The Beverly Hillbillies (film)

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The Beverly Hillbillies
Beverly hillbillies.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Penelope Spheeris
Produced by Ian Bryce
Penelope Spheeris
Screenplay by Lawrence Konner
Mark Rosenthal
Jim Fisher
Jim Staahl
Story byLawrence Konner
Mark Rosenthal
Based on
Music by Lalo Schifrin
CinematographyRobert Brinkmann
Edited byRoss Albert
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date
  • October 15, 1993 (1993-10-15)
Running time
92 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$25 million[ citation needed ]
Box office$57.4 million [1]

The Beverly Hillbillies is a 1993 American comedy film directed by Penelope Spheeris, [2] written by Lawrence Konner and Mark Rosenthal, and starring Jim Varney, Diedrich Bader, Dabney Coleman, Erika Eleniak, Cloris Leachman, Rob Schneider, Lea Thompson, and Lily Tomlin. It is based on the television series of the same name (which ran from 1962–71) and features cameo appearances by Buddy Ebsen (the original Jed Clampett, in his final motion picture appearance, playing his other classic character, Detective Barnaby Jones), Dolly Parton, and Zsa Zsa Gabor.


The film follows a poor hillbilly named Jed Clampett (Jim Varney), who becomes a billionaire when he accidentally discovers crude oil after missing his target while hunting. [3]


Jed Clampett (Jim Varney), a hillbilly of humble station from Arkansas, accidentally discovers oil on his land while shooting at a rabbit. Ozark Mountain Oil, interested in purchasing his land, offers him $1 billion for the property. Unsure of what to do, Jed consults his cousin, Pearl Bodine (Linda Carlson), during a family dinner. Pearl suggests that a change of scenery for Jed's daughter, Elly May (Erika Eleniak), would be a good thing. Pearl and Jethrine convince them to move to Beverly Hills California. Ozark Mountain Oil come by Jed's place to check to see if he has signed the contract. Having made up his mind and signed the contract, Jed and his daughter, his mother-in-law Granny (Cloris Leachman), and his nephew, Jethro (Diedrich Bader), Pearl's son, load up Jethro's old, dilapidated truck with their possessions and move to Beverly Hills, California, even though Granny is reluctant to come.

Milburn Drysdale (Dabney Coleman), the CEO of the Commerce Bank of Beverly Hills (where Jed's money is stored), sends out his secretary/assistant, Jane Hathaway (Lily Tomlin) to meet the Clampetts at their new estate that is next door to his. Jane calls the Beverly Hills Police after the Clampetts arrive, mistaking them for burglars. Upon learning of Jane's mistake at the police station, Drysdale briefly fires her. But seeing that Jed insists that he still wants her to watch over his affairs, Drysdale rehires her.

The Clampetts settle into their new surroundings. Drysdale pushes his reluctant son, Morgan Drysdale (Kevin Connolly), into befriending Elly May, to whom he eventually develops an attraction. Jane is also smitten by Jethro, who seems ignorant of her affections.

Jed requests Jane's assistance in helping him search for someone who will help turn Elly May into a lady and also wants to get married. So Miss Hathaway has to play matchmaker. Woodrow Tyler (Rob Schneider), a banker at Drysdale's bank, catches wind of this and contrives a scheme with his con artist girlfriend, Laura Jackson (Lea Thompson), to steal Jed's money by having her marry Jed. She poses as a French etiquette teacher, Laurette Voleur, [4] and asks for work. 'Laurette' feigns romantic interest in Jed, which eventually leads to him proposing marriage to her.

Shortly before the wedding, Granny hears Laura and Woodrow talking about the scam. Granny reveals herself to the pair and threatens to expose their scam to Jed, and thus the impending wedding will be off. But before she can do so, they capture her, restrain her, and have her institutionalized at the Los Viejos Nursing Home, so that she cannot contact Jed.

At the wedding, Woodrow prepares to transfer all of Clampett's money in Drysdale's bank to a Swiss account, on his laptop computer, when the couple says 'I do'. Realizing that Granny is missing, Jane goes to the office of Barnaby Jones (Buddy Ebsen) and after learning where Granny is and who Laura is, poses as a nurse and breaks her out. Granny and Jane arrive at the wedding and foil Laura and Tyler's plan when Jane grabs a shotgun and blows the laptop to bits, before they can steal Jed's money. The police arrest Laura and Woodrow. Jed decides that, since the wedding was off, they should have 'one hellacious shindig'.


The Dolly Parton 'band' was composed of members of Rhino Bucket (who had contributed a song on the soundtrack of the 1992 movie Wayne's World , also directed by Penelope Spheeris), the Dwight Yoakam Band (Skip Edwards), and Vern Monnett (Randy Meisner, Texas Tornados and Gary Allan). Parton's appearance reunited her with 9 to 5 co-stars Lily Tomlin and Dabney Coleman.

Box office

In its first weekend, The Beverly Hillbillies grossed $9,525,375 at the box office. [7] The film moved up to number one two weeks later. [8] The total worldwide gross was $57,405,220, making it a moderate box office success. [1]


On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 22% based on reviews from 32 critics. The site's consensus states: "Wasting a talented cast and director Penelope Spheeris' deft comedic touch on crude hijinks, this lame adaptation digs for comedic gold and only finds dirt." [9] On Metacritic the film has a score of 37 out of 100 based on reviews from 24 critics, indicating 'generally unfavorable reviews'. [10] Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore gave the film a grade of 'B+' on scale of A+ to F. [11]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times , gave the film half a star out of a possible 4, arguing that it did not capture the appeal of the original television series nor did it improve the source material. Furthermore, he wrote that The Beverly Hillbillies was a major disappointment for Spheeris after her surprising triumph with Wayne's World the year before: "When directors make a wonderful movie, you look forward to their next one with a special anticipation, thinking maybe they've got the secret. If it turns out they don't, you feel almost betrayed. That's how I felt after The Beverly Hillbillies, one of the worst movies of this or any year." [12] Peter Travers of Rolling Stone , wrote: "The Beverly Hillbillies is not, as the saying goes, a critic’s picture. Still, you want to root for a movie that wallows without shame in leering, fatuous humor. I did — for about 15 minutes — then the sameness set in like an overdose of Beavis and Butt-Head." [13] Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly , gave the film a grade 'D' and wrote: 'The plot, which features Lea Thompson as a gold digger scheming to marry Jed, is like something you'd catch on the USA Network at 4 a.m. But enough of beating a dead possum. After sitting through The Beverly Hillbillies, I now realize that the best tribute anyone can make to the pop detritus of our childhood is to let it rest in peace.' [14]

Video Game

In 1993, Synergistic Software developed and Capstone Software published a game for MS-DOS loosely based on the film. The game is a point-and-click adventure game.

Related Research Articles

<i>The Beverly Hillbillies</i> American sitcom

The Beverly Hillbillies is an American television sitcom broadcast on CBS from 1962 to 1971. The show had an ensemble cast featuring Buddy Ebsen, Irene Ryan, Donna Douglas, and Max Baer Jr. as the Clampetts, a poor backwoods family from the hills of the Ozark Mountains, who move to posh Beverly Hills, California after striking oil on their land. The show was produced by Filmways and was created by writer Paul Henning. It was followed by two other Henning-inspired "country cousin" series on CBS: Petticoat Junction and its spin-off Green Acres, which reversed the rags-to-riches, country-to-city model of The Beverly Hillbillies.

Buddy Ebsen American actor and dancer

Buddy Ebsen, was an American actor and dancer whose career spanned seven decades. His most famous role was as Jed Clampett in the CBS television sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies (1962–1971); afterwards he starred as the title character in the television detective drama Barnaby Jones (1973–1980).

Penelope Spheeris

Penelope Spheeris is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. She has directed both documentary film and scripted films. Her best known works include the trilogy titled The Decline of Western Civilization, each covering an aspect of Los Angeles underground culture, and Wayne's World, her highest-grossing film.

Jim Varney American actor and comedian

James Albert Varney Jr. was an American actor and comedian. He is best known for his broadly comedic role as Ernest P. Worrell, appearing in numerous television commercial advertising campaigns and films and for which he won a Daytime Emmy Award. He played Jed Clampett in a film adaptation of The Beverly Hillbillies (1993) and performed the voice of Slinky Dog in Toy Story (1995) and Toy Story 2 (1999). He died of lung cancer at the age of 50 in 2000, leaving two posthumous releases of Daddy and Them and Atlantis: The Lost Empire.

Erika Eleniak American-Canadian actress, Playboy Playmate, and former model

Erika Eleniak is an American actress, Playboy Playmate, and former model best known for her role in Baywatch as Shauni McClain. Her film debut was a small part in E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982). She later starred in the films The Blob (1988), Under Siege (1992), and The Beverly Hillbillies (1993).

<i>Barnaby Jones</i> American television series 1973-1980

Barnaby Jones is a television detective series starring Buddy Ebsen and Lee Meriwether as a father and daughter-in-law who run a private detective firm in Los Angeles, California. The show was introduced as a midseason replacement on the CBS network and broadcast from 1973 to 1980. After four seasons, halfway through the series run, Mark Shera was added to the cast as the cousin of Ebsen's character, who joins the firm. Ratings improved in seasons 6 and 7. William Conrad guest-starred as Frank Cannon of Cannon on the first Barnaby Jones episode, "Requiem for a Son", and the 1975 two-part crossover episodes, "The Deadly Conspiracy". The series was produced by QM Productions. It had the second-longest QM series run, following the nine years of The FBI. The series followed the characteristic Quinn Martin episode format with commercial breaks dividing each episode into four "acts," concluding with an epilogue. The opening credits were narrated by Hank Simms.

<i>Green Acres</i>

Green Acres is an American sitcom starring Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor as a couple who move from New York City to a country farm. Produced by Filmways as a sister show to Petticoat Junction, the series was first broadcast on CBS, from September 15, 1965, to April 27, 1971. All episodes were filmed in color.

<i>9 to 5</i> (film) 1980 American comedy film directed by Colin Higgins

9 to 5 is a 1980 American comedy film produced by Bruce Gilbert, story by Patricia Resnick, screenplay by Resnick and Colin Higgins, and directed by Higgins. It stars Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dolly Parton as three working women who live out their fantasies of getting even with and overthrowing of the company's autocratic, "sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot" boss, played by Dabney Coleman.

Dabney Coleman American actor

Dabney Wharton Coleman is an American actor.

Nancy Kulp American actress and educator

Nancy Jane Kulp was an American character actress best known as Miss Jane Hathaway on the CBS television series The Beverly Hillbillies.

Diedrich Bader American actor and voice actor

Karl Diedrich Bader is an American actor and voice actor. He has appeared as a series regular in television sitcoms The Drew Carey Show, American Housewife, and Outsourced, along with notable recurring roles in Better Things and Veep. His film credits include The Beverly Hillbillies, Office Space, EuroTrip and Napoleon Dynamite. He is also an accomplished voice actor for multiple animated series; some of his roles include Bruce Wayne / Batman on Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Harley Quinn, JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time, and Bojack Horseman. His other voice roles include the android Zeta in The Zeta Project, Warp Darkmatter/Agent Z in Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, the Fiskerton Phantom in The Secret Saturdays and his recurring role as Hoss Delgado in The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy.

Irene Ryan American actress

Irene Ryan was an American actress who found success in vaudeville, radio, film, television, and Broadway. Ryan is most widely known for her portrayal of Daisy May "Granny" Moses, the mother-in-law of Buddy Ebsen's character Jed Clampett on the long-running TV series The Beverly Hillbillies (1962–1971), for which she was nominated for Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 1963 and 1964.

Donna Douglas American actress

Donna Douglas was an American actress and singer, known for her role as Elly May Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies (1962–1971). Following her acting career, Douglas became a real estate agent, gospel singer, inspirational speaker, and author of books for children and adults.

Raymond Bailey American actor

Raymond Thomas Bailey was an American actor on the Broadway stage, films, and television. He is best known for his role as wealthy banker Milburn Drysdale in the television series The Beverly Hillbillies.

Max Baer Jr. American actor, producer and director

Maximilian Adalbert Baer Jr. is an American actor, producer, and director. He is best known for playing Jethro Bodine, the dim-witted nephew of Jed Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies.

Jerry Scoggins was an American country/western singer, guitarist, and band leader. He performed on radio, in movies, and on television from the 1930s thru the 1980s. He was noted for his work with Gene Autry and Bing Crosby and especially for singing "The Ballad of Jed Clampett", the theme song to the 1960s sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies.

"The Ballad of Jed Clampett" is the theme song for the television series The Beverly Hillbillies and the later movie of that name, providing the introductory story for the series. The song was composed by Paul Henning, and recorded first by bluegrass musicians Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, with Lester Flatt singing. The single phono-album version, released for radio and retail sale, merged both the beginning and ending lyrics of the theme song of the television series. The first two verses comprised the beginning theme, while the ending theme served as the third verse. A banjo-dominated sequence occurs between verses and as the ending fade-out. The song was sung by Jerry Scoggins for the beginning of the series, with instruments played by Flatt and Scruggs.

Money for Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies* 1989 single by "Weird Al" Yankovic

"Money for Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies*" is a song by "Weird Al" Yankovic. It is a cover of "Money for Nothing" by Dire Straits with the lyrics replaced by those of The Beverly Hillbillies theme song. The music video, which appeared as part of Yankovic's film UHF, is a parody of the "Money for Nothing" music video. The song features Dire Straits members Mark Knopfler on guitar and Guy Fletcher on synthesizer, Knopfler's one condition for allowing the parody. Jim West, Yankovic's own guitarist, then practiced the song for weeks. As a result of that and because Knopfler had become more relaxed after having played it for several years, West's version sounded more like the original version.

Leo "Zeke" Manners was an American country musician.

Return of the Beverly Hillbillies is a 1981 American made-for-television comedy film based on the 1962–1971 sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies which reunited original cast members Buddy Ebsen, Donna Douglas and Nancy Kulp reprising their characters of Jed Clampett, Elly May Clampett and Jane Hathaway, along with newcomers Werner Klemperer as C.D. Medford, Ray Young as Jethro Bodine and Imogene Coca as Granny's 100-year-old mother; noticeably absent are cast members Irene Ryan (Granny) and Raymond Bailey, who had died in 1973 and 1980 respectively, and Max Baer Jr. who declined to participate.


  1. 1 2 "The Beverly Hillbillies (1993)". Box Office Mojo . 1993-12-14. Retrieved 2012-01-23.
  2. Rhodes, Joe (1993-06-13). "Swimmin' Pools, Movie Stars . . . : Yes, they're making a movie from TV's 'Beverly Hillbillies.' My goodness, should they tamper with a national treasure?". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-11-08.
  3. "Hollywood To Make Movie Of Old 'Beverly Hillbillies'". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 2010-10-06.
  4. Voleur is French for thief, per the Collins French to English Dictionary. Copyright © by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved. (Retrieved 2018-09-06.)
  5. Willman, Chris (1993-10-16). "Movies: Buddy Ebsen has warm words for Jim Varney's rendition of the Clampett patriarch and for Penelope Spheeris' take on the old series". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-10-06.
  6. "SCHNEIDER'S A FILM ACTOR OF MANY CHARACTERS - ALL OF THEM SMARMY". she let him rewrite most of the scenes involving his money-grubbing banker
  7. Fox, David J. (1993-10-19). "Weekend Box Office : 'Demolition Man' Fends Off 'Hillbillies'". The Los Angeles Times . Retrieved 2010-12-30.
  8. Fox, David J. (1993-10-26). "Weekend Box Office : 'Beverly Hillbillies' Hits a Gusher". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved 2012-06-02.
  9. "The Beverly Hillbillies". Rotten Tomatoes . Retrieved 2020-04-05.
  10. "The Beverly Hillbillies". Metacritic . Retrieved 2020-05-04.
  11. "Cinemascore". Archived from the original on 2018-12-20.
  12. Roger Ebert (1993-10-15). "The Beverly Hillbillies". Chicago Sun-Times . Retrieved 2020-05-04.
  13. Travers, Peter (17 April 2001). "Beverly Hillbillies". Rolling Stone .
  14. Owen Gleiberman (October 22, 1993). "Movie Review: 'The Beverly Hillbillies'". Entertainment Weekly .