Sidekicks (1993)

PG | 101 mins | Comedy-drama, Fantasy | 16 April 1993

Director:

Aaron Norris

Producer:

Don Carmody

Cinematographer:

Joao Fernandes

Production Designer:

Reuben Freed

Production Company:

Gallery Films
Full page view
HISTORY

The film includes several scenes depicting “Barry Gabrewski’s” dreams, in which he acts as the “sidekick” to motion picture characters played by actor Chuck Norris. Supporting characters in the imaginary scenarios, such as the villains, henchmen, and “damsels-in-distress,” are portrayed by people in Barry’s life, including “Kelly Stone,” “Noreen Chen,” “Randy Cellini,” and “Lauren.”
       According to the 10 Jan 1992 DV, executive producer and star Chuck Norris first met local mattress salesman Jim “Mattress Mac” McIngvale at an anti-drug fundraiser in Houston, TX. Interested in Norris’s plans to produce Sidekicks, McIngvale offered to finance the entire film himself through Galley Films. A 1 Dec 1991 HR production chart indicated that principal photography began on 18 Nov 1991, with locations in Houston and Los Angeles, CA.
       A 6 Apr 1993 DV article stated that in addition to covering the $8--$10 million production budget, McIngvale also contributed $6--$7 million of his own money to the prints-and-advertising campaign. McIngvale claimed he was unhappy with the deals offered by various studios and independent distributors, and sought to take control of the film’s marketing himself. Promotions included an eight-minute “trailer,” which was shown in 2,000 martial arts schools throughout Texas and California. A 17 Jun 1992 HR brief stated that Norris and the Sidekicks crew also helped distribute beds to those whose homes were destroyed in the Los Angeles Riots.
       According to the 28 Apr 1993 HR, Sidekicks opened on 9 Apr 1993 in Los Angeles, where it earned a “healthy” $340,000 on eighty-five screens, with similarly strong openings in Houston and Dallas, TX. Due to ... More Less

The film includes several scenes depicting “Barry Gabrewski’s” dreams, in which he acts as the “sidekick” to motion picture characters played by actor Chuck Norris. Supporting characters in the imaginary scenarios, such as the villains, henchmen, and “damsels-in-distress,” are portrayed by people in Barry’s life, including “Kelly Stone,” “Noreen Chen,” “Randy Cellini,” and “Lauren.”
       According to the 10 Jan 1992 DV, executive producer and star Chuck Norris first met local mattress salesman Jim “Mattress Mac” McIngvale at an anti-drug fundraiser in Houston, TX. Interested in Norris’s plans to produce Sidekicks, McIngvale offered to finance the entire film himself through Galley Films. A 1 Dec 1991 HR production chart indicated that principal photography began on 18 Nov 1991, with locations in Houston and Los Angeles, CA.
       A 6 Apr 1993 DV article stated that in addition to covering the $8--$10 million production budget, McIngvale also contributed $6--$7 million of his own money to the prints-and-advertising campaign. McIngvale claimed he was unhappy with the deals offered by various studios and independent distributors, and sought to take control of the film’s marketing himself. Promotions included an eight-minute “trailer,” which was shown in 2,000 martial arts schools throughout Texas and California. A 17 Jun 1992 HR brief stated that Norris and the Sidekicks crew also helped distribute beds to those whose homes were destroyed in the Los Angeles Riots.
       According to the 28 Apr 1993 HR, Sidekicks opened on 9 Apr 1993 in Los Angeles, where it earned a “healthy” $340,000 on eighty-five screens, with similarly strong openings in Houston and Dallas, TX. Due to its success, Vision International decided to open the film nationwide on 1,200 screens—marking the company’s largest domestic release to date—and hoped to expand its international release schedule. The 5 May 1993 DV advertised a three-day gross of $3,765,828 from 1,214 theaters.
       Sidekicks marked the feature film debut of Danica McKellar, who had achieved recognition at the time for her role as “Winnie Cooper” on the ABC television series, The Wonder Years (31 Jan 1988—12 May 1993).
       End credits give “Special Thanks” to: “Texas Film Commission; Houston Film Commission; Galviston Island Film Commission; Drew Mayer-Oaks; the men and women of the U.S. Customs Service in Washington, D.C. & Houston, Texas; Marilyn S. Chambers; K-Swiss; Guess; Justin Boots; Mayer-Berkshire Hosiery; Century Martial Arts Supply; Nike; Black Belt Magazine; Always Travel; Arlynea Stuckey; Tom & Eileen Fitzpatrick; Cooper, Epstein & Hurewitz; Henry Holmes and Andrea Grefe.” Acknowledgments also state: "Missing in Action clip courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.” More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
10 Jan 1992.
---
Daily Variety
6 Apr 1993.
---
Daily Variety
5 May 1993.
---
Hollywood Reporter
1 Dec 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jun 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
19 Apr 1993
p. 5, 10.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Apr 1993
p. 3, 17.
Los Angeles Times
19 Apr 1993
p. 3.
New York Times
1 May 1993
p. 17.
Variety
19 Apr 1993
p. 45.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
2d unit dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
WRITERS
Scr
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Steadicam op
Stills photog
Cam apprentice
Gaffer
Best boy
Elec
Key grip
Best boy
Dolly grip
Dolly grip
2d unit dir of photog, Houston
1st asst cam, 2d unit
2d unit dir of photog, L.A. crew
2d unit 1st A/C, L.A. crew
2d unit 2d A/C, L.A. crew
Best boy elec, L.A. crew
Elec, L.A. crew
Elec, L.A. crew
Elec, L.A. crew
Best boy grip, L.A. crew
Arriflex cams & lenses
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Asst art dir
Prod illustrator
Art dir, L.A. crew
Asst art dir, L.A. crew
FILM EDITORS
Addl ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Apprentice ed
Negative cutting
SET DECORATORS
Asst set dec
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Head scenic artist
Scenic artist
Draftsman
Prop master
Asst props
2d asst props
Const coord
Const foreman
Const foreman
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Metal fabricator
Set dresser - Lead, L.A. crew
Const coord, L.A. crew
Const foreman, L.A. crew
Carpenter, L.A. crew
Carpenter, L.A. crew
Carpenter, L.A. crew
Carpenter, L.A. crew
Carpenter, L.A. crew
Propmaker, L.A. crew
Stage mgr, L.A. crew
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost constuctor
Cost supv
Costumer
Ward asst, L.A. crew
MUSIC
Mus ed
SOUND
Boom op
Audio programming
Supv sd ed
Sd des
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
ADR supv
Foley supv
Foley artist
Foley artist
Post prod sd services provided by
ADR mixer
Foley mixer
ADR/Foley eng
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Post prod
ADR group
Sd mixer, L.A. crew
Boom op, L.A. crew
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff coord
Effectsman
Effectsman
Spec FX transfers
Title des by
MAKEUP
Hair & make-up des
Hair & make-up des
Chuck Norris' hairstylist
Asst make-up
Asst make-up, L.A. crew
Asst make-up, L.A. crew
Asst hair, L.A. crew
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Prod coord
Prod accountant
Scr supv
Loc mgr
Asst to the prod
Prod secy
Asst accountant
Asst loc
Asst to Aaron and Chuck Norris
2d unit coord
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Studio teacher
Casting asst
Extras casting
Craft service
Caterer
Caterer
Office coord
Loc mgr, L.A. crew
Asst loc, L.A. crew
Asst prod coord, L.A. crew
Asst prod coord, L.A. crew
Asst accountant, L.A. crew
Prod asst, L.A. crew
Transportation capt, L.A. crew
Transportation capt, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Driver, L.A. crew
Craft service, L.A. crew
Caterer, L.A. crew
Medic/Nurse, L.A. crew
STAND INS
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt coord
Fight coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
Col timer
SOURCES
SONGS
"In The Hall Of The Mountain King," from the Per Gynt Suite, by Edvard Grieg.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
16 April 1993
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles, Houston, and Dallas openings: 16 April 1993
New York opening: 30 April 1993
Production Date:
began 18 November 1991
Copyright Claimant:
Gallery Films, Inc.
Copyright Date:
14 April 1993
Copyright Number:
PA715705
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Duration(in mins):
101
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
32115
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

During his afternoon history class, unpopular high school student Barry Gabrewski has a vivid, recurring daydream in which he is the sidekick to his favorite martial arts film star, Chuck Norris. He stirs from his reverie to the teasing of his classmates—all except a pretty cheerleader named Lauren, who comes to his defense. After school, Barry’s teacher, Noreen Chan, discusses the problem with his widowed father, Jerry. Hoping to ground his son’s fantasies in something real, Jerry takes Barry to sign up for karate class with “dojo master” Kelly Stone, but they are quickly turned off by the instructor’s egotistical attitude and derogatory remarks about his former competitor, Chuck Norris. Instead, Noreen Chan invites Barry to meet her elderly uncle, Lee Chan, who has recently arrived from China to run her father’s restaurant. Taking a liking to the boy, Mr. Lee offers to teach Barry martial arts and impresses the Gabrewskis when he singlehandedly defends himself against a gang of drunken bikers. The next day, Barry decides to walk to school to build up his physical endurance so he can overcome his crippling asthma. In the locker room, a bully named Randy Cellini tears up Barry’s favorite martial arts magazine featuring a cover story about Chuck Norris. His gym teacher ridicules Barry for falling asleep on the bleachers, and forces him to climb a vertical rope while the other students jeer. Struggling to reach the top, he imagines Chuck Norris giving him words of encouragement. Afterward, Lauren offers her sympathy for the other students’ behavior. Barry asks her out on a date, but instantly realizes he has mistaken her pity for romantic interest. Embarrassed, he runs home and suffers ... +


During his afternoon history class, unpopular high school student Barry Gabrewski has a vivid, recurring daydream in which he is the sidekick to his favorite martial arts film star, Chuck Norris. He stirs from his reverie to the teasing of his classmates—all except a pretty cheerleader named Lauren, who comes to his defense. After school, Barry’s teacher, Noreen Chan, discusses the problem with his widowed father, Jerry. Hoping to ground his son’s fantasies in something real, Jerry takes Barry to sign up for karate class with “dojo master” Kelly Stone, but they are quickly turned off by the instructor’s egotistical attitude and derogatory remarks about his former competitor, Chuck Norris. Instead, Noreen Chan invites Barry to meet her elderly uncle, Lee Chan, who has recently arrived from China to run her father’s restaurant. Taking a liking to the boy, Mr. Lee offers to teach Barry martial arts and impresses the Gabrewskis when he singlehandedly defends himself against a gang of drunken bikers. The next day, Barry decides to walk to school to build up his physical endurance so he can overcome his crippling asthma. In the locker room, a bully named Randy Cellini tears up Barry’s favorite martial arts magazine featuring a cover story about Chuck Norris. His gym teacher ridicules Barry for falling asleep on the bleachers, and forces him to climb a vertical rope while the other students jeer. Struggling to reach the top, he imagines Chuck Norris giving him words of encouragement. Afterward, Lauren offers her sympathy for the other students’ behavior. Barry asks her out on a date, but instantly realizes he has mistaken her pity for romantic interest. Embarrassed, he runs home and suffers an anxiety attack that sends him to the hospital. Mr. Lee recognizes the boy’s ambition and helps him develop a sensible training regimen. Over time, Barry becomes stronger, improves his reflexes, and learns to use nunchaku. As the two families spend more time together, Barry’s teacher and father develop a romantic relationship. One day, Barry stands up to Randy Cellini and holds his own in a fight, which prompts Lauren to reconsider her feelings and ask him on a date. Insulted and jealous, Randy Cellini challenges Barry to the Texas Open Karate Championships, where he will be competing with his instructor, Kelly Stone. Mr. Lee encourages Barry to fight on a team with him and Noreen. On the day of the competition, however, the registrar turns them away because each team is required to have four members. When Chuck Norris arrives as a guest of the event, Mr. Lee decides to ask the superstar to stand in as their fourth teammate, in hope of making Barry’s dreams a reality. Norris agrees, relishing the opportunity to defeat his archrival, Kelly Stone, and Barry is stunned to meet his hero. After Mr. Lee and Noreen compete in their respective events, Barry receives a high score for his nunchaku routine, elevating their team to second place. For the final round of freestyle fighting, Kelly Stone tries too hard to show off in front of Chuck Norris, who swiftly knocks his opponent to the ground by kicking him in the face. With the two teams now tied for overall points, Barry volunteers for the tie-breaker round against Randy Cellini, which requires him to smash his arm through a stack of flaming bricks. He succeeds, and the crowd erupts in wild applause. Afterward, Barry thanks Chuck Norris for making his dreams come true before rushing off to rejoin his father and Noreen. He accidentally leaves behind his prized martial arts magazine, but when he turns back to look for it, Norris has disappeared. Barry walks away, and a young boy in a wheelchair finds the magazine and flips through the pages in awe. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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