Singing for Supper
A talented, but loony and cantankerous actor/musician, leaves his wife, family, and a successful role as a dog character selling dog food, and returns to his home in New Orleans to regain his artistic soul and real mission in life. While there he falls in love, bonds with his daughter, stages a play he wrote, escapes from trouble with the mafia and, with his daughter, solves a crime wave. More
Talented, but emotionally mercurial Tony Murano left his hometown New Orleans, fifteen years earlier, for an acting career in L.A., considering himself a serious artist aiming to take on challenging roles in the theatre or films. As fate bequeathed it, he gained fame and fortune while there playing Bordo, a lovable basset hound, as the spokes-dog for Doggie Diner, the best-selling dog food which gobbled up market share when Tony stepped in. While not the kind or caliber of artistry he sought, it was very lucrative and made him famous, if not professionally satisfied or personally happy. It did however, give him, his wife, Jane, and their daughter, Jessie, the means to a very well healed, if unchallenging life.
Pressed into action by circumstances, he tries to maintain his financial and logistical footing, and prepare for the arrival of his daughter Jessie, finally freed by the terms of his divorce, to come visit him. First he must get enough money together to fix up his trashy apartment, provide for Jessie’s visit, pay his always behind rent, and have enough left to cover the costs of staging his play. He’s invited his old friend and acting pal, Ranny, an outstanding actor, to play the lead role, hoping his talent and professionalism spreads to the cast.
The plot thickens and the potential trouble boils up when Tony’s Uncle Eddie becomes inadvertently mixed-up in a criminal investigation of drug smuggling and misdeeds by local mafia figures. A certain Pinky Bonura, also an uncle, has been giving details of an alleged plot to cleverly smuggle drugs, using the port, in cahoots with local people in various levels of participation. At a press conference, D.A. Parker makes a bold claim of his intention to indict several people, including members of Tony’s family, as criminal participants. Tony’s brother, Bill, also Uncle Eddie’s attorney, claims that Parker’s bluster is but politically motivated stunt in his run for governor. Parker puts out the story that Pinky has implicated Eddie, as well as others, in the scheme.
Back in L.A., Jane sees a national TV report about a mafia investigation in New Orleans, recognizes the name of Eddie Schultz as a relative of Tony, and becomes gravely concerned about Jessie’s welfare. Tony covers over the whole affair, assuring Jane she is safe, and in good hands. Sonny, however, is very concerned also and worried about her brother’s implication in the probe.
At his birthday party, Tony introduces Johnny, his new love and a local musical celebrity, to her family, and to Jessie. To his delight, Johnny and Jessie form an immediate if unlikely bond. With an unknown and unseen mystery car following them, trouble is close by. Called by Eddie one night to meet him in a secret meeting place, he gets a package from him which contains records and computer disks with bookkeeping and other information the DA wants, and is central to his investigation. Although he tries to dissuade him, Eddie gives Tony a package with all of the records and asks Tony to hide it. Following close behind, Jessie witnesses the whole caper. Whatever is in that package is something both the DA and Eddie’s company really want badly enough to ransack his apartment to find.
Faced with the danger that threatens Johnnie and Jessie, and the fiasco of his opening night, Tony takes them both away from the city and the trouble, before deciding to return and face all the music. At last all turns out for the good, even as it looks like eminent disaster is about to engulf everyone.
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