Mystic Pizza Owner, Inspiration for 80’s Film, Pleas Guilty to Tax Crime

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Mystic Pizza Owner, Inspiration for 80’s Film, Pleas Guilty to Tax Crime

The New York Daily News, via AP, is reporting that the owner of Mystic Pizza, John Zelepos, pleaded guilty to funneling funds from the business to his personal accounts and accounts of family members, and then filing false tax returns.

Let’s talk about Mystic Pizza, the movie.    Roger Ebert, the legend, said the following about the film, among an otherwise fairly positive review:

I have a feeling that “Mystic Pizza” may someday become known for the movie stars it showcased back before they became stars. All of the young actors in this movie have genuine gifts. Roberts is a major beauty with a fierce energy. Gish projects intelligence and stubbornness like a young Katharine Hepburn. And Taylor, who is given what’s intended as a more comic role, finds human comedy in her ongoing problems with the earnest and chaste Bill.

It’s fun to watch them work. Of the men, D’Onofrio, as Bill, has the best part to work with as he stubbornly explains how he doesn’t believe in sex without a commitment.

Amazing how dead on Ebert was.  Mystic Pizza, in fact, preceded Roberts’ breakthrough performance in Pretty Woman by 2 years.   D’Onofrio is now a major television star with some significant continuing film roles.  Lili Taylor is still basically playing Lili Taylor (though we lover that quirky, free spirited woman around here – so that is not really a complaint).

Anyway, I am craving some pizza.

Daniel Layton, the author of this post, is the principal of Tax Attorney OC.

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