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Desperately Seeking Susan Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

A petite New Jersey housewife finds self-fulfillment through amnesia in this new wave comedy of errors set in New York's hip '80s downtown scene. Rosanna Arquette stars as Roberta, who turns to the personals for vicarious thrills after her four-year marriage to staid hot tub salesman Gary (Mark Blum) grows stale. Her favorite classified ads trace the romance of Jim (Robert Joy), a struggling musician, and Susan (Madonna), a SoHo vamp who's just narrowly escaped being murdered alongside one of her other boyfriends -- a gangster who recently stole some Egyptian jewelry. Through a series of complicated missteps, Roberta ends up losing her memory and convincing both herself and a broodingly handsome young man named Dez (Aiden Quinn) that she's the elusive, adventurous Susan. Soon, Roberta finds herself being romanced by Dez and pursued separately by her husband, Jim, Susan, and by a murderous mobster who's looking for the stolen jewels. For her second feature outing, which was partially inspired by Jacques Rivette's Celine and Julie Go Boating, director Susan Seidelman filled her cast with hipster extras, downtown personalities, and New York thespians. Notable faces include comedian Steven Wright; future indie mainstay John Turturro; future TV stars Michael Badalucco and Laurie Metcalf; punk singer Richard Hell, who also starred in Seidelman's Smithereens; and performance artist Ann Magnunson, who would star in the director's Making Mr. Right. The big dance-club sequence was filmed at Danceteria, the disco that helped launch Madonna's career. The scene, and the film, helped propel "Into the Groove," one of the singer's all-time club classics, into the charts even though it was actually a b-side to the single "Angel." ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi

  • Release date:September 6, 1985

Awards

Awarded by
Nominee
Category
Year
Status
British Academy of Film and Television Arts Rosanna Arquette Best Supporting Actress 1985 Winner

Cast

Rosanna Arquette
as Roberta Glass
Madonna
as Susan
Aidan Quinn
as Dez
Mark Blum
as Gary Glass
Robert Joy
as Jim
Laurie Metcalf
as Leslie Glass
Anna Levine
as Crystal
Will Patton
as Wayne Nolan
Peter Maloney
as Ian
Steven Wright
as Larry Stillman D.D.S
John Turturro
as Ray
Anne Carlisle
as Victoria
Shirley Stoler
as Jail Matron
Risa Bramon Garcia
Billy Hopkins
Harsh Nayyar
as Egyptian Diplomat
Jose Santana
as Boutique Owner
Giancarlo Esposito
as Street Vendor
Richard Hell
as Bruce Meeker
Steve Bosh
as Newscaster
Daisy Bradford
as Daisy
Annie Golden
as Band Singer
Richard Edson
as Man with Newspapers
Ann Magnuson
as Cigarette Girl
John Lurie
as Neighbor Saxophonist
Mary Joy
as Cocktail Waitress
Rosemary Hochschild
as Cocktail Waitress
Iris Chacon
as TV Singer
Victor Argo
as Sgt. Taskal
Arto Lindsay
as Newspaper Clerk
Henry Adler
as Magic Club Drummer
Marty Gold
as Magic Club Pianist
Alvy West
as Magic Club Saxophonist
Timothy Carhart
as Victoria's Boy Friend
Curt Dempster
as Coffee Shop Manager
Shirley Kaplan
as Waitress
Lazaro Perez
as Enrique the Guard
John Hoyt
as Space Commander
Gary Ray
as Band Member
Gary Binkow
as Band Member
Joyce Griffen
as Prostitute
Paul Austin
as Policeman
Donna Ritchie
as Hot Tub Girl
Kim Chan
as Park Bum
Michael Badalucco
as Guy from Brooklyn
Adele Bertei
as Prisoner
Steve Eidel
as Party Guest
Ilene Kristen
as Party Guest
Carol Leifer
as Party Guest
Richard Portnow
as Party Guest
Isabel García Lorca
as Party Guest
Gilda Tortorello
as Ray's Mom
Rockets Redglare
as Taxi Driver
Peter Castellotti
as Coffee Shop Cop
Michael Bramon
as Band Member
Steve Bosh
as Newscaster
Gary Ray
as Band Member
Peter Castellotti
as Coffee Shop Cop
Donna Ritchie
as Hot Tub Girl
Carol Leifer
as Party Guest
Annie Golden
as Band Singer
Iris Chacon
as TV Singer
Ilene Kristen
as Party Guest
Adele Bertei
as Prisoner
Timothy Carhart
as Victoria's Boy Friend
Rosemary Hochschild
as Cocktail Waitress
Gilda Tortorello
as Ray's Mom
Rockets Redglare
as Taxi Driver
Harsh Nayyar
as Egyptian Diplomat
Victor Argo
as Sgt. Taskal
Isabel García Lorca
as Party Guest
Curt Dempster
as Coffee Shop Manager
Gary Binkow
as Band Member
John Lurie
as Neighbor Saxophonist
Marty Gold
as Magic Club Pianist
Richard Hell
as Bruce Meeker
Mary Joy
as Cocktail Waitress
Richard Portnow
as Party Guest
Henry Adler
as Magic Club Drummer
Richard Edson
as Man with Newspapers
Daisy Bradford
as Daisy
Joyce Griffen
as Prostitute
Steve Eidel
as Party Guest
Jose Santana
as Boutique Owner
Kim Chan
as Park Bum
Michael Badalucco
as Guy from Brooklyn
Ann Magnuson
as Cigarette Girl
Giancarlo Esposito
as Street Vendor
John Hoyt
as Space Commander
Arto Lindsay
as Newspaper Clerk
Paul Austin
as Policeman
Alvy West
as Magic Club Saxophonist
Shirley Kaplan
as Waitress
Lazaro Perez
as Enrique the Guard

Crew

Susan Seidelman
Director
Midge Sanford
Producer
Sarah Pillsbury
Producer
Craig Bolotin
Screenwriter
Leora Barish
Screenwriter
Edward Lachman
Cinematographer
Danny Goldberg
Musical Direction/Supervision
Thomas Newman
Composer (Music Score)
Timothy R. Sexton
Musical Direction/Supervision
Madonna
Songwriter
Andrew Mondshein
Editor
Santo Loquasto
Production Designer
Speed Hopkins
Art Director
Michael Peyser
Executive Producer
Santo Loquasto
Costume Designer
Les Lazarowitz
Sound/Sound Designer
Joel Tuber
First Assistant Director
Madonna
Singer
Betty Everett
Singer
Francis Kenny
Camera Operator
Billy Hopkins
Casting
Ruth Mullen
Production Assistant
Vincent Delaney
Electrician
Rocco Derasmo
Transportation Captain
Robert Prate
Grip
Frank Graziadei
Cable Person
Lou Graf
Sound Editor
John Panuccio
Grip
Todd Thaler
Additional Casting
Tommy Southern
Scenic Artist
Claudette Didul
Production Assistant
Chris Vogt
Set Dresser
Michael Peyser
Unit Production Manager
Brunilda Torres
Assistant Sound Editor
Scott Leva
Stunts Coordinator
Peter Odabashian
Sound Editor
Ernie Karpeles
Animal Trainer/Wrangler
Francis Kenny
Additional Cinematography
Werner Sherer
Hair Styles
Laurie Mullen
Assistant Sound Editor
Ray Quinlan
Gaffer
Jay Dranch
ADR Editor
Stuart Stanley
Assistant Sound Editor
Don Zappia
Grip
Mark Rathaus
Sound Editor
Thomas McKibbin
Electrician
Morris Weinman
Set Dresser
Debbie Sarjeant
Second Assistant Camera
Bruce Kitzmeyer
Foley Editor
Maurice Schell
Supervising Sound Editor
Ralph Fratianni
Grip
Louis Cerborino
Music Editor
Kenton Jakub
Assistant Sound Editor
Ira Hurvitz
Script Supervisor
Randall Coleman
Assistant Sound Editor
Ahmad Shirazi
Assistant Sound Editor
Paul Petschek
Research
Michael Sporn
Title Design
Bill Sorice
Scenic Artist
Reid Rosefelt
Publicist
Lee Dichter
Re-Recording Mixer
Glenn Lloyd
Art Department Coordinator
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