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The Stunt Man. A Production History. Richard Rush. Born April, 1929 Director and Screenwriter Previous Productions Getting Straight (1970) Freebie and the Bean (1974) After The Stunt Man (1980) The Color of Night (1994). Rush and The Stunt Man.

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the stunt man

The Stunt Man

A Production History

richard rush
Richard Rush
  • Born April, 1929
  • Director and Screenwriter
  • Previous Productions
    • Getting Straight (1970)
    • Freebie and the Bean (1974)
  • After The Stunt Man (1980)
    • The Color of Night (1994)
rush and the stunt man
Rush and The Stunt Man
  • Preproduction began in 1973, just as the last troops were leaving Vietnam
  • Production began in 1978
    • Produced by Melvin Simon for Avco Embassy
  • Film was released in 1980 by Fox Studios
  • What’s wrong with this timeline?
box office
Box Office
  • Rush claims studio executives, particularly one he calls DB blocked release for egotistical, not economic reasons
  • After successful release at film festivals, critics pressed for theatrical release
    • Premiered in Seattle, then the West Coast, and finally nationwide
    • Box office for 1980 was 7 million +, with a couple more million in worldwide box office
awards
Awards
  • Grand Prix, Montreal Film Festival
  • Nominated for Best Director at Academy Awards, the Directors Guild of America and the Golden Globe Awards
  • Peter O’Toole was nominated for Best Actor, but lost to Robert DeNiro (Raging Bull)
what can we learn from this film s production history
What can we learn from this film’s production history?
  • Economics of 1970s Hollywood
  • Taste of movie going public
  • Perceptions of the Vietnam War and Vietnam Vets during this period
  • Impact of the Auteur Theory on American filmmaking at this time
  • Realities of self-censorship in the Hollywood production system
the last word
The Last Word

Peter O’Toole:

“The Stunt Man wasn’t released,

it escaped.”

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