The House on Carroll Street (1988)

PG | 101 mins | Drama, Mystery | 4 March 1988

Director:

Peter Yates

Cinematographer:

Michael Ballhaus

Editor:

Ray Lovejoy

Production Designer:

Stuart Wurtzel

Production Company:

Orion Pictures
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HISTORY

On 25 Dec 1985, DV announced that director Peter Yates had begun working with writer Walter Bernstein on a screenplay called Sullivan St. The following year, a 12 May 1986 HR item included the project, now titled The House on Sullivan Street, as one of seven new feature films to be produced by Orion Pictures.
       A 19 Aug 1986 HR production chart indicated that filming began in New York City on 7 Jul 1987, with the tentative working title, The Peter Yates Project. To transform the city into its 1950s setting, production designer Stuart Wurtzel told the 22 Aug 1986 NYT that he rented several vintage automobiles, removed all visible air conditioners, and built special period streetlights to fit around existing modern fixtures. Locations included the East Village, the Chamber of Commerce building, and Grand Central Station. The 1 Aug 1986 NYT noted that President Street in Brooklyn doubled for the exterior location of the eponymous “Sullivan Street,” located in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village. However, the setting of the story was ultimately changed to Brooklyn to reflect the street name used in the film’s final re-title, The House on Carroll Street.
       The 2 Mar 1988 Var review indicated that production concluded sometime in late 1986. Although a 25 Mar 1987 DV item suggested that Orion planned to release the picture later that fall, The House on Carroll Street opened the following spring, on 4 Mar 1988. The May 1988 issue of Box reported meager two-week earnings of only $312,851 from thirty theaters.
              ... More Less

On 25 Dec 1985, DV announced that director Peter Yates had begun working with writer Walter Bernstein on a screenplay called Sullivan St. The following year, a 12 May 1986 HR item included the project, now titled The House on Sullivan Street, as one of seven new feature films to be produced by Orion Pictures.
       A 19 Aug 1986 HR production chart indicated that filming began in New York City on 7 Jul 1987, with the tentative working title, The Peter Yates Project. To transform the city into its 1950s setting, production designer Stuart Wurtzel told the 22 Aug 1986 NYT that he rented several vintage automobiles, removed all visible air conditioners, and built special period streetlights to fit around existing modern fixtures. Locations included the East Village, the Chamber of Commerce building, and Grand Central Station. The 1 Aug 1986 NYT noted that President Street in Brooklyn doubled for the exterior location of the eponymous “Sullivan Street,” located in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village. However, the setting of the story was ultimately changed to Brooklyn to reflect the street name used in the film’s final re-title, The House on Carroll Street.
       The 2 Mar 1988 Var review indicated that production concluded sometime in late 1986. Although a 25 Mar 1987 DV item suggested that Orion planned to release the picture later that fall, The House on Carroll Street opened the following spring, on 4 Mar 1988. The May 1988 issue of Box reported meager two-week earnings of only $312,851 from thirty theaters.
              End credits state: "Excerpts from A Woman Called Fancy by Frank Yerby"; "Photographs courtesy of FPG International, Yivo Institute for Jewish Research, U.S. Army Center of Military History"; "Antique cars provided in part with the co-operation of The Antique Automobile Association of Brooklyn, Inc."; "Period forklifts supplied by Clarklift of New York, Inc."; and, "Special thanks to: Jaynne C. Keyes, Pepper O'Brien, & The New York State Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development; City of New York Mayor's Office for Film, Theatre and Broadcasting; Luxuty Rails, Inc. American Zephyr; Mohawk & Hudson Chapter, National Railway Histoical Society; Auschwitz Exhibit Sponsored by The United Nations Center for Human Rights, International Auschwitz Committee & The Auschwitz State Museum, Poland; Center for Holocaust Studies Documentation & Research; Jessica Brackman, Mary Jane Cannizzaro and Rebecca Haines of FPG International; Giblin-Currier Associates P.C.--New York Architectural & Engineering Consultants; Keen's Restaurant; Perry IV; The Strang Bookstore; Blue Mill Tavern; Maimonides Cemetery; Caffe Cefalu; Braemar International by C.A. Wallace Shaw and Todd & Duncan, PLC.; Yale School of Drama; The Juilliard School; Parker Pen USA Ltd.; James J. F. Haslip and Edward T. Coyne of Customs International Inc."
       A disclaimer reads: "The story, all names, characters and incidents portrayed in this production are fictitious, no identification with or similarity to actual persons, living or dead, or to actual events is intended or should be inferred. In particular, the producers do not intend to imply that Life magazine dismissed any of its employees for their political beliefs or activities. The producers appreciate that Life magazine recognizes the right of its employees to puruse their own political choices." More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
May 1988.
---
Daily Variety
25 Dec 1985.
---
Hollywood Reporter
12 May 1986.
---
Hollywood Reporter
19 Aug 1986.
---
Hollywood Reporter
1 Mar 1988
p. 3, 24.
Los Angeles Times
4 Mar 1988
Calendar, p. 14.
New York Times
1 Aug 1986.
---
New York Times
22 Aug 1986.
---
New York Times
4 Mar 1988
p. 23.
Variety
2 Mar 1988
pp. 112-113.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
An Orion Pictures Release
A Peter Yates Film
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
DGA trainee
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Gaffer
Key grip
Cam op
Focus puller
Clapper/Loader
Still photog
Best boy
Grip
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Asst art dir
FILM EDITORS
Assoc ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Const coord
Master scenic artist
Lead set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Asst props
Asst props
Const grip
Stand-by scenic
COSTUMES
Cost des
Men's ward supv
Women's ward supv
Fitter
Asst to the cost des
Cost asst
Cost asst
MUSIC
Mus rec by
Mus ed
Supv mus ed
Mus ed
Mus rec at
SOUND
Sd mixer
Supv re-rec mixer
Supv sd ed
Re-rec mixer
Sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
VISUAL EFFECTS
Matte photog consultant
MAKEUP
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Project consultant
Prod coord
Loc coord
Scr supv
Transportation capt
Asst prod coord
Asst to Mr. Yates & Mr. Colesberry
Art/Research asst
Picture car consultant
Prod accountant
Prod auditor
Asst accountant
Asst accountant
Transportation co-capt
Post prod runner
Addl casting
for Todd Thaler Casting
Casting asst
Loc asst
Loc asst
Loc asst
Loc asst
Loc asst
Loc intern
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Post prod services
Post prod at
Post prod at
England
STAND INS
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
COLOR PERSONNEL
SOURCES
SONGS
"Because Of You," written by A. Hammerstein & D. Wilkinson, performed by Dan Kroll and The Ambassadors.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Sullivan St.
The House on Sullivan Street
The Peter Yates Project
Release Date:
4 March 1988
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 4 March 1988
Production Date:
began 7 July 1987
Copyright Claimant:
Orion Pictures Corporation
Copyright Date:
20 June 1988
Copyright Number:
PA373593
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Lenses
Cameras & Lenses by Arriflex®
Prints
Prints by DeLuxe®
Duration(in mins):
101
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
28690
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1951 New York City, Life magazine photography editor Emily Crane is cited by the House of Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) for refusing to divulge the names of members in her civil liberties group. After losing her job, she responds to a newspaper advertisement for a part-time position reading novels to an elderly Brooklyn woman named Miss Venable. One afternoon, Emily overhears an argument and notices Senator Ray Salwen, the chairman of HUAC, speaking with two German-Jewish refugees who are moving into a neighboring house on adjacent Carroll Street. Although she cannot discern details of the conversation, she notices that Stefan, the younger German boy, acts as an interpreter for the older refugee, Dr. Meyer Teperson. After work, Emily encounters Stefan on the street and they converse amiably about poetry. When she begins to ask questions about his association with Senator Salwen, however, Stefan becomes hostile and runs away. Later, Emily follows him to a cemetery, where he stands over the freshly dug grave of a man named Jesse Sackadorf. Believing he is in danger, she offers to help him, but as she reaches for her business card, Stefan notices a man standing nearby and flees in fear. Back in New York City, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Agent Mike Cochran and his partner enter Emily’s apartment with a warrant to conduct a routine search. Once they leave, Emily receives a telephone call from Stefan asking for help. They meet at a bookstore, but two government officials arrive and attempt to arrest Stefan. He and Emily weave through the book stacks and disappear in a crowd of theatregoers standing outside. As they sneak backstage, a ... +


In 1951 New York City, Life magazine photography editor Emily Crane is cited by the House of Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) for refusing to divulge the names of members in her civil liberties group. After losing her job, she responds to a newspaper advertisement for a part-time position reading novels to an elderly Brooklyn woman named Miss Venable. One afternoon, Emily overhears an argument and notices Senator Ray Salwen, the chairman of HUAC, speaking with two German-Jewish refugees who are moving into a neighboring house on adjacent Carroll Street. Although she cannot discern details of the conversation, she notices that Stefan, the younger German boy, acts as an interpreter for the older refugee, Dr. Meyer Teperson. After work, Emily encounters Stefan on the street and they converse amiably about poetry. When she begins to ask questions about his association with Senator Salwen, however, Stefan becomes hostile and runs away. Later, Emily follows him to a cemetery, where he stands over the freshly dug grave of a man named Jesse Sackadorf. Believing he is in danger, she offers to help him, but as she reaches for her business card, Stefan notices a man standing nearby and flees in fear. Back in New York City, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Agent Mike Cochran and his partner enter Emily’s apartment with a warrant to conduct a routine search. Once they leave, Emily receives a telephone call from Stefan asking for help. They meet at a bookstore, but two government officials arrive and attempt to arrest Stefan. He and Emily weave through the book stacks and disappear in a crowd of theatregoers standing outside. As they sneak backstage, a man emerges from the shadows and stabs Stefan. Police report that Stefan was an undocumented immigrant, but find a list of names in his pocket, one of which is Jesse Sackadorf, the name on the grave. Although Emily encourages them to search the house on Carroll Street, the officers refuse to believe her claims that the boy was somehow involved with Salwen. Sometime later, Miss Venable informs Emily that the neighboring house is no longer occupied. To be certain, Emily throws a rock through the front window and breaks in. Upstairs, Stefan’s killer appears with a knife, but the attack is thwarted by FBI Agent Cochran, who has developed an interest in Emily and continues to follow her. Emily steals one of Stefan’s poetry books inscribed with a falsified signature dated 1851, and believes it is a clue. Cochran and his partner deduce that the name matches that of a ship scheduled to arrive in port the next day. When the boat docks, Cochran and Emily watch as a government official picks up two immigrants and drives away. They follow the men to a wedding reception, where they pretend to be guests. Emily introduces herself to the new arrivals, and recognizes their names from the list found in Stefan’s pocket. Dr. Teperson appears, startling Emily as he tells her—now in perfect English—that she looks familiar. While eavesdropping on another conversation, Emily learns that the immigrants are scheduled to leave on the morning train for Chicago, Illinois. As she sneaks away, a man shoves her into a car and takes her to a restaurant to meet Senator Salwen. Cochran attempts to follow, but a senior FBI officer, who is also attending the wedding, warns the agent that he is outside his jurisdiction. At the restaurant, Salwen reveals that the “Jewish” refugees are actually Nazi war criminals being smuggled into the U.S. to aid the government’s anti-Soviet science programs. He offers to purge Emily’s record in exchange for the names of those who know about the house, but she refuses to talk, and returns home to find Agent Cochran diffusing a bomb he found planted in her kitchen. Unable to cut the wire in time, they run down the fire escape as the bomb explodes, destroying her apartment. Traumatized, Emily bursts into tears. Cochran kisses her, and they spend the night together. Early the next morning, Emily goes to Grand Central Station to follow the departing Germans, while Cochran receives strict orders from his supervisor to abandon the case. Two of Senator Salwen’s men catch Emily snooping around the train, so she escapes through the tunnels. Disobeying his orders, Cochran goes after her as she sneaks into the building and climbs into the rafters high above the main lobby. Senator Salwen follows and grabs her ankle, but Emily kicks free and knocks him onto the plaster mesh ceiling. The material crumbles, and Salwen falls to his death in the station below. Afterward, Cochran boards the train and arrests the “refugees,” exposing Dr. Teperson’s crimes performing experiments on prisoners at Auschwitz. Once the case is closed, Emily resumes work for Miss Venable, and Cochran is transferred to Butte, Montana. He promises to call her, but Emily laments that their relationship was never meant to be. +

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

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