Coogan's Bluff (1968)

R | 94 mins | Melodrama | 2 October 1968

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HISTORY

The copyright length of the picture was 100 minutes.
       Alex Segal was originally attached to direct Clint Eastwood in Coogan’s Bluff as part of an exclusive contract with Universal Pictures, the 28 Jul 1967 DV reported. However, as stated in a 1 May 1968 Var brief, Segal was forced to abandon the project due to illness. In an interview published in the 28 Nov 1968 LAT, director Don Siegel joked that he was chosen as a replacement because his name was a loose combination of Alex Segal’s and Don Taylor’s, noting that Taylor was the other contender for the job. By the time Siegel was brought on, the project had reportedly gone through eight scripts.
       Principal photography began 9 Nov 1967 in New York, according to an 8 Dec 1967 DV production chart. Four weeks of location shooting were scheduled to take place there, as stated in a 6 Dec 1967 Var item, which also indicated that dailies were being processed by Perfect Film & Chemical Corp., a recent acquisition of Pathé Laboratories. The 3 Oct 1968 NYT review listed Fort Tryon Park, the Cloisters museum, and Tavern on the Green in Central Park as New York City filming locations. On 12 Dec 1967, DV announced that production moved that day to the Mojave Desert for four days of exteriors.
       Prior to theatrical release, the picture was rated “C” (Condemned) by the National Catholic Office of Motion Pictures (NCOMP). A news item in the 3 Sep 1968 DV noted that it was rare for a U.S. film backed by a major ... More Less

The copyright length of the picture was 100 minutes.
       Alex Segal was originally attached to direct Clint Eastwood in Coogan’s Bluff as part of an exclusive contract with Universal Pictures, the 28 Jul 1967 DV reported. However, as stated in a 1 May 1968 Var brief, Segal was forced to abandon the project due to illness. In an interview published in the 28 Nov 1968 LAT, director Don Siegel joked that he was chosen as a replacement because his name was a loose combination of Alex Segal’s and Don Taylor’s, noting that Taylor was the other contender for the job. By the time Siegel was brought on, the project had reportedly gone through eight scripts.
       Principal photography began 9 Nov 1967 in New York, according to an 8 Dec 1967 DV production chart. Four weeks of location shooting were scheduled to take place there, as stated in a 6 Dec 1967 Var item, which also indicated that dailies were being processed by Perfect Film & Chemical Corp., a recent acquisition of Pathé Laboratories. The 3 Oct 1968 NYT review listed Fort Tryon Park, the Cloisters museum, and Tavern on the Green in Central Park as New York City filming locations. On 12 Dec 1967, DV announced that production moved that day to the Mojave Desert for four days of exteriors.
       Prior to theatrical release, the picture was rated “C” (Condemned) by the National Catholic Office of Motion Pictures (NCOMP). A news item in the 3 Sep 1968 DV noted that it was rare for a U.S. film backed by a major studio to receive such a harsh rating, and quoted NCOMP’s review, which denounced the film’s gratuitous nudity and sex, and its “repulsive protagonist…presented to the audience as an admirable hero.” The picture was first released in New York City, prior to the rollout of the Motion Picture Association of America’s (MPAA) new rating program; therefore, it was unrated by the MPAA upon first release, but by the time it opened on 20 Nov 1968 in Los Angeles, CA, it carried an “R” rating, which restricted children under sixteen from seeing it without a parent or guardian.
       According to the 28 Nov 1968 LAT, Don Siegel was unhappy with Universal Pictures’ distribution plan, specifically that the 2 Oct 1968 New York City opening coincided with the Jewish holiday Yom Kippur, a World Series baseball game, and the wide release of another Clint Eastwood movie, Hang ‘Em High (1968, see entry). Despite his complaints, the 7 Oct 1968 DV reported that Coogan’s Bluff had a successful opening week at New York City’s DeMille Theatre and Loew’s Orpheum, taking in an estimated $40,000 in box-office receipts. Following mixed critical reception, the picture went on to gross $3,011,145, according to a 10 May 1993 Var chart of “all-time film rental champs.”
       Coogan’s Bluff marked Siegel and Eastwood’s first collaboration. The pair made four more films together: Two Mules for Sister Sara (1970, see entry); The Beguiled and Dirty Harry (1971, see entries); and Escape from Alcatraz (1979, see entry). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
26 Jul 1967
p. 2.
Daily Variety
28 Jul 1967
p. 18.
Daily Variety
8 Dec 1967
p. 10.
Daily Variety
12 Dec 1967
p. 2.
Daily Variety
3 Sep 1968
p. 1, 4.
Daily Variety
1 Oct 1968
p. 1.
Daily Variety
7 Oct 1968
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
9 Nov 1968
Section A, p. 7.
Los Angeles Times
22 Nov 1968
Section F, p. 20.
Los Angeles Times
28 Nov 1968
Section G, p. 26.
New York Times
3 Oct 1968
p. 56.
Variety
15 Nov 1967
p. 22.
Variety
6 Dec 1967
p. 3.
Variety
1 May 1968
p. 19.
Variety
2 Oct 1968
p. 6.
Variety
10 May 1993
p. 182.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Stunt coordinator
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Exec prod
Assoc prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Cost des
MUSIC
Mus supv
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairstyles
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Dial coach
SOURCES
SONGS
"Pigeon-Toed Orange Peel" and "Everybody," words and music by Wally Holmes and Lalo Schifrin
sung by The Pigeon-Toed Orange Peels.
DETAILS
Release Date:
2 October 1968
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 2 October 1968
Los Angeles opening: 20 November 1968
Production Date:
began 9 November 1967
Copyright Claimant:
Malpaso Company
Copyright Date:
30 November 1968
Copyright Number:
LP37073
Physical Properties:
Sound
Westrex
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
94
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
21736
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Arizona Deputy Sheriff Walt Coogan is sent to New York City to extradite escaped killer James Ringerman. Accustomed to getting his man in the old-West tradition, Coogan is frustrated by legal snarls when Manhattan Detective Lieutenant McElroy tells him Ringerman is at Bellevue Hospital recuperating from an overdose of LSD and cannot be moved until the doctors release him. After whiling away some time with probation officer Julie Roth, Coogan bluffs his way into Bellevue and tricks the attendants into handing Ringerman over to him. On the way to the airport to catch a plane for Arizona, however, he is outwitted by Ringerman's freaked-out girl friend Linny and beaten unconscious by a thug, and Ringerman escapes. Now Coogan tries another tack; he visits Julie in her apartment, gets Linny's address from Julie's files, and tracks her to a psychedelic club. After accompanying Linny back to her apartment, he makes love to her and extracts from her a promise to lead him to Ringerman. Instead, she takes him to a pool hall where he is attacked in a bloody battle with pool balls and cues. Coogan returns to Linny's apartment and, by knocking her around, bluffs her into believing he'll kill her if she does not lead him to Ringerman. She takes him to the Cloisters where Ringerman, armed with a gun stolen from Coogan, attempts to escape on his motorcycle. But Coogan gives chase on another cycle and then on foot until he eventually tackles his man. When McElroy and his men arrive, Coogan claims he is making a citizen's arrest. Later, as he and Ringerman wait on top of the Pan Am Building for the helicopter that will ... +


Arizona Deputy Sheriff Walt Coogan is sent to New York City to extradite escaped killer James Ringerman. Accustomed to getting his man in the old-West tradition, Coogan is frustrated by legal snarls when Manhattan Detective Lieutenant McElroy tells him Ringerman is at Bellevue Hospital recuperating from an overdose of LSD and cannot be moved until the doctors release him. After whiling away some time with probation officer Julie Roth, Coogan bluffs his way into Bellevue and tricks the attendants into handing Ringerman over to him. On the way to the airport to catch a plane for Arizona, however, he is outwitted by Ringerman's freaked-out girl friend Linny and beaten unconscious by a thug, and Ringerman escapes. Now Coogan tries another tack; he visits Julie in her apartment, gets Linny's address from Julie's files, and tracks her to a psychedelic club. After accompanying Linny back to her apartment, he makes love to her and extracts from her a promise to lead him to Ringerman. Instead, she takes him to a pool hall where he is attacked in a bloody battle with pool balls and cues. Coogan returns to Linny's apartment and, by knocking her around, bluffs her into believing he'll kill her if she does not lead him to Ringerman. She takes him to the Cloisters where Ringerman, armed with a gun stolen from Coogan, attempts to escape on his motorcycle. But Coogan gives chase on another cycle and then on foot until he eventually tackles his man. When McElroy and his men arrive, Coogan claims he is making a citizen's arrest. Later, as he and Ringerman wait on top of the Pan Am Building for the helicopter that will take them to the airport and on to Arizona, Julie runs up to say goodbye. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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