The Shrimp on the Barbie

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The Shrimp on the Barbie
The Shrimp on the Barbie.jpg
DVD cover
Directed by Michael Gottlieb (as Alan Smithee)
Produced by R. Ben Efraim
Written by Grant Morris
Ron House
Alan Shearman
Starring Cheech Marin
Emma Samms
Vernon Wells
Bruce Spence
Carole Davis
Music by Peter D. Kaye
Cinematography James Bartle
Edited by Fred A. Chulack
Distributed by Unity Pictures
Release dates
August 31, 1990
Running time
87 minutes
Country New Zealand
United States
Language English
Box office $458,996 (USA)

The Shrimp on the Barbie is a 1990 comedy film directed by Michael Gottlieb (under the pseudonym Alan Smithee) and starring Cheech Marin. In Australia, the film was released as The Boyfriend from Hell. The title is derived from a line in a 1980s series of popular ads starring Paul Hogan promoting tourism to Australia: "I'll slip an extra shrimp on the barbie for you".


Australian heiress Alexandra Hobart's (Emma Samms) father has disapproved of every boyfriend she has brought home to meet him, including her burly, life-of-the-party fiance, Bruce (Vernon Wells). After a disastrous birthday party, Australian heiress Alexandra Hobart (Emma Samms) decides to challenge her father (Terence Cooper) with the worst boyfriend she can find. She hires a down-on-his luck waiter in a Mexican restaurant in Sydney, Australia named Carlos (Cheech Marin) to masquerade as her new boyfriend to persuade her father into allowing her to marry Bruce. Needing the money to save the failing restaurant, Carlos is hired by Alex to pose as the worst boyfriend in the world. Acting loud, belligerent and obnoxious, he shocks everyone in the Hobart household and their high-society friends at a party with his crude behavior, warranting unwanted attention from Alex's eccentric cousin, Maggie (Jeanette Cronin) in the process. Alex's father, however, doesn't buy the act, and hires a detective to photograph Bruce in a very public display of attraction with Alex's best friend, Dominique (Carole Davis). Carlos gets wind of the infidelity as well and is beaten up by Bruce as a result to silence him. By now, unfortunately, Carlos wants out, dissolving their deal, and Alex becomes aware of Bruce being unfaithful, outing both him and Dominique at a party. Repentant, Alex races to the airport to mend fences with Carlos, whose plane is called back to the airport by her father. Realizing how far noble Carlos is over Bruce, Alex's father decides to invest in the restaurant and save it.

Principal Cast[edit]

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