Three Fugitives (1989)

PG-13 | 96 mins | Comedy | 27 January 1989

Director:

Francis Veber

Writer:

Francis Veber

Cinematographer:

Haskell Wexler

Editor:

Bruce Green

Production Designer:

Rick Carter

Production Companies:

Touchstone Pictures, Silver Screen Partners IV
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HISTORY

A 1 Feb 1989 Var article reported that, at the Cannes Film Festival in 1985, French director Francis Veber was approached by Touchstone Pictures' Jeffrey Katzenberg, who solicited a screenplay from him. Veber told Katzenberg the plot of his 1986 Les fugitifs. Although principal photography had not yet started on the French film, Katzenberg decided to do the “remake,” and Veber started fashioning the English language script. Katzenberg also got the Walt Disney Company to acquire the U.S. distribution rights to the French version.
       Although Disney expressed its intentions to distribute Les fugitifs, it delayed its U. S. release until after Three Fugitives was released.
       The budget was estimated to be somewhere in the “mid-teens” of millions of dollars while the French version only cost $6 million.
       A 19 Apr 1988 HR news brief announced principal photography began on 4 Apr 1988.
       Although the story takes place in Tacoma, WA, documents in AMPAS library file state that the first six weeks of shooting took place in Los Angeles, CA and the surrounding communities of San Pedro, Arcadia and Pasadena. The production designer chose five locations that were demolished before they could film there. Sites that high were used included Bishop Conaty Memorial High School, which doubled for the children’s home; Los Angeles County Arboretum which became a Tacoma Park; the downtown Department of Water and Power building which served as the Tacoma Police headquarters; and the CHB Food Processing Plant on Terminal Island, which was used as a seafront building.
       The production moved to Tacoma where the Old City Hall, Gasworks ... More Less

A 1 Feb 1989 Var article reported that, at the Cannes Film Festival in 1985, French director Francis Veber was approached by Touchstone Pictures' Jeffrey Katzenberg, who solicited a screenplay from him. Veber told Katzenberg the plot of his 1986 Les fugitifs. Although principal photography had not yet started on the French film, Katzenberg decided to do the “remake,” and Veber started fashioning the English language script. Katzenberg also got the Walt Disney Company to acquire the U.S. distribution rights to the French version.
       Although Disney expressed its intentions to distribute Les fugitifs, it delayed its U. S. release until after Three Fugitives was released.
       The budget was estimated to be somewhere in the “mid-teens” of millions of dollars while the French version only cost $6 million.
       A 19 Apr 1988 HR news brief announced principal photography began on 4 Apr 1988.
       Although the story takes place in Tacoma, WA, documents in AMPAS library file state that the first six weeks of shooting took place in Los Angeles, CA and the surrounding communities of San Pedro, Arcadia and Pasadena. The production designer chose five locations that were demolished before they could film there. Sites that high were used included Bishop Conaty Memorial High School, which doubled for the children’s home; Los Angeles County Arboretum which became a Tacoma Park; the downtown Department of Water and Power building which served as the Tacoma Police headquarters; and the CHB Food Processing Plant on Terminal Island, which was used as a seafront building.
       The production moved to Tacoma where the Old City Hall, Gasworks Park and McNeil Island Prison were utilized.
       A 30 Jan 1989 DV news item reported that the film’s Los Angeles premiere was a benefit for the California Institute of the Arts. The event raised $210,000 with Disney matching that with $210,000 of its own money.
       Although most critics dismissed the film, it had a strong box-office showing, grossing $11.9 million its first two weeks of release. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
30 Jan 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
26 Jan 1989
p. 10, 12.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Apr 1988.
---
Los Angeles Times
27 Jan 1989
p. 4.
New York Times
27 Jan 1989
p. 6.
Variety
1 Feb 1989
p. 11, 14, 18, 20.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Touchstone Pictures presents
in association with Silver Screen Partners IV
A Lauren Shuler-Donner Production
A Francis Veber Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
DGA trainee
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Chief lighting tech
Best boy elec
Key grip
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Still photog
Cableman
2d unit dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
FILM EDITORS
Apprentice ed
SET DECORATORS
Set des
Const coord
Prop master
Asst prop
Standby painter
Greens foreman
Asst prop
Asst prop, Tacoma unit
Asst prop, Tacoma unit
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost supv
Set cost
MUSIC
Sup mus ed
Mus rec and mixed by
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Cableman
Sd ed
Sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
ADR ed
Asst ADR ed
Foley ed
Foley artist
Foley artist
Sd eff rec
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff supv
Title des by
MAKEUP
Makeup artist/Nick Nolte
Hairdresser/Nick Nolte
Makeup artist
Hairdresser
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Prod auditor
Prod coord
Scr supv
Asst to Mr. Veber
Asst to Ms. Shuler-Donner
Unit pub
Asst to Nick Nolte
Asst to Martin Short
Casting asst
Asst prod coord
1st asst auditor
2d 2d asst dir
Transportation coord
Prod asst
Prod asst
Studio teacher
Extra casting
Animal handlers
Exercise trainer to Mr. Nolte
Broadcast equip provided by
Tacoma casting
Asst prod coord, Tacoma unit
Prod asst, Tacoma unit
Prod asst, Tacoma unit
Asst to Ms. Shuler-Donner, Tacoma unit
Washington state extras casting, Tacoma unit
Street fair coord, Tacoma unit
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunt double for Nick Nolte
Stunt double for Martin Short
Stunt double for Martin Short
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Living In The City," written and performed by Gary Mallaber and Glenn Sherba
"Visiting The Zoo," written by John Easdale, performed by Dramarama, courtesy of Questionmark Records
"Hard Work," written by Brian O'Neal, performed by The Bus Boys, courtesy of Voss Records.
DETAILS
Release Date:
27 January 1989
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 27 January 1989
Production Date:
began 4 April 1988
Copyright Claimant:
Touchstone Pictures a.a.d.o. the Walt Disney Company
Copyright Date:
1 February 1989
Copyright Number:
PA395456
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo® in selected theaters
Color
Duration(in mins):
96
MPAA Rating:
PG-13
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
29381
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

When bank robber Daniel Lucas is paroled from a Tacoma, Washington, prison, he is met by police detective Dugan, who put him away. Dugan insists Lucas will return to crime, so Lucas asks for a ride to a nearby bank, claiming he will rob it. Lucas enters the bank and asks to open a new account with the money he was paid from his prison work program. As Dugan drives away, Ned Perry bursts into the bank with a pistol and a hand grenade. Unaware a teller has activated the silent alarm, Ned Perry orders the teller to stuff money in a duffel bag and throw it to him. The teller follows orders, but when he throws the bag back it gets caught in a chandelier. As the teller frees the bag with a broom, police surround the bank. Dugan arrives and demands the robber surrender. Over Lucas’s protests, Perry picks him as a human shield and they leave the building. Although Lucas screams he is a hostage, Dugan orders him to kneel down or he will order the police to shoot. Ned Perry faints, causing Lucas to grab his arm so he does not drop the grenade. Ned Perry comes to and accidently fires his pistol. Police open fire and the two men leap under a truck. When the shooting stops, Lucas screams he is coming out, but Ned Perry, forgetting he is beneath a truck, fires a shot into the automobile and is covered in oil. Realizing Dugan will not believe his innocence, Lucas grabs the pistol from Perry, pulls him from under ... +


When bank robber Daniel Lucas is paroled from a Tacoma, Washington, prison, he is met by police detective Dugan, who put him away. Dugan insists Lucas will return to crime, so Lucas asks for a ride to a nearby bank, claiming he will rob it. Lucas enters the bank and asks to open a new account with the money he was paid from his prison work program. As Dugan drives away, Ned Perry bursts into the bank with a pistol and a hand grenade. Unaware a teller has activated the silent alarm, Ned Perry orders the teller to stuff money in a duffel bag and throw it to him. The teller follows orders, but when he throws the bag back it gets caught in a chandelier. As the teller frees the bag with a broom, police surround the bank. Dugan arrives and demands the robber surrender. Over Lucas’s protests, Perry picks him as a human shield and they leave the building. Although Lucas screams he is a hostage, Dugan orders him to kneel down or he will order the police to shoot. Ned Perry faints, causing Lucas to grab his arm so he does not drop the grenade. Ned Perry comes to and accidently fires his pistol. Police open fire and the two men leap under a truck. When the shooting stops, Lucas screams he is coming out, but Ned Perry, forgetting he is beneath a truck, fires a shot into the automobile and is covered in oil. Realizing Dugan will not believe his innocence, Lucas grabs the pistol from Perry, pulls him from under the truck and informs Dugan he will detonate the grenade unless he is allowed to drive away. Dugan agrees. Perry refuses to relinquish the keys unless Lucas returns his gun. Lucas makes the swap, but has trouble operating the stick shift. Perry tries to help, but shoots Lucas in the leg. Lucas drives off leaving a confused Dugan behind. Lucas passes out from blood loss and drives the car over an embankment, seconds before police cruisers pass by. The two fugitives crawl out of the car when Perry realizes he dropped the grenade. They run to safety as the car explodes. Lucas carjacks a Porsche, forces Perry in, and drives to a police station. However, Perry screams he is a hostage and police aim their guns on Lucas, who punches a cop and runs. Perry follows, leaping into the car as Lucas drives off. Lucas orders Perry out of the car, but the little man refuses to go without his money. Lucas tosses him the bag, then passes out. Perry drives Lucas to Dr. Horvath, a veterinarian with dementia who thinks Lucas is a dog and extracts the bullet from his leg. Dugan investigates Perry and learns his wife died, which led to a nervous breakdown that caused him to lose his job. His six-year-old daughter, Meg, who has not spoken since her mother died, is in a special school, but Perry cannot afford tuition. Dugan sends a squad car to the school. The officers arrive in time to see Perry driving away with Meg. They give chase, but Perry loses them by parking under a bridge. Perry returns to Horvath’s and asks Lucas to help him get a fake ID so he can flee the country. Perry voices his fear that the authorities will take Meg from him if he is homeless. When Lucas refuses, Perry threatens to blame the robbery on him if he gets caught. Perry goes to a seedy bar to meet Charlie, a forger, who demands the $50 thousand he believes Lucas stole from the bank. When Perry protests the haul was only thirteen thousand, Charlie has two of his goons beat him up. Back at Horvath’s, Lucas is awakened by Meg bringing him a glass of water. As she leaves, the telephone rings. It is Charlie the forger demanding fifty thousand. A police officer arrives with Max, a German sheperd. Lucas hides his wounded leg with his jacket, but Max pulls it off. Before the cop can react, Horvath walks in and Max runs to greet him. Lucas head-butts the officer and runs off, with Meg following him. At an abandoned building, Lucas passes out. He awakens a few hours later to find Meg nestled against him for warmth. The next morning, two ruffians appear and threaten Lucas with a straight razor. Lucas pulls his gun and steals their clothes, and takes Meg to Charlie’s bar, ordering her to wait outside. He gets in a delivery van, drives it through the front door, holds a gun to Charlie’s head and orders one of Charlie’s thugs to hand over Ned Perry. Lucas drives to a marina where Perry writes a complete confession absolving Lucas of any knowledge of the robbery. Although Lucas advises Perry to turn himself in, Perry refuses, fearing Meg will be put in the orphanage. However, Meg takes his hand and asks him not to go. A stunned Lucas tells her he he has to go, but promises to see her again. Perry puts Meg in the van, but she leaps out and rushes after Lucas. He runs after her and is hit by a van full of police. Recognizing Perry as a suspect in the bank robbery, police give chase. Lucas pulls up with the stolen van. Perry jumps in and they drive after Meg. When they try to follow her into a park, they hit a pair of bollards, totaling the van. They avoid the police by hiding in some bushes. Perry spots Meg sitting with an old man who offers her candy. Thinking the man is pervert, Perry throws a stone at him; however, Lucas grabs his arm, and the flying rock hits a cop instead. As the police approach, the old man calls out that he has found a lost girl. As the policemen lead Meg away, Lucas and Perry sneak out of the park. Later, Perry tells Lucas he has helped enough and wanders away. Armed with Perry’s confession, Lucas finds Dugan and clears his name. Weeks go by and Lucas gets a job as a mobile locksmith. One day, he visits Meg at the reformatory and is told the girl refuses to eat. The next night, as Lucas cases out the reformatory, he spots Perry trying to break a lock with a rock. Lucas picks the lock and they sneak into the building. Lucas tells Perry to stand guard, and sneaks into the dormitory, but he returns with the wrong girl. The child screams and a policewoman appears with a drawn gun. She trips and falls over some toys and drops her gun. Perry retrieves it and threatens to kill the woman if she does not take him to Meg. In the infirmary, Perry locks the policewoman in a closet, grabs his daughter and runs into the hall to find two cops. Lucas appears, slams the two policemen’s heads together, and they escape. They drive to an empty house. As they climb the stairs, Perry begins to faint from hunger, but refuses to let Lucas carry Meg. Instead, he lifts them both. They place Meg in a bed, but not until Lucas shakes her does she open her eyes, smile, and tell them she is hungry. The next day, a disgruntled Perry dresses up as Lucas’s wife. In order to fool the police, who are looking for two men and a girl, they cut Meg’s hair to make her look like a boy. Driving to Canada, they run into a police roadblock. When Perry panics, Lucas punches him in the stomach. When a police officer pulls them over, Lucas claims Perry is pregnant and sick. Police escort the outlaws to the hospital. Perry is put on a gurney and wheeled into an examination room where he leaps up, yells “false alarm,” and runs back to the car. Arriving in Canada, Lucas gives Perry all his money and the name of a man in Vancouver who will help him disappear. As Perry goes into a bank to exchange his U.S. dollars, Lucas hugs Meg and promises to visit. He is dismayed when a half dozen Royal Mounted Police cars surround the bank. A confused Lucas watches as a bank robber comes out using Perry as a hostage. He turns to Meg and tells her he will be staying with her a little longer.
+

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

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