Martin and Lewis (film)

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Martin and Lewis
Genre Drama
Created by Storyline Entertainment and St. Amos Productions in association with Sony Pictures Television
Written by John Gray
Directed by John Gray
Starring Jeremy Northam
Sean Hayes
Paula Cale
Sarah Manninen
Kate Levering
Theme music composer Ernest Troost
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
Producer(s) Mark Winemaker
Dave Mace
Editor(s) Keith Reamer
Running time 120 minutes
Original network CBS
Original release November 24, 2002

Martin and Lewis is a 2002 biographical CBS television movie, written and directed by John Gray, exploring the lives of the comedy team of Martin and Lewis. The film stars Jeremy Northam as Dean Martin and Sean Hayes as Jerry Lewis.

Also featured in supporting roles are Paula Cale as Betty Martin, Sarah Manninen as Patti Lewis, Kate Levering as Jeanne Biegger Martin, Scott McCord as Abby Greshler, Steve Brinder as Danny Lewis, Conrad Dunn as Lou Perry, Bill Lake as Hal Wallis, David Eisner as Lew Wasserman, Sean Cullen as Jackie Gleason, Robert Morelli as Skinny D'Amato and Markus Parilo as Irwin Woolfe.

The film is based on the book, Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime (Especially Himself) by Arthur Marx.

Hayes was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award for his performance as Jerry Lewis.


When lounge singer Dean Martin (Northam) and burlesque comic Jerry Lewis (Hayes) clicked during an impromptu pairing in 1946, neither anticipated their unparalleled success as a team. Lewis was going nowhere fast with an act built around miming to records, while Martin was making a subpar living as a crooner, sleeping on his agent's couch. Lewis had beseeched his agent to reteam him with the reluctant Martin; Lewis instigated their act and adopted the jaded pro as his unofficial big brother. Ever aloof, Martin is content to cash in on the bonanza and continue his sideline in womanizing. But as Lewis assumes more control, Martin’s mistress, Jeanne (Levering), nags him to take more credit. From bistros to radio to television, the seductive singer and the wacky stooge click with audiences. As the act takes Hollywood by storm in 1949, Lewis becomes paranoid about Martin’s popularity; psychosomatic stomach pains become his way of grabbing attention. Handsome and effortlessly charming, Martin successfully launches a solo acting career, in part to escape Lewis’s directorial aspirations and oppressive neediness. When Martin is called on the carpet by his wife, Betty (Cale), he walks out on his family; his frustration and resentment at being part of a two-headed showbiz monster only increases. Engineered by managers and agents, the last lap of the Martin-Lewis partnership is a cheerless financial arrangement, and though each triumphs after the official split in 1956, neither ever recaptures the elation of their early chemistry.


In real life, Dean Martin was married to Jeanne Biegger in 1949, many years before the breakup of his professional partnership with Jerry Lewis.


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