the legendary jazz musician.


Trivia
  • Eastwood, a lifelong jazz fan, had been fascinated by Charlie Parker and his music since seeing him play in Oakland in 1945.
  • The project was originally destined for Richard Pryor at Columbia eight years earlier. Persuaded by Clint, Warner Bros. traded it for Revenge, which was made starring Kevin Costner.
  • Clint approached Chan Richardson, Parker's common-law wife on whose memoirs the script was based, for input - she unlocked from a bank vault a collection of 'lost' recordings.
  • The sax playing of Charlie Parker was removed from these poor quality recordings, digitally enhanced, and added to a backing of modern musicians.
  • The film was shown in competition at Cannes, winning prizes for Forest Whitaker and the sound achievement.
  • The film won an Oscar for Best Achievement in Sound, and Eastwood won a Golden Globe for Best Director.

Cast
Charlie "Bird" Parker
Chan Parker
Red Rodney
Dizzy Gillespie
Buster Franklin
Brewster
Esteves
Young Bird
Kim
Dr. Heath
Moscowitz
Bellevue nurse
Alcoholic patient
Patient with checkers
Dr. Caulfield
Mayor of 52nd Street
First doorman
Second doorman
Gene
Sid
Frog
Mildred Berg
Ralph the Narc
Audrey
Owner - Three Deuces
Wilson
Prince
Stratton
Bride's father
Parisian MC
Benny Tate
Southern nurse
Southern doctor
Pee Wee Marquette
Baroness Nica
Bartender
Red's girlfriend
Engine
Grainger
Judge
Bird's lawyer
Recording producer
Nun
Owner - Oasis Club
Violet Welles
DJ at the Paramount
Harris
Morello
Doctor at Nica's
Medical Examiner
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Forest Whitaker
Diane Venora
Michael Zelniker
Samuel E. Wright
Keith David
Michael McGuire
James Handy
Damon Whitaker
Morgan Nagler
Arlen Dean Snyder
Sam Robards
Penelope Windust
Glenn Wright
George Orrison
Bill Cobbs
Hamilton Camp
Chris Bosley
George T. Bruce
Joey Green
John Witherspoon
Tony Todd
Jo De Winter
Richard Zavaglia
Anna Levine
Al Pugliese
Hubert Kelly
Billy Mitchell
Karl Vincent
Lou Cutell
Roger Etienne
Jason Bernard
Gretchen Oehler
Richard McKenzie
Tony Cox
Diane Salinger
Johnny Adams
Natalia Silverwood
Duane Matthews
Slim Jim Phantom
Matthew Faison
Peter Crook
Alec Paul Rubinstein
Patricia Herd
Steve Zettler
Ann Weldon
Charley Lang
Tim Russ
Richard Jeni
Don Starr
Richard Mawe

Credits
Executive Producer
Producer/Director
Screenplay
Director of Photography
Editor
Music
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David Valdes
Clint Eastwood
Joel Oliansky
Jack N. Green
Joel Cox
Lennie Niehaus


Purchase

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