Director Michael Ritchie turns in another crowd-pleasing sports picture with DIGGSTOWN, featuring James Woods as Gabriel Caine, a con artist who has just been released from prison. Based on a tip by his cellmate, Wolf Forrester (Randall "Tex" Cobb), Caine heads for Diggstown, Georgia, a small town run by the ruthless John Gillon (Bruce Dern). Arriving there, Caine sets his sights on the ultimate setup. Conning Gillon into believing that he's the one being scammed, Caine makes a bet with him. Caine will supply a fighter he's convinced will beat any 10 men whom Diggstown has to offer over the course of one day. The palooka, "Honey" Roy Palmer (Louis Gossett Jr.), a 48-year-old ex-heavyweight, must be coaxed out of retirement in order for Caine to exact his plan. As the fights begin and the double crosses begin to spiral out of control, Palmer must reach inside himself to recapture the glory of his youth and ensure victory for Caine. Playing the conniving scoundrel with remarkable ease, Woods delivers one of his best performances, making Caine a character who walks with the calm and authority of a true professional. Gossett, Dern, and Cobb all deliver fine supporting turns, as do Oliver Platt, Orestes Matacena, and Heather Graham.
Michael Ritchie - American Director/Producer
Heather Graham - American actress, BOOGIE NIGHTS
Louis Gossett Jr. - African American actor, AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN
Lou Gossett Jr. - African American actor, AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN
Oliver Platt - Actor, BEETHOVEN
Bruce Dern - American actor, COMING HOME
Orestes Matacena - Director/Actor
James Woods - American Actor
In director Michael Ritchie's DIGGSTOWN, a criminal just out of prison enters the world of cash fighting where bouts aren't televised, licensed, or sanctioned by any boxing authority--a con artist's dream. He sets up a sting to take down the fight boss but neglects to tell his own fighter of the plan.
Theatrical release: August 14, 1991. Shot on location in Atlanta, Georgia; Deer Lodge, Montana; Sacramento and Los Angeles, California. The film began shooting October 11, 1991, and was completed on December 20, 1991. DIGGSTOWN RINGERS and DIGGSTOWN USA were two working titles for the film. Budget estimate $15 million.
"...A funny and vulgar fable....It moves with such speed and cheerful nerviness that it's almost as irresistible as its fast-talking hero is reputed to be..." - 08/14/1992 New York Times, p.C1
"...DIGGSTOWN has a soothing old- timey feel..." - 08/14/1992 USA Today, p.4D
"...In a movie like this about a sting operation, the payoff at the end must be worth the price of the setup. DIGGSTOWN leaves nobody feeling cheated..." - 08/14/1992 Chicago Sun-Times, p.41