Revenge of the Pink Panther
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|Revenge of the Pink Panther|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Blake Edwards|
|Produced by||Blake Edwards|
|Screenplay by||Frank Waldman
|Story by||Blake Edwards|
And Herbert Lom
|Music by||Henry Mancini
Leslie Bricusse (songwriter)
|Edited by||Alan Jones|
Jewel Productions Limited
|Distributed by||United Artists|
|Box office||$49.5 million|
Revenge of the Pink Panther is the sixth film in The Pink Panther film series. Released in 1978, it was the last entry released during the lifetime of Peter Sellers, who died in 1980. It is also the last entry to be distributed solely by United Artists, which merged with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1981. The opening credits were animated by DePatie-Freleng Enterprises. This was Graham Stark's first stint as Professor Auguste Balls. He would portray him once more in Son of the Pink Panther (1993).
Philippe Douvier (Robert Webber), a major businessman and secretly the head of the French Connection, is suspected by his New York Mafia drug trading partners of weak leadership and improperly conducting his criminal affairs. To demonstrate otherwise, Douvier's aide Guy Algo (Tony Beckley) suggests a show of force with the murder of Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau (Peter Sellers). Unfortunately for Douvier, his first attempt at bombing him fails; and the subsequent attempt by Chinese martial artist 'Mr. Chong' (an uncredited appearance by the founder of American Kenpo, Ed Parker) is thwarted when Clouseau successfully fights him off, believing him to be his (Clouseau's) valet Cato (Burt Kwouk) who has orders to keep his employer alert with random attacks. That night, Douvier poses as an informant to lure Clouseau into a trap, but the Chief Inspector's car and clothes are stolen by transvestite criminal Claude Russo (Sue Lloyd), who is killed by Douvier's men. Subsequently Douvier and the French public believe Clouseau is dead and, as a result of this assumption, Clouseau's former boss, ex-Commissioner Charles Dreyfus (Herbert Lom), is ordered released from the lunatic asylum to perform the investigation.
In Russo's clothes and insisting on his true identity, Clouseau is taken to the asylum himself (featuring a cameo by Andrew Sachs, whose character apparently believes himself to be Hercule Poirot), but escapes into Dreyfus' room, who faints from the shock of seeing Clouseau alive. Clouseau manages to disguise himself as Dreyfus and is taken home by operative François (André Maranne). At home, Clouseau finds Cato, who, despite having turned Clouseau's apartment into a Chinese-themed brothel, is relieved to see he survived and the two plan revenge on the sponsor of Clouseau's assassination. Meanwhile, Dreyfus is assigned to read an elegy at Clouseau's funeral by the police chief's wife, on pain of his own discharge. During his recital, Dreyfus barely controls his mirth at the praise of Clouseau, but his reaction is disguised by his tears of muffled laughter. Later, at the graveside ceremony, Clouseau sneaks in disguised as a church official and then surreptitiously reveals himself to Dreyfus. Upon recognizing Clouseau, Dreyfus faints and falls into the burial pit.
Douvier's wife eventually threatens him with divorce for his unfaithfulness. Needing her respectability, Douvier tells his secretary and paramour Simone LeGree (Dyan Cannon) that their relationship is over, to which Simone reacts angrily. Fearing that she will reveal his crimes, Douvier gives orders to have Simone killed at her nightclub; but having been told by an informant (Alfie Bass) of the possibility of trouble there, Clouseau and Cato inadvertently manage to save her. At Simone's flat, Clouseau reveals his identity, prompting her to reveal that Douvier ordered Clouseau's assassination. Attacked by more hit men, Clouseau and Simone escape into Dreyfus' flat, coincidentally located nearby. Dreyfus overhears Simone telling Clouseau of Douvier's plan to meet the New York Mafia godfather Julio Scallini (Paul Stewart) in Hong Kong, but again faints when he beholds Clouseau.
Clouseau, Cato, and Simone follow Douvier to Hong Kong in disguise, unaware that Dreyfus has also arrived. There, Clouseau impersonates Scallini, while Simone distracts the real Scallini; but the plan goes awry when one of Scallini's men spots Douvier leaving their hotel with a stranger and Clouseau exposes his own disguise. A car chase begins, ending in a crash at the Hong Kong docks, where Dreyfus recognizes Clouseau and pursues him into a firework warehouse. Inside, Dreyfus mistakenly sets the fireworks off and the resulting explosions sow chaos among all the participants, which eventually leads to the arrests of Douvier and Scallini. Clouseau is awarded for their arrest by the President of France, and he and Simone spend an evening together.
- Peter Sellers as Inspector Jacques Clouseau
- Herbert Lom as Chief Insp. Charles Dreyfus
- Dyan Cannon as Simone Legree
- Robert Webber as Philippe Douvier
- Paul Stewart as Julio Scallini
- Burt Kwouk as Cato Fong
- Tony Beckley as Guy Algo
- Robert Loggia as Al Marchione
- André Maranne as Sgt. François Chevalier
- Graham Stark as Prof. Auguste Balls
- Alfie Bass as Fernet
- Sue Lloyd as Claude Russo
- Danny Schiller as Cunny
- Douglas Wilmer as Police Commissioner
- Ferdy Mayne as Dr. Paul Laprone
- Valerie Leon as Tanya
- Ed Parker as Mr. Chong
- Adrienne Corri as Therese Douvier
- Henry McGee as Officer Bardot
- Andrew Sachs as Hercule Poirot
- Julian Orchard as Hospital Clerk
- John Bluthal as Guard at Cemetery
- Rita Webb as Woman at Window
The opening animated titles in the film were designed by DePatie-Freleng Enterprises, who had been involved with the series since the animated titles of the original 1963 film, The Pink Panther. It was the first time since Inspector Clouseau in 1968 that DePatie-Freleng animated the opening titles of a Pink Panther film (Return and Strikes Again having been done by Richard Williams' Studio). They later went on to produce the animated television series The All-New Pink Panther Show. Trail of the Pink Panther and Curse of the Pink Panther would be animated by the retitled Marvel Productions.
Romance of the Pink Panther was a Pink Panther film that Sellers was working on--and willing to make without Edwards--before Sellers' fatal heart attack. UA considered recasting the role before convincing Blake Edwards to return to the series. Edwards chose to replace Clouseau with a new character rather than replace Sellers as Clouseau and to utilize outtakes from The Pink Panther Strikes Again to set up a transitional film (Trail of the Pink Panther) with new linking footage shot on the set of the new film (Curse of the Pink Panther).
The theme music, and much of the soundtrack from this entry in the series, draw heavily from the disco trends of the late 1970s. The theme itself was reworked to include a more dancy bassline, electric piano, and guitar solo.
- "Revenge of the Pink Panther, Box Office Information". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved June 25, 2012.
- Revenge of the Pink Panther at the Internet Movie Database
- Revenge of the Pink Panther at the TCM Movie Database
- Revenge of the Pink Panther at AllMovie