Lucas (1986)

PG-13 | 100 mins | Comedy-drama, Romance | 28 March 1986

Director:

David Seltzer

Writer:

David Seltzer

Producer:

David Nicksay

Cinematographer:

Reynaldo Villalobos

Editor:

Priscilla Nedd

Production Designer:

James Murakami

Production Company:

Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

A 27 Apr 1986 NYT article stated that writer-director David Seltzer’s inspiration for the story came from notes he jotted down fifteen years earlier as a possible theme for later use. For the idea of a scientifically directed teenager’s first unrequited love, Seltzer called upon moments from his own experience.
       Production notes in AMPAS library files state that filmmakers were not interested in casting “brat pack” actors for their movie, and visited thirteen cities looking for fresh talent. What mattered was finding juvenile actors with eccentricities and idiosyncrasies, who had some experience but were not overexposed. In addition, filmmakers hired 500 background actors, many of whom were students from Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, IL, according to a 28 Mar 1986 Chicago Tribune article.
       A 4 Apr 1985 HR article announced that principal photography began 6 May 1985, but according to a 21 Jun 1985 DV production chart, shooting began 20 May 1985. The film’s budget was $7 million, and the 27 Apr 1986 NYT noted the picture was filmed over a period of forty-four days.
       Production notes state that various Illinois suburbs including Arlington Heights, Glen Ellyn, West Chicago and Wilmette stood in for Lucas’s town of Deer Park, IL. Much of the action was shot at Glenbard West High School.
       Articles in the Chicago Tribune, and the 3 Apr 1986 HR reported that the movie’s world premiere was held 27 Mar 1986 at the Glen Theater in Glen Ellyn, IL. A lottery was held to determine which residents would obtain tickets for the 470 available seats.
       ... More Less

A 27 Apr 1986 NYT article stated that writer-director David Seltzer’s inspiration for the story came from notes he jotted down fifteen years earlier as a possible theme for later use. For the idea of a scientifically directed teenager’s first unrequited love, Seltzer called upon moments from his own experience.
       Production notes in AMPAS library files state that filmmakers were not interested in casting “brat pack” actors for their movie, and visited thirteen cities looking for fresh talent. What mattered was finding juvenile actors with eccentricities and idiosyncrasies, who had some experience but were not overexposed. In addition, filmmakers hired 500 background actors, many of whom were students from Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, IL, according to a 28 Mar 1986 Chicago Tribune article.
       A 4 Apr 1985 HR article announced that principal photography began 6 May 1985, but according to a 21 Jun 1985 DV production chart, shooting began 20 May 1985. The film’s budget was $7 million, and the 27 Apr 1986 NYT noted the picture was filmed over a period of forty-four days.
       Production notes state that various Illinois suburbs including Arlington Heights, Glen Ellyn, West Chicago and Wilmette stood in for Lucas’s town of Deer Park, IL. Much of the action was shot at Glenbard West High School.
       Articles in the Chicago Tribune, and the 3 Apr 1986 HR reported that the movie’s world premiere was held 27 Mar 1986 at the Glen Theater in Glen Ellyn, IL. A lottery was held to determine which residents would obtain tickets for the 470 available seats.
       Production notes and a Twentieth Century Fox Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc. press release state that the movie marked writer-director David Seltzer’s feature film directorial debut. Actors Tom Hodges, Ciro Poppiti, Winona Ryder, Jeremy Piven, Gary Cole, and Courtney Thorne-Smith also made their theatrical film debuts in supporting roles.
       The following acknowledgments appear in end credits: “The Filmmakers wish to thank: Glenbard West High School, Glen Ellyn, Illinois; Drs. Bob Elliot and Frank Danes; Illinois Film Commission, Suzy Kellett, Director; Cities of Chicago, Glen Ellyn, Highland Park, Wilmette and Arlington Heights, Illinois.” More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
Jun 1986.
---
Chicago Tribune
28 Mar 1986
pp. 1-2.
Daily Variety
21 Jun 1985.
---
Hollywood Reporter
4 Apr 1985.
---
Hollywood Reporter
26 Mar 1986
p. 3, 14.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Apr 1986.
---
Los Angeles Times
28 Mar 1986
Section H, p. 9.
New York Times
28 Mar 1986
p. 22.
New York Times
27 Apr 1986.
---
Variety
2 Apr 1986
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
A Lawrence Gordon Production
A David Seltzer Film
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
Addl 2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
Gaffer
Key grip
Still photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Addl ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Leadman
Prop master
Const coord
COSTUMES
Cost des
Costumer
MUSIC
Band coord
Mus ed
Mus ed
Asst mus ed
Asst mus ed
Score co-prod
Scoring mixer
Scoring mixer
SOUND
Sd mixer
Sd mixer
Sd ed
Supv ADR ed
ADR ed
Asst ADR ed
Asst mus ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Dolby consultant
VISUAL EFFECTS
Opticals by
Main title des
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
Makeup artist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Scr supv
Casting-Chicago
Casting-Chicago
Extra casting-Chicago
Crowd coord
Transportation capt
Unit pub
Prod coord
Loc mgr
Loc mgr
Asst to the prod
Asst to the prod
Loc asst
Loc asst
Loc auditor
Asst auditor
Football adv
STAND INS
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Post prod voices
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
SONGS
“Walk Of Life,” performed by Dire Straits, written by Mark Knopfler, courtesy of Phonogram Ltd./ Warner Bros. Records Inc. by arrangement with Warner Special Products
“Follow Your Heart,” performed and written by Peter Rafelson
“Night Rolls On,” performed by Chris Farren, written by Chris Farren and Curtis Stone, Courtesy of MCA Music
+
SONGS
“Walk Of Life,” performed by Dire Straits, written by Mark Knopfler, courtesy of Phonogram Ltd./ Warner Bros. Records Inc. by arrangement with Warner Special Products
“Follow Your Heart,” performed and written by Peter Rafelson
“Night Rolls On,” performed by Chris Farren, written by Chris Farren and Curtis Stone, Courtesy of MCA Music
“King For A Day,” performed by The Thompson Twins, written by Tom Bailey, Alannah Currie, Joseph Leeway, courtesy of Arista Records
“Hit Me With Your Best Shot,” written by Edward Schwartz, published by ATV Music Corp.
“Strut,” written by Charlie Dore and Julian Littman, published by Ackee Music Inc.
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
28 March 1986
Premiere Information:
Glen Ellyn, IL premiere: 27 March 1986
Los Angeles and New York openings: 28 March 1986
Production Date:
began 20 May 1985
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Copyright Date:
14 April 1986
Copyright Number:
PA286404
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Lenses
Lenses and Panaflex® camera by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
100
MPAA Rating:
PG-13
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
27764
SYNOPSIS

When a high school cheerleader discovers fourteen-year-old Lucas Bligh hiding in the bushes, the cheerleading squad calls Lucas a pervert as he runs away. At a nearby tennis court, Lucas watches sixteen-year-old Maggie practice her groundstrokes. When she asks him to return a ball, she wonders if he plays the game. He does not play, but reveals that he likes to study insects like locusts. As he turns on a tape player in his backpack and listens to classical music, she reveals that she just moved into the neighborhood, and they discover they will attend the same school in the fall, although Lucas looks much younger. Walking to Maggie’s car, he also claims to be an athlete, although he believes sports and partying are superficial. Maggie drops Lucas at his palatial home, which she admires. The next day, Maggie wants to set up a tennis date with Lucas but he claims his phone number is unlisted and his parents do not like him to give out the number. However, he agrees to meet her at the tennis court at 3:00 p.m. every day. While Lucas is an average tennis partner, he eagerly shows Maggie different insects in the woods. They also sneak into an underground park tunnel at night to listen to an outdoor classical music concert. He is surprised that they have become such good friends. When she really enjoys classical music, Lucas is lost in thought, and senses that their friendship will be tested when school starts. On the first day of classes, school principal Gordon Kaiser ushers students into the gymnasium for a pep rally. As Lucas walks toward Maggie, he becomes tangled up ... +


When a high school cheerleader discovers fourteen-year-old Lucas Bligh hiding in the bushes, the cheerleading squad calls Lucas a pervert as he runs away. At a nearby tennis court, Lucas watches sixteen-year-old Maggie practice her groundstrokes. When she asks him to return a ball, she wonders if he plays the game. He does not play, but reveals that he likes to study insects like locusts. As he turns on a tape player in his backpack and listens to classical music, she reveals that she just moved into the neighborhood, and they discover they will attend the same school in the fall, although Lucas looks much younger. Walking to Maggie’s car, he also claims to be an athlete, although he believes sports and partying are superficial. Maggie drops Lucas at his palatial home, which she admires. The next day, Maggie wants to set up a tennis date with Lucas but he claims his phone number is unlisted and his parents do not like him to give out the number. However, he agrees to meet her at the tennis court at 3:00 p.m. every day. While Lucas is an average tennis partner, he eagerly shows Maggie different insects in the woods. They also sneak into an underground park tunnel at night to listen to an outdoor classical music concert. He is surprised that they have become such good friends. When she really enjoys classical music, Lucas is lost in thought, and senses that their friendship will be tested when school starts. On the first day of classes, school principal Gordon Kaiser ushers students into the gymnasium for a pep rally. As Lucas walks toward Maggie, he becomes tangled up with football players called to the stage. A player named Bruno jokingly insists that Lucas is part of the team and carries Lucas on stage, manipulating him like a puppet until he evades Bruno’s grasp. Lucas mugs to the crowd, and pantomimes football moves until the coach demands he leave. When Maggie runs after him, he tells her the gag was planned. She wants to know if his parents will attend parent-teacher night so she can introduce her mother. He angrily informs her that they do not attend such superficial events. She changes the subject, and invites him to go to a movie. Later, at the movie refreshment counter, Lucas’s friend, Ben, orders treats for everyone. Bruno the bully appears, ribs Lucas about joining the football team, and insults Ben about his weight. When Ben and Lucas hurl insults at Bruno, the atmosphere grows tense. Cappie, another football player, defends Lucas, and Bruno backs down. Back at school, Cappie soils his shirt during a home economics class, and Maggie volunteers to show him how to use the school laundry machines. As they wash and fold his clean laundry, Cappie recalls how he was sick at home with hepatitis and Lucas would stop by everyday to bring his schoolbooks and help with his assignments. After Cappie recovered, he stopped bullying Lucas like the other athletes. When Maggie wants to know why people pick on Lucas, Cappie guesses it is because he does not fit in. Cappie suggests that Maggie try out for cheerleading. Later, Lucas tries to talk Maggie out of being a cheerleader. He accuses her of being shallow, but she retorts that she would like to have fun and meet people. She hints that he may be the one who is missing out. Later, Maggie is furious when Lucas asks Cappie for a ride to the dance so Lucas can help Maggie make more friends. Maggie is mortified that Lucas makes her sound like a social cripple when she never agreed to go to the dance with him in the first place. Lucas’s friend, Rina, invites him to the dance, but he declines and says he already has a date. Both Lucas and Cappie’s girlfriend Alise notice a growing attraction between Cappie and Maggie. Alise demands that Cappie ignore Maggie, and does not want him to chauffeur Lucas and Maggie to the dance. When Cappie refuses, the couple end their relationship. On dance night, Maggie tells Lucas that Cappie is upset over the breakup. Instead of going to the dance, Maggie and Cappie decide to eat pizza and invite Lucas. Angrily, Lucas insists on going to the dance alone. Rina finds Lucas sitting by the lake. He shows her an insect caught in a bottle and asks her questions about Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, claiming he has some decisions to make and leaves. Lucas bicycles to the pizza parlor and sees Maggie and Cappie kissing. The next day in band class, Ben announces that Lucas is trying out for the football team. The coach tells Lucas his uniform does not fit and his tryout is over. Lucas cites a Supreme Court decision saying that any student trying out for a team sport has to be given the same fair chance as anyone else. If the coach does not comply, Lucas threatens to take him to court. In the locker room, Lucas goes into the communal shower where Bruno insults him. Lucas turns the tables and suggests that Bruno is a homosexual. The team retaliates by rubbing Icy-Hot salve on Lucas’s groin and shoving him out the door, wearing just a towel. He pretends to be dancing when Maggie asks him why he is jumping around. He runs across the field past the laughing cheerleadering squad and finds relief in a birdbath. Later, Principal Kaiser bans Lucas from football tryouts until his parents agree to discuss their son’s extreme need to become a football player. Mr. Kaiser also refuses Lucas’s request to suit up and sit on the bench. Later, Lucas refuses to talk to Maggie, but she finds him hiding below an underpass. He is annoyed that Maggie and Cappie have become romantically involved and wants to understand why he and Maggie have never been more than friends. She tries to convey that there are some people you like in a special way, and believes Lucas’s understanding of science offers the best explanation. He responds that in Darwin’s process of natural selection, the males with the greatest physical prowess are the most attractive. By breeding with the strongest males, the females ensure the survival of the species. She tells him he is wonderful, but he is disappointed that it does not translate into a romance. He insists that she leave, and sinks into depression, spending time with his insects. At a home football game, the players lack focus, and are losing. The coach is upset as the opposing team scores another goal and Bruno is tackled hard. Soon, Lucas appears in an ill-fitting football uniform. He challenges the coach to allow him on the field for one play since the team is so far behind. Lucas joins the team after the coach buckles under his insults. Cappie wants Lucas off the field, but instead, Lucas joins the huddle and asks the players to pass him the ball. As Maggie calls out to Lucas, he is distracted and is knocked down by an opposing player. However, he recovers, and evades teammates, chasing after him. Referees tell the coach, he only has thirty seconds more to put the ball in play and must remove an extra man from the field. In the confusion, the referees eliminate a real player instead of Lucas. Although the players exclude him from the huddle, he remains on field and positions himself near the end zone. When Lucas’s friends demand that Cappie throw him the ball, Lucas makes the catch, but the ball slips from his hands and he disappears in a pileup. He recovers and hangs onto an opposing player, who intercepts the ball and travels down the field. When Lucas’s teammate tackles the two, a second pileup occurs in which Lucas is injured. Lucas is taken to the hospital as Cappie, Maggie and Rina drive to his home to give his parents the bad news. However, when they reach the residence, Rina and Cappie tell Maggie that Lucas does not live there, he works for the gardener, and lives in a trailer park. When Lucas’s parents are not home, his friends camp out in the hospital lounge. Later, Maggie wanders into his hospital room. When he wakes up, she is relieved that he is okay and wipes away her tears. She demands that he stop playing football, and he agrees. She sits down on the bed and takes his hand. He apologizes for endangering himself but believes he had something to prove. He wonders if they will still be friends when the locusts return in seventeen years. He hopes so, and she agrees. Later, when Lucas returns to school, the football players watch as he opens his locker. Inside the locker is a team jacket with a varsity letter and his name sewn on the back. Bruno starts the applause, and the whole school joins in as Lucas raises his arms in victory.
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Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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