Stephen King's Graveyard Shift (1990)

R | 87 mins | Horror | 26 October 1990

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HISTORY

The 15 Aug 1990 Var and 11 Aug 1990 Screen International reported that principal photography took place over eight weeks, from 11 Jun to 2 Aug 1990. According to production notes in AMPAS library files, locations included Bangor, Maine, and several nearby villages, including Harmony (where the Bartlettyarn Mill stood in for Bachman Mills), Brewer, and Hermon (where the filmmakers used a closed diner and a warehouse). Stephen King wrote the original short story, “Graveyard Shift,” while teaching at a high school in Hermon. The production used two cotton pickers. One large machine belonged to the Bartlettyarn Mill, and the other was moved from Canada to a soundstage in Brewer. The 15 Oct 1990 Var noted that the film’s budget was $11 million.
       Bachman, the name of the cotton mill’s owner, was also a Stephen King pseudonym: Richard Bachman.
       When Republic Pictures Corp. purchased Sugar Entertainment Inc., it acquired a financial participation in Stephen King’s Graveyard Shift, the 8 Oct 1990 Business Wire reported.
       Stephen King’s Graveyard Shift was released during the Halloween weekend, and suffered a fifty percent drop in box office revenue during the second week of release, according to the 6 Nov 1990 DV. Reviews were mostly negative. The 29 Oct 1990 DV predicted the film would “be buried quickly by word of mouth,” and the 29 Oct 1990 HR noted “the blameless Mr. King has nothing to do with this mess.” The 29 Oct 1990 LAT speculated from its construction that the film “has been pruned considerably.”
       End credits contain the following acknowledgments: ... More Less

The 15 Aug 1990 Var and 11 Aug 1990 Screen International reported that principal photography took place over eight weeks, from 11 Jun to 2 Aug 1990. According to production notes in AMPAS library files, locations included Bangor, Maine, and several nearby villages, including Harmony (where the Bartlettyarn Mill stood in for Bachman Mills), Brewer, and Hermon (where the filmmakers used a closed diner and a warehouse). Stephen King wrote the original short story, “Graveyard Shift,” while teaching at a high school in Hermon. The production used two cotton pickers. One large machine belonged to the Bartlettyarn Mill, and the other was moved from Canada to a soundstage in Brewer. The 15 Oct 1990 Var noted that the film’s budget was $11 million.
       Bachman, the name of the cotton mill’s owner, was also a Stephen King pseudonym: Richard Bachman.
       When Republic Pictures Corp. purchased Sugar Entertainment Inc., it acquired a financial participation in Stephen King’s Graveyard Shift, the 8 Oct 1990 Business Wire reported.
       Stephen King’s Graveyard Shift was released during the Halloween weekend, and suffered a fifty percent drop in box office revenue during the second week of release, according to the 6 Nov 1990 DV. Reviews were mostly negative. The 29 Oct 1990 DV predicted the film would “be buried quickly by word of mouth,” and the 29 Oct 1990 HR noted “the blameless Mr. King has nothing to do with this mess.” The 29 Oct 1990 LAT speculated from its construction that the film “has been pruned considerably.”
       End credits contain the following acknowledgments: “Special thanks to the following executives of JVC: Tokyo office: Kunio Kakigi; Masahiro Inbe; Masahiro Nishizawa; Makoto Hasegawa; Masaaki Hisamatsu; Los Angeles liaison office: Teruhiko Noguchi; Heidi Lester.” Also, “The producers wish to thank: Lindsley Parsons, Sr.; William Tyrer; Christopher Ball; Paul Kijzer; Lew Horwitz; John Flock; Charles Meeker III; Katherine Goodman; Adrian Scrope; Howard Fabrick; The Maine Film Commission; the City of Bangor, Maine; Maine Army National Guard; Maj. General Ernest C. Park, the Adjutant General; Brig. Gen. Nelson Durgin, Assistant Adjutant General; Headquarters Troop Command; Commander of the 240th Engineering Group; the City of Brewer, Maine; Bartlett Yarns Mill Workers; Graveyard Shift logo design by Tim Cobb; Larry Smith; Shirley Sonderegger; George Demick; Tom Valentine; Patagonia Outlet-Maine; Geolitz Confectionery Co.; and last, but not least, ‘Ralph the Rat.’” More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Business Wire
8 Oct 1990
p. 1
Daily Variety
26 Feb 1990
p. 55
Daily Variety
25 Jul 1990
p. 2
Daily Variety
29 Oct 1990
p. 2, 14
Daily Variety
31 Oct 1990
p. 3
Daily Variety
6 Nov 1990
p. 21
Hollywood Reporter
3 Jul 1990.
---
Hollywood Reporter
29 Oct 1990
p. 6, 15
Los Angeles Times
29 Oct 1990
Calendar, p. 9
New York Times
27 Oct 1990
p. 12
Screen International
11 Aug 1990.
---
Variety
15 Aug 1990
p. 15
Variety
15 Oct 1990
p. 122
Variety
5 Nov 1990
p. 73
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Paramount Pictures Presents
A Larry Sugar Production
A Ralph S. Singleton Film
Produced in association with JVC
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d unit dir
1st asst dir, 2d unit
PRODUCERS
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst photog
2d asst photog
2d asst photog
Still photog
Chief lighting tech
Asst chief lighting tech
1st company grip
2d company grip
Dolly grip
Dir of photog, 2d unit
Chief lighting tech, 2d unit
1st company grip/Dolly, 2d unit
Dailies processing by
Addl cam equip by
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Visual consultant
Art dir
Asst art dir
Art dept coord
FILM EDITORS
Post prod supv
Asst ed
Negative cutting
SET DECORATORS
Prop master
Set props
Asst set dec
Junior set des
Const coord
Gen const foreperson
Paint foreperson
Plaster foreperson
Set props, 2d unit
COSTUMES
Cost des
Costumer
Costumer, 2d unit
MUSIC
Mus rec and mixed by
Asst eng
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
Musician
SOUND
Looper
Looper
Looper
Looper
Looper
Looper
Sd mixer
Spec vocal eff
Boom op
Sd eff
ADR/Foley supv
Dial/ADR ed
Dial/ADR ed
Dial/ADR ed
Foley artist
Foley artist
Rerec mixer
Rerec mixer
Rerec mixer
ADR/Foley eng
Digital sd specialist
Digital sd asst
Sd eff creation
Spec sd processing
Looping company
VISUAL EFFECTS
Visual eff adv
Main title des
Opticals by
Opticals by
Spec visual eff
Spec visual eff
Spec visual eff
Mechanical eff
Eff supv
Image general mgr
Eff coord
Eff lead person
Eff lead person
Creature eff
Creature supv
Creature sculptor
Creature sculptor
Creature sculptor
Creature sculptor
Creature mechanicals
Creature mechanicals
FXSmith coord
MAKEUP
Key make-up artist
Make-up artist
Hair stylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Casting
Casting
Scr supv
Prod auditor
Asst auditor
Prod office coord
Asst prod office coord
Asst to Mr. Singleton
Asst to Mr. Dunn
Asst to Mr. Dunn
Prod secy
Local casting - Maine
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Animals supplied by
Animal trainer
Animal trainer
Animal trainer
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Transportation capt
Transportation co-capt
Catering by
Craft service
First aid
Asst to Mr. Chesney, 2d unit
Unit coord, 2d unit
Completion guarantee provided by
Prod financing provided by
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunts
Stunts
Stunts
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the short story "Graveyard Shift" by Stephen King (from Night Shift, New York, 1978).
AUTHOR
SONGS
"Bad Boys," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records
"Joanna," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records
"Honky Tonk Dreams," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band and Lacy J. Dalton, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records, Lacy J. Dalton performs courtesy of Capitol Nashville, a division of Capitol-EMI Music, Inc.
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SONGS
"Bad Boys," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records
"Joanna," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records
"Honky Tonk Dreams," by Charlie Daniels, William DiGregorio, Tommy Crain, Freddie Edwards, Charlie Hayward, performed by The Charlie Daniels Band and Lacy J. Dalton, Charlie Daniels performs courtesy of CBS Records, Lacy J. Dalton performs courtesy of Capitol Nashville, a division of Capitol-EMI Music, Inc.
"Surfin' Safari," by Brian Wilson & Mike Love, performed by The Beach Boys, courtesy of Deck Records
"Blue Hour," by Steven Moos, Norman Harris, Alfons Kettner, performed by The Metropolitans
"They're Gone," written and performed by Scott Reeder.
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DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Grave Yard
Graveyard Shift
Release Date:
26 October 1990
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 26 October 1990
New York opening: week of 27 October 1990
Production Date:
11 June--2 August 1990
Copyright Claimant:
Graveyard, Inc.
Copyright Date:
9 November 1990
Copyright Number:
PA505091
Physical Properties:
Sound
Spectral Recording Dolby Stereo™ in selected theatres
Color
Prints by Technicolor®
Lenses
Filmed with Panavision® cameras & lenses
Duration(in mins):
87
Length(in feet):
7,756
MPAA Rating:
R
Countries:
Japan, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
30739
SYNOPSIS

A worker in the basement of Bachman Mills, an aging textile factory in Gates Falls, Maine, is surrounded by rats. He picks up one, tosses it into a “cotton picker” machine to be ripped apart, and grabs another. When a figure appears behind him, the worker freezes in terror and falls backward into the machine. Rats feed on his blood and torn flesh. Mr. Warwick, the mill owner, hires exterminator Tucker Cleveland to rid the old basement of vermin. Using a long hose and generator, Tucker vacuums out rats with water and dumps them in the adjacent river. Meanwhile, John Hall, a drifter, arrives in Gates Falls and stops at a restaurant-bar to look at bulletin board with employment notices. He ignores the several men who insult him. Meanwhile, a state inspector looks at the Bachman Mills basement and tells Mr. Warwick it must be cleared out before he can hire another worker. When John Hall applies for work at the mill office, Warwick asks if he can run the “picker,” a machine that separates bales of cotton that arrive at the factory in burlap wraps. Warwick stresses that the mill relies on the picker, and Gates Falls relies on the mill, so the job is very important, despite its low pay. Also, because of the heat, the picker runs only at night—the graveyard shift. A female employee runs through the corridor outside the office, chased by a rat closely followed by Tucker Cleveland, who kills it. That night, rats are everywhere as John Hall slits open bales and dumps cotton into the picker. For recreation, he propels empty soda cans at the rats with a slingshot. Introducing himself, ... +


A worker in the basement of Bachman Mills, an aging textile factory in Gates Falls, Maine, is surrounded by rats. He picks up one, tosses it into a “cotton picker” machine to be ripped apart, and grabs another. When a figure appears behind him, the worker freezes in terror and falls backward into the machine. Rats feed on his blood and torn flesh. Mr. Warwick, the mill owner, hires exterminator Tucker Cleveland to rid the old basement of vermin. Using a long hose and generator, Tucker vacuums out rats with water and dumps them in the adjacent river. Meanwhile, John Hall, a drifter, arrives in Gates Falls and stops at a restaurant-bar to look at bulletin board with employment notices. He ignores the several men who insult him. Meanwhile, a state inspector looks at the Bachman Mills basement and tells Mr. Warwick it must be cleared out before he can hire another worker. When John Hall applies for work at the mill office, Warwick asks if he can run the “picker,” a machine that separates bales of cotton that arrive at the factory in burlap wraps. Warwick stresses that the mill relies on the picker, and Gates Falls relies on the mill, so the job is very important, despite its low pay. Also, because of the heat, the picker runs only at night—the graveyard shift. A female employee runs through the corridor outside the office, chased by a rat closely followed by Tucker Cleveland, who kills it. That night, rats are everywhere as John Hall slits open bales and dumps cotton into the picker. For recreation, he propels empty soda cans at the rats with a slingshot. Introducing himself, Tucker Cleveland tells John Hall the rats at Bachman Mills require special killing, because normal poison does not work on them. He shows Hall the pistol he uses on large ones, and explains that he originally dealt with rats in Vietnam. At first, he and his fellow soldiers lived with them, but then Viet Cong began staking captive Americans to the ground, cutting holes in their stomachs, and forcing hungry rats to dig inside and eat the soldiers’ guts while they were still alive. John Hall goes upstairs where the rest of the night shift works. Meanwhile, another employee named Stevenson wires lights around the massive basement for the cleanup. Surrounded by rats, he calls for his assistant, but a large creature kills him. A secretary hangs a “Now Hiring” sign out front. Hall returns to the restaurant-bar, where one of his coworkers serves him a dead rat on a platter. Outside the mill, employee Jane Wisconsky picks up John Hall and gives him a ride into town. Warwick watches disapprovingly, but Nardello, his mistress and office assistant, comes out of the mill and grabs him. Charlie Carmichael, an African American, approaches to ask for a job. Warwick hires him to begin cleaning the basement. When Carmichael asks what happened to the last guy on the job, Warwick answers he “didn’t work out.” Warwick also assigns Nardello to the cleanup crew, and she becomes enraged. Smashing his Cadillac with an axe, she screams that he cannot put her down there because she knows “things.” Warning her to watch what she says, Warwick starts to hit her, but John Hall grabs his fist and stops him. Jane Wisconsky calms Nardello down and takes her home. Later, Hall cleans the picker in the stifling heat, and during breaks, he shoots empty cans at the rats with his slingshot. Warwick apologizes for the misunderstanding. He offers an extra job on the cleanup crew, at double pay, for the upcoming Fourth of July holiday when the mill closes for a couple of days. John Hall accepts. When he invites Jane Wisconsky to his trailer for lunch, she tells him that Warwick offered her a job as office manager following her divorce, but her only duties were to “perform” on the office couch a couple of times a week. She stuck with it long enough to qualify for membership in the textile workers union. That night, Nardello breaks into Warwick’s office and rifles through his papers searching for incriminating evidence, but on her way out she stumbles in the dark, falls down stairs into the basement, and is attacked by rats. A large, slithering monster approaches. Later, the basement cleanup crew uses a power hose to blast rats with water. They move old chairs and boxes of files that have been rotting for years. When one worker complains that he came to clean up, not kill rats, Warwick fires him. Tucker Cleveland arrives with his rat terrier, “Moxie,” but Warwick complains that his method of using a vacuum to suck rats out of the building and dump them into the water below has angered people downriver. Cleveland claims Mr. Bachman, the mill owner, came up with the idea to pump rats into the river, but Warwick challenges him to prove it in writing. He asks Cleveland for one additional service: To rid the little graveyard below the mill of the rats he pumped from the basement. As Tucker Cleveland sets rat traps, Moxie runs into a crypt. Tucker tries to retrieve the dog, but is sucked into the muck, where the large creature kills him. Meanwhile, John Hall, Jane Wisconsky, Charlie Carmichael, Brogan, and Danson clean the basement. When John Hall finds a trap door, Warwick sends him into the sub-basement below, and the others volunteer to accompany him. The lower region is filled with old equipment. Brogan finds a human arm and runs, but he falls through the rotted floorboards into yet another, flooded area below. The creature drags him beneath the surface of the murky water. Danson, Carmichael, and Warwick run one way, and John Hall and Jane run another. They wade through water into a section of the crypt in the cemetery, and use a floating coffin to paddle through a cave. The rotting coffin breaks open and a skeleton tumbles out. Elsewhere, Danson, Carmichael, and Warwick hear the river. Carmichael reaches his arm through a hole, but something rips it off, sending Warwick and Danson running. However, one of the monster’s tentacles drags Danson beneath the floorboards. Warwick tumbles down a mineshaft into a pile of human skeletons. John Hall and Jane Wisconsky reach another series of caves and see a hole above them that reveals a silhouette of the mill. As they climb up the pile of bones, Warwick reaches from beneath the human debris and grabs Hall. They fight, and when Jane intervenes, Warwick stabs her with a knife. Hearing the creature roar, Warwick hurries back into the cave, but the monster wraps itself around him. John Hall watches it feed on its victim, then returns to the shaft and climbs upward. He finds himself in his basement workplace, surrounded by rats. The big creature breaks through the walls, but as one of its tentacles reaches into the picker, John Hall shoots a soda can at the start button. The picker turns on and drags the creature into the blades, and the rats rush into the machine to feed on its viscera.
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Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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