Awards and nominations
Midler won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Miniseries or Television Film. Gibb was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film and the production was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Miniseries or Television Film.
The film was nominated for 12 Primetime Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Made for Television Movie and Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie for Midler, and won for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Music Direction (Michael Rafter).
Ardolino was nominated for the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Specials
Jule Styne said, “I’m so excited. I just watched a tape of the movie and I cried. It is the most outstanding singing and acting performance I’ve seen on the screen within memory.”
Dorothy Rabinowitz wrote, “Ms. Midler the toughest and brassiest Mama Rose ever… Most everything comes up roses here all right.”
Jennifer Stevenson wrote, “Probably the best movie of the television year…”
Barbara Jaeger wrote, “…Midler deserves both an Emmy and a Grammy.”
“Midler was sensational as Mama Rose in the recent TV version of Gypsy,” wrote The Buffalo News.
The Chicago Sun-Times said, “Midler has the perfect blend of energy and maturity to portray vaudeville’s ultimate stage mother. But the guiding force behind the new, sparkling Gypsy comes from the perceptive and reverent direction of Oscar winner Emile Ardolino, who artfully preserves the spirit of a stage play within the confines of television.” In another article, the publication wrote, “Bette Midler’s star turn in CBS’ Gypsy not only brought the TV musical back from the dead, but it also helped the network win another
The film brought in an 18.6/28 rating/share, ranking 4th out of 90 programs that week, and was watched by 26.2 million viewers