Leaving Normal (1992)

R | 110 mins | Comedy-drama | 29 April 1992

Director:

Edward Zwick

Writer:

Edward Solomon

Producer:

Lindsay Doran

Cinematographer:

Ralf Bode

Editor:

Victor Du Bois

Production Designer:

Patricia Norris

Production Company:

Universal Pictures
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HISTORY

A news item in the 8 Mar 1991 HR announced that principal photography would begin on 10 Apr 1991 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, for twelve weeks. Additional locations were anticipated in northern British Columbia and Alberta, Canada.
       The 11 Mar 1991 People reported that Cher had been offered the role of “Darly,” but turned it down because she felt the character was too similar to the one she portrayed in Come Back to the 5 & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982, see entry). Actresses Goldie Hawn , Jessica Lange, and Barbara Hershey reportedly lobbied for the role, although Lange’s representative claimed that she did not. The part ultimately went to Christine Lahti.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, filming took place in the small towns of Champion, Alberta; Stewart, British Columbia; and Hyder, AK, a town of 100 people, across the border from Stewart. Filmmakers also shot for two weeks at Yoho National Park in British Columbia, in an area that included a “stunning valley and mountain range” used to depict Darly’s Alaskan property.
       The 21 Apr 1992 DV reported the film would be released on 29 Apr 1992 in Los Angeles, CA; New York City; Boston, MA; Chicago, IL; Washington, DC; Seattle, WA; Portland, OR; and Toronto, Canada, prior to its wide release on 1 May 1992.
       End credits include the following acknowledgements: “Special Thanks to: The Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Glennallen, Alaska; Yoho National Park – British Columbia, Canada; Banff National Park – Alberta, Canada; Hyder, Alaska; Stewart, British Columbia, Canada; Champion, Alberta, Canada.” End credits also ... More Less

A news item in the 8 Mar 1991 HR announced that principal photography would begin on 10 Apr 1991 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, for twelve weeks. Additional locations were anticipated in northern British Columbia and Alberta, Canada.
       The 11 Mar 1991 People reported that Cher had been offered the role of “Darly,” but turned it down because she felt the character was too similar to the one she portrayed in Come Back to the 5 & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982, see entry). Actresses Goldie Hawn , Jessica Lange, and Barbara Hershey reportedly lobbied for the role, although Lange’s representative claimed that she did not. The part ultimately went to Christine Lahti.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, filming took place in the small towns of Champion, Alberta; Stewart, British Columbia; and Hyder, AK, a town of 100 people, across the border from Stewart. Filmmakers also shot for two weeks at Yoho National Park in British Columbia, in an area that included a “stunning valley and mountain range” used to depict Darly’s Alaskan property.
       The 21 Apr 1992 DV reported the film would be released on 29 Apr 1992 in Los Angeles, CA; New York City; Boston, MA; Chicago, IL; Washington, DC; Seattle, WA; Portland, OR; and Toronto, Canada, prior to its wide release on 1 May 1992.
       End credits include the following acknowledgements: “Special Thanks to: The Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Glennallen, Alaska; Yoho National Park – British Columbia, Canada; Banff National Park – Alberta, Canada; Hyder, Alaska; Stewart, British Columbia, Canada; Champion, Alberta, Canada.” End credits also state: “Fish report courtesy of Prime Network; ‘A Promise Is A Promise’ courtesy of Annick Press Ltd.; Spiderman and his likeness is trademarked and copyrighted by Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. and has been used with permission; Maps © AAA – reproduced by permission,” and, "‘Alaska Crude: Visions of the Last Frontier’ by Kenneth Andrasko and Marcus Halevi, photographs copyright © 1977 by Marcus Halevi, used by permission of Little, Brown and Company.” More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
21 Apr 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
8 Mar 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
12 Mar 1991.
---
Los Angeles Times
29 Apr 1992
p. 1.
New York Times
29 Apr 1992
p. 14.
People
11 Mar 1991.
---
Variety
20 Apr 1992
p. 45.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Universal Pictures Presents
A Mirage Production
An Edward Zwick Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
3d asst dir
2d unit dir
2d unit dir
PRODUCERS
Co-prod
Line prod
Assoc prod
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Cam trainee
Cam trainee
Still photog
Gaffer
Lamp op
Lamp op
Lamp op
Lamp op
Key grip
Dolly grip
2d grip
Grip
Grip, Alberta unit
Grip, Alberta unit
Grip, Alberta unit
Elec, Alberta unit
Elec, Alberta unit
Genny op, Alberta unit
2d elec, Alberta unit
2d elec, Alberta unit
Lamp op, Alberta unit
Lamp op, Alberta unit
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir
Asst art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Addl film ed
Addl film ed
Asst ed - L.A.
Asst ed - L.A.
Asst ed - Vancouver
Asst ed - Vancouver
Asst ed - Vancouver
Ed on
Negative cut by
SET DECORATORS
Asst set dec
Set dec buyer
Set dresser
Set dresser
On-set dresser
Prop master
Asst props
Asst props
Const coord
Foreman
Foreman
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Scenic carpenter
Model maker
Head scenic artist
Lead painter
Scenic artist
Scenic artist
Scenic painter
Scenic painter
Scenic painter
Scenic painter
Scenic painter
Standby painter
Head greensman
Greens best boy
Greensman
Greensman
Greensman
Greensman
Greensman
Greensman
Asst set dec, Alberta unit
Set dresser, Alberta unit
Asst props, Alberta unit
Const foreman, Alberta unit
Stand-by carpenter, Alberta unit
Stand-by painter, Alberta unit
COSTUMES
Cost des
Asst cost des
Cost supv
MUSIC
Mus ed asst
Asst to W.G. Snuffy Walden
Mus preparation
Score rec eng
Score mixing eng
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Sd asst
Sd asst
Cable puller, Alberta unit
Supv sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
ADR supv
ADR group coord
Digital sd ed
Digital sd ed
Foley artist
Foley artist
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec at
,a division of LucasArts Entertainment Company
VISUAL EFFECTS
SPFX coord
SPFX best boy
Spec eff asst, Alberta unit
Visual eff consultant
Matte painting eff prod by
Dir of matte photog, Matte World
Matte artist supv, Matte World
Exec in charge of prod, Matte World
Matte artist, Matte World
Matte artist, Matte World
Motion control cam, Matte World
Key grip, Matte World
Plate cam op, Matte World
Spec opt eff prod by
Supv, Visual Concept Engineering
Cam, Visual Concept Engineering
Cam, Visual Concept Engineering
Cam, Visual Concept Engineering
Opticals, Visual Concept Engineering
Opticals, Visual Concept Engineering
Opticals, Visual Concept Engineering
Opticals, Visual Concept Engineering
Anim, Visual Concept Engineering
Coord, Visual Concept Engineering
Titles by
Titles by
DANCE
Dance instruction by
Dance instruction by, Dance City Studios
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Asst makeup artist
Hairstylist
Asst makeup artist, Alberta unit
Asst hairstylist, Alberta unit
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Canadian casting by
Unit mgr
Loc mgr
Asst loc mgr
Loc prod asst
Loc prod asst
Alaska loc
Scr supv
Asst to Patricia Norris
Prod coord
Asst prod coord
Office prod asst
Prod accountant
Asst accountant
Accounting clerk
2d accounting clerk
Post prod asst
Post prod asst
Asst to Edward Zwick
Asst to Lindsay Doran
Asst to Sarah Caplan
Asst to prods (Vancouver)
Asst to Sydney Pollack
Asst to Mary Colquhoun
Extras casting
Canadian casting asst
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Co-capt
Picture cars
Driver
Driver
Driver
Shotmaker driver
Mechanic
Catering by
Craft service
Animal handler
Translator
Loc mgr, Alberta unit
Transportation coord, Alberta unit
Driver, Alberta unit
Post prod coord
STAND INS
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
“Honky Tonk Special,” written and performed by Marty Brown, courtesy of MCA Records
“T For Trouble,” written by Bill Carter, Ruth Ellsworth and Colin James, performed by Colin James, courtesy of Virgin Records American, Inc.
“Changing Partners,” written by Joe Darion, Larry Coleman, performed by The Tumbleweed Band
+
SONGS
“Honky Tonk Special,” written and performed by Marty Brown, courtesy of MCA Records
“T For Trouble,” written by Bill Carter, Ruth Ellsworth and Colin James, performed by Colin James, courtesy of Virgin Records American, Inc.
“Changing Partners,” written by Joe Darion, Larry Coleman, performed by The Tumbleweed Band
“Heaven,” written and performed by Chris Rea, courtesy of ATCO Records/Warner Music U.K. Ltd., by arrangement with Warner Special Products
“Wicked Game,” written and performed by Chris Isaak, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products
“Crazy Love,” written and performed by Van Morrison, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products.
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
29 April 1992
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 29 April 1992
New York opening: week of 29 April 1992
Production Date:
began 10 April 1991
Copyright Claimant:
Universal City Studios, Inc.
Copyright Date:
24 August 1992
Copyright Number:
PA582931
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Lenses
Filmed with Panavision® Cameras & Lenses
Duration(in mins):
110
MPAA Rating:
R
Countries:
Canada, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
31705
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

As a child, Marianne moved continually as her parents searched for work. Her older sister, Emily, hated being uprooted, but Marianne assured her that everything would work out fine. Years later, twenty-seven-year-old Marianne finishes a stint in the Army and travels to Normal, Wyoming, to join her second husband, Kurt Johnson, whom she married impetuously. Soon after Marianne’s arrival, Kurt becomes violent and hits her. She grabs her backpack and leaves. Meanwhile, Darly, a thirty-eight-year-old cocktail waitress, finishes her final shift and readies to leave for Alaska to claim the property inherited from her ex-husband. Darly sees Marianne crying at the bus stop, stops to help, and offers to drive her to her sister’s home in Portland, Oregon. Along the way, Darly reveals that she is part-Eskimo and purchased land with her husband, Joe, under the Native Alaskan Land Settlement of 1973. They were building a house when Darly left her husband, but she is certain he finished the project. When they reach Portland, Emily and her husband scold Marianne about her poor choices and meandering life. They offer to help her get a job and an apartment, but she sneaks away with Darly. Sometime later, Darly’s car breaks down, and they hitchhike to a nearby town for coolant. They return to discover the car stripped of its parts and their luggage strewn by the roadside. Darly is ready to give up, but Marianne is more positive, insisting they can hitchhike to their destination. They accept a ride from a trucker named Leon and his nephew, Harrison “Harry” L. Rainey, III. Marianne connects with ... +


As a child, Marianne moved continually as her parents searched for work. Her older sister, Emily, hated being uprooted, but Marianne assured her that everything would work out fine. Years later, twenty-seven-year-old Marianne finishes a stint in the Army and travels to Normal, Wyoming, to join her second husband, Kurt Johnson, whom she married impetuously. Soon after Marianne’s arrival, Kurt becomes violent and hits her. She grabs her backpack and leaves. Meanwhile, Darly, a thirty-eight-year-old cocktail waitress, finishes her final shift and readies to leave for Alaska to claim the property inherited from her ex-husband. Darly sees Marianne crying at the bus stop, stops to help, and offers to drive her to her sister’s home in Portland, Oregon. Along the way, Darly reveals that she is part-Eskimo and purchased land with her husband, Joe, under the Native Alaskan Land Settlement of 1973. They were building a house when Darly left her husband, but she is certain he finished the project. When they reach Portland, Emily and her husband scold Marianne about her poor choices and meandering life. They offer to help her get a job and an apartment, but she sneaks away with Darly. Sometime later, Darly’s car breaks down, and they hitchhike to a nearby town for coolant. They return to discover the car stripped of its parts and their luggage strewn by the roadside. Darly is ready to give up, but Marianne is more positive, insisting they can hitchhike to their destination. They accept a ride from a trucker named Leon and his nephew, Harrison “Harry” L. Rainey, III. Marianne connects with Harry, who was deeply affected after reading The Grapes of Wrath, despite being ridiculed by his uncle. When they stop at a diner, Leon gives Darly $100, believing she is a prostitute. Darly and Marianne excuse themselves to the restroom, and although Marianne is disappointed to leave Harry, they escape through the bathroom window. After learning of his uncle’s proposition, Harry laughs that the women left with Leon’s money. Outside, Darly and Marianne grab their belongings from the big rig and hide in another car as the men return to the truck. They are surprised when their waitress “66,” which is short for Cecilia, gets inside the vehicle. Darly and Marianne are dismayed to learn that Leon did not pay for their meal, and 66 was fired. They offer to pay, but 66 exacts revenge on her manager by shooting the diner’s sign with her handgun. The women stop at a bar, where the vulnerable, overweight 66 reveals her hope to find true love. When she is turned down by several male patrons to dance with her, she smiles and dances alone. 66 lets Darly and Marianne stay in her mobile home that night, and the next morning, she announces she is going with them. After crossing into Canada, they stop at a town picnic. Darly reveals that she briefly worked as an erotic dancer with the pseudonym “Pillow Talk,” and Marianne admits that she has never held a job outside the Army. A lanky gentleman named Dan Earl “Spicy” Jones asks 66 to dance, and she accepts. Hours later, 66 returns to their campsite in a limousine and announces she is engaged to Spicy, who owns a spice and herb farm. She gives the car and trailer to Darly and Marianne, and leaves with her new fiancé. As Darly and Marianne watch the evening’s fireworks, Darly admits that she abandoned her two-day-old daughter at the hospital when she left Alaska in 1973. Sometime later, they arrive in Palmer Valley, Alaska, where Darly discovers her husband never built the house and only the weathered framework remains. She knew her husband did not want children, but admits to hoping that he raised their daughter, and she would arrive o find them together. Marianne suggests they work on the house themselves, and also learn what became of Darly’s daughter. The women go to the hospital and encounter a judgmental nurse, who states the records are not public domain and would not be available to a mother who abandoned her child. She admits there is a form to request information, but the daughter must also be seeking her birth mother, and the odds of success are slim. Depressed, Darly wants to leave Alaska, but they are stuck until they earn some money. Marianne telephones her husband, Kurt, and demands that he send her belongings and the wedding ring she left behind. Doubting Kurt will follow through, Marianne gets a job at the hardware store. Reluctantly, Darly takes a cocktail waitressing job at a local bar. Upon returning to their property, they are confronted by two Eskimo teenagers, Clyde and Nuqaq, who claim the land belongs to them and order the women to leave. Darly shows them her deed, but the boys cannot read, and admit they are living on the property while their father is in jail. Marianne offers to let them stay in exchange for help fixing up the property. She receives a package from Kurt containing her ring and a forwarded letter from Harry. When she met him on the road, she told him that she was once married to a man named Johnson in Wyoming, and Harry sent letters to every “Johnson” in the state, hoping to reach her. Happy at the effort he made to locate her, Marianne writes back to Harry. Over time, she enjoys living in Alaska, working on the property, and teaching Clyde and Nuqaq to read. Darly, however, still plans to leave. At the bar, a drunk patron named Walt recognizes Darly as “Pillow Talk” and harasses her. She asks him to leave her alone, but he persists, and she hits him, prompting her to be fired. Meanwhile, Marianne uses most of their savings to plant a garden and fix the house. Darly is furious to discover their savings nearly gone, and the women argue. Marianne wants to stay in Alaska, feeling that she has finally found the right place, and asks Darly to stay. However, Darly fears Marianne might turn against her, and leaves. A short time later, Harry arrives unexpectedly. He announces that his uncle quit the trucking business and Harry inherited his vehicle. Harry diverted a pick up in Salt Lake City, after receiving Marianne’s letter. He asks her to join him on the road, but Marianne wants to stay in Alaska. They kiss before he leaves, promising to return soon. Meanwhile, Darly calls the bar patron, Walt, and offers to have sex with him for $500. At his home, Darly learns that Walt saw her husband with a child a few years earlier. Darly breaks down in tears when she learns the youngster was not her daughter, but rather a child Joe had with his second wife. Darly returns to the property where Marianne and the boys welcome her home. She fills out the hospital forms in hope of finding her daughter someday. In time, Darly, Marianne, and the teenagers finish building their home. +

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

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