Daddy's Dyin'...Who's Got the Will? (1990)

PG-13 | 96 mins | Comedy-drama | 4 May 1990

Director:

Jack Fisk

Writer:

Del Shores

Cinematographer:

Paul Elliott

Production Designer:

Michelle Minch

Production Company:

Propaganda Films
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HISTORY

       Playwright and screenwriter Del Shores’ original play, titled Daddy’s Dyin’ (Who’s Got the Will?), opened 7 Feb 1987 at Theatre/Theater in Los Angeles, CA, and ran for twenty-one months, according to the printed script and the 3 May 1990 DV. The play was the middle of what Shores called his “Daddy’s Dyin’ trilogy,” between Cheatin’ and Daughters of the Lone Star State. Exactly three years after the play opened, Shores signed a film deal with Propaganda Films. Since the play was confined to the "Turnover" family’s living room, Shores moved a few scenes into other rooms, outside the house, and into the nearby "Bluebells" bar and a hospital. He also elaborated upon the illicit romance between “Marlene Turnover” and “Harmony Rhodes,” whom he renamed “Harmony Grabowski” in the film. Patrika Darbo and Molly McClure were the only actors from the stage play cast in the movie.
       Principal photography began 25 Sep 1989 in Denton, TX, according to the 3 Oct 1989 and 24 Oct 1989 issues of HR. The 21 Jul 1989 LAT estimated the budget between $4--5 million.
       Kathleen Torn, who portrays the childhood version of “Lurlene,” is the daughter of Amy Wright, who plays Lurlene as an adult.
       Daddy’s Dyin’…Who’s Got the Will? premiered at the USA Film Festival in Dallas, TX, on 24 Apr 1990, the 17 Apr 1990 and 27 Apr 1990 DV reported. The film’s release was set for 4 May 1990 in Los Angeles and several Southwest cities. It opened in New York City on 17 Aug 1990, according to that day’s ... More Less

       Playwright and screenwriter Del Shores’ original play, titled Daddy’s Dyin’ (Who’s Got the Will?), opened 7 Feb 1987 at Theatre/Theater in Los Angeles, CA, and ran for twenty-one months, according to the printed script and the 3 May 1990 DV. The play was the middle of what Shores called his “Daddy’s Dyin’ trilogy,” between Cheatin’ and Daughters of the Lone Star State. Exactly three years after the play opened, Shores signed a film deal with Propaganda Films. Since the play was confined to the "Turnover" family’s living room, Shores moved a few scenes into other rooms, outside the house, and into the nearby "Bluebells" bar and a hospital. He also elaborated upon the illicit romance between “Marlene Turnover” and “Harmony Rhodes,” whom he renamed “Harmony Grabowski” in the film. Patrika Darbo and Molly McClure were the only actors from the stage play cast in the movie.
       Principal photography began 25 Sep 1989 in Denton, TX, according to the 3 Oct 1989 and 24 Oct 1989 issues of HR. The 21 Jul 1989 LAT estimated the budget between $4--5 million.
       Kathleen Torn, who portrays the childhood version of “Lurlene,” is the daughter of Amy Wright, who plays Lurlene as an adult.
       Daddy’s Dyin’…Who’s Got the Will? premiered at the USA Film Festival in Dallas, TX, on 24 Apr 1990, the 17 Apr 1990 and 27 Apr 1990 DV reported. The film’s release was set for 4 May 1990 in Los Angeles and several Southwest cities. It opened in New York City on 17 Aug 1990, according to that day’s NYT.
      End credits contain the following information: “Special thanks to: Michele B. Rosen--JEM Associates, Inc.; Motion Picture Marketing; Upp Entertainment Marketing; Wrangler Jeans; Malcolm Richie; the interns from the Film Department of North Texas University; Irving Film Commission; North Texas Film Commission; Texas Film Commission; Denton Chamber of Commerce; City of Denton; Denton Regional Medical Center; the Webster Family; M. T. Cole Trust--in memory of Mammy Cole.”
More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
Aug 1990.
---
Daily Variety
27 Apr 1990
p. 2, 33.
Daily Variety
17 Apr 1990.
---
Daily Variety
3 May 1990
p. 10, 14.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Oct 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
24 Oct 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
27 Apr 1990
p. 4, 61.
Los Angeles Times
1 Feb 1987
Section K, p. 42.
Los Angeles Times
25 Feb 1987
Section G, p. 7.
Los Angeles Times
8 Jul 1988
Section G, p. 16.
Los Angeles Times
21 Jul 1989
Section C, p. 19A.
Los Angeles Times
4 May 1990
p. 10.
New York Times
17 Aug 1990
p. 8.
Variety
2 May 1990
p. 284.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
In Association With Artist Circle Entertainment
A Propaganda Films Production of
A Jack Fisk Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dir
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Co-prod
Line prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
WRITER
Scr
Based on his play
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Main unit cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Key grip
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Grip/Elec swing
Gaffer
Best boy elec
Elec
Still photog
Video asst op
Cam equip supplied by
Lighting and grip equip
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Asst art dir
Art dept swing gang
Art dept swing gang
FILM EDITORS
1st asst film ed
2d asst film ed
2d asst film ed--Texas
Negative cutter
SET DECORATORS
Asst to set dec
On set dresser
Prop master
Asst prop master
COSTUMES
Ward supv
Costumer
MUSIC
Mus ed
Mus contractor
Scoring eng
Guitar, Score performed by
Fiddle, Score performed by
Bass, Score performed by
Steel guitar, Score performed by
Keyboards, Score performed by
Electric guitar, Prod mus performed by
Drums, Prod mus performed by
Keyboards, Prod mus performed by
Mandolin--Elec & acoustic guitar, Prod mus perform
Pedal steel, Prod mus performed by
Violin, Prod mus performed by
Bass, Prod mus performed by
2d eng
Asst eng
Prod asst
Prod and arr by
Mus supv
Mus coord
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
2d boom op
Supv sd ed
Sd ed
Supv ADR ed
Asst sd ed
Apprentice sd ed
ADR performer
ADR performer
ADR performer
ADR performer
ADR performer
Foley artist
Foley artist
Foley mixer
Foley mixed at
Post prod sd rec
Rerec mixer
Rerec mixer
Sd rec facilities
This film rec in a
VISUAL EFFECTS
Titles and opt eff
Title des by
Title art by
MAKEUP
Key makeup artist
Asst makeup artist
Key hair stylist
Asst hair stylist
Addl makeup and hair
Beverly D'Angelo hair and makeup by
PRODUCTION MISC
Scr supv
Prod coord
Los Angeles coord
Prod accountant
Asst accountant
Prod secy
Loc mgr
Loc casting dir
Casting asst
Transportation coord
Transportation
Transportation
Transportation
Transportation
Transportation
Post prod supv
Post prod supv
Caterer
Caterer, Tux Wagon
Caterer, Tux Wagon
Craft service
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Key set prod asst
Set prod asst
Office prod asst
Post prod asst
Completion bond company
Completion bond company, Film Finances
Completion bond company, Film Finances
Travel consultant
Prod legal services
Prod legal services
Prod legal services
Prod legal services
STAND INS
Stunts
Stunts
Stand-in
Stand-in
Stand-in
Stand-in
Stand-in
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
Col timer
Col timer
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Daddy's Dyin' (Who's Got the Will?) by Del Shores (1987).
AUTHOR
SONGS
"You Find Your Way," written by David McHugh, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by Shadow Canyon Music (ASCAP)
"You Ain't Good Enough To Be That Bad," written by Butch Curry and Pam Brown, performed by Pam Brown, published by PolyGram International, Inc. (ASCAP)
"What A Love's Supposed To Be," written and performed by Kimmie Rhodes, published by Joe Garcey and Pedernales Music/BMI
+
SONGS
"You Find Your Way," written by David McHugh, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by Shadow Canyon Music (ASCAP)
"You Ain't Good Enough To Be That Bad," written by Butch Curry and Pam Brown, performed by Pam Brown, published by PolyGram International, Inc. (ASCAP)
"What A Love's Supposed To Be," written and performed by Kimmie Rhodes, published by Joe Garcey and Pedernales Music/BMI
"Still On The Bottle," composed by Rick Knowles, Jeff Knowles, Marmion Knowles and T. J. Knowles, performed by Tony Booth
"I'll Fly Away," composed by A. Brumley, performed by the Cast, published by A. E. Brumley & Sons/SESAC
"Harder Than Your Husband," written by Frank Zappa, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published worldwide by Munchkin Music (ASCAP), lyrics changed by permission
"Daddy You Can't Blame Me," written by George Highfill, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by Fandango Music/BMI--admin. by Bug
"Hungry For Love," composed by Stevenson E. Miller, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by ACUFF-Rose Music Inc./BMI
"Still Tryin'," written by George Highfill, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by Fandango Music/BMI--admin. by Bug
"Dark Side Of Life," written by Lucinda Williams, performed by Beverly D'Angelo, published by Lucy Jones Music/BMI--admin. by Bug
"Precious Memories," composed by J. B. F. Wright, performed by Cast & Chior [sic], published by Stamps-Baxter Music/BMI
"Rock Of Ages," performed by Newell Alexander, Rosemary Alexander.
+
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Daddy's Dyin' (Who's Got the Will?)
Release Date:
4 May 1990
Premiere Information:
Dallas, TX premiere: 24 April 1990
Los Angeles opening: 4 May 1990
New York opening: 17 August 1990
Production Date:
began 25 September 1989
Copyright Claimant:
MGM/UA Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
30 May 1990
Copyright Number:
PA483638
Physical Properties:
Sound
Recorded in Ultra-Stereo®
Sound
THX
Color
Duration(in mins):
96
Length(in feet):
8,587
MPAA Rating:
PG-13
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
30310
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In the yard of a Lowake, Texas, farmhouse, the Turnover children play on a merry-go-round. Many years later, one of the children, Sara Lee Turnover, and her grandmother, Mama Lois Wheelis, prepare for the return of her siblings. Having the family together again, Sara Lee and Mama Wheelis agree, will be a “livin’ hell.” Seeing big sister Lurlene Turnover Rogers, a preacher’s wife, drive into the front yard, Sara Lee places an open Bible on a table and turns the radio to a gospel music station. Lurlene arrives with their father, Buford Turnover, whom she picked up at the local hospital. Lurlene is shocked by how far Buford has slipped into dementia since his recent stroke. The three women put him to bed. Orville Turnover, Buford’s only son, arrives with his wife, Marlene, after stopping at the nearby Bluebells roadhouse for a case of beer. Orville constantly demeans and bosses his overweight wife. Evalita, the youngest Turnover daughter, pulls up in a van with her newest “fiancé,” a hippie musician named Harmony Grabowski. She explains that Harmony picked her up after her last boyfriend threw her out of his house, and now they are recording country music together. Sara Lee, the family “spinster” who stayed home, tells her sisters she is engaged to a local man, Clarence Hopkins, and displays the ring he gave her, but Evalita says she just saw Clarence at the Bluebells and he said nothing about it. Struggling to lose weight, Marlene exclaims she has lost a pound or so since yesterday, but she is unhappy because Orville committed their son, “Jimbo” Turnover, to a reform school against her wishes, after the boy set his ... +


In the yard of a Lowake, Texas, farmhouse, the Turnover children play on a merry-go-round. Many years later, one of the children, Sara Lee Turnover, and her grandmother, Mama Lois Wheelis, prepare for the return of her siblings. Having the family together again, Sara Lee and Mama Wheelis agree, will be a “livin’ hell.” Seeing big sister Lurlene Turnover Rogers, a preacher’s wife, drive into the front yard, Sara Lee places an open Bible on a table and turns the radio to a gospel music station. Lurlene arrives with their father, Buford Turnover, whom she picked up at the local hospital. Lurlene is shocked by how far Buford has slipped into dementia since his recent stroke. The three women put him to bed. Orville Turnover, Buford’s only son, arrives with his wife, Marlene, after stopping at the nearby Bluebells roadhouse for a case of beer. Orville constantly demeans and bosses his overweight wife. Evalita, the youngest Turnover daughter, pulls up in a van with her newest “fiancé,” a hippie musician named Harmony Grabowski. She explains that Harmony picked her up after her last boyfriend threw her out of his house, and now they are recording country music together. Sara Lee, the family “spinster” who stayed home, tells her sisters she is engaged to a local man, Clarence Hopkins, and displays the ring he gave her, but Evalita says she just saw Clarence at the Bluebells and he said nothing about it. Struggling to lose weight, Marlene exclaims she has lost a pound or so since yesterday, but she is unhappy because Orville committed their son, “Jimbo” Turnover, to a reform school against her wishes, after the boy set his room on fire. Since Buford is not expected to live much longer, Orville asks what happened to his will. After he drives into town to speak with Buford’s lawyer, Mama Wheelis confides to the sisters that the lawyer returned the will for revisions, but Buford forgot where he put it. Stepping outside, Mama Wheelis finds Marlene crying on the merry-go-round swing because she misses Jimbo and can no longer stand Orville’s insults. While Evalita walks to the Bluebells for a drink, Harmony stays at the house and plays “I’ll Fly Away” on the piano. Mama Wheelis, Sara Lee, and Lurlene sing along, and their harmonies bring Buford out of bed and into the living room. He sees his little children, including Linnie Sue, who died in childhood, singing around the piano. Later, Orville returns home and searches Buford’s bedroom for the will. Hearing Evalita singing with the Bluebells’ country music band down the road, Harmony gets his electric guitar from his van and walks to the bar to join her. Afterward, Harmony asks Evalita to return home, but she wants to drink with Clarence, and yells at Harmony to leave her alone. The next morning, Harmony enters the house after sleeping alone in his van, but Evalita has not returned. Orville, a city trash collector, accuses Harmony of a being a “commie” who looks down his nose at him. When Clarence Hopkins brings Evalita home in his pickup truck, she staggers into the house. Lurlene takes Buford his breakfast, finds him unresponsive, and calls an ambulance. At the hospital, Buford tries to talk to his children, and Orville attempts, unsuccessfully, to find out where he put the will. Orville and Evalita rush home and ransack the house. As the others arrive and see everything in disarray, Orville claims he wants to get his father’s “affairs in order” in case he dies. The family laughs together over a memory of Evalita going under the outhouse to get a ball for Orville, and Mama Wheelis accuses Orville of being the spoiled one of the family. Angry that Clarence brought Evalita home that morning, Sara Lee demands to know if they spent the night together, because Clarence is supposed to be her fiancé. When Evalita later returns to the bar, Sara Lee follows and sees Clarence watching her sister sing. She drags him outside and confesses she told her family they were engaged. Clarence insists nothing happened between him and Evalita, but Sara Lee refuses to believe him and calls off their engagement. Meanwhile, Harmony and Marlene slip away, smoke marijuana, return to the house, and raid the refrigerator. Nearby, Mama Wheelis and Orville find Buford’s strongbox in an outside building and tote it into the house. Seeing Marlene giggling and eating with Harmony, Orville demeans her. Evalita returns home and follows Marlene into the back yard. As the two spin on the swing, Marlene cries about her husband and Evalita tells her to defy him. They return to the house and drink Orville’s beer. When Orville threatens Marlene with the crowbar he uses to try to open the strongbox, she grabs it and nearly hits him. Harmony volunteers to open the box with one of Evalita’s hairpins, and as he unlocks it, he confesses he was a robber until he reformed in prison. He walks out when Evalita complains that she always picks “losers.” Inside the box are mementoes of the Turnover brood’s childhood, which makes them nostalgic, but when Orville finds the will, its contents end the levity. Buford has willed the house to Sara Lee and Mama Wheelis and decreed that $600,000 be shared among Sara Lee, Evalita, and Jimbo, Orville’s son. Lurlene and Orville inherit only $1 each. Harmony returns to the house and tells Evalita he dumped her belongings on the lawn, because he is returning to California. Marlene announces she is going with him. Orville threatens her, but Harmony backs him off and drives away with Marlene. Days later, preparing for Buford’s funeral, Sara Lee agrees to share her inheritance with Lurlene and Orville. Evalita dresses in a cowgirl stage outfit, her only “formal” clothes, she says, but Mama Wheelis gives her a dark shawl to wear over her shoulders. Agreeing to sing at the funeral, the Turnovers, even Orville, practice “Precious Memories” around the piano. Buford appears in the window, smiling, watching all his little children sing. His image fades. +

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

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