Blackbeard's Ghost (1968)

107 mins | Comedy | 8 February 1968

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HISTORY

The 2 Feb 1966 DV announced that actor Dean Jones, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, would begin filming Blackbeard’s Ghost after a stint in Vietnam, where he was entertaining troops. According to a 12 Apr 1966 DV item, principal photography on the Walt Disney Productions feature was set to begin in mid-Aug 1966. After a slight delay, shooting began on 17 Oct 1966, as noted in a 21 Oct 1966 DV production chart. The film was at least partially shot at Walt Disney studios in Burbank, CA.
       An article in the 15 May 1966 NYT stated that studio head Walt Disney hoped to cast Jackie Gleason or Sir Laurence Olivier in the role of “Captain Blackbeard.” However, Peter Ustinov won the role. Paul Bradley and Phil Arnold were listed as a cast members in the 7 Dec 1966 Var and 12 Jan 1967 DV, and actor Forrest Tucker’s daughter, Pamela Cusick, was said to be making her feature film debut as a background actor, according to a 19 Dec 1966 DV brief.
       On 19 Jan 1967, LAT announced that Dean Jones was signed to a non-exclusive, five-picture, seven-year deal with Walt Disney Productions. Jones’s contract was reportedly the first of its kind for Disney, and Blackbeard’s Ghost was not to be included as one of the five pictures.
       Blackbeard’s Ghost was set to premiere in Los Angeles, CA, on 8 Feb 1968. The 29 Jan 1968 LAT noted that the event would benefit the Southern California Chapter of the U.S. Olympians. According ... More Less

The 2 Feb 1966 DV announced that actor Dean Jones, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, would begin filming Blackbeard’s Ghost after a stint in Vietnam, where he was entertaining troops. According to a 12 Apr 1966 DV item, principal photography on the Walt Disney Productions feature was set to begin in mid-Aug 1966. After a slight delay, shooting began on 17 Oct 1966, as noted in a 21 Oct 1966 DV production chart. The film was at least partially shot at Walt Disney studios in Burbank, CA.
       An article in the 15 May 1966 NYT stated that studio head Walt Disney hoped to cast Jackie Gleason or Sir Laurence Olivier in the role of “Captain Blackbeard.” However, Peter Ustinov won the role. Paul Bradley and Phil Arnold were listed as a cast members in the 7 Dec 1966 Var and 12 Jan 1967 DV, and actor Forrest Tucker’s daughter, Pamela Cusick, was said to be making her feature film debut as a background actor, according to a 19 Dec 1966 DV brief.
       On 19 Jan 1967, LAT announced that Dean Jones was signed to a non-exclusive, five-picture, seven-year deal with Walt Disney Productions. Jones’s contract was reportedly the first of its kind for Disney, and Blackbeard’s Ghost was not to be included as one of the five pictures.
       Blackbeard’s Ghost was set to premiere in Los Angeles, CA, on 8 Feb 1968. The 29 Jan 1968 LAT noted that the event would benefit the Southern California Chapter of the U.S. Olympians. According to a 15 Feb 1968 Los Angeles Sentinel brief, the premiere was attended by several Olympians, including Jesse Owens, Mal Whitfield, Sammy Lee, and Ollie Matson, and raised $12,000 for the athletes’ charity.
       Critical reception was positive, and the 14 Feb 1968 Var reported a promising opening-week box-office gross of $18,000 at the Pantages Theatre.
       Walt Disney died of lung cancer in Dec 1966, while filming was still underway. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
2 Feb 1966
p. 2.
Daily Variety
12 Apr 1966
p. 2.
Daily Variety
21 Oct 1966
p. 6.
Daily Variety
19 Dec 1966
p. 4.
Daily Variety
12 Jan 1967
p. 4.
Daily Variety
17 Jan 1968
p. 3.
Los Angeles Sentinel
15 Feb 1968
Section A, p. 11.
Los Angeles Times
19 Jan 1967
Section C, p. 11.
Los Angeles Times
29 Jan 1968
Section D, p. 22.
Los Angeles Times
9 Feb 1968
Section C, p. 11.
New York Times
15 May 1966
Section D, p. 11, 23.
New York Times
11 Apr 1968
p. 51.
Variety
7 Dec 1966
p. 6.
Variety
14 Feb 1968
p. 9.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Co-prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost
SOUND
Sd supv
Sd mix
Music ed
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Spec eff
Matte artist
MAKEUP
Hairstyles
PRODUCTION MISC
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Blackbeard's Ghost by Ben Stahl (Boston, 1965).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
8 February 1968
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles premiere: 8 February 1968
Production Date:
began 17 October 1966
Copyright Claimant:
Walt Disney Productions
Copyright Date:
13 October 1967
Copyright Number:
LP35091
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
107
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Blackbeard's Inn, a small hotel on the Carolina coast, is run by the Daughters of the Buccaneers, a group of little old ladies all claiming to be descendants of the notorious Edward Teach, known as Blackbeard. When Steve Walker, the new track coach for Godolphin College, registers at the inn, he learns that the Daughters are desperately trying to pay off their mortgage in order to prevent a takeover by the local gambling czar, Silky Seymour. Encouraged by Jo Anne Baker, a college instructor, Steve helps the old ladies' cause by buying an antique bedwarmer at a charity auction and discovers that it was once owned by Blackbeard's 10th wife. Before being burned as a witch, she had condemned her philandering husband to wander in limbo until he performed one good deed. By accident, Steve conjures up the devilish pirate's spirit and persuades him to help the Daughters. Since Blackbeard is invisible to all but Steve, he easily steals $900 of the mortage money that Jo Anne has raised and places a bet with Silky that Steve's track team will win the upcoming relays. Utilizing his invisible powers, Blackbeard creates havoc among the opposing team and literally hurls the Godolphins to victory; but Silky welshes on the bet and agrees only to return the $900. Steve, relying on Blackbeard's help, storms into Silky's gaming room, slaps down the money at the roulette table, and watches as the pirate helps him win $38,000. Following a confrontation with Silky and his hoods, Steve and Jo Anne hand the money over to the Daughters and save the inn. Suddenly Blackbeard materializes, ritually burns the mortgage, and then--free at last from the curse ... +


Blackbeard's Inn, a small hotel on the Carolina coast, is run by the Daughters of the Buccaneers, a group of little old ladies all claiming to be descendants of the notorious Edward Teach, known as Blackbeard. When Steve Walker, the new track coach for Godolphin College, registers at the inn, he learns that the Daughters are desperately trying to pay off their mortgage in order to prevent a takeover by the local gambling czar, Silky Seymour. Encouraged by Jo Anne Baker, a college instructor, Steve helps the old ladies' cause by buying an antique bedwarmer at a charity auction and discovers that it was once owned by Blackbeard's 10th wife. Before being burned as a witch, she had condemned her philandering husband to wander in limbo until he performed one good deed. By accident, Steve conjures up the devilish pirate's spirit and persuades him to help the Daughters. Since Blackbeard is invisible to all but Steve, he easily steals $900 of the mortage money that Jo Anne has raised and places a bet with Silky that Steve's track team will win the upcoming relays. Utilizing his invisible powers, Blackbeard creates havoc among the opposing team and literally hurls the Godolphins to victory; but Silky welshes on the bet and agrees only to return the $900. Steve, relying on Blackbeard's help, storms into Silky's gaming room, slaps down the money at the roulette table, and watches as the pirate helps him win $38,000. Following a confrontation with Silky and his hoods, Steve and Jo Anne hand the money over to the Daughters and save the inn. Suddenly Blackbeard materializes, ritually burns the mortgage, and then--free at last from the curse of his wife--majestically departs. +

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

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