Unreleased short film featuring Lenny Bruce Edit


11 MWalB02733


  • circa 1955 (Creation)


  • 1 Items (Whole)
    1 16mm film in unlabeled paillard film canister

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  • Content Description

    An unreleased, black and white silent film featuring Lenny Bruce as a down-on-his-luck street newspaper salesman. The 12-and-a-half minute 16mm film, most likely created in the mid-to-late 1950s or early 1960s, follows the ups-and-downs — mainly downs — of the main character, including his dreams of owning a motorcycle jacket, his clashes with the landlady of the rooming house where he lives (probably played by Bruce’s mother, Sally Marr), a brief romantic meeting with a female stranger, and an accidental, fateful run-in with a drug dealer and the police.

    Based on William Karl Thomas’s description in his book “Lenny Bruce: The Making of a Prophet,” this film bears a striking resemblance to another short film by Bruce called the "Leather Jacket." However, the film at Brandeis is believed to be a collaboration between Bruce and the musician “Count” Lewis DePasquale, a friend of the comedian, who likely contributed the jazz soundtrack.

  • Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is open for research use.

    Access to the collection is in accordance with the policies of the Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections, Brandeis University. Please contact the department for more details.

    The film was recorded on 16mm film and has been reformatted to a mov file. Researchers must use digital copy.

  • Conditions Governing Use

    Copyright restrictions may apply. Requests to reproduce or publish material from the collection should be directed to the Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections Department, Brandeis University.

  • Immediate Source of Acquisition

    The acquisition of this film was made possible through the support of Ann and Abe Effron Fund - Donor Advised of the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley.

  • Preferred Citation

    Unreleased film featuring Lenny Bruce, Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections, Brandeis University.

  • Related Materials

    Special Collections at Brandeis also houses the Lenny Bruce collection.