Paternity (film)

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Directed by David Steinberg
Produced by Lawrence Gordon
Hank Moonjean
Written by Charlie Peters
Starring Burt Reynolds
Beverly D'Angelo
Paul Dooley
Elizabeth Ashley
Lauren Hutton
Music by David Shire
Cinematography Bobby Byrne
Edited by Donn Cambern
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release date
October 2, 1981
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $18,838,812[1]

Paternity is a 1981 American comedy film directed by David Steinberg, and stars Burt Reynolds, Beverly D'Angelo, Paul Dooley, Elizabeth Ashley and Lauren Hutton.[2] The film was released on October 2, 1981.


Buddy Evans manages events at Madison Square Garden in New York. He is a confirmed bachelor who lives with his housekeeper Celia. After coming into contact with several children, Buddy decides that he is ready to be a father. Buddy decides to hire a surrogate mother in the hope of having a son.

With the help of Larry and Kurt, Buddy conducts a search by setting up interviews. However, he offends many of the women who he speaks to, even mistaking an interior decorator for a surrogate applicant. Buddy meets up with Maggie, a waitress at the local coffee shop. She reveals that she is an aspiring musician who works as a food server to make ends meet. Maggie offers to bear Buddy's child, planning to use the money that Buddy is offering to move to Paris and pursue her goal. Buddy and Maggie attempt to conceive with little success. Maggie engages in some seductive role-playing. After Maggie finally becomes pregnant, she moves into Buddy's apartment. Buddy obsessively supervises Maggie's exercise and diet. Otherwise he pays little attention to her, continuing to date other women.

Maggie not only resents being ignored, but she also begins to want to keep her baby. Buddy becomes angry at the thought of losing the son he wants so much. But he begins to develop romantic feelings for Maggie as well. He also becomes fearful of losing the child after Maggie gives birth. Buddy and Maggie marry, and have three daughters.



"Baby Talk," composed by David Shire with lyrics by Dave Frishberg, won the 1981 Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Original Song.


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