The Four Seasons (1981)

PG | 108 mins | Comedy-drama | 22 May 1981

Director:

Alan Alda

Writer:

Alan Alda

Producer:

Martin Bregman

Cinematographer:

Victor J. Kemper

Production Designer:

Jack T. Collis

Production Company:

Universal Pictures
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HISTORY

End credits include the following statement: “The Producers wish to thank: The U.S. Department of the Interior and the Virgin Islands National Park Service, Vermont Film Commission, Virginia Film Commission, Charlottesville Chamber of Commerce, Georgia Film Commission, Virgin Islands Film Commission.”
       The 10 Oct 1979 Var reported that actor-director-writer Alan Alda and producer Martin Bregman signed a three picture deal with Universal Pictures. The Four Seasons was set to be the first project under the agreement, and production was planned for Feb 1980. An article in the 17 Jun 1981 Var noted that Alda made his feature film directorial debut with The Four Seasons, and the 24 Jun 1980 US added that the picture marked the feature film acting debut of Alda’s daughters, Elizabeth Alda and Beatrice Alda. Alda’s wife, Arlene Alda, received an onscreen credit for her “vegetable photographs.”
       The 17 Jun 1981 Var stated the film’s budget was $6.5 million. According to the 14 Mar 1980 HR, the 2 Apr 1980 Show Biz West, and production notes in AMPAS library files, principal photography began 11 Mar 1980 in New York City. The film would also shoot on location in VT, GA, NC, and the Virgin Islands. Production notes reported that New York City locations included a residential club for men on East 75th Street, which doubled as “Nick and Anne Callan’s” home. A Bedford Street brownstone in Greenwich Village was the site of the “Zimmer’s” home, and the exterior of a large meat market building on West 13th Street was used as ... More Less

End credits include the following statement: “The Producers wish to thank: The U.S. Department of the Interior and the Virgin Islands National Park Service, Vermont Film Commission, Virginia Film Commission, Charlottesville Chamber of Commerce, Georgia Film Commission, Virgin Islands Film Commission.”
       The 10 Oct 1979 Var reported that actor-director-writer Alan Alda and producer Martin Bregman signed a three picture deal with Universal Pictures. The Four Seasons was set to be the first project under the agreement, and production was planned for Feb 1980. An article in the 17 Jun 1981 Var noted that Alda made his feature film directorial debut with The Four Seasons, and the 24 Jun 1980 US added that the picture marked the feature film acting debut of Alda’s daughters, Elizabeth Alda and Beatrice Alda. Alda’s wife, Arlene Alda, received an onscreen credit for her “vegetable photographs.”
       The 17 Jun 1981 Var stated the film’s budget was $6.5 million. According to the 14 Mar 1980 HR, the 2 Apr 1980 Show Biz West, and production notes in AMPAS library files, principal photography began 11 Mar 1980 in New York City. The film would also shoot on location in VT, GA, NC, and the Virgin Islands. Production notes reported that New York City locations included a residential club for men on East 75th Street, which doubled as “Nick and Anne Callan’s” home. A Bedford Street brownstone in Greenwich Village was the site of the “Zimmer’s” home, and the exterior of a large meat market building on West 13th Street was used as “Claudia Zimmer’s” art studio. After completing photography in New York City, the company moved to Stowe, VT, for winter scenes. Fall scenes were filmed in Charlottesville, VA, and Atlanta, GA. The Keswick Country Club in Charlottesville substituted for a CT inn, and Agnes Scott College in Atlanta became the campus for the film’s “Parents’ Weekend” visit. Scenes set during the spring season were filmed in Tiger, GA, a rural town bordering NC, and on nearby Lake Burton. In late Apr 1980, the production moved to the Virgin Islands, and the 4 Jun 1980 DV announced principal photography was completed.
       The 16 Jan 1981 HR reported The Four Seasons was scheduled for a Jun 1981 release. An item in the 16 Mar 1981 HR noted the film had been chosen to close the USA Film Festival in Dallas, TX, on 4 Apr 1981, and the 24 Apr 1981 HR announced it would open the Denver International Film Festival on 30 Apr 1981. The 26 May 1981 DV reported that The Four Seasons was released on Memorial Day weekend, 22-25 May 1981. According to an article in the 17 Jun 1981 Var, the film grossed more than $5 million during its first three days of release at 634 theaters. The 2 Jun 1981 DV noted the picture grossed $4,355,238 in its second weekend, a strong performance that was on par with its first weekend business. The film’s ten day gross was $11,375,954. The Four Seasons continued to perform well, with the 7 Jul 1981 LAHExam and the 10 Jul 1981 LAT reporting that it grossed $1.7 million over the 4th of July weekend, an increase of seven percent over its previous weekend tally, bringing the film’s total boxoffice gross-to-date to $33,242,535.
       The film received a Writers Guild of America (WGA) Award nomination for Best Comedy Written Directly for the Screen, and the following Golden Globe Award nominations: Best Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical, Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical (Carol Burnett), Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy Musical (Alan Alda), and Best Screenplay.
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BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
4 Jun 1980.
---
Daily Variety
26 May 1981.
---
Daily Variety
2 Jun 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
14 Mar 1980.
---
Hollywood Reporter
16 Jan 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
16 Mar 1981.
---
Hollywood Reporter
6 Apr 1981
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Apr 1981.
---
LAHExam
7 Jul 1981.
---
Los Angeles Times
22 May 1981
p. 1.
Los Angeles Times
10 Jul 1981
p. 1, 4.
New York Times
22 Jun 1981
p. 11.
Show Biz West
2 Apr 1980.
---
US
24 Jun 1980.
---
Variety
10 Oct 1979.
---
Variety
8 Apr 1981
p. 20.
Variety
17 Jun 1981
p. 6, 35.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Martin Bregman Production
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dir
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Exec prod
WRITER
Wrt
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
Cam asst
Cam asst
2d cam asst
Stills
Gaffer
Key grip
Best boy
Best boy
Dolly grip
Vegetable photogs by
Grip, New York crew
Elec, New York crew
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
Asst film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dresser
Leadman
Scenic artist
Prop master
Props, New York crew
COSTUMES
SOUND
Sd re-rec
Sd eff ed
Loop dial ed
Boom man
Cableman
Sd, New York crew
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Spec eff
Titles and opt eff
MAKEUP
Makeup
Makeup
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Asst to Jane Greenwood
Prod secy
Asst to Alan Alda
Asst to Louis A. Stroller
Loc mgr
Transportation capt
Loc accountant
Unit pub
Loc coord, New York crew
STAND INS
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts/Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
MUSIC
Music by Antonio Vivaldi. “The Four Seasons,” by Antonio Vivaldi, Berliner Philharmoniker, Herbert Von Karajan, conductor, Michel Schwalbe, soloist, courtesy of Deutsche Grammophon
“Concerto In C For Two Trumpets,” by Antonio Vivaldi, Paillard Chamber Orchestra, Jean-Francois Paillard, conductor, Maurice Andre and Marcel Lagorce, soloists, courtesy of Erato Records
“Flute Concerto In C Minor,” by Antonio Vivaldi, I Musici, Heinz Holliger, Severino Gazzelloni, Salvatore Accardo, soloists, courtesy of Philips Records
+
MUSIC
Music by Antonio Vivaldi. “The Four Seasons,” by Antonio Vivaldi, Berliner Philharmoniker, Herbert Von Karajan, conductor, Michel Schwalbe, soloist, courtesy of Deutsche Grammophon
“Concerto In C For Two Trumpets,” by Antonio Vivaldi, Paillard Chamber Orchestra, Jean-Francois Paillard, conductor, Maurice Andre and Marcel Lagorce, soloists, courtesy of Erato Records
“Flute Concerto In C Minor,” by Antonio Vivaldi, I Musici, Heinz Holliger, Severino Gazzelloni, Salvatore Accardo, soloists, courtesy of Philips Records
“Flute Concerto In F,” by Antonio Vivaldi, I Musici, Heinz Holliger, Severino Gazzelloni, Salvatore Accardo, soloists, courtesy of Philips Records
“Concerto In C Minor,” by Antonio Vivaldi, I Musici, Heinz Holliger, Severino Gazzelloni, Salvatore Accardo, soloists, courtesy of Philips Records
“Concerto No. 12 In D,” by Antonio Vivaldi, I Musici, Heinz Holliger, Severino Gazzelloni, Salvatore Accardo, soloists, courtesy of Philips Records.
+
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
22 May 1981
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 22 May 1981
Production Date:
11 March--early June 1980
Copyright Claimant:
Universal City Studios, Inc.
Copyright Date:
30 June 1981
Copyright Number:
PA107206
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Lenses
Panaflex® Camera and Lenses by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
108
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
26088
SYNOPSIS

On a spring weekend, Jack and Kate Burroughs, Nick and Anne Callan, and Danny and Claudia Zimmer leave New York City for a weekend at the Callans’ country home. The men cook dinner while Kate and Claudia look at photographs of vegetables that have been Anne’s project for the past three years. Kate, a magazine editor, offers Anne an assignment, but Anne balks at the deadline. At dinner, Jack toasts Nick and Anne’s anniversary and to their friendships. The men think they were responsible for bringing them all together, but Anne insists they met through the women. The next day, the men race motorcycles across the property, despite Danny’s objections. In their competitive zeal, Jack and Nick skid off the path, ditching their bikes as Danny races to victory. Later, as the couples lounge on a lake rowboat, Nick mentions his success as an estate planner, but Anne disparages him as merely an insurance salesman. Jack stands to make another toast and, to memorialize the moment, he jumps in the lake. Not to be outdone, Nick also jumps in. Danny grabs a loaf of bread and slips overboard. Laughing, the women join the men in the water. As they collect firewood, Jack is shocked when Nick reveals his intention to divorce Anne. Months later, on the group’s summer vacation sailing in the Virgin Islands, Nick brings his new, young girl friend, Ginny Newley. Being inexperienced sailors, the friends break their anchor and get lodged on a sandbar prior to cruising around the islands. On the small sailboat, the friends are kept awake during the ... +


On a spring weekend, Jack and Kate Burroughs, Nick and Anne Callan, and Danny and Claudia Zimmer leave New York City for a weekend at the Callans’ country home. The men cook dinner while Kate and Claudia look at photographs of vegetables that have been Anne’s project for the past three years. Kate, a magazine editor, offers Anne an assignment, but Anne balks at the deadline. At dinner, Jack toasts Nick and Anne’s anniversary and to their friendships. The men think they were responsible for bringing them all together, but Anne insists they met through the women. The next day, the men race motorcycles across the property, despite Danny’s objections. In their competitive zeal, Jack and Nick skid off the path, ditching their bikes as Danny races to victory. Later, as the couples lounge on a lake rowboat, Nick mentions his success as an estate planner, but Anne disparages him as merely an insurance salesman. Jack stands to make another toast and, to memorialize the moment, he jumps in the lake. Not to be outdone, Nick also jumps in. Danny grabs a loaf of bread and slips overboard. Laughing, the women join the men in the water. As they collect firewood, Jack is shocked when Nick reveals his intention to divorce Anne. Months later, on the group’s summer vacation sailing in the Virgin Islands, Nick brings his new, young girl friend, Ginny Newley. Being inexperienced sailors, the friends break their anchor and get lodged on a sandbar prior to cruising around the islands. On the small sailboat, the friends are kept awake during the night by Nick and Ginny’s incessant lovemaking, and are surprised to discover the couple skinnydipping in the morning. Kate and Claudia are somewhat jealous of the parade of gifts that Nick bestows upon Ginny and, when he presents her with a pearl ring in a clamshell, their jokes make Ginny feel awkward. As Ginny and Nick retire below deck, Kate admits she is angry at Nick for leaving Anne, but is inspired by the couple’s passion. Claudia wistfully wonders how they lost that feeling. Jack is defensive, particularly when Kate insists it is natural for him to be jealous of Nick. When Jack restrains his anger and tries to analyze the situation, Kate laughs at him. They kiss, but are interrupted by Claudia and Danny, jumping into the ocean naked. Months later, in the autumn, the couples, including Ginny, squeeze into Danny’s new Mercedes Benz to attend Parents’ Weekend at the university attended by Beth Burroughs and Lisa Callan. Beth is happy to see her parents and enjoys school, but Lisa, reacting to her parents’ divorce, is sullen and withdrawn. When they check into the hotel, Nick discovers that Anne has claimed his reservation, but he is able to secure another room for himself and Ginny. When Anne enters the lobby, Kate and Claudia follow her outside to apologize for letting their friendship drift apart. Inside, Jack is shocked by Danny’s confession that Nick was unfaithful to Anne for years. Jack confronts Nick about his affairs, wondering why Nick did not confide in him, too. Nick counters that Jack is too judgmental and disapproving. As they finish lunch with Beth and Lisa, Danny irritates the others when he calculates everyone’s share of the bill to the penny, before suggesting they split the cost evenly. Later, when the group plays soccer, Jack and Nick are predictably competitive. In their hotel room, Kate is unsympathetic to Jack’s bloody knee and insists he can get his own ice. She is angry that Jack does not pay attention to her needs, and that he is jealous of Nick’s relationship with a young woman. When Jack refuses to anger, their argument escalates. Moments later, Jack meets Danny at the hallway ice machine. As they fill their buckets, Ginny joins them to collect ice for Nick’s injuries. On their next holiday, the group assembles in Stowe, Vermont, for a winter skiing vacation. On the first day, Jack and Nick race down the slopes and the competitive duo lands in the emergency room, where Jack is treated for a torn ligament and Nick’s broken ankle is put in a cast. At their lodge, Jack wants to talk about the group’s dynamic, insisting the situation has been awkward since Parents’ Weekend. No one else wants to discuss the topic and Ginny suggests they go for drinks at a nearby roadhouse. As they get into Danny’s Mercedes Benz, Nick asks when Jack will forgive him for leaving Anne. Danny replies that they are all mad at Nick; they love Ginny, but miss Anne. However, Jack denies being angry and Danny accuses him of dishonesty. At the roadhouse, Danny characterizes Jack as being cold and judgmental. Jack agrees to accept this assessment on condition that Danny admit he is controlling and hypochondriacal. Danny, ten years older than Jack, feels death hangs over him, and lists milk and underwear elastic among his greatest fears. Kate cannot help but laugh, and Ginny attempts to soothe Danny’s feelings by dancing with him. When they return to the lodge at 3:00 AM, everyone but Danny is laughing. While the ladies make coffee, Ginny suggests that Kate owes Danny an apology. Insisting that laughter can combat depression, Kate tells Ginny to stop worrying about things she does not understand. Infuriated, Ginny puts on her jacket and informs the group that she is tired of trying to establish a relationship with Nick under the constant scrutiny of the others. As she leaves for a run in the snow, Nick hobbles outside to follow her, but Jack stops him, insisting that Ginny will be fine. He is surprised to learn Ginny is pregnant. Kate convinces them to go back inside and, as they wait, she leads a discussion on friendship, suggesting that Jack stop judging their friends. Jack restrains his anger and claims that he is rational and cheerful, regardless of how people treat him. When Kate questions why Jack avoids anger, Jack unleashes his fury, breaking dishes and lamps. When he pulls a moose head from the wall and attempts to shove it into the fireplace, the others rush to calm him. Shocked at his behavior, Jack apologizes but Kate declares no one is mad at him for getting angry. By daylight, Ginny has not returned. Nick and Jack want to search for her, but they are both injured and Danny offers to find Ginny. Danny spots Ginny jogging on a hillside and calls to her as he crosses a frozen pond. However, the ice cracks beneath him and he falls into the water. Ginny runs to the lodge for help and everyone gets into the Mercedes to rescue Danny. They drive the car onto the ice, tie a rope around Danny and pull him to safety. Danny is alive, but his beloved Mercedes falls through the ice and sinks into the cold water. +

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

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