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Tin Cup
Tin Cup.jpg
Theatrical Release Poster
Directed by Ron Shelton
Produced by Gary Foster
Written by John Norville
Ron Shelton
Starring Kevin Costner
Rene Russo
Don Johnson
Cheech Marin
Music by William Ross
Regency Enterprises
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release date(s)
  • August 16, 1996 (1996-08-16) (U.S.)
Running time 135 min.
Language English
Budget $45 million
Box office $75,854,588[1]

Tin Cup is a 1996 romantic comedy film co-written and directed by Ron Shelton, and starring Kevin Costner and Rene Russo with Cheech Marin and Don Johnson in major supporting roles.[1]


Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy (Kevin Costner) is a former golf prodigy who has little ambition. He owns a driving range in West Texas, where he drinks and hangs out with his pal Romeo Posar (Cheech Marin) and their friends. Dr. Molly Griswold (Rene Russo), a clinical psychologist, wants a golf lesson. She asks Roy because he knows her boyfriend David Simms (Don Johnson), a top professional golfer. Roy is immediately attracted, but she sees through his charm and resists.

Simms shows up at Roy's trailer ahead of a local benefit tournament. Roy thinks Simms is offering him an invitational spot to play, but Simms actually wants to hire him as a caddy (since Roy knows the course). During the round, Roy needles Simms about "laying up" instead of having the nerve to go for the green, 230 yards away over a water hazard. Simms fires back that Roy's problem is playing recklessly instead of playing the percentages. Roy brags that he could make it, and spectators make bets among themselves that Roy could. Simms warns Roy that he'll fire him if he tries, but Roy does anyway, hitting a brilliant shot onto the green. Simms immediately fires Roy as he said he would.

To get even, Roy decides to try to qualify for the U.S. Open. He also makes a play for Molly, seeking her professional help. Molly agrees to help Roy rebuild his self-confidence in exchange for the golf lessons. In two qualifying rounds, with Romeo as caddy, Roy's golf is excellent but his head needs help. He continues to resist playing safely, smashing most of his clubs (leaving only his 7-iron intact) in a snit that causes Romeo to quit, but still manages to qualify. Following the round, he makes a wager with Simms that costs him his car. He persuades Romeo to go along as caddy, but develops a problem with his golf swing. On the first day of the tournament in North Carolina he shoots a horrible 83. Meanwhile, Molly gets a glimpse of Simms' unpleasant side when he arrogantly refuses to give a child an autograph.

Molly sees that trying to change Roy is a mistake and encourages him to be himself. At her suggestion, Roy wins another silly wager with Simms, the leader after the first round. Then with renewed confidence, "Tin Cup," a nobody from nowhere, shocks the golf world with a remarkable record second round of 62, making the cut. His third round is also excellent and moves him into contention. His flaw, though, is that on all three rounds, he refused to lay up on the par-5 18th hole, hitting the ball into the pond.

On the last day, Roy, Simms and real-life PGA Tour pro Peter Jacobsen (playing himself) are in a three-way battle to be the Open's Champion. Jacobsen finishes with a par on 18, tied for the lead with Roy and one shot ahead of Simms. Simms yet again lays up at the 18th hole, playing it safe, despite the fact that doing so takes him out of championship contention. Roy should do likewise to save par and force a playoff, but over Romeo's objections and urged by Molly to "go for it," he takes his fateful shot which finally carries the green. However, a "little gust from the Gods", a sudden contrary wind causes his ball to roll off the green and back into the pond. Reminiscent of his blow-up back in college when he failed to qualify for the Tour, Roy tries to hit the same shot repeatedly, with the same heart-breaking result. With one last ball in his bag, Roy risks not only being humiliated but being disqualified (having no golf balls to play with), but still goes for the green. On his 12th shot, the ball clears the water and slowly rolls into the hole. After a wild celebration, Roy finally realizes what he has done and feels ashamed of himself, but Molly assures him. "Five years from now nobody will remember who won or lost, but they're gonna remember your 12!"

Now back in Texas, Molly tells Roy that by finishing in the top 15 at the Open he automatically qualifies to play again next year. She further suggests that he go back to the qualifying school so he can get on the Tour. Molly, who picked up a bunch of new clients at the tournament, prepares for a career of helping players with the mental portion of the game. They kiss passionately as the movie ends.

The movie features cameos by a number of PGA pros including Gary McCord, Phil Mickelson, Craig Stadler, Johnny Miller, Lee Janzen, Corey Pavin, Fred Couples, and Billy Mayfair, as well as TV golf broadcasters Jim Nantz, Ken Venturi, and Frank Chirkinian, all playing themselves.



Janine Turner was the first choice for the role of Molly Griswold, but she turned it down and Rene Russo was then cast. Pierce Brosnan was considered for the part of David Simms, before Don Johnson was placed in the film. John Leguizamo was offered the character of Romeo Posar, until Cheech Marin stepped in to do the role.

Kevin Costner trained extensively with Gary McCord to learn how to play golf, as stated in the foreword Costner wrote for McCord's book, Golf For Dummies.[2] McCord, who helped Costner develop a swing and pre-shot routine,[3] is listed in the end credits as a golf consultant and has a cameo appearance in the film.

The film's climactic scenes take place at a fictional U.S. Open tournament set in North Carolina. Several pro golfers and golf personalities make cameo (credited) appearances, playing themselves. Some of the film was shot in Kingwood, Texas, and some was shot at Tubac GC in Tubac, Arizona. The movie's 18th hole is actually the 4th hole on Kingwood's Deerwood course; the lake that guards the front of the green on this beautiful and difficult par-5, actually a par 4 in real life, was built for the movie by the film company.

Many of the golf shots by Roy McAvoy (Kevin Costner) were made by Costner himself.[4]

The scene at the end of the movie where Roy McAvoy hits the shot into the water hazard again and again was based on an actual event. Gary McCord (the commentator with the handlebar mustache in the movie) is an actual commentator and pro on the Champions Tour. In a tournament he had a similar shot to McAvoy's. He needed a birdie to win and went for it. He shot over and over again and finally got it in 15 strokes. In the movie McAvoy holes out the shot and gets it in 12.

The scene with the golf shot that knocked the pelican off its perch was indeed a real life scenario, based on the life of Gary McCord.


An annual golf tournament located in Charlotte, NC that benefits the American Cancer Society is named the "Tin Cup Tournament." It is the American Cancer Society's largest single-day golf event in the Carolinas. Play is always on the second Monday of August. 2004 REMAX World Long Drive Champion, David Mobley, is an annual celebrity guest. Most recently, the location is at Ballantyne Resort Golf Course.

After carding a quadruple bogey and a double bogey on the 17th and 18th holes of the 2013 Players Championship, "Tin Cup" became a nickname for professional golfer Sergio García.[5]


Tin Cup currently holds a 69% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 48 reviews, indicating a mixed to positive reception.

Box office[edit]

The movie debuted at No. 1.[6]


The soundtrack was released through Sony in 1996.

  1. "Little Bit Is Better Than Nada" - The Texas Tornados
  2. "Cool Lookin' Woman" - Jimmie Vaughan
  3. "Crapped Out Again" - Keb' Mo'
  4. "Big Stick" - Bruce Hornsby
  5. "Nobody There But Me" - Bruce Hornsby
  6. "Let Me into Your Heart" - Mary-Chapin Carpenter
  7. "I Wonder" - Chris Isaak
  8. "This Could Take All Night" - Amanda Marshall
  9. "Back to Salome" - Shawn Colvin
  10. "Just One More" - George Jones
  11. "Where Are You Boy" - Patty Loveless
  12. "Every Minute, Every Hour, Every Day" - James House
  13. "Character Flaw" - Joe Ely
  14. "Double Bogey Blues" - Mickey Jones


  1. ^ a b "Tin Cup". The Numbers. 
  2. ^ Gary McCord & John Huggan, Golf for Dummies. New York: John Wiley & Sons (1999): 21
  3. ^ Gary McCord & John Huggan, Golf for Dummies. New York: John Wiley & Sons (1999): 21. "One of the first things we talked about was preshot routine."
  4. ^ "WarnerBros.com - Movies , TV Shows and Video Games including Harry Potter". Movies.warnerbros.com. Retrieved 2012-05-30. 
  5. ^ "Tiger Woods wins Players Championship by two strokes; Sergio Garcia puts three balls in water over final two holes - NYPOST.com". http://www.nypost.com/sports/golf. Retrieved 2013-05-12. 
  6. ^ Snow, Shauna (1996-08-20). "Morning report". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-12-30. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tin_Cup — Please support Wikipedia.
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236 news items

International Business Times AU
Wed, 06 Aug 2014 18:30:00 -0700

Making the rounds of cable television today is this feel good golf story Tin Cup starring Kevin Costner and Rene Russo. Costner is a golf prodigy who spends his day laissez fairly. Well as most romantic comedies go, Costner who is nicknamed Tin Cup ...

WLKY Louisville

WLKY Louisville
Tue, 29 Jul 2014 08:30:49 -0700

The event will feature world-renowned golf coach Butch Harmon, his son, Claude Harmon III, who is also one of the world's leading coaches, and Sky Sports golf presenter David Livingstone. Livingstone will lead the interview with the Harmons. Tickets ...
The Root
Tue, 05 Aug 2014 13:00:22 -0700

The Washington Government Relations Group, the nation's oldest organization for African-American government-relations professionals, honored leaders in the government-affairs community at its fifth annual Tin Cup Awards Dinner at the Canadian Embassy ...
Baraboo News Republic
Wed, 20 Aug 2014 04:03:45 -0700

It's a changing world, one often observes, and folks in Baraboo today had a somewhat striking illustration of this. We are accustomed to the blind man with his tin cup and his music box but the 1939 version of it was a blind man with his tin cup and ...
Virtual-Strategy Magazine (press release)
Thu, 31 Jul 2014 23:56:15 -0700

Tin Cup Coffee, one of the few coffee houses in Nashville that roasts its own coffee on site, is now open for business. The unique coffee shop is gaining traction after an incubation phase as one of Nashville's best kept secrets. Tin Cup's storefront ...
Tue, 19 Aug 2014 10:15:00 -0700

The film rights to Rene Steinke's novel “Friendswood,” set in the suburb just south of Houston, have been obtained by movie producers, according to Variety. The producing team is now looking for screenwriters to turn Steinke's book into a feature ...
San Jose Mercury News
Tue, 19 Aug 2014 19:02:07 -0700

I had resisted these tin-cup cries for financial help for years. They were akin to acts of begging. They were somehow unseemly. Besides, the TV folks with their hands out were well-dressed, well-spoken and in no obvious need of fiscal assistance. But ...
The Birmingham News - al.com
Thu, 14 Aug 2014 10:03:45 -0700

71 on the points list, right behind Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy and just ahead of Happy Gilmore. Anyone with a shred of self-awareness would realize the need for time off for rest and rehabilitation, but this is Tiger Woods we're talking about. Sure, he's had ...

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