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(Robert Downey, 1969)
Release date: 25 July 2022
Limited Edition Blu-ray

Putney Swope (Arnold Johnson, Shaft) is the only Black executive at a stuffy Madison Avenue advertising agency. When the chairman dies unexpectedly, Putney is unexpectedly elected the new boss – because those voting never thought anyone else would to do the same. Putney proceeds to kick out the white majority, replacing them with young, revolutionary types, and renames the agency Truth and Soul.

A bracing satire, taking well-aimed pot-shots at capitalism, power and racism in America, Robert Downey’s Putney Swope is a key entry in counterculture cinema, and a landmark of independent filmmaking, and – after more than a half a century – is still very, very funny.


  • 4K restoration by the Academy Film Archive and the Film Foundation
  • Original mono audio
  • Audio commentary with writer-director Robert Downey (2001)
  • Audio commentary with film critic and historian Sergio Mims (2019)
  • Interview with Robert Downey (2001, 16 mins): archival conversation with the filmmaker on the creation, reception and influence of Putney Swope
  • Interview with Gerald Cotts (2019, 20 mins): audio recording of the cinematographer recalling his work on the film
  • Film Forum Q&A with Robert Downey (2016, 34 mins): archival audio recording of the noted provocateur in conversation with Bruce Goldstein at the Film Forum, New York
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • Trailer commentary (2013): short critical appreciation by film producer Dan Ireland
  • Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials
  • New and improved English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Limited edition exclusive 36-page booklet featuring a new essay by Christina Newland, an archival article on the film originally published in the Los Angeles Free Press, an extensive archival interview about Putney Swope with Robert Downey and filmmaker Jonas Mekas, an overview of contemporary critical responses, and full film credits
  • UK premiere on Blu-ray
  • Limited edition of 3,000 copies for the UK

BBFC cert: 15
EAN: 5060697921489