Eddie Macon's Run (1983)

PG | 95 mins | Drama | March 1983

Director:

Jeff Kanew

Writer:

Jeff Kanew

Producer:

Louis A. Stroller

Cinematographer:

James A. Contner

Editor:

Jeff Kanew

Production Designer:

Bill Kenney

Production Company:

Universal Pictures
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HISTORY

End credits include the statement: “Special thanks to La Posada Hotel, Texas Film Commission, City of Laredo.”
       The 8 Mar 1977 HR announced tha author James McLendon’s “novel-in-progress," Eddie Macon’s Run, was acquired by Frank P. Rosenberg of Cutlass Productions. According to the 28 Mar 1977 Publishers Weekly, the novel was still in outline form at the time of the acquisition. In a letter to the Summer 1983 Movie Magazine, the author’s wife, Ann R. McLendon, stated that the “Macon” family was modeled on their family, although the second child, a daughter, was omitted from the final screenplay. Mrs. McLendon recalled her husband’s meticulous research for the novel, which included being driven down a one-way street in Laredo, TX, at high speed by a police officer to simulate the sensation of being in a car chase. She lamented the fact that author’s death from cancer on 12 Mar 1982 prevented him from seeing the finished picture, which was scheduled to open 25 Mar 1983 in her home state of NC.
       On 8 Nov 1978, Var reported that the film would be financed and produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (M-G-M) at the company’s Culver City, CA, studios, and distributed by United Artists Corporation. The screenplay was reportedly written by Spencer Eastman, although he is not credited onscreen. An article in the 12 Dec 1979 Var stated that M-G-M had withdrawn from the project sometime during the previous year. More than two years later, on 4 Jan 1982, HR announced Eddie Macon’s Run as the feature film debut for ... More Less

End credits include the statement: “Special thanks to La Posada Hotel, Texas Film Commission, City of Laredo.”
       The 8 Mar 1977 HR announced tha author James McLendon’s “novel-in-progress," Eddie Macon’s Run, was acquired by Frank P. Rosenberg of Cutlass Productions. According to the 28 Mar 1977 Publishers Weekly, the novel was still in outline form at the time of the acquisition. In a letter to the Summer 1983 Movie Magazine, the author’s wife, Ann R. McLendon, stated that the “Macon” family was modeled on their family, although the second child, a daughter, was omitted from the final screenplay. Mrs. McLendon recalled her husband’s meticulous research for the novel, which included being driven down a one-way street in Laredo, TX, at high speed by a police officer to simulate the sensation of being in a car chase. She lamented the fact that author’s death from cancer on 12 Mar 1982 prevented him from seeing the finished picture, which was scheduled to open 25 Mar 1983 in her home state of NC.
       On 8 Nov 1978, Var reported that the film would be financed and produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (M-G-M) at the company’s Culver City, CA, studios, and distributed by United Artists Corporation. The screenplay was reportedly written by Spencer Eastman, although he is not credited onscreen. An article in the 12 Dec 1979 Var stated that M-G-M had withdrawn from the project sometime during the previous year. More than two years later, on 4 Jan 1982, HR announced Eddie Macon’s Run as the feature film debut for actor John Schneider, who was currently on hiatus from his television series, The Dukes of Hazzard (CBS, 26 Jan 1979--8 Feb 1985). Principal photography was scheduled for early Mar 1982. The 9 Mar 1982 HR reported that Universal Pictures would begin photography 12 Apr 1982 in Laredo.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, writer-director Jeff Kanew and producer Louis A. Stroller traveled to TX in early 1982 to scout locations. They followed the trail of title character “Eddie Macon” as described in the novel, which began in Huntsville, went south to San Antonio, and then toward the U.S.-Mexico border. After considering the cities of Brownsville and El Paso, the team chose Laredo as their primary location, a decision that saved the production a considerable amount of time and money. Kanew, in consultation with production designer Bill Kenney, adapted his screenplay to suit the available facilities and locations the city had to offer. Among them was the Laredo International Fair and Exposition Grounds, where the rodeo sequence was filmed. The rodeo itself was supervised uncredited by Lester “Dusty” Davis, who supplied the animals, crew, and equipment to stage the event. In addition, the background actors were offered “autographed prizes and movie props” used by Schneider and actor Kirk Douglas. The “Potts ranch” was comprised of two locations: a hunting house on a 10,000-acre ranch in Encinal, TX, used for interior shots, and an abandoned Victorian home near Laredo for exterior shots, with an oil pump donated to the set by a member of the petroleum industry to “insure accuracy.” Other locations included Laredo City Hall, an oil-drilling company, a hospital, two schools, the International Border Bridge, the 13,000-acre Dolores Ranch on the Rio Grande, which served as the “Marzack” home, and an early twentieth-century courthouse in Catulla, TX. Interior sets, such as a jail cell and a hotel room, were built inside a rented warehouse, which also functioned as a mill and a storage facility. The 18 May 1982 DV reported that the picture was completed within its $5 million budget.
       The following year, the 14 Apr 1983 NYT announced that the New York City opening of Eddie Macon’s Run would be postponed to 29 Apr 1983. However, according to a news item in the 27 Apr 1983 HR, the film was a commercial failure following its Mar 1983 opening in the southern U.S., and would likely not be released theatrically. Press screenings resulted in lukewarm reviews, several of which suggested that the picture was better suited to television.
       An article in the 10 Jun 1983 HR stated that MCA Home Video, the home entertainment branch of Universal Pictures, scheduled a videotape release of the film for Jul 1983. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
BAM
6 May 1983.
---
Box Office
Jun 1983
pp. 53-54.
Daily Variety
7 Nov 1978.
---
Daily Variety
7 May 1982.
---
Daily Variety
18 May 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
8 Mar 1977.
---
Hollywood Reporter
4 Jan 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
9 Mar 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
30 Apr 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
23 Mar 1983
p. 3, 4.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Apr 1983.
---
Hollywood Reporter
10 Jun 1983.
---
Los Angeles Times
18 Apr 1982
p. 25.
Movie Magazine
Spring 1983
p. 12.
Movie Magazine
Summer 1983.
---
New York Times
14 Apr 1983
p. C-14.
Publishers Weekly
28 Mar 1977.
---
Variety
8 Nov 1978.
---
Variety
12 Dec 1979.
---
Variety
23 Mar 1983
p. 18, 20.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Martin Bregman Production
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
DGA trainee
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Key grip
Stills
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Best boy grip
Best boy
ART DIRECTOR
Prod des
FILM EDITORS
Asst film ed
2d asst film ed
Apprentice film ed
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Prop master
Set dec
Leadman
Const coord
Standby painter
COSTUMES
Cost supv
MUSIC
Arr and addl mus
Mus collaboration
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Sd re-rec
Sd eff ed
Asst sd ed
VISUAL EFFECTS
Titles and opt
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Scr supv
Prod secy
Unit pub
Transportation capt
Driver capt. (Texas)
Loc casting
Prod asst
Prod asst
Asst to prod and dir
Loc auditor
Snake handler
Chef
Helper
First aid
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Eddie Macon's Run by James McLendon (New York, 1980).
SONGS
"It's Gonna Be All Right," performed by John Schneider, courtesy of Scotti Bros. Records
"Forever More," performed by John Schneider, courtesy of Scotti Bros. Records
"Havin' You Back," performed by Lacy J. Dalton, courtesy of Columbia Records.
DETAILS
Release Date:
March 1983
Premiere Information:
NC opening: 25 March 1983
Los Angeles opening: 6 May 1983
Production Date:
began 12 April 1982 in Laredo, TX
Copyright Claimant:
Universal City Studios, Inc.
Copyright Date:
21 October 1983
Copyright Number:
PA190282
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Color by Technicolor
Lenses
Panaflex camera and lenses by Panavision
Duration(in mins):
95
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
26700
SYNOPSIS

In Huntsville, Texas, convict Eddie Macon escapes from a prison rodeo in a cattle truck, then makes his way to a riverbank, where his wife, Chris, has hidden a duffel bag containing clothes, food, a pistol, and a map that will guide him to Mexico. That evening, Inmate Transfer Officer Carl Marzack, a former police detective, offers his services to Police Lieutenant Joe Logan. Marzack reminds Logan that he foiled Eddie’s first escape attempt, and points to the scar he received when the prisoner resisted. Logan declines the proposal and forms a posse to track down the prisoner, though Marzack predicts that it is doomed to failure. He embarks on an unauthorized investigation, questioning Eddie’s former cellmate, Ray Banes, who reveals that Eddie spent much of his time studying geography in the library and jogging around the prison yard. Meanwhile, Eddie runs twenty-seven miles per day toward Mexico, where he intends to reunite with Chris and their son, Bobby. He reminisces about his life in Florida, and his dream of buying a fishing boat and going into business for himself. When Bobby contracted a blood disease, the resulting medical bills forced Eddie to postpone his plans. Eddie moved his family to Texas for a lucrative job in the oil industry, only to discover that his new employer, Mr. Hebert, extorted a hefty fee from his workers’ pay. Eddie assaulted his boss in the ensuing argument, for which he was later arrested, along with drinking while driving. On the advice of his attorney, Eddie pled guilty in hopes of a reduced sentence, but received a five-year prison term, which was ... +


In Huntsville, Texas, convict Eddie Macon escapes from a prison rodeo in a cattle truck, then makes his way to a riverbank, where his wife, Chris, has hidden a duffel bag containing clothes, food, a pistol, and a map that will guide him to Mexico. That evening, Inmate Transfer Officer Carl Marzack, a former police detective, offers his services to Police Lieutenant Joe Logan. Marzack reminds Logan that he foiled Eddie’s first escape attempt, and points to the scar he received when the prisoner resisted. Logan declines the proposal and forms a posse to track down the prisoner, though Marzack predicts that it is doomed to failure. He embarks on an unauthorized investigation, questioning Eddie’s former cellmate, Ray Banes, who reveals that Eddie spent much of his time studying geography in the library and jogging around the prison yard. Meanwhile, Eddie runs twenty-seven miles per day toward Mexico, where he intends to reunite with Chris and their son, Bobby. He reminisces about his life in Florida, and his dream of buying a fishing boat and going into business for himself. When Bobby contracted a blood disease, the resulting medical bills forced Eddie to postpone his plans. Eddie moved his family to Texas for a lucrative job in the oil industry, only to discover that his new employer, Mr. Hebert, extorted a hefty fee from his workers’ pay. Eddie assaulted his boss in the ensuing argument, for which he was later arrested, along with drinking while driving. On the advice of his attorney, Eddie pled guilty in hopes of a reduced sentence, but received a five-year prison term, which was increased to twenty years after his first attempted escape. He now faces a life sentence if he is recaptured. At the La Posada Motel in the border city of Laredo, Texas, Chris reserves a room for her husband, under the alias “Edward Lanson,” whom she promises will arrive in the next two days. In Huntsville, Marzack convinces police captain Mike Shorter to put him on the case, explaining that he misses being a policeman ever since he was dismissed from the force for killing a violent juvenile offender. He also seeks retribution against Eddie for scarring him. Late that night, Eddie stumbles onto the ranch of Daryl and Rudy Potts, who hold him at gunpoint while accusing him of cattle rustling. Unable to divulge his true identity, Eddie tells the brothers that he is an accountant from Dallas, Texas, on a camping trip. Neither is convinced and they take Eddie to their house, where Daryl and his wife, Kay, hang him from the living room ceiling. Rudy stops the hanging and Eddie falls to the floor unconscious. He awakens while the brothers are preoccupied with video games, retrieves the pistol from his duffel bag, and leaves the men with gunshot wounds as he makes his escape. When Marzack receives word of the shooting the next day, he travels to the Potts ranch, where he discovers Eddie’s duffel bag, containing the map of the fugitive’s route. On the outskirts of Laredo, Marzack lies in wait on a desert hilltop, armed with a high-powered rifle. Meanwhile, Eddie rescues a young woman named Jilly Buck from a rapist, and continues his escape in her car. Marzack arrives at the scene moments later, where he is forced to kill the attacker, Earl Barnes, in self-defense. Eddie admits to Jilly that he is an escaped convict, but when they are stopped by a policeman for speeding, she persuades the officer to overlook the incident. She then tells Eddie that she will assist with his escape for the sake of her own amusement. Continuing his investigation, Marzack learns that Eddie’s “hostage” is the wealthy niece of Texas governor Silas Allgood Montgomery, and a resident of Laredo. Eddie and Jilly arrive at La Posada Hotel, where Chris has hidden the key to a safety deposit box containing identification papers bearing Eddie’s new alias. That evening, Jilly makes sexual advances toward Eddie, but he declines, explaining he loves his wife too much to be unfaithful. The next morning, Marzack, posing as an aide to the governor, enlists the help of the police in locating Jilly, and surprises her and Eddie when they return to their hotel room. Jilly breaks a pitcher over Marzack’s head, allowing them to escape with the detective’s rifle. Marzack regains consciousness and pursues the pair as they drive toward the border. The chase ends in a cemetery as Marzack loses control of his car and it flips over. When Eddie pulls Marzack from the wreckage, the detective grudgingly lets him go free, and Jilly drives Eddie to the border, where she bids him a sad fairwell as he is reunited with his family. +

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

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