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Just a Gigolo

In “Fading Gigolo,” which hits theaters on April 18, actor/writer/director John Turturro plays Fiovarante, a meek florist in his 50s who gets roped into an unlikely paid part in a ménage-a-trois with two very attractive women (Sharon Stone and Sofia Vergara), and suddenly he’s Joe Buck in “Midnight Cowboy.” Yes, it’s a comedy. But reviews from the Toronto Film Festival, where this offbeat film debuted last fall, also describe it as tender and heartfelt — especially when Fiovarante meets Avigal, a sensitive Hassidic widow played, oddly enough, by French pop star (and Johnny Depp ex) Vanessa Paradis. What has caused the biggest stir, however, is another casting surprise. Woody Allen costars as Fiovarante’s pimp, Murray Schwartz (street name: “Bongo”), a rare book dealer embarking on a second career. Many say it’s his best role in ages. —John Birmingham