The Idolmaker

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The Idolmaker
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Taylor Hackford
Produced by Gene Kirkwood and Howard W. Koch Jr.
Written by Edward di Lorenzo
Starring Ray Sharkey
Peter Gallagher
Joe Pantoliano
Tovah Feldshuh
Music by Jeff Barry
Cinematography Adam Holender, A.S.C
Edited by Neil Travis
Distributed by United Artists
Release dates
  • November 14, 1980 (1980-11-14)
Running time
117 minutes
Country United States
Language English

The Idolmaker is a 1980 American musical drama starring Ray Sharkey, Peter Gallagher, Paul Land, Tovah Feldshuh and Joe Pantoliano.

The film is based on the life of rock promoter and manager Bob Marcucci, who discovered and promoted several rock 'n' roll stars including Frankie Avalon and Fabian. Bob Marucci served as a technical advisor for the production. It was directed by Taylor Hackford and written by Edward di Lorenzo (Miami Vice series). It was the feature film debut for Peter Gallagher, Joe Pantoliano, and Paul Land.


Ray Sharkey plays Vincent Vacari, a songwriter/manager, driven by his desire to discover the next big act. After watching a local band play, Vinnie approaches Tomaso DeLorusso (Paul Land), the popular and talented saxophone player, and convinces him to trade his instrument for a microphone. After some months under Vinnie's guidance, "Tommy Dee" becomes a rock 'n' roll sensation.

Following on from his success with Tommy Dee, Vinnie prepares another act in the form of Guido (Peter Gallagher), a local busboy. With even more gusto and single-mindedness, Vinnie embarks on a destructive journey to control every aspect of his new act's image.

Despite Vinnie's obvious flair for idolmaking, his girlfriend Brenda (Tovah Feldshuh) is concerned that his obsession is destroying everyone around him, including himself.



Marcucci approached producer Gene Kirkwood with the idea for the film. In the original script, the singers were more sympathetic and the producer less so.[1]


The film features an original music score by Jeff Barry and choreography by Deney Terrio. Music Supervisor: Richard Flanzer

Track listing for the soundtrack
  1. Here Is My Love (Jesse Frederick)
  2. Ooo-Wee Baby (Darlene Love)
  3. Come And Get It (Nino Tempo)
  4. Sweet Little Lover (Jesse Frederick)
  5. I Can't Tell (Colleen Fitzpatrick)
  6. However Dark The Night (Peter Gallagher)
  7. Baby (Peter Gallagher)
  8. I Know Where You're Going (Nino Tempo)
  9. A Boy And A Girl (The Sweet Inspiration and The London Fog)
  10. I Believe It Can Be Done (Ray Sharkey)
  11. I Believe It Can Be Done Instrumental (Nino Tempo)

Home media[edit]

On August 27, 2013, Shout! Factory released The Idolmaker on Blu-ray.[2]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Golden Globes 1980, USA[edit]

Award Person
Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Musical/Comedy Ray Sharkey
Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture in a Musical/Comedy Howard W. Koch Jr., Gene Kirkwood
Preceded by
Peter Sellers
Golden Globes

Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical

Succeeded by
Dudley Moore

External links[edit]


  1. ^ MOVIES: THE STORY OF FRANK AND FABE AND BOB Farley, Ellen. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 23 Nov 1980: x30.
  2. ^