Newsies is based on the true story of the Newsboys Strike of 1899 in New York City, who sold newspapers for Joseph Pulitzer. Two newsboys, Jack Kelly (Christian Bale) and David David Jacobs (David Moscow) are aided by newspaper reporter Bryan Denton (Bill Pullman) and vaudeville performer Medda (Ann-Margret), as well as being hindered by Snyder, warden of "The Refuge" juvenile detention facility (Kevin Tighe), and Pulitzer. They get every newsie from all of New York to team up and strike against the big-shot newspapermen.
- It's this brain of mine, always makin' mistakes. It's got a mind of its own!
- When ya' learn from Jack, ya' learn from the best.
- I can't afford to be a kid no more, Dave. For the first time in my life I got money in my pockets. Real money. Money, you understand?
- Well, dat's da foist thing ya gotta learn - headlines don't sell papes. Newsies sell papes.
- Got no brains. Why we starting to fight each other? Its just what the big shots wanna see. That we're street trash, street rats with no brains. No respect for nothin' including ourselfs. So heres how it is if we don't act together then we nothin'. if we don't stick together we nothin'. And if we can't even trust each other, then we nothin'. So whats it gunna be?
- We're a union just by sayin' so.
- Jack- Did you miss me weasel? Huh, did you miss me?
Weasel- It's Wisel, and that's Mr. Wisel to you. How many papes do you want? Jack- Don't rush me, I'm perusin' the merchandise Mr. Weasel!
- Mush- How'd ya sleep Jack?
Jack- On me back Mush.
- Jack- Remember Crutchy? (Said to a member of the Delancys before headbutting him)
Jack Kelly: If we go on strike, then we are a union. Right?David Jacobs:' No. We're just a bunch of angry kids with no money.
Jack Kelly: Extra, extra, read all about it! Ellis Island in flames!
David Jacobs: Hey, where's that story?
Jack Kelly: Page nine. Thousands Flee in Panic!
David Jacobs: "Trash Fire Next To Immigration Building Terrifies Seagulls"?
Jack Kelly: Terrified Flight from Inferno!
David Jacobs: My father taught us not to lie. Jack Kelly: Well, mine told me not to starve; so we both have an education.
"..When I dream,on my own. I'm alone but I ain't lonely. For a dreamer nights the only time of day.." -Santa Fe
- David Jacobs: You're a liar! You lied about everything. You lied about your father being out west, 'cause he's not out west! You didn't even tell me your real name!
Jack Kelly: So? What you wanna do about it Dave? David Jacobs: I don't understand you. Jack Kelly: Oh, so let me spell it out for you. You see, I ain't got nobody tucking me in at night, like you. It's just me, I gotta look out for myself. David Jacobs: You had the Newsies! Jack Kelly: Oh, what'd being a Newsie ever give me but a dime a day and a few black eyes? You know, I can't afford to be a kid no more, Dave. For the first time in my life, I got money in my pockets. Real money. Money, you understand? I got more on the way and as soon as I collect, I'm gone, I'm away. David Jacobs: Well, that's good! That's good because we don't need you! We don't need you! All those words you said, those were mine. Jack Kelly: Yeah, but you never had the guts to put them across yourself, did ya? David Jacobs: I do now.
- Look at this. Baby born with 2 heads. Must be from Brooklyn.
- Oh, you mean Jack Kelly. Yeah, he was here. But he put an egg in his shoe and...beat it.
- In 1899, the streets of New York City echoed with the voices of newsies, peddling the papers of Joseph Pulitzer, William Randalph Hearst, and other giants of the newspaper world. On every corner you saw them carrying the banner. Bringing you the news for a penny a pape. Poor orphans and runaways, the newsies were a ragged army without a leader, until one day all that changed.
- Remember that hot tip I told you 'bout? Nobody told the horse.