Lucky Lady

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Lucky Lady
Lucky lady poster.jpg
Theatrical poster by Richard Amsel
Directed by Stanley Donen
Produced by Michael Gruskoff
Written by Willard Huyck
Gloria Katz
Starring Gene Hackman
Liza Minnelli
Burt Reynolds
Music by Ralph Burns
Cinematography Geoffrey Unsworth
Edited by Peter Boita
Gruskoff/Venture Films
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date
December 25, 1975 (1975-12-25)
Running time
118 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $13 million
Box office $24,441,725[1]

Lucky Lady is a 1975 American comedy-drama film directed by Stanley Donen and starring Gene Hackman, Liza Minnelli, and Burt Reynolds, with Robby Benson. Its story takes place during Prohibition in the United States in the year 1930.

Gene Hackman initially did not want to do the film, but 20th Century Fox kept offering him more and more money. Finally, Fox offered him $1.25 million, and according to talent agent Sue Mengers, "it was almost obscene for him not to do the film."[2]

On February 1, 2011 Shout! Factory released the film on DVD for the first time.[3]

The film is notable for serving as a storefront for George Lucas and Gary Kurtz who were looking for crew to assist with the look of Star Wars. Both visited the set during production and were impressed with what they saw. Several of the many British crew were effectively recruited during this visit.


During the Prohibition era, a young widow, Claire, gets involved in liquor smuggling and romance with two men, Walker and Kibby, off the San Diego coast. Organized crime controls bootlegging back east and wants to do the same here, so a hit man named McTeague is sent to deal with these amateur crooks, as is the Coast Guard, leading to various battles at sea.



The script was sold for $450,000.[4] The writers wanted Steven Spielberg to direct and he was interested but had made a commitment to do Jaws.[5]

Donen originally wanted Paul Newman, who also wanted Spielberg to direct,[6] and Warren Beatty for the lead male roles with production scheduled to begin in October 1974. Later, in November 1974, Reynolds was signed along with George Segal, who later dropped out of the project and was quickly replaced with Hackman.[7] Filming began in Mexico in February 1975 and finished in July of that year.

The artist Lilly Fenichel served as the film's art director.[8]


The film earned rentals of $12.1 million in North America.[9]

Additional information

This film was also released under the following titles:

  • Abenteurer auf der Lucky Lady - West Germany
  • Belali sevgili - Turkey
  • I tyheri kyria - Greece (transliterated ISO-LATIN-1 title)
  • In 3 sul Lucky Lady - Italy
  • Los aventureros de Lucky Lady - Spain
  • Oh, vilket sjöslag! - Sweden
  • Os aventureiros de Lucky Lady - Brazil (TV title)
  • Tre smarte smuglere på 'Lucky Lady' - Denmark
  • Uma Mulher dos Diabos - Portugal (imdb display title)
  • Una dama con suerte - Venezuela
  • Viskiseikkailu Lucky Ladyllä - Finland


  • "Empty Bed Blues" - Written by J.C. Johnson, Performed by Bessie Smith
  • "Ain't Misbehavin'" - Music by Fats Waller and Harry Brooks, Lyrics by Andy Razaf, Performed by Burt Reynolds
  • "A Hot Time in the Old Town" - Music by Theo. A. Metz, Lyrics by Joe Hayden, Performed by Bessie Smith
  • " (Get) While the Getting is Good" - Written by John Kander and Fred Ebb, Performed by Liza Minnelli
  • "Lucky Lady Montage" - Written by John Kander and Fred Ebb, Performed by Liza Minnelli
  • "Lucky Lady (reprise)" - Written by John Kander and Fred Ebb, Performed by Liza Minnelli


  1. ^ "Lucky Lady, Box Office Information". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 22, 2012. 
  2. ^ Litwak, Mark (1986). Reel Power: The Struggle for Influence and Success in the New Hollywood. New York: William Morrow and Company. p. 86. ISBN 0-688-04889-7. 
  3. ^ "Lucky Lady, 1975". Amazon. Retrieved May 15, 2012. 
  4. ^ Screenwriter as Star: Shaking the Shackles Laskos, Andrew. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 29 Aug 1976: k1.
  5. ^ "FORTUNE AND GLORY: Writers of Doom! Quint interviews Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz!" Aint It Cool New 23 May 2014 accessed 23 April 2015
  6. ^ Freer, Ian (9 May 2014). "Steven Spielberg's Interstellar?! The 19 Films He Nearly Made". Empire (film magazine). Retrieved 17 July 2018. 
  7. ^ "Burt Reynolds Goes Two-for-Two on Xmas". Video Junkie. Retrieved December 27, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Lilly Fenichel: 'I Don't Make Hemline Art' (1984)". ARTLines Archive, July 30, 2011. Originally published 1984.
  9. ^ Solomon, Aubrey. Twentieth Century Fox: A Corporate and Financial History (The Scarecrow Filmmakers Series). Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press, 1989. ISBN 978-0-8108-4244-1. p233. Please note figures are rentals accruing to distributors and not total gross.

External links

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