48 Hrs. (1982)

R | 96 mins | Comedy | 8 December 1982

Director:

Walter Hill

Cinematographer:

Ric Waite

Production Designer:

John Vallone

Production Company:

Paramount Pictures
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HISTORY

Various contemporary sources referred to the film by the title 48 Hours.
       “Roxanne” songwriter Sting is credited onscreen as “S. Sting,” while “Cartoon Music” composer Winston Sharples is listed as “W. Sharples.”
       On 1 Apr 1982, HR stated that actor Nick Nolte publicly revealed news of the project during an acting seminar at Sherwood Oaks College in CA, claiming that he had been contributing to the script with writer-director Walter Hill, but did not want a writing credit. According to the 6 Apr 1982 LAHExam, Saturday Night Live (NBC, 11 Oct 1975--) comedian Eddie Murphy disclosed that he would make his motion picture debut in 48 Hrs., which Paramount Pictures expected to begin filming Jun 1982 for a Dec 1982 release. An article in the 6 Jun 1982 LAHExam reported that Paramount had previously rejected early drafts of the film, but suddenly rushed into production in spring 1982, urging Walter Hill and producer Lawrence Gordon to begin principal photography by mid-May 1982. However, the script had not been completed, and, according to Nolte, Hill and co-writer Larry Gross continued to write throughout the shoot. The Nov 1982 edition of Moviegoer claimed that prior to filming, method actor Nolte spent “several weeks” submerging himself in the role of “Jack Cates” by interviewing San Francisco, CA, police officers and eating foods he felt were fitting to the character.
       Production notes found in AMPAS library files stated that principal photography began 17 May 1982 in Modesto, CA. Moviegoer reported that the budget had been set at $10 million. In addition to Gross re-writing ... More Less

Various contemporary sources referred to the film by the title 48 Hours.
       “Roxanne” songwriter Sting is credited onscreen as “S. Sting,” while “Cartoon Music” composer Winston Sharples is listed as “W. Sharples.”
       On 1 Apr 1982, HR stated that actor Nick Nolte publicly revealed news of the project during an acting seminar at Sherwood Oaks College in CA, claiming that he had been contributing to the script with writer-director Walter Hill, but did not want a writing credit. According to the 6 Apr 1982 LAHExam, Saturday Night Live (NBC, 11 Oct 1975--) comedian Eddie Murphy disclosed that he would make his motion picture debut in 48 Hrs., which Paramount Pictures expected to begin filming Jun 1982 for a Dec 1982 release. An article in the 6 Jun 1982 LAHExam reported that Paramount had previously rejected early drafts of the film, but suddenly rushed into production in spring 1982, urging Walter Hill and producer Lawrence Gordon to begin principal photography by mid-May 1982. However, the script had not been completed, and, according to Nolte, Hill and co-writer Larry Gross continued to write throughout the shoot. The Nov 1982 edition of Moviegoer claimed that prior to filming, method actor Nolte spent “several weeks” submerging himself in the role of “Jack Cates” by interviewing San Francisco, CA, police officers and eating foods he felt were fitting to the character.
       Production notes found in AMPAS library files stated that principal photography began 17 May 1982 in Modesto, CA. Moviegoer reported that the budget had been set at $10 million. In addition to Gross re-writing Nolte and Murphy’s dialogue on set, location manager Mary F. Galloway said that Hill spontaneously selected locations throughout San Francisco. Production notes included the San Francisco locations of Chinatown, North Beach, Haight-Ashbury, and Mission districts, and the Church and Market Street MUNI subway station, while filming in Los Angeles, CA, took place at the Lincoln Heights Jail, Uniroyal Factory in South Gate, the Million Dollar Building, the Hall of Justice, Club Lingerie, and in downtown. Production in San Francisco lasted three weeks, before concluding in Los Angeles on the morning of 18 Aug 1982.
       On 4 Jun 1982, BAM announced that rock group The Blasters would score the film, which would include only two vocal tracks among the instrumental pieces, but later revised the statement in the 30 Jul 1982 issue, reporting that the band had been replaced by The BusBoys, who would make their motion picture debut. Production notes indicated that The BusBoys created a song titled “Monkey Mash,” which is not included in onscreen credits. In an 18 Aug 1982 LAT article, producer Joel Silver explained that the nightclub scene had originally been written to include a rock band, but filmmakers later decided to “tailor the scene more for Murphy” by featuring a predominantly African American band and group of 200 extras. In addition, Hill stated that he had begun developing the story as early as 1975 or 1976, but that the casting of a black actor had been considered “radical” until the commercial success of Richard Pryor. The 29 Aug 1982 LAHExam stated that director of photography, Ric Waite, used Kodak 93, a high-speed film for nighttime and interior shots, which minimized lighting setups and allowed the production to work more quickly. Moviegoer claimed that most of the roughly sixty-person crew had worked with Hill on previous projects, including Lawrence Gordon, who collaborated on Hard Times (1975, see entry), The Driver, (1978, see entry), and The Warriors (1979, see entry). Production notes claimed that, as a result, Hill and Gordon were able to quickly assemble technicians and crewmembers “in one afternoon.”
       According to a brief in the 9 Jul 1982 HR, the film was expected to be released in 1,300 theaters on 17 Dec 1982, but production notes listed a 10 Dec 1982 debut. On 24 Nov 1982, a Paramount press release announced that the film would open 8 Dec 1982 in selected theaters throughout Los Angeles.
       Eddie Murphy was nominated for the Golden Globe for New Star Of The Year, while the film won Best Music Score at the 1982 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards.
       Three years after the film’s theatrical release, in Jul 1985, actor Sonny Landham had won $506 in Los Angeles small claims court against KCBS-TV, as reported in a 12 Nov 1985 LAT article. The station had used footage of Landham from 48 Hrs. in a 6 May 1982 news segment about the influence of television violence, and KCBS-TV’s parent company, CBS Inc., had appealed the decision. Court proceedings revealed that KCBS-TV was not among the signers of a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) agreement that allowed free usage of film clips for news programs, but on 5 Dec 1985, LAT stated that a Los Angles County Superior Court judge ruled in favor of the station under protection of the First Amendment.
       On 24 Aug 1992, HR reported that 48 Hrs. paid net profits of $3,260,000 to four net participants.
       In 1990, Nolte and Murphy reprised their roles, reuniting with Hill and producer Lawrence Gordon for Another 48 Hrs. (see entry). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
BAM
4 Jun 1982.
---
BAM
30 Jul 1982.
---
Daily Variety
1 Jul 1982
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Apr 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jul 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
24 Nov 1982
p. 3, 11.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Aug 1992.
---
LAHExam
6 Apr 1982.
---
LAHExam
6 Jun 1982.
---
LAHExam
29 Aug 1982.
---
Los Angeles Times
18 Aug 1982
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
9 Dec 1982
p. 1.
Los Angeles Times
12 Nov 1985
Section VI, p. 1, 5.
Los Angeles Times
5 Dec 1985
Section VI, p. 6.
Moviegoer
Nov 1982
p. 7.
New York Times
8 Dec 1982
p. 28.
Paramount Pictures Corporation
24 Nov 1982.
---
Variety
24 Nov 1982
p. 14.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Paramount Pictures Presents
A Lawrence Gordon Production
A Walter Hill Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Still photog
Gaffer
Key grip
Cam op
Cam op
Cam asst
Cam asst
Cam asst
Best boy
Elec
2d grip
Dolly grip
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Const coord
Set des
Leadman
Leadman
Prop asst
Paint foreman
Const foreman
COSTUMES
Eddie Murphy's suit by
Cost supv
Men`s cost
Ladies' cost
MUSIC
Mus comp
Mus scoring mixer
SOUND
Supv sd eff ed
Supv sd eff ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Boom op
VISUAL EFFECTS
Main title des by
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Scr supv
Pub coord
Transportation coord
Extra casting
Asst to Lawrence Gordon
Asst to Lawrence Gordon
Asst to Joel Silver
Asst to Walter Hill
Asst to Nick Nolte
Secy to Gene Levy
Asst to Lawrence Gordon
Auditor
Asst auditor
Transportation capt
First aid
Craft services
STAND INS
Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
"(The Boys Are) Back In Town," written and recordings produced by Brian O'Neal
"48 Hrs.," written and recordings produced by Brian O'Neal
"Love Songs Are For Crazies," written and recording produced by Kevin O'Neal, performed by The Busboys featuring Michael D. Jones, Steven G. Felix, Gustarv O. Loundermon, Victor L. Johnson, Kevin A. O'Neal, and Brian E. O'Neal, The Busboys Music supervised by Ira Newborn
+
SONGS
"(The Boys Are) Back In Town," written and recordings produced by Brian O'Neal
"48 Hrs.," written and recordings produced by Brian O'Neal
"Love Songs Are For Crazies," written and recording produced by Kevin O'Neal, performed by The Busboys featuring Michael D. Jones, Steven G. Felix, Gustarv O. Loundermon, Victor L. Johnson, Kevin A. O'Neal, and Brian E. O'Neal, The Busboys Music supervised by Ira Newborn
"New Shoes," written by Brian O'Neal, performed by The Busboys, courtesy of Arista Records, Inc.
"Torchy's Boogie," written by Ira Newborn
"Roxanne," written by S. Sting, performed by Eddie Murphy
"Cartoon Music," written by W. Sharples.
+
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
48 Hours
Release Date:
8 December 1982
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 8 December 1982
Production Date:
17 May--18 August 1982 in Modesto, CA, San Francisco, CA, and Los Angeles, CA
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Pictures Corporation
Copyright Date:
8 March 1983
Copyright Number:
PA171804
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo in selected theaters
Color
Lenses
Lenses and Panaflex® Cameras by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
96
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
26865
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In a rural field, a group of prison convicts repair train tracks under the supervision of a police guard. A Native American man named Billy Bear approaches and helps one of the prisoners, Albert Ganz, escape, shooting two officers in the process. Meanwhile, in San Francisco, California, police officer Jack Cates wakes up in his girl friend Elaine’s apartment. They argue about the state of their relationship before Jack leaves for work. In the city, Ganz and Billy Bear use a payphone to order two prostitutes under the name of “G. P. Polson,” and walk away from a bench containing the body of a man with a bullet in his forehead. Later, Ganz kidnaps a former gang member, Luther, and his girl friend, Rosalie, insisting that Luther give him the money that was hidden by an acquaintance named Reggie. When Luther promises to get him the money by Monday, Ganz drives away with Rosalie. Jack follows two colleagues to a hotel, where they have traced “Polson,” but the officers force him to wait in the lobby. Ganz and Billy Bear kill the two officers, steal Jack’s gun, and run away taking one of the prostitutes as a hostage. At the police station, other detectives are skeptical of Jack’s account of the hotel shootout. Jack discovers that another one of Ganz’s former gang members, convicted felon Reggie Hammond, might be able to provide information about the fugitives. Although Reggie still has six months remaining on his three-year robbery sentence, Jack agrees to parole him for forty-eight hours so he may help him catch Ganz. After Reggie emerges from prison wearing a $975 suit, the two men find Luther and bring ... +


In a rural field, a group of prison convicts repair train tracks under the supervision of a police guard. A Native American man named Billy Bear approaches and helps one of the prisoners, Albert Ganz, escape, shooting two officers in the process. Meanwhile, in San Francisco, California, police officer Jack Cates wakes up in his girl friend Elaine’s apartment. They argue about the state of their relationship before Jack leaves for work. In the city, Ganz and Billy Bear use a payphone to order two prostitutes under the name of “G. P. Polson,” and walk away from a bench containing the body of a man with a bullet in his forehead. Later, Ganz kidnaps a former gang member, Luther, and his girl friend, Rosalie, insisting that Luther give him the money that was hidden by an acquaintance named Reggie. When Luther promises to get him the money by Monday, Ganz drives away with Rosalie. Jack follows two colleagues to a hotel, where they have traced “Polson,” but the officers force him to wait in the lobby. Ganz and Billy Bear kill the two officers, steal Jack’s gun, and run away taking one of the prostitutes as a hostage. At the police station, other detectives are skeptical of Jack’s account of the hotel shootout. Jack discovers that another one of Ganz’s former gang members, convicted felon Reggie Hammond, might be able to provide information about the fugitives. Although Reggie still has six months remaining on his three-year robbery sentence, Jack agrees to parole him for forty-eight hours so he may help him catch Ganz. After Reggie emerges from prison wearing a $975 suit, the two men find Luther and bring him to the police station. Jack telephones Elaine to tell her he will not be home that night, increasing her frustration with his lack of commitment. While Jack and Reggie drive to the Southern-themed bar where Billy Bear used to work, Reggie questions Jack about Elaine, but Jack refuses to discuss his personal life. Even though he is confident that he can handle the questioning alone, Jack wonders if the bar patrons will recognize him as a police officer. Believing that Jack needs his help, Reggie proposes that he pose as the officer, with conditions: if he uncovers any useful information, Jack will allow him thirty minutes of privacy to have sex with a woman, but if he cannot, Reggie will tell Jack everything he knows about Ganz’s motives. Inside, Reggie takes Jack’s police badge and aggressively questions the customers about Billy Bear, while confiscating their weapons and money. The bartender gives him the address of Casey, Billy Bear’s girl friend. When Reggie and Jack break into Casey’s apartment, she and her roommate believe the men to be imposters. Reluctantly, they admit that they have not seen Billy Bear for over two weeks. When Reggie does not divulge information about Ganz as promised, Jack starts a fistfight in an alleyway. Responding to Casey’s distress call, two police officers arrive and break up the fight. Later, Reggie reveals that Ganz is after $500,000 that they stole from a drug dealer, hidden in a briefcase in the trunk of Reggie’s car, which has been sitting in a parking garage since Ganz turned him in to the police. The next morning, Luther picks up Reggie’s convertible. Jack and Reggie follow him as he removes the briefcase and descends to an underground train station, where Ganz approaches Luther with a gun. When another police officer orders Ganz to drop his weapon, Billy Bear opens fire into the crowd, and the criminals board a train. Reggie chases Luther, who still carries the briefcase, just as two more police officers thwart Jack’s attempt to arrest Ganz and Billy Bear, allowing them to escape yet again. That night, Reggie visits a dance club and leaves a telephone message for Jack, informing him of his location. While Jack speaks with Elaine on the telephone, Jack’s coworker, Kehoe, interrupts him with Reggie’s message, and Jack hangs up on his girl friend. Jack finds Reggie at the club while he is propositioning a woman named Candy. Reggie informs him that Luther has checked into the hotel across the street, where they will catch him in the morning. After apologizing for acting tough and referring to him with racial slurs, Jack gives Reggie $20 so he can rent a hotel room to have sex with Candy, making good on their previous deal. As Reggie and Candy walk across the street to the hotel, Reggie sees Luther leaving the lobby with the briefcase, and returns to find Jack. Luther boards a bus driven by Billy Bear. Inside, Ganz holds Rosalie hostage and kills Luther. Jack and Reggie shoot at the bus, but Jack crashes into a store window, and the criminals drive away. At the station, police Chief Haden tells Jack he has been suspended and orders Reggie to return to jail. Jack defends Reggie and handcuffs their wrists together. Outside, he removes the cuffs and drives them to a bar in Reggie’s impounded convertible. Jack telephones Kehoe, who says that the bus was abandoned in Chinatown, but the fugitives are nowhere to be found. Suspecting that Billy Bear has returned to visit Casey, Jack and Reggie follow her home and enter her apartment, where Billy Bear and Ganz are hiding. Hands shaking, Reggie shoots Billy Bear, and Ganz jumps out the window with Reggie’s money. When the partners follow him into a darkened warehouse, Ganz holds Reggie at gunpoint, but Jack shoots Ganz in the chest six times. Later, Reggie leaves Candy’s apartment, promising he will see her again in six months. He then rejoins Jack, who promises to hold onto Reggie’s money until he is released. Although Jack does not want a share of the cash, Reggie promises to loan him a few thousand dollars so he can buy a new car. Jack acknowledges that Reggie is a changed man, but vows to catch him if he ever decides to steal again. The two men drive away, laughing, as the sun rises over the city. +

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

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