Hercules (1983)

PG | 101 mins | Adventure | 26 August 1983

Director:

Lewis Coates

Writer:

Lewis Coates

Cinematographer:

Alberto Spagnoli

Editor:

James Beshears

Production Designer:

M. A. Geleng

Production Company:

Cannon Films
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HISTORY

       The character names "Cassiopeia" and "King Augeas" are misspelled in credits, but corrected in the summary.
       The 12 Mar 1982 DV announced that actor Lou Ferrigno would play the title role in the $6 million production, Hercules, to be directed by Bruno Mattei, from a screenplay by Ricardo Ghione, with Alexander Hacohen as executive producer. Principal photography was scheduled to begin May 1982 in Rome, Italy. A full-page advertisement in the 25 Mar 1982 HR included Swedish actress Mary Stavin in the cast, named Claudio Fragasso as screenwriter, and Ennio Morricone as music composer and conductor. Neither Mattei, Ghione, Hacohen, Stavin, Fragasso, nor Morricone appear in onscreen credits.
       According to the 17 Aug 1982 HR, principal photography began Aug 1982 in Italy under the direction of Luigi Cozzi (Lewis Coates), with a cast that included Sybil Danning and William Berger, and John Thompson as executive producer. A news item in the same issue incorrectly announced Thompson as associate producer. Another advertisement for the film appeared in the 12 Oct 1982 HR, featuring updated credits for cast and crew, although Morricone was still listed as composer and conductor.
       The 21 Apr 1982 Var reported that another film about the mythical character “Hercules” was currently in production, titled Hercules in New York (1970, see entry), starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, which was reportedly unrelated to Schwarzenegger’s prior release of the same name. Almost a year later, the 8 Apr 1983 LAT confirmed that Hercules in New York was indeed a reissue, and its distributor, Filmpartners, Inc., ... More Less

       The character names "Cassiopeia" and "King Augeas" are misspelled in credits, but corrected in the summary.
       The 12 Mar 1982 DV announced that actor Lou Ferrigno would play the title role in the $6 million production, Hercules, to be directed by Bruno Mattei, from a screenplay by Ricardo Ghione, with Alexander Hacohen as executive producer. Principal photography was scheduled to begin May 1982 in Rome, Italy. A full-page advertisement in the 25 Mar 1982 HR included Swedish actress Mary Stavin in the cast, named Claudio Fragasso as screenwriter, and Ennio Morricone as music composer and conductor. Neither Mattei, Ghione, Hacohen, Stavin, Fragasso, nor Morricone appear in onscreen credits.
       According to the 17 Aug 1982 HR, principal photography began Aug 1982 in Italy under the direction of Luigi Cozzi (Lewis Coates), with a cast that included Sybil Danning and William Berger, and John Thompson as executive producer. A news item in the same issue incorrectly announced Thompson as associate producer. Another advertisement for the film appeared in the 12 Oct 1982 HR, featuring updated credits for cast and crew, although Morricone was still listed as composer and conductor.
       The 21 Apr 1982 Var reported that another film about the mythical character “Hercules” was currently in production, titled Hercules in New York (1970, see entry), starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, which was reportedly unrelated to Schwarzenegger’s prior release of the same name. Almost a year later, the 8 Apr 1983 LAT confirmed that Hercules in New York was indeed a reissue, and its distributor, Filmpartners, Inc., was “having discussions” with Cannon Films, distributor of Hercules , with a tentative plan for a summer 1983 release of both pictures, but at opposite ends of the season. The 7 Apr 1983 DV stated that Hercules was scheduled to open 8 Jul 1983.
       The film garnered negative reviews, exemplified by the 29 Aug 1983 LAHExam, which described it as “a mythological mishmash of unprecedented ludicrousness.” The review also indicated that Ferrigno’s voice was dubbed by another actor, who was not credited onscreen.
      End credits include the following statements: "Filmed at Studios de Paolis, RPA-Elios Studios, Laboratory Valcauda;" "Music recorded at Forum Studios;" "Mixed at Twickenham Film Studios (London)."
More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
12 Mar 1982.
---
Daily Variety
7 Apr 1983.
---
Hollywood Reporter
25 Mar 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
17 Aug 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
12 Oct 1982.
---
Hollywood Reporter
30 Aug 1983
p. 3, 33.
LAHExam
29 Aug 1983
p. C-3.
Los Angeles Times
8 Apr 1983.
---
Los Angeles Times
29 Aug 1983
p. 6.
New York Times
28 Aug 1983
p. 61.
Variety
21 Apr 1982.
---
Variety
31 Aug 1983
p. 18.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
The Cannon Group Presents
A Golan-Globus Production
A Cannon Film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Cam op
Cam asst
Cam asst
Still man
Key grip
Gaffer
Cam equip
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Draftsman
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dresser
Propman
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost
MUSIC
SOUND
Boom man
Post synch supv
Spec sd eff
Sd mixer
Sd mixer
Dolby consultant
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec visual eff
Spec FX
Cam op, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Cam op, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Cam asst, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Unit coord, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Key grip, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Gaffer, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Spec FX, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Spec FX, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Spec FX, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Underwater photog, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Cam asst, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Spec zoning, Miniatures and spec visual eff
Opt house
Opt house
Opt house
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairdresser
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod dir
Prod accountant
Scr supv
Post prod facilities
Pub
STAND INS
Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
DETAILS
Release Date:
26 August 1983
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 26 August 1983
Production Date:
began August 1982 in Rome, Italy.
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo
Color
Duration(in mins):
101
MPAA Rating:
PG
Countries:
Italy, United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Zeus, the king of the gods, and goddesses Hera and Athena discuss the fate of humanity now that Pandora’s jar has unleashed evil on the world. Athena persuades Zeus to create a hero of supreme strength and intelligence who will be a champion for good. The child, named Hercules, is born to King Amphitryon and Queen Alcmene of Thebes. Army commander Valcheus acquires the sacred sword of Hera and gives it to Adriana, daughter of the evil King Minos, who covets the sword for its power over fire. Valcheus also desires the throne and has the king and queen killed, but Hercules is rescued by chambermaid, who spirits him out of the palace and sets him adrift in a boat on the river. Zeus ensures Hercules’ safety until a farmer and his wife discover the child when the boat runs aground. As Hercules reaches manhood, he is mystified by his superhuman strength, and ponders what his life’s purpose might be. When his father is killed by a bear, Hercules throws the animal into the sky, where it becomes the constellation, Ursa Major. King Minos observes Hercules through his crystal ball, and enlists the aid of the sorceress Daedalus in eliminating the hero. She produces three large mechanical monsters: a flying insect, a three-headed dragon, and a centaur. After his mother is killed by the mechanical insect, Hercules leaves his home in search of his destiny. He travels to the kingdom of Tyre, where King Augeas holds trials to find a suitable warrior to escort his daughter, Cassiopeia, to Athens. After Hercules passes each of the tests handily, ... +


Zeus, the king of the gods, and goddesses Hera and Athena discuss the fate of humanity now that Pandora’s jar has unleashed evil on the world. Athena persuades Zeus to create a hero of supreme strength and intelligence who will be a champion for good. The child, named Hercules, is born to King Amphitryon and Queen Alcmene of Thebes. Army commander Valcheus acquires the sacred sword of Hera and gives it to Adriana, daughter of the evil King Minos, who covets the sword for its power over fire. Valcheus also desires the throne and has the king and queen killed, but Hercules is rescued by chambermaid, who spirits him out of the palace and sets him adrift in a boat on the river. Zeus ensures Hercules’ safety until a farmer and his wife discover the child when the boat runs aground. As Hercules reaches manhood, he is mystified by his superhuman strength, and ponders what his life’s purpose might be. When his father is killed by a bear, Hercules throws the animal into the sky, where it becomes the constellation, Ursa Major. King Minos observes Hercules through his crystal ball, and enlists the aid of the sorceress Daedalus in eliminating the hero. She produces three large mechanical monsters: a flying insect, a three-headed dragon, and a centaur. After his mother is killed by the mechanical insect, Hercules leaves his home in search of his destiny. He travels to the kingdom of Tyre, where King Augeas holds trials to find a suitable warrior to escort his daughter, Cassiopeia, to Athens. After Hercules passes each of the tests handily, the king awards him the mission, and warns Hercules of the evil demons in the service of King Minos and Adriana. A high official named Dorcon insists on a final test, and challenges Hercules to clean the long-neglected sacred stables, home to 1000 horses, by the following dawn. Hercules accepts the task, which the princess believes to be impossible. Shortly before sunrise the next morning, Cassiopeia visits Hercules in the stables and discovers that no work has been done. When Hercules asks why Cassiopeia covers her face with a veil, she explains that she is betrothed to the son of Hera, and because she is destined to marry the first man who sees her face, it must remain hidden. Hercules requests that she remove the veil if he completes his task, and Cassiopeia agrees, confident that he will lose the wager. She follows him to the nearby riverbank, where he uses large boulders to divert the river into the stables. Moments later, the waters subside and the stables are immaculate. When Cassiopeia removes her veil, she and Hercules fall in love, incurring the wrath of Zeus, who strikes them unconscious with a lightning bolt. Dorcon and his soldiers place the couple aboard a ship, and Hercules is thrown overboard. He regains consciousness and swims for seven days until he reaches the island of the elderly sorceress Circe, who offers him food and rest. She informs Hercules that Cassiopeia is being taken to Thera, where King Minos intends to sacrifice her to Hera. Circe offers to aid Hercules in Cassiopeia’s rescue, but she must first drink ten drops of his blood to restore her youth and beauty. In return, Hercules must help her retrieve her sacred talisman, hidden by King Minos in the center of Hell. Knowing the dangers that lie ahead, Circe gives Hercules a sword and a shield for protection. Approaching the passageway to Hell, they encounter the Hydra, the three-headed mechanical dragon that “spits cosmic rays of deadly fire.” At Circe’s urging, Hercules uses his shield to deflect the rays, which disintegrate the dragon. After retrieving the talisman, they are transported to the shores of Africa, where King Xenodama asks for Hercules’s help in irrigating the land. Circe turns Hercules into a giant and he forces the continents of Europe and Africa apart, allowing the sea to flow between them. King Xenodama rewards Hercules and Circe with the flying chariot of Perseus, and they fly to Thera. Upon reaching Atlantis, the capital of Thera, Circe realizes that her powers have been neutralized by her love for Hercules, and she is killed by the death ray from Daedalus’s mechanical centaur. Hercules demolishes the machine with a boat anchor and makes his way to the palace where Cassiopeia has been drugged into submission in preparation for the sacrifice. As Hercules enters, he falls through a trap door into a dungeon. He resists Adriana’s efforts to seduce him, overpowers the guards, and runs to Cassiopeia’s rescue. Meanwhile, King Minos leads Cassiopeia onto a footbridge straddling the crater of a volcano, places her in a crucible, and begins to lower her into the crater. Hercules interrupts the sacrifice and the king attacks him with a flaming sword. Hercules grabs the sacred sword of Hera and kills both King Minos and Adriana. He and Cassiopeia escape to a neighboring island as the volcano erupts and Atlantis sinks into the sea. Cassiopeia declares her love for Hercules and they ascend into the heavens, where they become a constellation. +

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

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