The Giant Spider Invasion (1976)

PG | 80 mins | Science fiction | 1976

Director:

Bill Rebane

Editor:

Barbara Pokras

Production Designer:

Ito Rebane

Production Company:

Transcentury Pictures
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HISTORY

After the end credits, the following written statement appears onscreen: “The producers wish to acknowledge the co-operation of: The University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, Wisconsin; Nicolett College and Technical Institute, Rhinelander, Wisconsin; Marathon County Sheriff’s Department, Wausau, Wisconsin; Owens of Illinois; Towns of Merrill and Gleason, and Lincoln County, Wisconsin; Enstrom Helicopter furnished through the courtesy of the Enstrom Helicopter Corporation, Menomonee, Michigan; Vehicles courtesy American Motors Corporation; Filmed on location in Wisconsin.”
       According to a 28 Jul 1975 Box article, The Giant Spider Invasion was filmed in and around Tomahawk, WI, with the town’s actual Fourth of July parade used in the film. More shooting was scheduled for Marquette, MI, and the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point. It also stated that principal photography started in the last week of Jun 1975 and the release date was scheduled for Oct 1975.
       The 27 Feb 1976 LAT review claimed the story for The Giant Spider Invasion was originally a four page comic book, however the literary source is not credited ... More Less

After the end credits, the following written statement appears onscreen: “The producers wish to acknowledge the co-operation of: The University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, Wisconsin; Nicolett College and Technical Institute, Rhinelander, Wisconsin; Marathon County Sheriff’s Department, Wausau, Wisconsin; Owens of Illinois; Towns of Merrill and Gleason, and Lincoln County, Wisconsin; Enstrom Helicopter furnished through the courtesy of the Enstrom Helicopter Corporation, Menomonee, Michigan; Vehicles courtesy American Motors Corporation; Filmed on location in Wisconsin.”
       According to a 28 Jul 1975 Box article, The Giant Spider Invasion was filmed in and around Tomahawk, WI, with the town’s actual Fourth of July parade used in the film. More shooting was scheduled for Marquette, MI, and the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point. It also stated that principal photography started in the last week of Jun 1975 and the release date was scheduled for Oct 1975.
       The 27 Feb 1976 LAT review claimed the story for The Giant Spider Invasion was originally a four page comic book, however the literary source is not credited onscreen.
More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
28 Jul 1975.
---
Box Office
24 Nov 1975.
---
Hollywood Reporter
3 Jul 1975
p. 19.
Los Angeles Times
27 Feb 1976
p. 9.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Cinema Group 75 Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
1st asst dir
2d asst dir, unit mgr
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
From an orig story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of cine
Asst cam
Gaffer
Key grip
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Eff ed
SET DECORATORS
Set des
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus ed
Mus ed
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom man
Post prod sd services
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Spec eff
Titles & optical eff
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairdresser
PRODUCTION MISC
Continuity & script
Prod secy
Prod secy
STAND INS
Stunt man
Stunt man
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
The Great Spider Invasion
Release Date:
1976
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 25 February 1976
Production Date:
began late June 1975
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Filmed in Eastman Color
Duration(in mins):
80
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Davy Perkins, a young local reporter, asks the sheriff for news he can publish in his father’s newspaper, but the sheriff says nothing is happening and asks Davey if he is dating Terry Kester. The sheriff is concerned that Terry’s stepfather, Sam Kester, won’t approve and is known to get violent, but Davy is not worried and goes off to his date. Across town, Sam Kester, tells his wife, Ev, who is also Terry’s sister that he is going to a prayer meeting. Instead, he drives into town to see Helga, a waitress at the local diner. They then go to her trailer to fool around. Meanwhile, Davy Perkins sits outside the Kester farm with Ev, who drunkenly flirts with the boy, then takes Terry to the junkyard to make out. Elsewhere, Sam leaves Helga and goes home, where Ev asks about the prayer meeting and Sam says the minister preached against sin. Just then, a meteor crashes into their back pasture and the electricity goes out. Although Ev suggests to her husband that they go see what fell, Sam claims he is tired from praying and goes to sleep. Back in the junkyard, Terry and Davy are kissing when the meteor hits. The car radio goes dead and Davy cannot start his car. Down the road, a motorcyclist is knocked off his bike before it explodes. The rider runs into the woods, then screams. Meanwhile, a B-52 bomber crashes. Later that night, Dr. Jenny Langer, a scientist at the observatory, calls to NASA, reporting a huge burst of gamma radiation ... +


Davy Perkins, a young local reporter, asks the sheriff for news he can publish in his father’s newspaper, but the sheriff says nothing is happening and asks Davey if he is dating Terry Kester. The sheriff is concerned that Terry’s stepfather, Sam Kester, won’t approve and is known to get violent, but Davy is not worried and goes off to his date. Across town, Sam Kester, tells his wife, Ev, who is also Terry’s sister that he is going to a prayer meeting. Instead, he drives into town to see Helga, a waitress at the local diner. They then go to her trailer to fool around. Meanwhile, Davy Perkins sits outside the Kester farm with Ev, who drunkenly flirts with the boy, then takes Terry to the junkyard to make out. Elsewhere, Sam leaves Helga and goes home, where Ev asks about the prayer meeting and Sam says the minister preached against sin. Just then, a meteor crashes into their back pasture and the electricity goes out. Although Ev suggests to her husband that they go see what fell, Sam claims he is tired from praying and goes to sleep. Back in the junkyard, Terry and Davy are kissing when the meteor hits. The car radio goes dead and Davy cannot start his car. Down the road, a motorcyclist is knocked off his bike before it explodes. The rider runs into the woods, then screams. Meanwhile, a B-52 bomber crashes. Later that night, Dr. Jenny Langer, a scientist at the observatory, calls to NASA, reporting a huge burst of gamma radiation in Northern Wisconsin. Strange phenomena, including a twenty point drop in the barometer and an aurora with no solar activity had been seen. NASA executives connect the events to the B-52 crash and send Dr. Vance to investigate. The next morning, Sam and Ev find dead cows that have been partially eaten. Ev worries about the cost, but Sam says he will butcher the cows, but Sam says he will butcher the livestock and sell the remaining meat to Dutch, the owner of a local diner. Although Ev worries the meat may be bad, Sam says that is Dutch’s problem. At the observatory, Vance meets Jenny and tells her that he has an appointment with her father. She responds that her father is dead and Vance tries to cover by saying that the appointment must be with her husband. She explains that she is Doctor Langer and his meeting is with her. She shows him her data on the increased gamma radiation and says this has only been seen after atomic bomb blasts. Vance suggests it may have been a missile attack. Meanwhile, Sam and Ev find perfectly round rocks and try to saw them open. After Sam uses a hammer and chisel, one rock breaks and a small spider crawls out and runs under the counter. The rock turns out to be a geode with diamond like rocks inside. Sam plans to show the rock to his cousin Billy to see if the diamonds are real. Jenny and Vance find the sheriff at a diner and explain about the gamma radiation. Just then, Davy arrives and tells Vance about his car’s reaction to the meteor crash. He gives the scientists the location of the impact site. Meanwhile, Sam goes back to the pasture to gather more rocks and finds the half-eaten motorcyclist. He buries the body and camouflages the grave, then goes home to tell Ev, who is making a Bloody Mary for lunch. She wants to call the sheriff, but Sam refuses, unwilling to reveal the diamonds and his marijuana crops. Ev complains about the spiders in the house and Sam tells her to lay off the booze. Sam heads into town with his stones, but keeps a date with Helga, instead of visiting his cousin Billy. Ev gets ready for bed with another drink, unaware that a big spider is crawling towards her. It is almost upon her, when she gets up to open a dresser drawer. As a dog-sized spider crawls out, she rushes for the door, which is covered with cobwebs. She fights her way through and runs into the barn, where she is killed by a giant spider. The next morning, Sam shows his diamonds to Billy, who reports that they are industrial grade and not very valuable, but Sam resolves to acquire a large sum. At the observatory, Vance and Jenny deduce that a black hole in a parallel universe is sucking in a star and casting its radiation on earth. If it is not closed, radiation could climb to lethal levels. Later, Sam comes home and cannot find Ev. He offers his daughter, Terry, a diamond in return for sex and she refuses. Later, when Sam collects more rocks, he is eaten alive by a giant spider. Cousin Billie comes to the house as Terry emerges from the shower. He tells her that they aren’t blood relatives so they can have sex, but she rebuffs him and asks about the diamond. He tells her it is only worth $5, but he offers $20 when she does not want to sell. Billy drives home and sees a large spider crawling on the front seat. He tries to kill it, but drives into a giant web. Speeding away, Billie crashes into a gas station, which explodes. As Terry dries off, she sees hundreds of spiders in her room. She runs into the kitchen and a giant spider climbs on the house. Davy drives up and shoots the spider with his rifle. As the spider crawls away, Davy rushes the unconscious Terry to the hospital. Meanwhile, Jenny and Vance decide a neutron bomb is the only way to seal the space rift created by the black hole. They tell the sheriff to keep everyone away from the site, but the sheriff explains that Dutch, the diner owner, has a posse of armed men who want to kill the spider. When Vance hangs up, the sheriff calls the National Guard. In the next town, a giant spider comes upon a baseball game and attacks, killing and eating a score of people. It runs into Dutch’s men, whose guns are useless against the giant arachnid. Jenny theorizes that the big spider is a queen bee; if they can kill it, the other spiders will be leaderless and rendered powerless. Although Jenny and Vance have a helicopter to drop the bomb, they have to go to the crater to mark the site with a flare. When they arrive there, thousands of spiders are hatching. They wait until the giant spider returns then signal the helicopter to drop the bomb, killing the giant spider and melting all the spider eggs. Afterwards, Jenny asks Vance if a similar invasion could happen again? The two look on as smoke rises from the giant spider’s corpse. +

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

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