Synopsis by Paul Brenner
Charles Lane directed Andy Breckman's script, based on an old "Saturday Night Live" sketch of Breckman's that featured Eddie Murphy. Comic Lenny Henry takes Murphy's place in True Identity as a black man forced to don white face in order to save his life. Henry plays Miles Pope, an agreeable British actor whose luck sours when he finds out that businessman Leland Carver (Frank Langella) is actually a notorious underworld mobster. Carver now wants to rub Miles out and the only way that Miles can escape Carver's retribution is to disguise himself as a man named Frank LaMotta, the Italian-American killer that Carver has hired to kill him. During the story, Miles finds that he has to assume a variety of roles to keep from getting shot --a gay real estate agent, a British lord, James Brown's brother Val, and even Othello. But the biggest shock for Miles comes when he plays the white man and discovers that he is given preferential treatment --not only by whites, but also by blacks and Hispanics.
assumed-identity, con/scam, confession [criminal], cross-cultural-relations, disguise, escape, gangster, impersonation, infiltration, mistaken-identity, on-the-run, role-switching