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Paparazzi is a 2004 action film directed by Paul Abascal, produced by actor Mel Gibson, and starring Cole Hauser and Tom Sizemore.

The film chronicles the life of a popular Hollywoodmarker movie star in the aftermath of a tragic car accident caused by four paparazzo tabloid photographers.


Bo Laramie (Hauser) is a famous Hollywood actor dealing with the negative sides of high publicity. After his wife (Tunney) and son are badly injured in a car accident, he decides to take out revenge by murdering three of the four paparazzi photographers who were responsible for the accident, then pinning the murders on the ringleader (Sizemore).


Mel Gibson, who was one of the film's producers, appears as an anger management patient in the waiting room of their shared therapist. In addition, Chris Rock appears as a pizza delivery driver, Vince Vaughn appears as Bo Laramie's co-star, Matthew McConaughey appears as himself at a movie premiere.

At about forty minutes into the movie, Detective Burton (Dennis Farina) tells Bo how one of the papparazzi have previously sued "Alec Baldwin" or one of the "Baldwins." Daniel Baldwin plays one of the paparazzi in the movie (see Baldwin brothers).


Box office

The film was a box office failure, having cost about US$20 million to be made, and grossing only $16 million worldwide.

  • United States Domestic Gross: US$ 15,714,234
  • International Gross: US$891,529
  • Total Worldwide Gross: US$16,605,763

Critical response

The film was poorly rated on Rotten Tomatoes. It received an 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a consensus of being "a crude, ludicrous exploitation movie with a questionable moral".

The film also received a large number of negative criticism from major American, Canadianmarker and Britishmarker publications:
  • "Amazingly arrogant, immoral film." -- Dave Kehr, The New York Times
  • "The audacity of the paparazzi is a good topic, but this imbecilic film has no idea how to focus its intentions." -- E! Online
  • "More than a few movie stars probably have fantasized about getting their revenge on the paparazzi. But leave it to Mel Gibson to see possibilities in a script about a rising star driven to go on a murderous rampage with [the paparazzi] as his victims." -- Ruthe Stein, San Francisco Chronicle
  • "First-time director Paul Abascal is an ex-hairdresser whose debut film wallows in melodramatic excesses - tense, shrieking music, spitting, sputtering villains and a hero who is right and righteous because, well, he's a celebrity! And even celebrities have vengeance fantasies!" -- Roger Moore, Chicago Tribune
  • "Especially since the death of Princess Diana, guerilla photographers who snap celebrity candids have come to be considered the gum on the bottom of society's shoe. The film Paparazzi exploits this built-in audience disgust to characterize them as somewhere between slugs and dung beetles on the morality scale, deserving whatever they get." -- Derek Armstrong, Allmovie
  • "The martyr is action star Bo Laramie (Cole Hauser, playing the role as if he were slipped Rohypnol in a drink and forced to be in this movie!)." -- Jim Slotek, Jam!
  • "[Bo] takes the paparazzi out with extreme prejudice, for which he is investigated by a Columbo-esque cop who not-so-secretly approves of this old school justice. It's just so embarrassing you wish the cinema would fit swivel seats so you can look round at the back wall when he comes on. The movie damns all paparazzi as parasitical villains." -- Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
  • "Hot on the blood-stained heels of The Punisher, Man On Fire and Kill Bill comes Paparazzi, another lurid revenge fantasy. Its flimsy plot rests on the ludicrous notion that an actor should be entitled to slaughter anyone who invades his privacy. Sadistic in the extreme and lacking any form of moral compass, it's the kind of film only the likes of OJ Simpson could love." -- Neil Smith, BBC


  1. Paparazzi (2004)
  2. Paparazzi - Paparazzi at Rotten Tomatoes
  3. Paparazzi at Rotten Tomatoes; Page 2
  4. Unbelievable plot, bad dialogue make 'Paparazzi' hard to watch
  5. Movie review: 'Paparazzi' - Metromix Chicago Movies
  6. CANOE - JAM! Movies - Paparazzi Review - Film negative
  7. Paparazzi (2004) | Now Showing | Guardian Unlimited Film
  8. BBC - Movies - review - Paparazzi

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