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Donna Summer in 'Thank God It's Friday'
As a tribute to Donna Summer, who died today at 63, here's the opening credit sequence to her 1978 film "Thank God It's Friday." Summer, who stars as an aspiring disco singer, is probably the only person involved with this flop who didn't regret it.
Set in the fictional Los Angeles nightclub The Zoo, "Thank God It's Friday" follows several characters over the course of one wild night. Among the cast members who go on to better things are Jeff Goldblum, as the club's sleazy owner, and Debra Winger, as a sheltered girl agog at the hedonism around her. Playing a high-school girl trying to win a dance contest is Terri Nunn, who would front the New Wave band Berlin, best known for their "Top Gun" theme song "Take My Breath Away."
The film was roundly rejected by both critics and audiences, but Summer had no cause for embarrassment. In one of the film's climactic moments, her character, Nicole, climbs onto a stage and belts out a song that gets the whole club dancing. The song? None other than Summer's now-classic "Last Dance," which not only became a smash hit but earned an Academy Award for best song the following year.
Part of Summer's performance can be seen in this clip, below: