Breakfast at Tiffany's is a 1961 romantic comedy film starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard, and featuring Patricia Neal, Buddy Ebsen, Martin Balsam, and Mickey Rooney. The film was directed by Blake Edwards and released by Paramount Pictures. It was loosely based on the novella of the same name by Truman Capote. Hepburn's portrayal of Holly Golightly as the naïve, eccentric woman is generally considered to be the actress's most memorable and identifiable role. She herself regarded it as one of her most challenging roles, since she was an introvert required to play an extrovert. Hepburn's performance of "Moon River" helped composer Henry Mancini and lyricist Johnny Mercer win an Oscar for Best Song.
Early on a fall morning, a lone taxicab deposits Holly Golightly at the Tiffany's jewelry store on Fifth Avenue in New York City. Holly eats a pastry and drinks coffee while admiring the window displays, then strolls home. At her brownstone apartment building, Holly successfully fends off her date from the night before. He had been waiting in his car all night, angry that she disappeared during their date. As is her habit, Holly had accepted $50 from her date to tip the powder room attendant at the club they were attending. Deciding her date was obnoxious she took the $50 and abandoned him. The next morning Holly is awakened by new tenant Paul Varjak ringing the door bell. After feeding her nameless pet cat, Holly chats with Paul as she hurriedly dresses for her visit to Sing Sing prison. This is a weekly routine from which she earns $100 for an hour's conversation with Sally Tomato, an incarcerated mob boss. Holly is apparently unaware that she is passing coded messages for Sally's drug ring. Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly. Wealthy matron Emily Eustace Failenson (or "2E") arrives at the brownstone and is introduced as Paul's "decorator". Holly later drops by Paul's apartment to escape a drunken date and sees 2E leave money and kiss Paul goodbye. Paul explains he is a writer who hasn't been published since 1956. Holly, at the age of 14, ran away from home with her brother Fred, who is now in the army. Paul attends a wild party at Holly's. He meets José da Silva Pereira, a handsome, rich Brazilian, and Rusty Trawler, a pudgy, rich American. Paul also meets Holly's "agent" O. J. Berman. O.J. tells him about Holly's transformation from a country girl with a thick accent to a classy Manhattan socialite, adding that she is a wild spirit, difficult to pin down. O. J. says he can't tell if she is "a phony". Holly is accompanied by Paul to visit Sally at Sing Sing. Paul begins writing again, starting a story about Holly. He hears Holly singing "Moon River" from her windowsill. 2E rushes into Paul's apartment, worried about a strange man outside. Paul is trailed by the man when he leaves the apartment. They confront one another in Central Park. The man introduces himself as Doc, claiming to be Holly's husband. He married herreal name Lula Mae Barneswhen she was turning 14 and explains that he has come to take Holly back to Texas, where he feels she rightly belongs. Holly tells Paul the marriage was annulled. Holly tells Doc she won't be returning with him. Doc blackmails her saying if she doesn't return he will no longer support her brother Fred, who will soon be released from the army. Holly still refuses and declares that Fred can come live with her in New York. She and Paul put a dejected Doc on the bus to Texas. Holly and Paul drown their sorrows at a bar. A tipsy Holly explains her feeling of responsibility for Fred. She decides to marry Rusty Trawler for his money, but then discovers that Rusty has married someone else. Holly and Paul spend a carefree, romantic day together, visiting the library and going to Tiffany's, where they have a cheap ring from a box of Cracker Jack engraved. Paul wakes up in bed, looks for Holly but realizes she has gone home. He informs 2E that he no longer needs her. A mercenary Holly plans to marry José, which angers Paul. Holly and José return to her apartment one night and find a telegram notifying her of Fred's death. Holly trashes her apartment in grief and her behavior disturbs José. Months later Paul has moved out of the brownstone. He is invited to dinner by Holly, who is leaving the next morning for Brazil. However they are arrested by police in connection with Sally's drug ring. Holly spends the night in lock-up. The next morning Paul is waiting with a taxi when Holly is released from jail. He is in possession of both Cat Holly's cat and a letter from José explaining he must end their relationship due to her headline-making arrest. An emotional Holly insists she will still go to Brazil anyway. She orders the driver to stop and she throws Cat out into the pouring rain. Paul admonishes Holly for her general behaviour and leaves the cab, tossing the ring he engraved for her from Tiffany's into her lap. Holly runs after him and together they find Cat and embrace.