Terms of Endearment dazzled critics and audiences alike with its believable, insightful story of two captivating people, mother and daughter, unforgettably played by Shirley MacLaine and Debra Winger. From grand slapstick to deepest sentiment, director James L. Brooks masterfully paints scenes from their evolving 30-year relationship. Jack Nicholson turns in a great comic performance as MacLaine's neighbor, a boozy, womanizing former astronaut. Winner of five Academy Awards, Best Picture 1983, Best Actress-Shirley MacLaine, Best Supporting Actor-Jack Nicholson, Best Director and Best Screenplay Adaptation-James L. Brooks.

  • 2 hr 12 minPGHDSD
  • Nov 23, 1983
  • Comedy

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  • Debra WingerActor

  • Jack NicholsonActor

  • Shirley MacLaineActor

    Shirley MacLaine was born Shirley MacLean Beaty in Richmond, Virginia. Her mother, Kathlyn Corinne (MacLean), was a drama teacher from Nova Scotia, Canada, and her father, Ira Owens Beaty, a professor of psychology and real estate agent, was from Virginia. Her brother, Warren Beatty, was born on March 30, 1937. Her ancestry includes English and Scottish. Shirley was the tallest in her ballet classes at the Washington School of Ballet. Just after she graduated from Washington-Lee High School, she packed her bags and headed for New York. While auditioning for Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II's "Me and Juliet", the producer kept mispronouncing her name. She then changed her name from Shirley MacLean Beaty to Shirley MacLaine. She later had a role in "The Pajama Game", as a member of the chorus and understudy to Carol Haney. A few months into the run, Shirley was going to leave the show for the lead role in "Can-Can" but ended up filling in for Haney, who had broken her ankle and could not perform. She would fill in for Carol, again, three months later, following another injury, the very night that movie producer Hal B. Wallis was in the audience. Wallis signed MacLaine to a five-year contract to Paramount Pictures. Three months later, she was off to shoot The Trouble with Harry (1955). She then took roles in Hot Spell (1958) and Around the World in 80 Days (1956), completed not too long before her daughter, Sachi Parker (born Stephanie), was born. With Shirley's career on track, she played one of her most challenging roles: "Ginny Moorhead" in Some Came Running (1958), for which she received her first Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. She went on to do The Sheepman (1958) and The Matchmaker (1958). In 1960, she got her second Academy Award nomination for The Apartment (1960). Three years later, she received a third nomination for Irma la Douce (1963). In 1969, she brought her friend Bob Fosse from Broadway to direct her in Sweet Charity (1969), from which she got her "signature" song, "If My Friends Could See Me Now". After a five-year hiatus, Shirley made a documentary on China called The Other Half of the Sky: A China Memoir (1975), for which she received an Oscar nomination for best documentary. In 1977, she got her fourth Best Actress Oscar nomination for The Turning Point (1977). In 1979, she worked with Peter Sellers in Being There (1979), made shortly before his death. After 20 years in the film industry, she finally took home the Best Actress Oscar for Terms of Endearment (1983). After a five-year hiatus, Shirley made Madame Sousatzka (1988), a critical and financial hit that took top prize at the Venice Film Festival. In 1989, she starred with Dolly Parton, Sally Field and Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias (1989). She received rave reviews playing Meryl Streep's mother in Postcards from the Edge (1990) and for Guarding Tess (1994). In 1996, she reprised her role from "Terms of Endearment" as "Aurora Greenway" in The Evening Star (1996), which didn't repeat its predecessor's success at the box office. In mid-1998, she directed Bruno (2000), which starred Alex D. Linz. In February 2001, Shirley worked with close friends once again in These Old Broads (2001), and co-starred with Julia Stiles in Carolina (2003) and with Kirstie Alley in Salem Witch Trials (2002). MacLaine as her own website which includes her own radio show and interviews, the Encounter Board, and Independent Expression, a members-only section of the site. In the past few years, Shirley starred in a CBS miniseries based on the life of cosmetics queen Mary Kay Ash--Hell on Heels: The Battle of Mary Kay (2002), and wrote two more books, "The Camino" in 2001, and "Out On A Leash" in 2003. After taking a slight hiatus from motion pictures, Shirley returned with roles in the movies that were small, but wonderfully scene-stealing: Bewitched (2005) with Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, In Her Shoes (2005) with Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette, in which Shirley was nominated for a Golden Globe in the best supporting actress category, and Rumor Has It... (2005) with Jennifer Aniston and Kevin Costner. Shirley completed filming of Closing the Ring (2007), directed by Sir Richard Attenborough, in 2007. Her latest book is entitled "Sage-ing While Ag-ing"; Shirley's latest film is Valentine's Day (2010), which debuted in theaters on February 12, 2010.
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  • Danny DeVitoActor

    Danny DeVito has amassed a formidable and versatile body of work as an actor, producer and director that spans the stage, television and film. Daniel Michael DeVito Jr. was born on November 17, 1944, in Neptune, New Jersey, to Italian-American parents. His mother, Julia (Moccello), was a homemaker. His father, Daniel, Sr., was a small business owner whose ventures included a dry cleaning shop, a dairy outlet, a diner, and a pool hall. While growing up in Asbury Park, his parents sent him to private schools. He attended Our Lady of Mount Carmel grammar school and Oratory Prep School. Following graduation in 1962, he took a job as a cosmetician at his sister's beauty salon. A year later, he enrolled at New York's American Academy of Dramatic Arts so he could learn more about cosmetology. While at the academy, he fell in love with acting and decided to further pursue an acting career. During this time, he met another aspiring actor Michael Douglas at the National Playwrights Conference in Waterford, Connecticut. The two would later go on to collaborate on numerous projects. Soon after he also met an actress named Rhea Perlman. The two fell in love and moved in together. They were married in 1982 and had three children together. In 1968, Danny landed his first part in a movie when he appeared as a thug in the obscure Dreams of Glass (1970). Despite this minor triumph, Danny became discouraged with the film industry and decided to focus on stage productions. He made his Off-Broadway debut in 1969 in "The Man With the Flower in His Mouth." He followed this up with stage roles in "The Shrinking Bride," and "Lady Liberty." In 1975, he was approached by director Milos Forman and Michael Douglas about appearing in the film version of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975), which would star Jack Nicholson in the leading role. With box office success almost guaranteed and a chance for national exposure, Danny agreed to the role. The movie became a huge hit, both critically and financially, and still ranks today as one the greatest movies of all time. Unfortunately, the movie did very little to help Danny's career. In the years following, he was relegated to small movie roles and guest appearances on television shows. His big break came in 1978 when he auditioned for a role on an ABC sitcom pilot called Taxi (1978), which centered around taxi cab drivers at a New York City garage. Danny auditioned for the role of dispatcher Louie DePalma. At the audition, the producers told Danny that he needed to show more attitude in order to get the part. He then slammed down the script and yelled, "Who wrote this sh**?" The producers, realizing he was perfect for the part, brought him on board. The show was a huge success, running from 1978 to 1983. Louie DePalma, played flawlessly by Danny, became one of the most memorable (and reviled) characters in television history. While he was universally hated by TV viewers, he was well-praised by critics, winning an Emmy award and being nominated three other times. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Danny maintained his status as a great character actor with memorable roles in movies like Romancing the Stone (1984), Ruthless People (1986), Throw Momma from the Train (1987) and Twins (1988). He also had a great deal of success behind the camera, directing movies like The War of the Roses (1989) and Hoffa (1992). In 1992, Danny was introduced to a new generation of moviegoers when he was given the role of The Penguin/Oswald Cobblepot in Tim Burton's highly successful Batman Returns (1992). This earned him a nomination for Best Villain at the MTV Movie Awards. That same year, along with his then-wife Rhea Perlman, Danny co-founded Jersey Films, which has produced many popular films and TV shows, including Pulp Fiction (1994), Get Shorty (1995), Man on the Moon (1999) and Erin Brockovich (2000). DeVito has many directing credits to his name as well, including Throw Momma from the Train (1987), The War of the Roses (1989), Hoffa (1992), Death to Smoochy (2002) and the upcoming St. Sebastian. In 2006, he returned to series television in the FX comedy series It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005). With a prominent role in a hit series, Devito's comic talents were now on display for a new generation of television viewers. In 2012, he provided the title voice role in Dr. Seuss' The Lorax (2012). These days, he continues to work with many of today's top talents as an actor, director and producer.
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  • Jeff DanielsActor

    Actor Jeff Daniels was born in Athens, Georgia, but was raised in Chelsea, Michigan. He is the son of Marjorie J. (Ferguson) and Robert Lee Daniels, who owned The Chelsea Lumber Company and was also mayor of Chelsea. Jeff attended Central Michigan University, but became involved in acting and dropped out to pursue a career as an actor. Daniels made his feature film debut in Milos Forman's Ragtime (1981). Daniels went on to prove himself to be one of Hollywood's most reliable and versatile actors with roles in successes such as Terms of Endearment (1983), The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985), Something Wild (1986), Arachnophobia (1990), Dumb and Dumber (1994), Pleasantville (1998), The Hours (2002) and Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005), to name a few. Alongside screen work, Daniels has many stage credits to his name and is the founder of The Purple Rose Theater Company in Chelsea, Michigan. He is also a musician and songwriter and has recorded two albums. Daniels is married to his childhood sweetheart, Kathleen Treado and they have three children.
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  • John LithgowActor

    If "born to the theater" has meaning in determining a person's life path, then John Lithgow is a prime example of this truth. He was born in Rochester, New York, to Sarah Jane (Price), an actress, and Arthur Washington Lithgow III, who was both a theatrical producer and director. John's father was born in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic, where the Anglo-American Lithgow family had lived for several generations. John moved frequently as a child, while his father founded and managed local and college theaters and Shakespeare festivals throughout the Midwest of the United States. Not until he was 16, and his father became head of the McCarter Theater in Princeton New Jersey, did the family settle down. But for John, the theater was still not a career. He won a scholarship to Harvard University, where he finally caught the acting bug (as well as found a wife). Harvard was followed by a Fulbright scholarship to study at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. Returning from London, his rigorous dramatic training stood him in good stead, and a distinguished career on Broadway gave him one Tony Award for "The Changing Room", a second nomination in 1985 for "Requiem For a Heavyweight", and a third in 1988 for "M. Butterfly". But with critical acclaim came personal confusion, and in the mid 1970s, he and his wife divorced. He entered therapy, and in 1982, his life started in a new direction, the movies - he received an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of Roberta Muldoon in The World According to Garp (1982). A second Oscar nomination followed for Terms of Endearment (1983), and he met a UCLA economics professor who became his second wife. As the decade of the 1990s came around, he found that he was spending too much time on location, and another career move brought him to television in the hugely successful series 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996). This production also played a role in bringing him back together with the son from his first marriage, Ian Lithgow, who has a regular role in the series as a dimwitted student.
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