Trading Places

Paramount Pictures Released 1983




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Movie Summary

John Landis

Billy Ray Valentine is a common street con artist doing what he can to make a buck, including posing as an injured veteran by tugging a leg into his pants. Louis Winthorpe III is a managing director at a commodities brokerage, wealthy, engaged, and a bit stuck up. The two wealthy and heartless men who own the brokerage decide to make a bet on whether or not changing the fortunes of these two men will also change their character. They bankrupt Winthorpe, have him falsely arrested and consequently fired. He ends up moving in with a prostitute (Jamie Lee Curtis). Meanwhile they put Valentine in Winthorpe's old job and help him move into Winthorpe's old home. The bet seems to have run its course until Valentine discovers the owners' ruse and seeks out Winthorpe to form a new alliance with an even more clever plan for revenge.


Metacritic Score

  • 88

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    But what's most visible in the movie is the engaging acting. Murphy and Aykroyd are perfect foils for each other.

  • 80


    Trading Places is a light romp geared up by the schtick shifted by Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy.

  • 75

    TV Guide Ethan Alter

    Although it tends to rely heavily on slapstick in the second half, the movie provides plenty of laughs and is one of director Landis's best efforts.

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (6)

    • Production Budget - $28,000,000
      Domestic Gross - $90,404,800 (4th)

      Domestic Adjusted for 2013 - $234,191,482

    • Other Production Companies:
      Cinema Group Ventures

    • Filming locations include:
      New York City, New York
      Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      Long Island, New York
      New Jersey
      St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands

    • Taglines:
      1. They're not just getting rich... They're getting even.
      2. Some very funny business.
      3. Take two complete strangers, make one of them rich the other poor... just watch the fun while they're... TRADING PLACES

    • Music:
      Overture, Marriage of Figaro
      By Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
      Conducted by Elmer Bernstein
      Andante Cantabile
      From K-465
      Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
      performed by Murray Adler, Harris Goldman, David Schwartz and Armand Kaproff
      Out of the Sheets - Into the Streets
      Written and performed by Dave Williams
      Do You Wanna Funk
      Written by Patrick Cowley and Sylvester
      Performed by Sylvester
      Oralee Cookies
      Written by Nicholas Guest and Robert Curtis-Brown
      Performed by The Hot Toddies
      The Louis Winthorpe III Blues
      Performed by Mike Lang, George Doering, Chuck Domanico and Ron Lee
      Jingle Bell Rock
      Written by Joe Beal and Jim Boothe
      Performed by Brenda Lee
      The Big Waltz
      Written by Lyn Murray
      The Loco-Motion
      Written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King
      Performed by Little Eva
      Get a Job
      Written and performed by The Silhouettes

    • Academy Awards Nominations:
      1. Adaption Score


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