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Plot, Details & Awards

Bird

(1988)
R In Theaters 02/2/2003 , 160min.
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Plot & Details

Forest Whitaker stars as the brilliant jazz saxophonist Charlie "Bird" Parker in this elegiac biopic. Director Clint Eastwood pays full homage to Parker's musical genius, but also devotes ample time to the musician's twin demons--drugs and alcohol-which accelerated his death at the age of 34. In his struggles to gain widespread acceptance for his music, "Bird" is forever stymied by his own self-destructiveness, and forever bailed out by the love of his life, Chan Richardson Parker (Diane Venora). The film bemoans the decline of the brand of jazz fathered by Parker, which came to be replaced by more conventional material -- as illustrated by the "descent" into the mainstream of Parker's mentor Buster Franklin. Also starring in Bird is Samuel E. Wright as Dizzy Gillespie. That's the real Charlie "Bird" Parker on the film's soundtrack, though most of the background music has been re-orchestrated.

Awards

Academy Awards

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1988 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Sound Verne Poore Won
1988 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Sound Dick Alexander Won
1988 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Sound Les Fresholtz Won
1988 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Sound Willie D. Burton Won

Golden Globes

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1988 Hollywood Foreign Press Association Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy Forest Whitaker Nominated
1988 Hollywood Foreign Press Association Best Director Clint Eastwood Won
1988 Hollywood Foreign Press Association Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture Diane Venora Nominated

Cannes Film Festival

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1988 Cannes Film Festival Grand Technical Prize Won
1988 Cannes Film Festival Best Actor Forest Whitaker Won

New York Film Critics Circle

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1988 New York Film Critics Circle Best Supporting Actress Diane Venora Won

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