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Academy Award® nominee Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises, The Lord of the Rings trilogy) and Academy Award® winner Mahershala Ali (Moonlight, Hidden Figures) star in Participant Media and DreamWorks Pictures’ Academy Award® winning film, Green Book. In his foray into powerfully dramatic work as a feature director, Peter Farrelly helms the film inspired by a true friendship that transcended race, class and the 1962 Mason-Dixon line.
When Tony Lip (Mortensen), a bouncer from an Italian-American neighborhood in the Bronx, is hired to drive Dr. Don Shirley (Ali), a world-class Black pianist, on a concert tour from Manhattan to the Deep South, they must rely on “The Green Book” to guide them to the few establishments that were then safe for African-Americans. Confronted with racism, danger—as well as unexpected humanity and humor—they are forced to set aside differences to survive and thrive on the journey of a lifetime.
Jim Burke (The Descendants), Charles B. Wessler (The Heartbreak Kid) produce alongside Farrelly’s fellow writers, Brian Currie and Nick Vallelonga, and Farrelly. The drama is executive produced by Participant’s Jeff Skoll (The Help) and Jonathan King (Lincoln), along with Octavia Spencer (Fruitvale Station) and Kwame L. Parker (Kill Bill series), as well as Cinetic Media’s John Sloss (Boyhood) and Steven Farneth. Linda Cardellini (Brokeback Mountain, The Founder) co-stars.
Image credits: © 2018 UNIVERSAL STUDIOS AND STORYTELLER DISTRIBUTION CO., LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Did you know?
- The pizza scene is drawn from real life: Nick Vallelonga said Tony Lip used to order a whole, unsliced pizza pie, fold it and eat it. Upon hearing the anecdote, Viggo Mortensen insisted they try to fit it into the movie. Peter Farrelly protested, saying there were enough funny eating scenes, but agreed to try it. When the crew burst out laughing, he agreed to leave the scene in.
- Upon the film's release, the Shirley family objected to the truthfulness of the film, claiming that Tony and Doc were not friends; that there "was an employer-employee relationship". In January, 2019, audio recordings of an interview with Don Shirley emerged, in which he stated, "I trusted him implicitly... You see... not only was [Tony] my driver, we never had an employer/employee relationship. You don't have time for that bullshit. My life is in this man's hands!... So you've got to be friendly with one another."
- The real Tony Lip is best known for playing Carmine Lupertazzi on The Sopranos and has had roles in several Martin Scorsese movies.
- Nick Vallelonga says he spent a lot of the shoot in tears because the actors' portrayals of his parents were so vivid. "Linda Cardellini, I can't even look at all. She just makes me lose it."