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Twice in a Lifetime is a 1985 film directed by Bud Yorkin and starring Gene Hackman. The plot involves a steelworker and married man going through a mid-life crisis when he finds himself attracted to another woman, played by Ann-Margret. Ellen Burstyn, Amy Madigan, Ally Sheedy and Brian Dennehy co-star.

Twice in a Lifetime
Twice in a lifetime film poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byBud Yorkin
Produced byDavid Salven
Bud Yorkin
Screenplay byColin Welland
Music byPat Metheny
CinematographyNick McLean
Edited byRobert C. Jones
Distributed byBud Yorkin Productions
Release date
  • 23 October 1985 (1985-10-23)
Running time
111 minutes
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
Box office$8,402,424[1]

Paul McCartney composed and performed the theme song to the film, heard over the end credits. It remained commercially unavailable as a recording until 1993, when it was included as a bonus track on a reissue of McCartney's album Pipes of Peace.



Harry Mackenzie works in a factory by day, and comes home to comfortable marriage at night, but it lacks excitement and passion. For his 50th birthday, his wife Kate blithely tells him to just go to his favorite corner tavern and have a good time.

An attractive barmaid, Audrey Minelli, captures his interest. Harry falls for her and, before long, shocks Kate by requesting a divorce. This horrifies their daughters, particularly Sunny, who is having a difficult marriage of her own, and Helen, who is about to be wed.

Kate goes through a difficult period of adjustment. She eventually lands a job in a beauty salon, changes her appearance, and tries to adopt a new outlook on life. But by the time Harry brings Audrey to his daughter Helen's wedding, old wounds open up that continue to keep the family members apart.



Hackman received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama. Amy Madigan received nominations from both the Golden Globes and the Oscars for best supporting actress.

Year Award Category/Recipient(s) Result Reference
1986 58th Academy Awards Best Supporting Actress (Amy Madigan) Nominated
43rd Golden Globe Awards Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama (Gene Hackman) Nominated
Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture (Amy Madigan) Nominated


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