After the success of the Pink Panther films, Blake Edwards and Peter Sellers reunited for The Party, an enjoyable piece of froth that saw Sellers adopt the bumbling-but-well-meaning persona he had perfected on stage, television and screen, particularly in The Millionairess. Sellers plays Hrundi V Bakshi, an Indian actor whose big moment comes in a Hollywood-financed epic when he blows up the fort. Unfortunately, before the cameras start rolling.
Studio head J Edward McKinley vows he’ll never work again but Bakshi’s name is accidentally left on the invite list for a grand party he’s giving. Turning up, hoping to appease McKinley, Bakshi succumbs to the lure of the free alcohol and before long he has innocently turned the evening into a shambles.
Sellers’ use of the Indian persona is never used to ridicule but rather to act as the innocent, uncomprehending mirror of the mysteries and mores of western society, but at the same time, through both language and set pieces that hark back to the silent era, succeeds in turning in a masterclass in comedy.
Cast: Peter Sellers, Claudine Longet, Natalia Borisova, Jean Carson, Marge Champion, Al Checco, Corinne Cole, Dick Crockett, Frances Davis, Danielle De Metz, Herb Ellis, Paul Ferrara, Steve Franken, Kathe Green, Allen Jung, Sharron Kimberly, James Lanphier, Buddy Lester, Stephen Liss, Gavin MacLeod, Jerry Martin, Fay McKenzie, J. Edward McKinley, Denny Miller
Director: Blake Edwards
Writers: Blake Edwards, Tom Waldman, Frank Waldman
Producer: Blake Edwards
Composer: Henry Mancini
Director of Photography: Lucien Ballard
Production Companies: The Mirisch Corporation
Release Date: 4 April 1968
Running Time: 99 minutes
Country: United States of America
Tagline: If you’ve ever been to a wilder party… you’re under arrest!
Budget and Box Office takings where known