From 1978 to 1980, the nightclub Studio 54 was the place to be seen in Manhattan, a haven of hedonism, tolerance, glitz, and glamour—hard to get into and impossible to ignore. News about who was there filled gossip columns daily. Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager, college friends from Brooklyn, created the ultimate escapist fantasy in the heart of the theater district. Rubell was the party boy photographed with every celebrity du jour in the club. Schrager was the quiet, behind-the-scenes workhorse who shunned the limelight.

Studio 54 became an instant success, but the drug-and-sex-fueled dream soon imploded in financial scandal and the club’s demise. With unprecedented access to Schrager, who tells the whole story for the first time, and a treasure trove of rare footage, director Matt Tyrnauer (Valentino: The Last Emperor) constructs a glorious portrait: of a disco-era phenomenon, and of two friends who stuck together through an incredible series of highs and lows.

“Thrilling and definitive! Studio 54 was like a slice of ancient Rome on West 54th Street, bedazzled by its delirium.” —Variety

“A dazzling piece of documentary filmmaking.” —

“A riveting and hugely compelling watch.” —

• See photos of celebrities at Studio 54.

► Plan ahead for your visit with parking information.

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Matt Tyrnauer
Running Time
98 minutes
Digital, Color