The Strongest Man in the World (1975)

G | 92 mins | Comedy | 12 February 1975

Director:

Vincent McEveety

Producer:

Bill Anderson

Cinematographer:

Andrew Jackson

Production Designers:

John Mansbridge, Jack Senter

Production Company:

Walt Disney Productions
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HISTORY

The Stongest Man in the World is the third installment of the “Medfield College” trilogy. The first was The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes (1970, see entry), followed by Now You See Him, Now You Don’t (1972, see entry). Actors Kurt Russell, Joe Flynn, Cesar Romero and Dick Bakalyan played the same roles for all three films. Actor William Schallert reprised his role as “Quigley” and Michael McGreevey reprised “Schuyler” from The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes. Composer Robert F. Brunner wrote the music for all three films,and screenwriter Joseph L. McEveety wrote all three scripts.
       Principal photography began 28 May 1974 at the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, CA, according to a news brief in the 29 Apr 1974 HR.
       A 14 Apr 1975 Box news brief stated that The World’s Strongest Man was expected to gross $8 million, making it the most successful of the “Medfield” comedies.
       Actor Joe Flynn died shortly after the film was completed in 1974. The Strongest Man in the World marked his last feature film appearance. He was best known for his portrayal of “Captain Wallace Burton Binghamton” on the television series McHale’s Navy (ABC, 11 Oct 1962--30 Aug ... More Less

The Stongest Man in the World is the third installment of the “Medfield College” trilogy. The first was The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes (1970, see entry), followed by Now You See Him, Now You Don’t (1972, see entry). Actors Kurt Russell, Joe Flynn, Cesar Romero and Dick Bakalyan played the same roles for all three films. Actor William Schallert reprised his role as “Quigley” and Michael McGreevey reprised “Schuyler” from The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes. Composer Robert F. Brunner wrote the music for all three films,and screenwriter Joseph L. McEveety wrote all three scripts.
       Principal photography began 28 May 1974 at the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, CA, according to a news brief in the 29 Apr 1974 HR.
       A 14 Apr 1975 Box news brief stated that The World’s Strongest Man was expected to gross $8 million, making it the most successful of the “Medfield” comedies.
       Actor Joe Flynn died shortly after the film was completed in 1974. The Strongest Man in the World marked his last feature film appearance. He was best known for his portrayal of “Captain Wallace Burton Binghamton” on the television series McHale’s Navy (ABC, 11 Oct 1962--30 Aug 1966). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
10 Feb 1975
p. 4755.
Box Office
14 Apr 1975.
---
Daily Variety
31 Jan 1975.
---
Hollywood Reporter
29 Apr 1974.
---
Hollywood Reporter
7 Jun 1974
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jul 1974
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Jan 1975
p. 6, 14.
Los Angeles Times
14 Feb 1975
Section IV, p.22.
New York Times
10 Jul 1975
p. 19.
Variety
5 Feb 1975
p. 20.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT

NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Starring
Co-starring
Co-starring
Co-starring
Dick Bakalyan
Co-starring
Our Students:
Featuring
Featuring
Featuring
Featuring
Featuring
With
Larry J. Blake
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
2d unit dir
Unit mgr/Asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
COSTUMES
SOUND
Sd supv
Sd mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Spec eff
Titles
Titles
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
DETAILS
Release Date:
12 February 1975
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 12 February 1975
New York opening: 9 July 1975
Production Date:
began 28 May 1974 in Burbank, CA
Copyright Claimant:
Walt Disney Productions
Copyright Date:
5 February 1975
Copyright Number:
LP44154
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Color by Technicolor®
Duration(in mins):
92
MPAA Rating:
G
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Dietz, a member of the Medfield College board of regents, asks for the resignation of Dean Higgins because the college is losing money. Desperate, Higgins begs for thirty days, claiming he has a plan to increase school revenues. Dietz agrees, but warns that the regents will not tolerate any more nonsense. Higgins opens the door and sees two students, Dexter Riley and Richard Schuyler, walking a cow down the hall. He slams the door until the cow is out of sight, then goes to the campus chemical laboratory and watches Schuyler grind vitamins and pizza into a bowl of cereal. Schuyler is attempting to formulate a feed that will make cows grow faster and stronger. Professor Quigley, the head of the science department, appears, and Higgins fires him for wasting college money making bovine health food. When Higgins leaves, he slams the door, causing a beaker full of the formula Dexter is working on to spill into the cereal bowl. The resulting concoction is eaten by the cow. Dexter notices his serum has spilled and saves what he can in a test tube, while Schuyler puts the remainder of the cereal back in its box and takes it home. That night, Dexter gets a call from the farmer to tell them the rented cow produced eighty gallons of milk and is still going strong. Next morning, Dexter eats the formula enriched cereal, and steam blows out his ears. Hating the acidic taste, Dexter gives the cereal to Schuyler’s terrier, Brutus. As he leaves the house, he pulls the doorknob out of the door, and later, ... +


Dietz, a member of the Medfield College board of regents, asks for the resignation of Dean Higgins because the college is losing money. Desperate, Higgins begs for thirty days, claiming he has a plan to increase school revenues. Dietz agrees, but warns that the regents will not tolerate any more nonsense. Higgins opens the door and sees two students, Dexter Riley and Richard Schuyler, walking a cow down the hall. He slams the door until the cow is out of sight, then goes to the campus chemical laboratory and watches Schuyler grind vitamins and pizza into a bowl of cereal. Schuyler is attempting to formulate a feed that will make cows grow faster and stronger. Professor Quigley, the head of the science department, appears, and Higgins fires him for wasting college money making bovine health food. When Higgins leaves, he slams the door, causing a beaker full of the formula Dexter is working on to spill into the cereal bowl. The resulting concoction is eaten by the cow. Dexter notices his serum has spilled and saves what he can in a test tube, while Schuyler puts the remainder of the cereal back in its box and takes it home. That night, Dexter gets a call from the farmer to tell them the rented cow produced eighty gallons of milk and is still going strong. Next morning, Dexter eats the formula enriched cereal, and steam blows out his ears. Hating the acidic taste, Dexter gives the cereal to Schuyler’s terrier, Brutus. As he leaves the house, he pulls the doorknob out of the door, and later, leans against a street lamp and bends the pole. He interrupts a basketball game, leaps fifteen feet in the air to dunk the ball, and shatters the backboard. Meanwhile, Higgins chastises an obese student for eating in class. Quigley comes to collect his severance check, but Higgins screams the college cannot afford to pay him, Dexter bursts in and demonstrates that Schulyer’s formula works by lifting the obese student into the air. After re-hiring Quigley, Higgins travels to Crumply Crunch Cereal Company headquarters to sell them the strength formula. Harry, the company’s vice-president, dismisses him, but Harriet, the board’s chairman, asks Higgins for a demonstration. He eats the cereal and demonstrates his strength by tossing a heavy bar of weights over his head, leaping twenty feet in the air and splitting the conference table with a karate chop. Harriet is overjoyed when Higgins confesses that the strength lasts only a limited time, reasoning that people will only eat more cereal. Harriet telephones Kerwood Krinkle of the Krinkle Krunch Cereal Company and challenges Krinkle’s alma mater, State University, to a weightlifting match with Medfield College. Knowing State is the national champion, and realizing people will believe his cereal is responsible for a victory, Krinkle accepts. Later, Harry informs Krinkle about the formula and agrees to steal it for $200 thousand. He drives to a state prison and offers the job to A. J. Arno and his assistant, Cookie, two thieves who where imprisoned after their last run in with the Medfield students. Cookie is reluctant, but Arno tells him the heist is so easy, he will allow Cookie to plan it. That night, Cookie and Arno arrive at the science building to find the halls crawling with security guards, but Cookie plans to get in to the laboratory by using a scaffold left behind by window washers. After a truck dumps a load of wet cement, the thieves climb to the roof, only to find Arno is afraid of heights. As Cookie lowers the scaffold, he hits a knot in the rope that almost dumps them over. Once inside, Cookie is unable to find the formula, so an indignant Arno reclaims his leadership and demands they leave by the stairs. He opens a door to find a sleeping guard, who awakes and blows a whistle. As other guards arrive, Cookie and Arno leap back onto the scaffold, but Arno hits the down lever and they fall, and when the guards look out the window, they only see the thieves’ impressions in the wet cement below. Unable to get back on campus, Arno and Cookie kidnap Schuyler to force him to reveal the formula. However, the boy cannot remember all the ingredients. The thieves take him to a Chinese restaurant where the chief of police is giving a speech. In a back room, the restaurant’s owner, Ah Fong, hypnotizes Schuyler into reciting the formula, then gives him a post hypnotic suggestion to forget everything and take the first mode of transportation he sees to get home. Schuyler stumbles out of the restaurant, spies the police chief’s cruiser, and drives away with twenty motorcycle cops chasing him. When he arrives home, Schuyler is tackled by the police and dragged off to jail. Later, he is bailed out, but cannot remember anything. The next day, Kringle drinks Schuyler’s formula. To demonstrate his new strength, he takes karate chops at the conference table and breaks his hand. Harry convinces Kringle that the fake formula is even better than the real thing as Harriet will be humiliated after the Medfield students eat her cereal on television and are soundly defeated by the State athletes. The day of the match, Dietz warns Higgins that he will be fired if Medfield loses. In front of the cameras, the scrawny Medfield and the muscle bound State athletes eat the cereal of their respective sponsors. When no steam comes out of his ears, Dexter realizes something is wrong and deduces that that it was really his spilt formula that created super strength. After warning Quigley and Higgins, Dexter remembers he still has a test tube of his formula at the laboratory and borrows Higgins’s Model T car. Harry overhears the conversation and telephones Arno to stop him. Meanwhile, the match begins with a State athlete easily lifting two hundred and fifty pounds. An overweight student for Medfield attempts to lift two hundred and seventy-five, but instead, his arms become extended so long they touch the floor. Harriet bursts into tears and beats Higgins with a sign. Meanwhile, Dexter cannot get Higgins’s car to go faster than a crawl. When he does get to the laboratory and finds the test tube, Arno, Cookie and six other men appear. Dexter gulps down the formula, then tosses the men around the lab. In the hall, Dexter finds Harry hiding, and rolls him like a bowling ball to knock the rest of the henchmen over. Running out of the building, Dexter hears the car radio announce that he is the last contestant and has four minutes to appear or Medfield must forfeit. Desperate, Dexter pours some drops of the formula into Higgins’s car’s radiator and it takes off like a rocket, but shakes apart under the strain until Dexter is only driving the frame when he crashes through the gym doors. Dexter rushes over to the weights, but realizes he has lost his strength. Yelling he needs to eat more cereal, he ducks backstage and drinks the remaining drops of the formula. With only seconds to spare, Dexter lifts eleven hundred and eleven pounds to win the match by one pound. Dexter is declared the strongest man in the world. Harriet hands Higgins a big check, and Krinkle sneaks backstage and eats the Crumbly Crunch. He then takes another karate chop at the table and lets out a loud scream. +

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

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