It's My Party (film)

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It's My Party
ITSMYPAR-00AA1-poster hires.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRandal Kleiser
Written byRandal Kleiser
Produced by
  • Randal Kleiser
  • Robert Fitzpatrick
  • Gregory Hinton
  • Harry Knapp
  • Dessie Markovsky
  • Joel Thurm
CinematographyBernd Heinl
Edited byIla von Hasperg
Music byBasil Poledouris
Opala Productions
United Artists
Distributed byMGM Distribution Co.
Release date
March 22, 1996
Running time
110 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$622,503 (USA)[1]

It's My Party is a 1996 American drama film written and directed by Randal Kleiser, it was one of the first feature films to address the topic of AIDS patients dying with dignity.[2] The film is based on the true events of the death of Harry Stein, accomplished architect and designer, who was actually director Kleiser's ex-lover. Stein's actual farewell party was held in 1992.

The cast includes Olivia Newton-John, Margaret Cho, Bronson Pinchot, Devon Gummersall, George Segal, Lee Grant, Marlee Matlin, Roddy McDowall, Steve Antin, Bruce Davison, Sally Kellerman, Lou Liberatore, Nina Foch, Eric Roberts as Nick Stark and Gregory Harrison as Brandon, Stark's estranged lover who returns to attend the party and say goodbye. Kleiser directed Newton-John in Grease almost 20 years earlier.


It's My Party chronicles a two-day party hosted by Nick Stark (Eric Roberts) a gay architect who, having been diagnosed with progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, will fall into a state of mental lapse lasting for months until his death. He decides to host a party for his family and friends, at the end of which he will commit suicide by taking Seconal.

"You won't leave me, will you?" Nick asks his estranged lover, Brandon Theis (Gregory Harrison) a B movie director, shortly after revealing to him the results of his last blood test for HIV. "I don't want to die alone." In spite of Brandon's protestations, the two soon find the love they had shared for many years in ruins. One year after their breakup, Nick is confronted with a ravaged immune system and a CT Scan and lab values which, along with his worsening forgetfulness, clinches the diagnosis of Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) -- a condition he has seen claim his friends and one which he vows will not take him. Due to the aggressive nature of the disease, he has only a few days of conscious life remaining. His plan, he announces to family and "extended family," is to voluntarily end his life himself before the disease renders him unrecognizable to those he loves and he, in turn, is unable to recognize them. Uninvited to the farewell party, Brandon's presence is greeted with jeers from those who see him as having abandoned Nick in his time of greatest need.



Critical response[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 47% based on reviews from 15 critics.[3]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 out of 4 stars.[4]

Box office[edit]

It's My Party opened in 28 theaters on March 22, 1996 with $148,532. The film would eventually gross $622,503 domestically.[1]

Home media[edit]

A DVD with several special features was released in 2003. It contains deleted and extended scenes, featurettes on the making of the film and audio commentary by the director and some of the actors.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "It's My Party (1996)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2021-01-29.
  2. ^ Holden, Stephen (1996-03-22). "FILM REVIEW; Giving a Farewell Party With Death as a Guest". The New York Times. Retrieved 2020-11-29.
  3. ^ "It's My Party". Rotten Tomatoes. 22 March 1996. Retrieved 2021-01-01.
  4. ^ Ebert, Roger (March 22, 1996). "It's My Party movie review & film summary (1996) | Roger Ebert". Chicago Sun-Times.

External links[edit]