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My Beautiful Laundrette Details


After the death of his wife and his subsequent descent into alcoholic near-agoraphobia, a crotchety Pakistani intellectual convinces his shady entrepreneur brother to provide work for his son in this multi-layered portrait of the immigrant experience in Great Britain. Young Londoner Omar (Gordon Warnecke) isn't sure what he wants out of life, but his uncle Nasser (Saeed Jaffrey) provides a corrupt, capitalist role model as Omar graduates from washing cars for the old crook to running his run-down laundromat. After a chance meeting with Johnny (Daniel Day-Lewis), an old school chum whose flirtation with fascism deeply wounded Omar's principled Papa (Roshan Seth), Omar hires the young thug to work for him. Soon, the pair begin a romantic relationship that remains as under wraps as the illicit drug-running and enforcement work they perform for Nasser's associate, Salim (Derrick Branche). On the domestic front, Omar must balance his knowledge of Nasser's long-running affair with posh Brit Rachel (Shirley Ann Field) with his own loyalty and attraction to Nasser's westernized daughter, Tania (Rita Wolf). After successfully transforming his laundrette into a vision of resplendent pastel suds and providing a bright spot in his otherwise squalid London neighborhood, Omar seems to have a bright future in Nasser's organization. The spectre of Johnny's past, however, combines with Omar's conflicted immigrant loyalties to threaten the sense of identity the young man has managed to stake out for himself. British-born, half-Pakistani playwright and novelist Hanif Kureishi won an Oscar nomination for his screenplay for My Beautiful Laundrette, which was originally filmed for BBC television. Kureishi collaborated again with director Stephen Frears on Stephen Frears. ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi

  • Release date:March 7, 1986


Awarded by
National Board of Review Daniel Day-Lewis Best Supporting Actor 1986 Winner
New York Film Critics Circle Daniel Day-Lewis Best Supporting Actor 1986 Winner
Independent Spirit Awards Stephen Frears Best Foreign Film 1986 Nominee
New York Film Critics Circle Hanif Kureishi Best Screenplay 1986 Winner
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Hanif Kureishi Best Original Screenplay 1986 Nominee


Daniel Day-Lewis
as Johnny
Gordon Warnecke
as Omar
Saeed Jaffrey
as Nasser
Roshan Seth
as Papa
Shirley Ann Field
as Rachel
Rita Wolf
as Tania
Derrick Branche
as Salim
Charu Bala Chokshi
as Bilquis, Nasser's Wife
Stephen Marcus
as Moose
Winston Graham
as Jamaican
Kerryann White
as Kid
Souad Faress
as Cherry, Salim's Wife
Ram John Holder
as Poet
Richard Graham
as Genghis
Buddy Uzzaman
as Dealer
Persis Khambatta
Chris Pitt
as Kid
Ayub Khan Din
as Student
Sheila Chitnis
as Zaki's Wife
Walter Donahue
as dick O'donnell
Garry Cooper
as Squatter
Dulice Leicier
as Girl in Disco
Jonathan Moore
as Gang Member
Dawn Archibald
as Gang Member
Neil Cunningham
as Englishman
Dudley Thomas
as Jamaican
Gerard Horan
as Telephone Man


Stephen Frears
Tim Bevan
Hanif Kureishi
Oliver Stapleton
Ludus Tonalis
Composer (Music Score)
Hans Zimmer
Composer (Music Score)
Stanley Myers
Composer (Music Score)
Mick Audsley
Hugo Luczyc-Wyhowski
Production Designer
Lindy Hemming
Costume Designer
Tip Tipping
Nosher Powell
Bill Weston
Jim Dowdall
Elaine Carew