Being There (United Artists 1979, Peter Sellers, Shirley Maclaine) (1980)
Adapted from Kosinski’s novel, Being There is the story of a mentally deficient gardener, who knows the outside world only through television, and his rise to political power when his idle aphorisms are interpreted as philosophical wisdom by a wealthy industrialist and, soon after, swallowed whole by the American public. Influential and provocative with a marvelously enigmatic performance by Sellers.
Jerzy Kosinski, the Polish emigre writer who adapted Being There from his own book, became internationally renowned for his Holocaust novel The Painted Bird (1965).
Academy Award Nominations: 2, including Best Actor: Peter Sellers.