It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is a 1963 American epic comedy film produced and directed by Stanley Kramer and starring Spencer Tracy with an all-star cast, about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 in stolen cash by a diverse and colorful group of strangers. The ensemble comedy premiered on November 7, 1963. The cast features Edie Adams, Milton Berle, Sid Caesar, Buddy Hackett, Ethel Merman, Mickey Rooney, Phil Silvers, Terry-Thomas and Jonathan Winters.
The film marked the first time that Kramer had directed a comedy; though he had produced the comedy So This Is New York in 1948, he's best known for producing and directing drama films about social problems (such as The Defiant Ones, Inherit the Wind, and Guess Who's Coming to Dinner). His first attempt at a comedy film paid off immensely, as It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World became a stunning critical and commercial success in 1963 and went on to win an Academy Award (for Best Sound Editing) and be nominated for five additional Academy Awards and two Golden Globe Awards. Despite this, the film suffered severe cuts by its distributor, United Artists, resulting in a shorter running time for its general release. The footage was excised against Kramer's wishes. The lost footage seriously deteriorated through the decades and was once thought impossible to restore. It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World featured at #40 in the American Film Institute's list 100 Years...100 Laughs.