The Last Starfighter (1984)

PG | 101 mins | Adventure, Science fiction | 13 July 1984

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HISTORY

       HR production charts on 24 May 1983 stated that principal photography began 9 May 1983 in Los Angeles and Soledad Canyon, CA. Other locations included Griffith Park. A May 1984 Marquee article reported that the production had a $13 million budget, and used 27 minutes of computer-generated imagery (CGI).
       The Last Starfighter marked the final feature film role for actor Robert Preston.
      End credits include the following statements: “Video Game available from Atari, Inc.,” and, “Read the Berkley Book.”
...

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       HR production charts on 24 May 1983 stated that principal photography began 9 May 1983 in Los Angeles and Soledad Canyon, CA. Other locations included Griffith Park. A May 1984 Marquee article reported that the production had a $13 million budget, and used 27 minutes of computer-generated imagery (CGI).
       The Last Starfighter marked the final feature film role for actor Robert Preston.
      End credits include the following statements: “Video Game available from Atari, Inc.,” and, “Read the Berkley Book.”

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
13 Jun 1983
p. 10, 118
Hollywood Reporter
24 May 1983
---
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jul 1984
p. 4
Los Angeles Times
13 Jul 1984
p. 4
Marquee
May 1984
pp. 21-22
New York Times
13 Jul 1984
p. 5
Variety
13 Jun 1983
---
Variety
11 Jul 1984
p. 16
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Lorimar presents
A Lorimar presentation
A Universal/Lorimar production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Nick Castle
Dir
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
DGA trainee
Prod mgr
PRODUCERS
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Gaffer
Best boy elec
Key grip
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Lighting tech
Lighting tech
Lighting tech
Lighting tech
Dolly grip
Still photog
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Prod illustrator
Illustrator
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set des
Set des
Set des
Prop master
Asst prop
Const coord
Star Car built by
Swing gang
COSTUMES
Cost des
Costumer
Men`s ward
Women's ward
MUSIC
Mus supv
Mus ed
Mus ed
SOUND
Prod sd mixer
Supv sd ed
Boom op
Sd ed
ADR ed
Asst sd ed
Foley artist
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Dolby stereo consultant
3rd man
Sd supv
Sd eff mgr
VISUAL EFFECTS
Digital scene simulation
Mechanical eff makeup
Spec eff
Spec eff
Spec eff
Opt eff
Jeffrey A. Okun
Visual eff coord
Digital Productions, Tech exec
Digital Productions, Prod exec
Digital Productions, Unit supv
Digital Productions, Sr drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Sr tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Tech mgr
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Drafter/Encoder
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Software development
Digital Productions, Digital post prod coord
Digital Productions, Digital ed
Digital Productions, Digital ed
Digital Productions, Asst to prod exec
Digital Productions, Supercomputer
Titles
MAKEUP
Des makeup
Tech makeup
Mechanical eff makeup
Head hairstylist
Asst hairstylist
Makeup supv
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Scr supv
Prod coord
Prod auditor
Prod liaison
Loc mgr
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Unit pub
Asst to Nick Castle
Secy to Gary Adelson
Secy to Edward O. Denault
Craft service
Animal handler
Animal handler
Casting coord
Post prod mgr
Film librarian
Welfare teacher
STAND INS
Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Never Crossed My Mind," by Craig Safan & Mark Mueller, performed by Clif Magness; "Incommunicado," by Craig Safan & Mark Mueller, performed by Clif Magness; "Satisfy The Night," by Craig Safan & Mark Mueller, performed by Karen Blake & Greg Prestopino; "Red Eyes," by Craig Safan & Mark Mueller, performed by Clif Magness.
SONGWRITER/COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
13 July 1984
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 13 Jul 1984
Production Date:
began 9 May 1983 in Los Angeles and Soledad Canyon, CA
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Lorimar/Universal
2 August 1984
PA223164
Physical Properties:
Sound
Recorded in Dolby Stereo® in selected theaters
Color
Lenses
Filmed in Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
101
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
27358
SYNOPSIS

Teenager Alex Rogan lives at the Starlite Starbrite trailer park with his mother, Jane, and brother, Louis. In addition to her job as a waitress in a nearby town, Jane serves as the park’s manager, and Alex helps with maintenance. The boy spends his free time playing an arcade game, “Starfighter,” which simulates space battles, at the park’s convenience store. One day, Alex stays behind to work while his friends go to a lake for a picnic, but he reminds them that while they stay home to attend City College, he is destined for bigger things. Later, Alex is jealous when his girlfriend, Maggie Gordon, gets a ride home from another boy. Alex breaks the Starfighter record to the cheers of his neighbors. Afterward, Alex assures Maggie he will return for her once he is settled at college. When Jane arrives home, she informs Alex he did not get a student loan and will be attending City College with his friends. Sitting outside, Alex witnesses a futuristic-looking “Star Car” pull up to the park. The driver, Centauri, introduces himself as the inventor of Starfighter and wants to meet the person who broke the game’s record. Centauri invites Alex to go for a ride and discuss something of the utmost importance, but will not reveal their destination. Soon, Alex realizes he is in a rocket ship and Centauri is an alien. In another part of the universe, they land on the planet Rylos, which Alex recognizes from the video game. Other than Centauri, no one speaks English and an electronic translator is attached to his collar, allowing him to understand what the others say. Alex learns he has been recruited ...

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Teenager Alex Rogan lives at the Starlite Starbrite trailer park with his mother, Jane, and brother, Louis. In addition to her job as a waitress in a nearby town, Jane serves as the park’s manager, and Alex helps with maintenance. The boy spends his free time playing an arcade game, “Starfighter,” which simulates space battles, at the park’s convenience store. One day, Alex stays behind to work while his friends go to a lake for a picnic, but he reminds them that while they stay home to attend City College, he is destined for bigger things. Later, Alex is jealous when his girlfriend, Maggie Gordon, gets a ride home from another boy. Alex breaks the Starfighter record to the cheers of his neighbors. Afterward, Alex assures Maggie he will return for her once he is settled at college. When Jane arrives home, she informs Alex he did not get a student loan and will be attending City College with his friends. Sitting outside, Alex witnesses a futuristic-looking “Star Car” pull up to the park. The driver, Centauri, introduces himself as the inventor of Starfighter and wants to meet the person who broke the game’s record. Centauri invites Alex to go for a ride and discuss something of the utmost importance, but will not reveal their destination. Soon, Alex realizes he is in a rocket ship and Centauri is an alien. In another part of the universe, they land on the planet Rylos, which Alex recognizes from the video game. Other than Centauri, no one speaks English and an electronic translator is attached to his collar, allowing him to understand what the others say. Alex learns he has been recruited by the Star League to be a Starfighter, and defend the Frontier against a rebel named Xur and the Ko-Dan Armada. As Alex explains to Centauri and a pilot named Grig that he does not want be part of their war, Xur appears as a hologram to threaten his father, Ambassador Enduran, the commander of the Starfighters. Reluctantly, Centauri returns Alex to Earth, but gives him a “communal crystal” to signal if he changes his mind. Meanwhile, Xur orders an attack on the Starfighter base, and a traitor inside the base sabotages its defenses. Back on Earth, Maggie slaps Alex and informs him she is no longer speaking to him. Alex realizes that Centauri left a “simuloid,” called Beta, a robotic replica to take his place while he was away. A hitchhiker enters the trailer park, but is revealed to be an alien when he passes near the Starfighter arcade game. When Alex goes outside to summon Centauri to retrieve Beta, the alien attacks him. Centauri arrives and wounds the alien, explaining it is a Xanodan, an assassin sent by Xur to kill Alex. The Xanodan fires on Centauri, wounding him, but is killed in the exchange. Centauri warns Alex that Xur will continue to send Xanodans after him. The only way to protect Earth is to return to Rylos and be a Starfighter. Alex acquiesces, but Centauri apparently dies from his injuries on their arrival on Rylos. Alex is the last remaining Starfighter and a lizard-like being named Grig trains him to be a gunner on a Gunstar warship. Grig tests Alex in a skirmish with a Xurian warship. Afterward, Alex claims he is not a true Starfighter, and he and Grig share photographs of their families. Later, Alex devises a plan to attack the Ko-Dan Armada, and realizes he might be a Starfighter after all. On Earth, Beta attempts to maintain the pretense of being Alex, but his odd behavior raises Maggie’s suspicions. Beta tries to explain he is not really Alex, but she does not believe him until a Xanodan, disguised as a police officer, wounds Beta, exposing his circuitry. Beta tells Maggie he must kill the Xanodan so that Xur does not learn Alex is in space. The simuloid rams a stolen truck into the Xanodan’s police car, and Xur believes Alex, the last remaining Starfighter, has been killed. Back in space, Alex and Grig enact their attack plan on the Armada. Realizing Alex is alive, Lord Kril relieves Xur of his command, and prepares to defend against the Gunstar. Xur flees in an escape pod as Alex uses his Starfighter abilities to defeat the Armada. The command ship attacks while the Gunstar recharges its power supply, but Grig evades fire. Alex neutralizes the command ship and the vessel is sucked into a moon’s gravitational pull and explodes. Following the battle, Ambassador Enduran invites Alex to remain to help rebuild the Star League with the help of an old friend. Centauri steps forward and explains that he did not die, but simply went dormant while his body repaired itself. As he contemplates Enduran’s offer, Alex receives a hero’s welcome from the citizens of Rylos. Later, on Earth, as Maggie wonders how she will explain the situation to Alex’s mother, the Gunstar lands and Alex emerges in his Starfighter uniform. When he kisses Maggie, she knows it is really him. The residents of the trailer park gather around the spacecraft and Alex introduces them to Grig. Alex invites Maggie to join him on Rylos. She is afraid to leave home, but changes her mind when she realizes Alex is really leaving. As the Gunstar blasts off, Louis begins playing the Starfighter game, hoping to one day emulate his brother.

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

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