The Nutty Professor

  • Directors: Tom Shadyac
  • Producers: Karen Kehela, Jerry Lewis, Mark Lipsky, Russell Simmons, Brian Grazer
  • Writers: David Sheffield, Barry W Blaustein, Tom Shadyac, Steve Oedekerk
  • Genres: Comedy, Fantasy, Romance, Sci-Fi
  • Actors: Eddie Murphy, Jada Pinkett Smith, James Coburn, Larry Miller, Dave Chappelle, John Ales

Lance Perkins (Murphy) is hosting an exercise program on TV for overweight people. Professor Sherman Klump (also Murphy) gets ready for school. Meanwhile, hamsters are overrunning Wellman College and causing general chaos. It turns out that these are the school’s laboratory hamsters that 400-pound Sherman accidentally released the night before. The problem contained, Sherman is given an update by his assistant Jason (Ales) about their latest project – an experimental formula that reconstructs the DNA of an obese person to make weight loss easy. It seems that their fattest hamster, Shelley, has lost 3 ounces, proving that the serum works. Jason suggests increasing the amount Shelley is fed, but the ever-kindly Sherman argues against it, saying it could be dangerous.

He then has an unpleasant meeting with Dean Richmond (Miller). The Dean tells him that the incident with the hamsters has cost the science department most of its funding. Harlan Hartley (Coburn) is the school’s last remaining wealthy alumnus and is planning to award a $10 million grant to the college, and Klump is warned not to alienate him as well.

After class, Sherman meets the lovely Miss Carla Purty (Pinkett), a chemistry grad student teaching a class across the hall who is a big fan of his work, and falls instantly in love with her. Later that night, Sherman dines with his portly family (most of whom are also played by Murphy), and argues with them about obesity. Cletus, his carnivorous father, starts his habit of farting randomly. Treating this disgraceful procedure religiously, he breaks wind to the point where he has soiled himself (6 times). Sherman is hurt by the comments his father, Cletus, makes, but Sherman’s mother, Anna, tells him that he is “beautiful inside and out”, prompting Sherman to attempt to ask Carla out on a date, which she accepts.

As Buddy stands poised to return a blow, Sherman starts to “fight” him for control of his body: fat and thin body parts- beginning with his right fist and subsequently varying around the rest of his body- alternate with increasing speed while Buddy’s voice shouts “You can’t beat me!” and Sherman’s voice replies “Yes I can!”. Eventually, after a violent transformation/confrontation, Sherman wins the struggle. Still on stage, he tells the awed alumni that , while he started out wanting to help people, what he did was selfish and foolish, and that he has learned that the important thing is to accept himself as he is, rather than being unhappy about how much he weighs. He leaves, but Carla stops him and asks why did he lie. He explains that he did not believe that she would accept him and she assures him that it doesn’t matter if he is overweight or not. Carla asks him to dance and he agrees yes, Jason subsequently arriving with a tuxedo that fits. The two subsequently dance for the rest of the night, much to the approval of Jason and Sherman’s family. Harley then tells the Dean that he’s decided to give Sherman the grant because he’s “a brilliant scientist, and a gentleman.”