My Cousin Vinny
You come from New York. You killed a good-ole-boy. There is no way this is not going to trial. And the only guy standing between you and the electric chair? My Cousin Vinny.
Extrapolated from a handful of experiences the screenwriter had in real life and fact-checked by a director who went to law school, this 1992 fish-out-of-water comedy provides a surprisingly accurate portrayal of a criminal trial. The real draw here, however, is of course the pitch-perfect casting of Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei.
And yet... Pesci was not the first choice for the title role and Tomei's character was nearly cut from the script. Development was a weird and wild ride and this is a great example of the alchemy involved in filmmaking.
Topics include: the chance meeting that inspired the story, a stereotype about Italian mothers that created structural issues, some really interesting alternate casting choices, a sequel that was written but never filmed, the unusual way Pesci did reprise this role, and much much more!