Crazy as a bedbug they called him... and the nickname stuck.
Born in Brooklyn in 1906, Benjamin Siegel was a young thug shaking down pushcart vendors for protection money when the Prohibition gave him his first job, as a bootlegger.
Working his way through the ranks of the New York Underworld, Bugsy s callous disregard for human life made him a valuable enforcer for Murder, Inc., that infamous army of Mob assassins.
It was through SCARFACE star George Raft that Bugsy gained entrance into the Hollywood demimonde, brushing shoulders with A-list actors, starlets, producers and West Coast
gangster Mickey Cohen.
Seeing potential in the undeveloped cowtown of Las Vegas, Bugsy borrowed millions to build the Flamingo Hotel, a lavish casino he hoped would put Vegas on the map. Bugsy s dream of a gaming dynasty in the Nevada desert ended abruptly with his still unsolved murder in June of 1947.
DON T CALL ME BUGSY is the true story of the Moses of American Organized Crime who, like his Biblical counterpart, led his people through the desert but never lived to see the promised land.
This documentary features the testimony of writer/director Max Allan Collins (THE ROAD TO PERDITION), comedienne Rose Marie (THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW), screenwriter Charles Bennett (THE 39 STEPS) and the associates, lawyers, barbers, cops and cronies who knew Bugsy well... and lived to tell his story.
Includes rare footage of the early stages of Las Vegas and the historical Flamingo Casino
Available for the first time on DVD
Bugsy Siegel s life story has been made into several feature films, including the Academy Award Winning film BUGSY, starring Warren Beatty and Annette Bening.