Howard the Duck (1986)

PG | 111 mins | Comedy, Science fiction | 1 August 1986

Director:

Willard Huyck

Producer:

Gloria Katz

Cinematographer:

Richard Kline

Production Designer:

Peter Jamison

Production Company:

Lucasfilm, Ltd.
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HISTORY

On 19 Jan 1981, HR announced that writer-producers Dennis Hackin and Neal Dobrofsky were preparing a screen adaptation of the Marvel comic Howard the Duck. The character was first created by writer Steve Gerber and graphic artist Val Mayerik in 1973, and evolved into a comic book by 1976. Hacklin and Dobrofsky had completed an early script as of Jan 1981, and Hacklin was planning to direct the picture for HTD Productions, on a budget of $8 million supplied by producers Peter Shanaberg, Morrie Eisenman, and Peter Cofrin. At that time, makeup artist Stan Winston had been hired to oversee the film’s $500,000 special effects budget. According to a 6 Aug 1986 HR interview with Morrie Eisenman, the filmmakers first acquired screen rights to Howard the Duck in 1980, and planned to model the human-duck character after “Yoda” from George Lucas’s Star Wars (1977, see entry).
       However, the project remained in limbo over four years, until Lucasfilm, Ltd. and Universal Pictures partnered to take over the property, as announced in a 26 Aug 1985 DV article. Studio production notes in AMPAS library files explained that executive producer George Lucas, an avid comic book fan, was eager to make a movie version of Howard the Duck in the 1970s, and brought the story to the attention of his University of Southern California (USC) film school colleague Willard Huyck and his wife, Gloria Katz. At that time, the three had recently collaborated on the script for American Graffiti (1973, see entry), which marked Lucas’s first box-office success, and they ... More Less

On 19 Jan 1981, HR announced that writer-producers Dennis Hackin and Neal Dobrofsky were preparing a screen adaptation of the Marvel comic Howard the Duck. The character was first created by writer Steve Gerber and graphic artist Val Mayerik in 1973, and evolved into a comic book by 1976. Hacklin and Dobrofsky had completed an early script as of Jan 1981, and Hacklin was planning to direct the picture for HTD Productions, on a budget of $8 million supplied by producers Peter Shanaberg, Morrie Eisenman, and Peter Cofrin. At that time, makeup artist Stan Winston had been hired to oversee the film’s $500,000 special effects budget. According to a 6 Aug 1986 HR interview with Morrie Eisenman, the filmmakers first acquired screen rights to Howard the Duck in 1980, and planned to model the human-duck character after “Yoda” from George Lucas’s Star Wars (1977, see entry).
       However, the project remained in limbo over four years, until Lucasfilm, Ltd. and Universal Pictures partnered to take over the property, as announced in a 26 Aug 1985 DV article. Studio production notes in AMPAS library files explained that executive producer George Lucas, an avid comic book fan, was eager to make a movie version of Howard the Duck in the 1970s, and brought the story to the attention of his University of Southern California (USC) film school colleague Willard Huyck and his wife, Gloria Katz. At that time, the three had recently collaborated on the script for American Graffiti (1973, see entry), which marked Lucas’s first box-office success, and they went on to co-write the blockbuster Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984, see entry). Although Katz and Huyck wanted to option Howard the Duck in the mid-1970s, the property was already owned by Universal Television, a subsidiary of Universal Pictures and its parent company, MCA, which acquired Howard the Duck as part of a bigger Marvel Comics package that included The Incredible Hulk. When Universal’s ten-year contract with Marvel expired, and the Hacklin-Dobrofsky production failed to gain traction, Katz and Huyck optioned Howard the Duck and took the project to Universal Pictures. Frank Price, Chairman of MCA/Universal’s Motion Picture Group, was reportedly eager to spearhead a George Lucas production at the studio and gave the filmmakers a $20 million budget, with release planned for summer 1986. According to various contemporary sources, the final film cost $35 million.
       Principal photography took place from 11 Nov 1985 to 27 Mar 1986 at thirty-two locations in and around San Francisco, CA, which stood in for Cleveland, OH. The filmmakers chose to shoot in Northern CA because of its proximity to Lucas’s post-production facilities – Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) in San Rafael, CA, and Sprocket Systems, later known as Skywalker Sound, in Nicasio, CA. Fifty sets were built for the production, including a seven-ton “Laser Spectroscope” constructed at Hunter’s Point Naval Shipyard in San Francisco, and “Joe Roma’s Cajun/Sushi Café,” built in a warehouse in Richmond, CA. The café exterior was erected at the Highway 12 and 121 merge in Napa Valley, CA. Second unit photography continued through Apr 1986, and on 21 Apr 1986, LADN reported that casting was underway for the voice of “Howard the Duck.”
       As announced in a 10 Jun 1986 HR article, delays in post-production and special effects processing prompted Universal to cancel a 300-screen, nation-wide test preview that was scheduled for 14 Jun 1986. However, the studio was confident its $8 million marketing campaign would generate enough interest to secure an anticipated blockbuster status in ticket sales. The picture was well-received by a test audience in San Francisco on 12 Jul 1986, according to an 18 Jul 1986 HR column, but it opened on 1 Aug 1986 to negative reviews and poor box-office revenues. The film grossed $5 million its opening weekend at 1,554 theaters, and by 24 Aug 1986, Universal gave West Coast theater owners permission to run the picture as a double-feature in an effort to keep the film in distribution, as stated in a LAT news item published that day. The move to screen Howard the Duck as a part of a double-feature reduced Universal’s profits to twenty percent of its box-office receipts, far less than the sixty to seventy percent expected from a major film in its third week of release. One month later, a 17 Sep 1986 Var article announced that Howard the Duck grossed only $14,964,638, and Frank Price was forced to resign from his MCA/Universal chairmanship, even though he had two years remaining on his contract. The next day, an 18 Sep 1986 LAHExam column took issue with the Var report, claiming that MCA president Sidney Sheinberg was responsible for the failure of Howard the Duck, along with George Lucas, who had been given unlimited authority over the picture.
       End credits state: “'Daffy Duck’ excerpts used with permission of Warner Bros., Inc., Daffy Duck’s voice by Mel Blanc.” More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
26 Aug 1985.
---
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jan 1981
p. 1, 4.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Jun 1986.
---
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jul 1986.
---
Hollywood Reporter
1 Aug 1986
p. 3, 27.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Aug 1986.
---
LAHExam
18 Sep 1986.
---
Los Angeles Daily News
21 Apr 1986.
---
Los Angeles Times
1 Aug 1986
Section I, p. 1, 14.
Los Angeles Times
24 Aug 1986.
---
New York Times
1 Aug 1986
p. 14.
Screen International
20-27 Sep 1986
pp. 1-2.
Variety
6 Aug 1986
p. 14.
Variety
16 Sep 1986.
---
Variety
17 Sep 1986.
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
George Lucas Presents
A Willard Huyck Film
A Gloria Katz Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
1st asst dir, 2d unit crew
2d asst dir, 2d unit crew
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Exec prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
"A" cam op
"B" cam op
Cam op, 2d unit crew
Cam op, 2d unit crew
1st asst "A" cam
1st asst "B" cam
1st cam asst, 2d unit crew
2d asst cam
2d cam asst, 2d unit crew
2d cam asst, 2d unit crew
Still photog
Stills, 2d unit crew
Video assist op
Video assist op
Video asst op, 2d unit crew
Video asst op, 2d unit crew
Gaffer, 2d unit crew
Best boy
Best boy, 2d unit crew
Lamp op
Lamp op
Lamp op
Lamp op
Key grip
Key grip, 2d unit crew
2d grip
2d grip, 2d unit crew
Dolly grip
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir
Art dir
Asst prod des
Asst art dir
Celestial paintings by
Celestial paintings provided by
Dinosaurs by
FILM EDITORS
Addl ed
Assoc film ed
1st asst ed
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
Negative cutting
SET DECORATORS
Set des
Set des
Set dec
Leadman
Leadman
Const coord
Const gen foreman
Const foreman
Const foreman
Const foreman
Paint foreman
Const bookkeeper
Stand-by painter
Propmaker
Propmaker
Prop master
Prop master
Prop master, 2d unit crew
Asst prop msater
Asst prop master
Asst prop master
Asst prop master, 2d unit crew
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost coord
Asst cost des
Asst cost des/Ward supv, 2d unit crew
Key cost
Specialty cost cutter
Specialty cost cutter
Specialty cost cutter
Head dyer
Costumer
Costumer
Costumer
Ward asst, 2d unit crew
MUSIC
Orig songs prod by
Mus score comp and cond by
Supv mus ed
Supv mus ed
Asst mus ed
Mus scoring mixer
Rock numbers staged by
SOUND
Supv sd ed
Prod sd mixer
Sd mixer, 2d unit crew
Boom op
Boom op, 2d unit crew
Duck communications
Cableman
Cableman, 2d unit crew
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer/Sd eff ed
Re-rec mixer
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Dial ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Re-sync ed
Re-sync asst
Apprentice sd ed
Apprentice sd ed
Foley rec
Foley artist
Foley artist
Asst to Mr. Thom
Audio eng
Audio eng
Audio eng
Audio eng
Audio eng
Audio eng
Audio tech
Audio tech
Audio tech
Audio tech
Audio tech
Audio eng
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff supv
Spec eff foreman
Spec eff foreman
Spec eff foreman
Spec eff foreman
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff prod asst
Visual eff
Title des
Anim supv, ILM visual eff unit
Alien monster des by/Stop motion supv, ILM visual
Stop motion supv, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff ed
Opt supv, ILM visual eff unit
Model shop supv, ILM visual eff unit
Matte painting supv, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff coord, ILM visual eff unit
Gen mgr, ILM
Prod mgr, ILM visual eff unit
Prod mgr, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff cam, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff cam, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff cam, ILM visual eff unit
Asst cam, ILM visual eff unit
Asst cam, ILM visual eff unit
Asst cam, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff anim, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff anim, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff anim, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff anim, ILM visual eff unit
Visual eff anim, ILM visual eff unit
Anim cam eff, ILM visual eff unit
Anim cam eff, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Rotoscope, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion photog, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion photog, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion anim, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion const, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion const, ILM visual eff unit
Stop motion const, ILM visual eff unit
Opt consultant, ILM visual eff unit
Opt consultant, ILM visual eff unit
Opt consultant, ILM visual eff unit
Opt cam op, ILM visual eff unit
Opt cam op, ILM visual eff unit
Opt cam op, ILM visual eff unit
Opt line-up, ILM visual eff unit
Opt line-up, ILM visual eff unit
Opt line-up, ILM visual eff unit
Opt line-up, ILM visual eff unit
Opt line-up, ILM visual eff unit
Lab tech, ILM visual eff unit
Lab tech, ILM visual eff unit
Lab tech, ILM visual eff unit
Chief modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Modelmaker, ILM visual eff unit
Matte artist, ILM visual eff unit
Matte artist, ILM visual eff unit
Matte artist, ILM visual eff unit
Matte photog, ILM visual eff unit
Asst ed, ILM visual eff unit
Asst ed, ILM visual eff unit
Stage tech, ILM visual eff unit
Stage tech, ILM visual eff unit
Stage tech, ILM visual eff unit
Miniature pyrotechnics, ILM visual eff unit
Miniature pyrotechnics, ILM visual eff unit
Still photog, ILM visual eff unit
Still photog, ILM visual eff unit
Prod asst, ILM visual eff unit
Prod asst, ILM visual eff unit
Prod asst, ILM visual eff unit
Prod asst, ILM visual eff unit
Engineering, ILM visual eff unit
Engineering, ILM visual eff unit
Engineering, ILM visual eff unit
Machine shop, ILM visual eff unit
Machine shop, ILM visual eff unit
Prod accountant, ILM visual eff unit
Prod accountant, ILM visual eff unit
Prod accountant, ILM visual eff unit
Mgr, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des supv, ILM creature shop
Mold des supv, ILM creature shop
Coord, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Animatronic des, ILM creature shop
Loc animatronics, ILM creature shop
Loc animatronics, ILM creature shop
Loc animatronics, ILM creature shop
Loc makeup and feathers, ILM creature shop
Painter, ILM creature shop
Mold makers, ILM creature shop
Mold maker, ILM creature shop
Mold maker, ILM creature shop
Foam latex tech, ILM creature shop
Sculptor, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Featherer, ILM creature shop
Consulting des, ILM creature shop
Duck World ducks created by, ILM creature shop
Wigs created by, ILM creature shop
Artisan, ILM creature shop
Artisan, ILM creature shop
Prod buyer, ILM creature shop
Prod buyer, ILM creature shop
Prod buyer, ILM creature shop
DANCE
Choreog
MAKEUP
Makeup, 2d unit crew
Hairdresser
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting, 2d unit crew
Addl casting
Addl casting
Addl casting
Prod asst
Loc mgr
Loc mgr
Prod coord
Post prod coord
Post prod coord
Post prod coord
Post prod coord
Prod accountant
Asst accountant
Asst accountant
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Transportation capt, 2d unit crew
Marketing consultant
Unit pub
Asst pub
Research
Research
Consultant to the prods
Asst to Ms. Katz
Prod secy
Scr supv, 2d unit crew
Prod asst, 2d unit crew
Craft service, 2d unit crew
Helicopter pilot, 2d unit crew
Post prod services provided by
Locs equipped by
STAND INS
Stunt duck
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
Col timer
Col by
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the Marvel Comics character created by Steve Gerber.
AUTHOR
SONGS
"Hunger City," performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
"Don't Turn Away," version #1 performed by Thomas Dolby, version #2 performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
"It Don't Come Cheap," performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
+
SONGS
"Hunger City," performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
"Don't Turn Away," version #1 performed by Thomas Dolby, version #2 performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
"It Don't Come Cheap," performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby and Allee Willis
"Howard The Duck," performed by Lea Thompson, Dominique Davalos, Liz Sagal, Holly Robinson, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby, Allee Willis and George Clinton
"I'm On My Way," performed by Tata Vega, produced by Thomas Dolby, adapted and arranged by Thomas Dolby
"Duckter Dread Dub," performed by Thomas Dolby, produced by Thomas Dolby, written by Thomas Dolby
"Two More Bottles Of Wine," performed by Karen Blake, produced by Christopher S. Brooks, written by Delbert McClinton.
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
1 August 1986
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 1 Aug 1986
Production Date:
11 Nov 1985--27 Mar 1986
Copyright Claimant:
Universal City Studios, Inc.
Copyright Date:
4 August 1986
Copyright Number:
PA294393
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Lenses
Lenses and Panaflex® camera by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
111
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
28226
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In outer space, the planet Duckworld is home to an advanced civilization of anthropomorphic ducks, including a city-dweller named Howard T. Duck. One evening, Howard’s apartment is pierced by an interstellar laser beam and he is propelled through the universe to Earth. Landing in Cleveland, Ohio, Howard finds himself outside a nightclub and suffers a series of attacks from inhospitable humans. However, he uses “quack-fu” martial arts skills to defend a young rock ‘n’ roll singer named Beverly Switzler, who is cornered by two aggressive admirers. Beverly is initially startled by Howard’s strange appearance, but she is enamored by his courage and invites him to her apartment. There, Howard explains that he recently abandoned his dream of becoming a musician and Beverly realizes they share similar ambitions. When Beverly suggests that Howard’s journey to Earth may have an unexpected and favorable outcome, since he has the chance to reinvent himself, Howard argues he is an outcast on Earth, and longs to return home. The next day, Beverly conceals Howard in a trash bag and escorts him to an appointment with her eccentric friend Phil Blumburtt, who works at the Natural History Museum. Phil, who aspires to be a world-famous scientist, delights in the opportunity to exploit Howard and is eager to uncover the mystery of his arrival on Earth, but Beverly and Howard are not impressed by Phil’s baseless theories, and are discouraged to learn he is a lowly janitor. Outraged by the ruse, Howard loses hope of finding a way home and ends his friendship with Beverly. He briefly finds work at a sex club spa, but is ... +


In outer space, the planet Duckworld is home to an advanced civilization of anthropomorphic ducks, including a city-dweller named Howard T. Duck. One evening, Howard’s apartment is pierced by an interstellar laser beam and he is propelled through the universe to Earth. Landing in Cleveland, Ohio, Howard finds himself outside a nightclub and suffers a series of attacks from inhospitable humans. However, he uses “quack-fu” martial arts skills to defend a young rock ‘n’ roll singer named Beverly Switzler, who is cornered by two aggressive admirers. Beverly is initially startled by Howard’s strange appearance, but she is enamored by his courage and invites him to her apartment. There, Howard explains that he recently abandoned his dream of becoming a musician and Beverly realizes they share similar ambitions. When Beverly suggests that Howard’s journey to Earth may have an unexpected and favorable outcome, since he has the chance to reinvent himself, Howard argues he is an outcast on Earth, and longs to return home. The next day, Beverly conceals Howard in a trash bag and escorts him to an appointment with her eccentric friend Phil Blumburtt, who works at the Natural History Museum. Phil, who aspires to be a world-famous scientist, delights in the opportunity to exploit Howard and is eager to uncover the mystery of his arrival on Earth, but Beverly and Howard are not impressed by Phil’s baseless theories, and are discouraged to learn he is a lowly janitor. Outraged by the ruse, Howard loses hope of finding a way home and ends his friendship with Beverly. He briefly finds work at a sex club spa, but is fired for being obstinate and returns to the street, where he is ridiculed by unfriendly gawkers, and coveted by duck hunters. With nowhere to go, Howard returns to the nightclub where he met Beverly and watches her perform with her band, Cherry Bomb. When Beverly’s manager, “Ginger,” plans to withhold her pay as blackmail for sex, Howard fights him with “quack-fu” and retrieves Beverly’s earnings. Backstage, Howard is annoyed by Phil Blumburtt’s new pseudo-scientific discoveries and protests when the boy plucks one of his feathers for a research sample. Beverly takes Howard to her apartment, asks him to be her new manager, and propositions him for sex, but he worries about comingling with a human and shuns her advances. As Beverly kisses Howard’s beak, Phil arrives unannounced with two colleagues, a young man named Carter and his boss, Dr. Walter Jenning, who explains that he was testing a “laser spectroscope” the night Howard came to Earth. During a routine procedure, a mysterious force redirected the laser toward Duckworld, and Howard was accidentally extracted in the beam. Dr. Jenning proves his claim by procuring a feather that materialized in his laboratory the night of the transmission. He declares that the specimen is a genetic match with Howard’s sample feather, and adds that the nightclub where Howard “landed” is only a few miles away from the laboratory. When Howard suggests they reverse the laser to return him to Duckworld, Dr. Jenning warns they must perform the operation right away and goes back to the laboratory to prepare. Sometime later, Howard and Beverly arrive at the facility to discover the laser was already reactivated, and Dr. Jenning disappeared in the ensuing explosion. Chaos abounds, and police officers try to arrest Howard, but Beverly helps him escape. Reuniting with a disoriented Dr. Jenning, the friends speed away from the compound and police give chase. However, they break away from the pursuit and stop for a meal at “Joe Roma’s Cajun Sushi” diner. There, Dr. Jenning reveals that his laser spectroscope has been appropriated by a group of alien demons called the “Dark Overlords of the Universe.” Long ago, the evil creatures were sequestered in a region of outer space near Duckworld, but they saw a chance to escape on the night of Dr. Jenning’s experiment. Redirecting the laser toward their quarantine, the Dark Overlords hoped to transmit themselves to Earth and achieve world domination, but Howard unwittingly intercepted the beam. When the demons made a second attempt earlier that day, Dr. Jenning became possessed by one of the Dark Overlords. Speaking with the demon’s voice, Dr. Jenning declares he is on a mission to beam the remaining overlords to Earth, and Beverly’s body will host their evil spirits. Despite the severity of Dr. Jenning’s message, Howard and Beverly disregard his tale and believe he is still shaky from the explosion. However, the doctor becomes increasingly agitated, and his body begins to transform into a radioactive zombie. Meanwhile, diner patrons take an immediate disliking to Howard and deem him a threat to the community. As they attack Howard and steal Dr. Jenning’s laser spectroscope “code key,” Beverly startles the angry mob by declaring that Howard is her boyfriend. Dr. Jenning emits laser beams from his body to retrieve the key and abducts Beverly in a stolen truck. Although Howard escapes, he is helpless to save Beverly until he reunites with Phil, who arrives at the diner in the back of police car. The two flee on an electric glider aircraft and return to the laboratory, where Beverly is restrained under the laser spectroscope. Dr. Jenning, who is still possessed by the Dark Overlord, inserts his key into the device and programs it to transmit the remaining demons to Earth, but Howard interrupts the procedure by shooting him with a newfangled “neutron disintegrator gun.” As Dr. Jenning regains consciousness, he reports that the demon has been exorcised from his body and the friends celebrate their victory. However, an enormous, tentacled monster rises from the laboratory floor and activates the laser once and for all, giving Howard four minutes to save mankind from the remaining Dark Overlords. When the creature paralyzes Beverly and Phil in a static laser beam, Howard comes to their rescue and blasts the monster with the neutron disintegrator. Still, the laser spectroscope remains activated, and the surviving Dark Overlords will be beamed to Earth in just a few seconds. Beverly warns Howard that he will not be able to return home if he destroys the spectroscope, but he pulverizes the apparatus and rescues humanity from evil oppression. Howard adjusts to his new life and Beverly’s band thrives under his management. At a sold-out concert, Howard finally fulfills his dream of becoming a musician by joining Beverly onstage for a guitar solo, and he is cheered by an adoring crowd. +

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

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