A Little Sex (1982)

R | 95 mins | Comedy, Romantic comedy | 2 April 1982

Director:

Bruce Paltrow

Cinematographer:

Ralf Bode

Editor:

Bill Butler

Production Designer:

Stephen Hendrickson

Production Companies:

MTM Enterprises , Universal Pictures
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HISTORY

Opening credits are transposed over the image of a burning cigarette.
       End credits include thanks from producers to “the New York City Mayor’s Office for Motion Pictures and Television and especially Nancy Littlefield for their assistance and cooperation in the making of this motion picture.”
       The name of production assistant Matthew Penn is misspelled onscreen as “Mathew Penn.” Writer-producer Robert De Laurentis is also known as Robert De Laurentiis.
       A 6 May 1981 LAT article reported that A Little Sex marked the first feature film of Mary Tyler Moore’s television production company, Mary Tyler Moore Enterprises (MTM). MTM agreed to fund half of the project’s $6 million budget, with Universal Pictures providing the remaining costs in exchange for distribution rights. As former creator of the MTM television series The White Shadow (CBS, 27 Nov 1978--12 Aug 1981), Bruce Paltrow was hired to make his motion picture debut as director and producer. De Laurentis also joined the production for his first film as writer-producer, after having met Paltrow in Venice, CA, several years earlier. According to a 15 Apr 1981 HR article, De Laurentis began working on the script around May 1979.
       The 27 Mar 1981 NYT article stated that actress Kate Capshaw auditioned for a minor part in the film, but was offered the role of “Katherine” two days later. A Little Sex marked her motion picture debut.
       According to the 27 Jan 1981 HR, production was expected to take place over forty-eight days in New York City. The 10 Apr 1981 HR production charts announced that filming began 16 Mar 1981. ... More Less

Opening credits are transposed over the image of a burning cigarette.
       End credits include thanks from producers to “the New York City Mayor’s Office for Motion Pictures and Television and especially Nancy Littlefield for their assistance and cooperation in the making of this motion picture.”
       The name of production assistant Matthew Penn is misspelled onscreen as “Mathew Penn.” Writer-producer Robert De Laurentis is also known as Robert De Laurentiis.
       A 6 May 1981 LAT article reported that A Little Sex marked the first feature film of Mary Tyler Moore’s television production company, Mary Tyler Moore Enterprises (MTM). MTM agreed to fund half of the project’s $6 million budget, with Universal Pictures providing the remaining costs in exchange for distribution rights. As former creator of the MTM television series The White Shadow (CBS, 27 Nov 1978--12 Aug 1981), Bruce Paltrow was hired to make his motion picture debut as director and producer. De Laurentis also joined the production for his first film as writer-producer, after having met Paltrow in Venice, CA, several years earlier. According to a 15 Apr 1981 HR article, De Laurentis began working on the script around May 1979.
       The 27 Mar 1981 NYT article stated that actress Kate Capshaw auditioned for a minor part in the film, but was offered the role of “Katherine” two days later. A Little Sex marked her motion picture debut.
       According to the 27 Jan 1981 HR, production was expected to take place over forty-eight days in New York City. The 10 Apr 1981 HR production charts announced that filming began 16 Mar 1981. On 27 Mar 1981, NYT reported that Capshaw had filmed a scene that morning in a convent school on the Upper East Side of New York City, which production notes in AMPAS library files indicated was the Convent of the Sacred Heart school. That scene, in which Capshaw’s character reads a story to her nursery school students, does not appear in the completed film.
       Production notes also included the following New York City locations: the Citicorp building, Joanna’s Restaurant, the Church of Transfiguration—also known as Little Church Around the Corner—the Central Park hockey fields, and the Central Park Zoo. On 6 Apr 1981, production relocated to the Empire Stages in Long Island City, NY, to shoot interior apartment and office scenes. According to production notes, filming lasted a total of ten weeks.
       The picture received generally poor reviews and performed poorly at the box office upon its 2 Apr 1982 domestic release. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Hollywood Reporter
27 Jan 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
10 Apr 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
15 Apr 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
31 Mar 1982.
---
Los Angeles Times
6 May 1981
Section VI, p. 2.
Los Angeles Times
2 Apr 1982
p. 4.
New York Times
27 Mar 1981.
---
New York Times
2 Apr 1982
p. 10.
Variety
31 Mar 1982
p. 23.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
also starring:
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
MTM Enterprises presents
An MTM Enterprises Production
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr in Los Angeles
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d asst dir
DGA trainee
DGA trainee
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Still photog
Steadicam op
Cam prod asst
Key grip
Best boy
Gaffer
Best boy
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
Apprentice film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Prop manager
Props
Const grip
Const grip
Head carpenter
Chargeman scenic artist
Scenic artist
Scenic artist
Scenic artist
COSTUMES
Men`s ward
Men`s ward
Women's ward
Prod asst ward
Bridal salon gowns by
MUSIC
Mus comp and cond
Mus ed
for La Da Productions
SOUND
Sd ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Boom op
VISUAL EFFECTS
Main titles and end credits des and prod by
New York City
Optical eff by
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Addl casting
Transportation capt
Loc mgr
Unit pub
Prod coord
Prod asst
Prod asst
Asst to Bruce Paltrow
Bell & Brown Advertising Offices by
Architecture by
with Alexandra Stoddard, Inc.
STAND INS
Stunt double--Michael
Stunt player
Stunt player
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Your Place Or Mine," written by Melissa Manchester, Allee Willis, and David Bryant, performed by Melissa Manchester, © 1982 by Rumanian Pickleworks Music (BMI)/Baby Shoes Music, Ink/Irvin Music, Inc. (BMI)/Adrovan Music (ASCAP)
"Mr. Sandman," words and music by Pat Ballard, © 1954 Worldwide Rights held by Edwin H. Morris & Co. a division of MTL Communications, Inc. (ASCAP).
PERFORMER
DETAILS
Release Date:
2 April 1982
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York opening: 2 April 1982
Production Date:
began 16 March 1981 in New York City and Long Island City, NY
Copyright Claimant:
Company Four
Copyright Date:
4 August 1982
Copyright Number:
PA153968
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Lenses
Panaflex® Camera and Lenses by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
95
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
26581
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

During his morning jog in New York City, television commercial director Michael Donovan visits his older scientist brother, Tommy, announcing he wishes to put a stop to his satyriasis. Afterward, he watches his nursery schoolteacher girl friend, Katherine, coach her young female students playing field hockey in Central Park. He follows Katherine down the street and aggressively flirts with her, proposing that they have sex if he is able to outrun her. Accepting the challenge, she bolts down the street and up the stairs of her apartment building, but he trips her on the landing, and they laugh at their familiar game. Later, Michael suggests they get married because he is ready to settle down after living together for a few months. Pressured by Michael to make a decision, Katherine agrees, casting aside her reservations that Michael will eventually lose interest in her. During a family picnic at Tommy’s house, Tommy bets that Michael will be unable to remain faithful to Katherine. At his Madison Avenue office, Michael convinces his co-workers to hire a desperate actress named Nancy Barwood for an advertisement. While testing new mattresses with Katherine at the furniture store, Michael pretends that his fiancée is a stranger and flirts with her, distressing the saleslady. One evening, Michael accompanies Katherine to watch her friend, Walter, and his girl friend, Philomena, perform in an orchestra concert before sharing news of their engagement over dinner. Walter doubts Michael’s commitment, while Philomena follows Michael outside to smoke and attempts to seduce him. At work, a scantily clad actress gives Michael a massage to relieve the tension in his back, causing him to be late for his wedding rehearsal. Convinced that ... +


During his morning jog in New York City, television commercial director Michael Donovan visits his older scientist brother, Tommy, announcing he wishes to put a stop to his satyriasis. Afterward, he watches his nursery schoolteacher girl friend, Katherine, coach her young female students playing field hockey in Central Park. He follows Katherine down the street and aggressively flirts with her, proposing that they have sex if he is able to outrun her. Accepting the challenge, she bolts down the street and up the stairs of her apartment building, but he trips her on the landing, and they laugh at their familiar game. Later, Michael suggests they get married because he is ready to settle down after living together for a few months. Pressured by Michael to make a decision, Katherine agrees, casting aside her reservations that Michael will eventually lose interest in her. During a family picnic at Tommy’s house, Tommy bets that Michael will be unable to remain faithful to Katherine. At his Madison Avenue office, Michael convinces his co-workers to hire a desperate actress named Nancy Barwood for an advertisement. While testing new mattresses with Katherine at the furniture store, Michael pretends that his fiancée is a stranger and flirts with her, distressing the saleslady. One evening, Michael accompanies Katherine to watch her friend, Walter, and his girl friend, Philomena, perform in an orchestra concert before sharing news of their engagement over dinner. Walter doubts Michael’s commitment, while Philomena follows Michael outside to smoke and attempts to seduce him. At work, a scantily clad actress gives Michael a massage to relieve the tension in his back, causing him to be late for his wedding rehearsal. Convinced that Michael’s resolve is wavering, Tommy encourages his brother to squelch his sexual frustration around women by writing their traits in a notebook, acting as if they are subjects of scientific observation. Meanwhile, Katherine tries on bridal gowns as her mother warns that her relationship will change after marriage. Following their wedding, Michael assures Katherine that their union will last, but over the next six weeks, he fills notepads with writings about numerous attractive women he encounters in the city, including a former girl friend. At home, Katherine notices that Michael has not been eating or sleeping well, and he tells her it is because he bet Tommy he could quit smoking. Michael later attempts to justify infidelity to his brother, claiming that monogamy has changed his personality and is hurting his marriage. At the office, Michael and his boss, Oliver, complain about the changing sexual attitudes of modern women. That evening, Michael runs to Central Park to seek solace from the beautiful ladies who distract him on the streets. There, he bumps into Philomena, and they return to her apartment to have sex. Although Philomena encourages his infidelity, Michael leaves in shame. Once at home, he presents his wife with a videocassette of himself reading a bedtime story, so Katherine can play it for her kindergarten students before naptime. After work that night, Michael records another tape, but is interrupted by Nancy Barwood, who thanks him for advancing her career. Meanwhile, Katherine arrives at the studio to surprise her husband, wearing nothing but a trench coat, but she finds Michael and Nancy dressing after having sex. Insisting on a separation, Katherine moves into Walter’s apartment, and Michael seeks advice from Tommy. Michael visits Katherine at school, but she rejects his apology. At a bar one evening, Tommy shares his experience of being cheated on by his wife. The next day, Michael interrupts Katherine’s hockey game and encourages her to move back in their house; when a girl breaks her arm, Michael and Katherine carry her to the hospital and buy her ice cream while they await her mother. The next day, Katherine’s mother admits that her husband, Katherine’s father, had an affair with the girl’s third grade teacher, but she fought to save the marriage. Katherine visits Michael’s studio and tells him she was hurt more by his dishonesty than his philandering. Later, Michael barges into Walter’s apartment and shows Katherine a typed list of all the women he has had sex with since the beginning of their two-year relationship. Although he begs for forgiveness, she hits him with a hockey stick. Early the next morning, Katherine returns home and announces her plans to file for divorce, claiming she had always known about Michael’s cheating but was too upset to ever confront him. At work, Michael looks at his wedding photographs and receives a package containing a stuffed animal snake from the girl who was injured during the hockey game. Meanwhile, Katherine cries as she plays the “Wedding March” on the piano. Despite Walter’s protests, Katherine packs her clothes and prepares to move out. Later, she approaches Walter in his bedroom and convinces him to have sex. Unable to sleep, Michael records another videotape and brings it to Walter’s apartment, where he discovers Katherine and Walter together. Sometime later, Michael tells Tommy that he made a mistake, and Katherine’s students ask to watch Michael’s tape, which features him telling a fairy tale story that parallels his relationship with Katherine. That afternoon, he returns home to find Katherine, who explains that she propositioned Walter to find out how it felt to have sex with someone she was not in love with. Although she learned that casual sex seemed more “adventurous,” she decided that it was not worth giving up a marriage for. They reconcile, and Katherine invites Michael to chase after her again. She trips him on the stairs, but he jumps to his feet, following her to Central Park until he tackles her in the grass. +

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

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