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October 24, 2011 (New York City)
November 4, 2011 (United States)

Tower Heist is a 2011 American heist comedy film directed by Brett Ratner, written by Ted Griffin and Jeff Nathanson, based on a story by Bill Collage, Adam Cooper and Griffin and starring Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Casey Affleck, Alan Alda, Matthew Broderick, Judd Hirsch, Téa Leoni, Michael Peña, and Gabourey Sidibe. The plot follows employees of an exclusive apartment building who lose their pensions in the Ponzi scheme of a Wall Street businessman and enlist the aid of a criminal, a bankrupt businessman, and an immigrant maid to break into his apartment and steal back their money while avoiding the FBI agents in charge of his case.

Tower Heist began development as early as 2005, based on an idea by Murphy that would star himself and an all-black cast of comedians as a heist group who rob Trump International Hotel and Tower. As the script developed and changed into an Ocean's Eleven–style caper, Murphy left the project. Ratner continued to develop the idea into what would eventually become Tower Heist, with Murphy later rejoining the production. Filming took place entirely in New York City on a budget of $75 million (after tax rebates), with several buildings provided by Donald Trump used to represent the eponymous tower. The film's soundtrack album and musical score was composed by Christophe Beck and produced by Jake Monaco and was released on November 1, 2011 by Varèse Sarabande, Back Lot Music and Colosseum Records.

The film received mixed reviews from critics, with praise going to the cast, including Broderick, Leoni, and Stiller. Murphy's performance was repeatedly singled out, with critics feeling that he displayed a welcome return to the comedic style of his early career. Much of the criticism was focused on the plot, which was considered "formulaic," "rushed," "dull" and "laborious". The film was theatrically released on November 4, 2011 in the United States by Universal Pictures where it earned $152.9 million worldwide on a budget of $75–85 million.

Prior to release, the film was involved in a controversy over plans by Universal Pictures to release it for home viewing on video on demand to 500,000 Comcast customers, only three weeks after its theatrical debut. Concern over the implementation's harming ticket sales and inspiring further films to follow suit resulted in several theater chains' refusal to show the film at all if the plan went ahead, forcing Universal to abandon the idea. It was the final film appearance of Robert Downey Sr., who retired in 2011 before he died on July 7, 2021.


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