Hide in Plain Sight (1980)

PG | 92 mins | Drama | 21 March 1980

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HISTORY

The following statement appears in the opening credits: “A dramatization of a true story.”
       The following statements appear at the end of the film: “Thomas Hacklin, Jr. lives with his family in Buffalo. He has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Government for depriving him of the right to ‘raise, rear, and nurture his children.’ The case is pending.” “Jack Scolese is employed as a professional informer for the U.S. Government and lives in a Northwestern state.” “Ruthie Hacklin Scolese is divorced and works as a secretary in Nevada.” Also, “The twelve men convicted as a result of Scolese’s testimony are all released from custody or are under parole supervision.”
       The following statement appears in the end credits: “The records of the 60’s courtesy Polydor and MGM Records.” The following acknowledgments appear in the end credits: “The Producers wish to thank: The Mayor, the Police Department, and the People of Buffalo, New York; The Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, New York; The Police Department of Albuquerque, New Mexico; The New Mexico Motion Picture Bureau; and Omni Zoetrope Studios, Facilities and Staff.”
       Acccording to a 9 Aug 1978 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (M-G-M) press release and production notes in AMPAS library files, the genesis of the story came to light through the investigative efforts of Lee Coppolla, a reporter working at the Buffalo Evening News. Writer Leslie Waller then expanded the story into a 1976 book, Hide in Plain Sight, which was the basis for Spencer Eastman’s screenplay.
       A 10 Mar 1978 HR brief stated that actor-director James Caan was in talks with actor James Woods to co-star. However, Woods was not credited ...

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The following statement appears in the opening credits: “A dramatization of a true story.”
       The following statements appear at the end of the film: “Thomas Hacklin, Jr. lives with his family in Buffalo. He has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Government for depriving him of the right to ‘raise, rear, and nurture his children.’ The case is pending.” “Jack Scolese is employed as a professional informer for the U.S. Government and lives in a Northwestern state.” “Ruthie Hacklin Scolese is divorced and works as a secretary in Nevada.” Also, “The twelve men convicted as a result of Scolese’s testimony are all released from custody or are under parole supervision.”
       The following statement appears in the end credits: “The records of the 60’s courtesy Polydor and MGM Records.” The following acknowledgments appear in the end credits: “The Producers wish to thank: The Mayor, the Police Department, and the People of Buffalo, New York; The Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, New York; The Police Department of Albuquerque, New Mexico; The New Mexico Motion Picture Bureau; and Omni Zoetrope Studios, Facilities and Staff.”
       Acccording to a 9 Aug 1978 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (M-G-M) press release and production notes in AMPAS library files, the genesis of the story came to light through the investigative efforts of Lee Coppolla, a reporter working at the Buffalo Evening News. Writer Leslie Waller then expanded the story into a 1976 book, Hide in Plain Sight, which was the basis for Spencer Eastman’s screenplay.
       A 10 Mar 1978 HR brief stated that actor-director James Caan was in talks with actor James Woods to co-star. However, Woods was not credited onscreen. In addition, a brief in the 20 Jun 1978 HR announced that actress Mary Beth Hurt had joined the cast, but she also did not receive onscreen credit.
       An article in the 11 Jun 1978 LAT reported that actor Robert Viharo, cast as “Jack Scolese,” prepared for his role by conversing with Paddy Calabrese, the real-life informant on whom his character was based, as well as listening to taped interviews. Viharo also befriended mobsters associated with “The Arm,” Buffalo, NY’s, version of the Mafia.
       Production notes stated that principal photography began 2 May 1978. The budget was $6 million, according to the 11 Jun 1978 LAT article, although the Nov 1978 issue of Rona Barrett’s Gossip reported the figure to be $8 million. The 11 Jun 1978 LAT article stated that the production spent eleven weeks on location in Buffalo. Approximately sixty locations included a Dunlap tire factory, and the century-old Buffalo Club. In addition, shooting moved to Albuquerque, NM, which doubled as Ann Arbor, MI. However, a 28 Jun 1978 Var news item reported that Buffalo Club owners reneged on their promise to allow filming inside the establishment, causing filmmakers to leave town one week early. A 7 Jul 1978 HR brief added that Caan would spend two days, 14 - 15 Jul 1978, on location in Washington, D.C., and then begin a final week of shooting on 17 Jul 1978 in Albuquerque.
       A 30 Apr 1979 LAT article reported that director Francis Ford Coppola, Caan’s friend, would assist the new filmmaker with some re-editing and dubbing at his American Zoetrope facilities in San Francisco, CA. Due to the additional post production, the movie’s release was pushed from Aug 1979 to a later date by distributor M-G-M.
       According to the 11 Jun 1978 LAT article, the film marked Caan’s feature film directorial debut. Caan was paid minimum scale for the job, and his contract stipulated that if he exceeded the budget, he would forfeit a percentage of his actor’s fee.

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Hollywood Reporter
10 Mar1978
---
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jun 1978
---
Hollywood Reporter
7 Jul 1978
---
Hollywood Reporter
18 Mar 1980
p. 3
Los Angeles Times
11 Jun 1978
Calendar, p. 38
Los Angeles Times
30 Apr 1979
---
Los Angeles Times
16 Mar 1980
p. 36
New York Times
21 Mar 1980
p. 6
Rona Barrett's Gossip
Nov 1978
---
Variety
28 Jun 1978
---
Variety
19 Mar 1980
p. 28
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANIES
PRODUCTION TEXT
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Presents
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
Asst dir
2d asst dir
2d asst dir
2d unit dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Still photog
Still photog
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Set dec
COSTUMES
Men`s cost
Women`s cost
MUSIC
Orig mus
Mus ed
SOUND
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Jay M. Harding
Re-rec mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Titles and opticals
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod coord
Casting
Casting
Asst to Mr. Caan
Asst to the prods
Unit pub
Scr supv
Consultant
COLOR PERSONNEL
[Col by]
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the book Hide in Plain Sight by Leslie Waller (New York, 1976).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
21 March 1980
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 21 Mar 1980
Production Date:
2 May 1978 in Buffalo, NY--21 Jul 1978 in Albuquerque, NM
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
1 April 1980
PA64513
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Lenses/Prints
Filmed in Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
92
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

In 1967 Buffalo, New York, Thomas “Hack” Hacklin, Jr., a Dunlap tire factory worker, babysits his children, Andy and Junie, while his former wife, Ruthie Hacklin, and her boyfriend, Jack Scolese, go out for the evening. At the party, Jack introduces Ruthie to his Mafia associates. Later, Jack and another gangster rob the city treasury. At a bar, Hack’s friend, Matty Stanek, introduces him to Alisa, an elementary school teacher. After small talk, Matty invites Alisa, whose nickname is Ali, to join Hack at the tire plant’s annual “Spring Fling” dance. As she accepts, Hack overhears a television news report that Scolese is wanted in connection with the treasury robbery. Offering his apologies to Alisa, Hack ends the date. Later, Hack and Ruthie argue about Scolese and his affect on the children. After five days in hiding, Scolese has a meeting with mobster Bobby Momisa, who admonishes him for committing the robbery on his own. Momisa tells Scolese to marry Ruthie to exempt her from testifying at his trial and to bolster his image. He also orders Scolese to turn himself in to the authorities, and assures Scolese that mob lawyers will represent him in court. When Ruthie tells Hack she married Scolese, who is in police custody, he is shocked and worried how the new arrangement will affect his children. Hack voices the same concerns to Ali when they step away from the Spring Fling after a fight erupts. Soon, they continue their date over a cup of coffee. At the police station, detective Sam Marzetta and Jason R. Reid from the Justice Department ask Scolese to be an informant in exchange for ...

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In 1967 Buffalo, New York, Thomas “Hack” Hacklin, Jr., a Dunlap tire factory worker, babysits his children, Andy and Junie, while his former wife, Ruthie Hacklin, and her boyfriend, Jack Scolese, go out for the evening. At the party, Jack introduces Ruthie to his Mafia associates. Later, Jack and another gangster rob the city treasury. At a bar, Hack’s friend, Matty Stanek, introduces him to Alisa, an elementary school teacher. After small talk, Matty invites Alisa, whose nickname is Ali, to join Hack at the tire plant’s annual “Spring Fling” dance. As she accepts, Hack overhears a television news report that Scolese is wanted in connection with the treasury robbery. Offering his apologies to Alisa, Hack ends the date. Later, Hack and Ruthie argue about Scolese and his affect on the children. After five days in hiding, Scolese has a meeting with mobster Bobby Momisa, who admonishes him for committing the robbery on his own. Momisa tells Scolese to marry Ruthie to exempt her from testifying at his trial and to bolster his image. He also orders Scolese to turn himself in to the authorities, and assures Scolese that mob lawyers will represent him in court. When Ruthie tells Hack she married Scolese, who is in police custody, he is shocked and worried how the new arrangement will affect his children. Hack voices the same concerns to Ali when they step away from the Spring Fling after a fight erupts. Soon, they continue their date over a cup of coffee. At the police station, detective Sam Marzetta and Jason R. Reid from the Justice Department ask Scolese to be an informant in exchange for a new identity, as part of the new witness protection program. As time passes, Hack and Ali grow closer and share their first kiss. Meanwhile, Ruthie visits Scolese in jail, complaining that the bills are piling up, but she has not gotten any support from Momisa or his associate, Pete Fiacco. While Scolese’s friends disappear, Marzetta brings groceries to Ruthie everyday. In court, Scolese testifies against Momisa and Fiacco, and afterward, Marzetta whisks Scolese away to be relocated. When Hack picks up his children, his wife’s house is empty and everyone is gone. The neighbor tells him that Ruthie and the children packed up and left at midnight. Hack files a police report, but after five days with no word, Ali encourages him to contact Marzetta. Hack approaches Marzetta at a diner; however, the detective evades his questions and leaves. Next, Hack appears at Reid’s office to get some answers, but is told Reid is unavailable. At dinner, Marzetta and Reid discuss the possibility that Hack is being used by the mob to uncover Scolese’s whereabouts. Meanwhile, Ali knows Hack is in a bind and makes an appointment for him to see Sal Carvello, an attorney who is very interested in the case. After meeting with Hack and Ali, Sal warns that a case against the government can last for years. Sal then contacts Lee McHugh at the Evening News. When Sal meets Lee at the gym, he explains that Hack served as a Marine for six years, minds his business, but then his children were stolen. He asks Lee to assign the story to one of his investigative reporters. Soon, Reid nervously shows Marzetta two stories in the newspaper about Hack’s predicament, and worries that the exposure is interfering with the program’s mandate to keep a low profile. In court, Sal argues the unfairness of Hack losing contact with his children because of their new identities. Richard Fieldston, the attorney for the government, argues that the mother has primary custody, and it made sense for the whole family to assume new identities once Scolese testified. After the hearing, Hack is discouraged and too upset to talk with reporters. In the parking lot, he sees Fieldston’s fancy sports car, and rams into it with his vehicle. One night, Hack’s mother is confused by a collect call, and the caller hangs up. Hack realizes immediately that the call is from Ruthie. When his mother remembers the call was placed from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Hack journeys there, but discovers he is being followed. He turns back when he assesses the situation is too dangerous. Later, Marzetta agrees to a meeting and apologizes for the way in which Hack’s life has been turned around. He asks for one year to make things right and encourages Hack to start a letter-writing campaign. Soon, Sal arranges for Hack to fly to Washington, D. C., where he has a brief meeting with Congressman Evetts. The politician promises to help, but when Hack returns home he decides he is through listening. He threatens Reid’s secretary to obtain Scolese’s current address in Albuquerque, New Mexico, then takes a plane to find his family. Confronted by Hack, Scolese says that Hack can find Ruthie and the children at a motel down the road. His family is not in the motel room, but at a diner across the street. The children see him through the window and run to embrace him. Hack takes custody of Andy and Junie. He tells Ruthie she can visit them anytime.

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

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