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HISTORY

       According to a 19 Jun 1992 DV article, Jonas McCord’s story, Damages, had been in development at Castle Rock Entertainment since the company’s conception in 1987, but it was not until 29 Mar 1989 that Var announced the project as one of nine new features being readied for production. Three years later, the 24 Feb 1992 Var reported that Castle Rock executive Rachel Pfeffer decided to step down from her position in order to produce Damages as part of a first-look production deal within the company.
       A 13 Sep 1993 HR article stated that Aaron Sorkin composed two drafts of the script before he was required to work on the motion picture adaptation of his 1989 play, A Few Good Men, which had been acquired from turnaround by Castle Rock. In the meantime, Scott Frank contributed to the screenplay’s “thriller structure,” and Harold Becker joined the project as director and producer, the 15 Sep 1993 HR reported. In a 27 Sep 1993 HR conversation with Martin A. Grove, Becker said he was “unsatisfied” with the current ending, in which Bill Pullman’s character, “Andy Safian,” “remained a victim” of his wife’s deception, and he decided to revise the story to include a “third act.” Upon completion of A Few Good Men (1992, see entry), Sorkin returned to write another draft of Damages. The 19 Jun 1992 DV claimed that Alec Baldwin had seen earlier versions of the script, but did not agree to star until reading Sorkin’s most recent rewrite.
       Contemporary sources suggested that ... More Less

       According to a 19 Jun 1992 DV article, Jonas McCord’s story, Damages, had been in development at Castle Rock Entertainment since the company’s conception in 1987, but it was not until 29 Mar 1989 that Var announced the project as one of nine new features being readied for production. Three years later, the 24 Feb 1992 Var reported that Castle Rock executive Rachel Pfeffer decided to step down from her position in order to produce Damages as part of a first-look production deal within the company.
       A 13 Sep 1993 HR article stated that Aaron Sorkin composed two drafts of the script before he was required to work on the motion picture adaptation of his 1989 play, A Few Good Men, which had been acquired from turnaround by Castle Rock. In the meantime, Scott Frank contributed to the screenplay’s “thriller structure,” and Harold Becker joined the project as director and producer, the 15 Sep 1993 HR reported. In a 27 Sep 1993 HR conversation with Martin A. Grove, Becker said he was “unsatisfied” with the current ending, in which Bill Pullman’s character, “Andy Safian,” “remained a victim” of his wife’s deception, and he decided to revise the story to include a “third act.” Upon completion of A Few Good Men (1992, see entry), Sorkin returned to write another draft of Damages. The 19 Jun 1992 DV claimed that Alec Baldwin had seen earlier versions of the script, but did not agree to star until reading Sorkin’s most recent rewrite.
       Contemporary sources suggested that the start of filming was repeatedly delayed throughout late summer and early fall of 1992. The 10 Nov 1992 HR production chart confirmed that principal photography began 3 Oct 1992, as Untitled Harold Becker. An unsourced “exhibitor relations” item in AMPAS library files suggested that the title was briefly changed to Bodily Harm before its final re-title as Malice. In the 13 Sep 1993 HR, Pfeffer explained that the film was renamed to avoid confusion with the 1992 French picture, Damage.
       According to production notes in AMPAS library files, four weeks of filming took place at the following Massachusetts locations: Smith College in Northampton; the Boston Center for Adult Education, which stood in for a law office; a Beacon Street apartment in Boston’s financial district; the Abbey Tavern; the Lord Jeffrey Inn in Amherst; and a neighborhood in Cambridge. Production then continued in Culver City, CA, until Jan 1993. Interiors of the “Safian” Victorian home, a hospital, and the Cape Cod beach house, yard, and cliffs, were constructed on sound stages at Culver Studiosdios. The 19 Jun 1992 DV estimated a production schedule of seventy days. The 3 Sep 1993 edition of LADN stated that Anne Bancroft and Bill Pullman spent six weekends rehearsing their seven-minute scene, which was Bancroft’s only appearance in the film.
       The 24 Sep 1993 HR announced that Columbia Pictures planned to hold a sneak preview in 600 theaters the following day, before the 1 Oct 1993 release on 1,000 screens and later expansion to 1,500 screens on 8 Oct 1993. The film received mixed reviews, with critics both praising Sorkin’s screenplay and noting his heavy reliance on clichéd tropes within the popular thriller genre.
      End credits state: “‘Lensman’ footage courtesy of E. E. ‘Doc’ Smith, MK Company Limited and Streamline Pictures”; “Filmed at Culver Studiosdios, Culver City, California and on location in Massachusetts”; and, “Producers wish to thank: Cities of Cambridge, Boston and Northampton; Town of Amherst; Smith College; Massachusetts Film Office; Bay State Medical Center; Barry Kieselstein-Cord; Lisa Lieberman.”
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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
27 Apr 1992.
---
Daily Variety
19 Jun 1992
p. 1, 72.
Hollywood Reporter
28 Jul 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
10 Nov 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
13 Sep 1993.
---
Hollywood Reporter
15 Sep 1993.
---
Hollywood Reporter
24 Sep 1993
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Sep 1993.
---
Hollywood Reporter
27 Sep 1993
p. 10, 20.
Los Angeles Daily News
3 Sep 1993
L.A. Life Weekend, p. 4.
Los Angeles Times
1 Oct 1993
Calendar, p. 12.
New York Times
1 Oct 1993
Section C, p. 5.
Variety
29 Mar 1989.
---
Variety
24 Feb 1992.
---
Variety
4 Oct 1993
pp. 38-39.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Castle Rock Entertainment
In association with New Line Cinema presents
A Harold Becker film
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Exec prod
Assoc prod
Co-exec prod
WRITERS
Story
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st cam asst
2nd cam asst
Steadicam op
Steadicam op
Gaffer
Key grip
Still photog
Video and computer supv
24 frame video op
Best boy elec
Rigging gaffer
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Key rigging grip
Best boy rigging grip
Cam loader
Photographic equip by
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir
Illustrator
Art dept supv
Art dept coord
Asst art dir
FILM EDITORS
1st asst ed
2d asst ed
Negative cutter
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Boston set dec
Prop master
Set des
Set des
Set des
Set des
Const coord
Gen foreman
Leadman
Drapery foreman
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Prod buyer
Asst prop master
Labor foreman
Labor foreman
Labor foreman
Propmaker foreman
Const foreman
Const foreman
Const foreman
Sign maker
Paint foreman
Plaster foreman
Greensman
Greensman
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost supv
Cost supv
Costumer
Costumer
Costumer
MUSIC
Song consultant
Mus ed
Orch cond by
Mus scoring mixer
SOUND
Prod sd mixer
Boom op
2d boom op
Supv sd ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Sd ed
Sd ed
Supv ADR ed
1st asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Foley artist
Foley artist
Foley mixer
ADR group coord
Field sd eff
Field sd eff
Foley rec
ADR rec
Re-rec facilities
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff supv
Spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Computer graphics
Title des
Main and end titles by
Opticals
Spec visual eff by
MAKEUP
Key makeup artist
Makeup artist
Key hair stylist
Hair stylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Scr supv
Loc mgr
Loc mgr
Ms. Kidman's dialect coach
Prod coord
Asst prod coord
Boston prod coord
Asst loc mgr
Tech adv
Asst to Harold Becker
Asst to Rachel Pfeffer
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Boston transportation coord
Boston transportation capt
Prod accountant
Asst prod accountant
Asst prod accountant
Asst prod accountant
Set estimator
Pub
Casting asst
Extras casting
Boston casting
Boston extras casting
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Boston picture cars
Key set prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Asst to Ms. Kidman
Asst to Mr. Baldwin
Craft service
Consultant
Completion guaranty provided through
Travel services provided by
STAND INS
Stunt coord
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
Col and prints by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Mama Told Me Not To Come," written by Randy Newman, performed by The Wolfgang Press, courtesy of 4AD Records/Reprise Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products
"Slave To Love," written and performed by Bryan Ferry, courtesy of Reprise Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products and Virgin EG Records Ltd.
"Little Miss Can't Be Wrong," written and performed by Spin Doctors, courtesy of Epic/Associated Records, by arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
+
SONGS
"Mama Told Me Not To Come," written by Randy Newman, performed by The Wolfgang Press, courtesy of 4AD Records/Reprise Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products
"Slave To Love," written and performed by Bryan Ferry, courtesy of Reprise Records, by arrangement with Warner Special Products and Virgin EG Records Ltd.
"Little Miss Can't Be Wrong," written and performed by Spin Doctors, courtesy of Epic/Associated Records, by arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
"Miss You," written by Greg Phillinganes, Bobby Colomby and Eric Clapton, performed by Eric Clapton, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records, Inc., by arrangement with Warner Special Products
"My Funny Valentine," written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart, performed by Gene Harris, courtesy of Concord Jazz, Inc.
+
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Damages
Untitled Harold Becker
Bodily Harm
Release Date:
1 October 1993
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 1 October 1993
Production Date:
3 October 1992--January 1993
Copyright Claimant:
Castle Rock Entertainment
Copyright Date:
4 November 1993
Copyright Number:
PA665219
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Duration(in mins):
107
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
32448
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Shortly after arriving in the Boston suburb of Westerly, Massachusetts, surgeon Dr. Jed Hill saves the life of a female college student who was victim to the attack of a serial rapist on campus. When Associate Dean Andy Safian inquires after her condition, he recognizes Jed as a former high school classmate. Later, as Andy meets his wife, Tracy, for lunch, the couple run into Jed and exchange pleasantries. That night, Andy is troubled when Tracy receives a ride home from a man he does not know, but she waves off his concerns, insisting he is her late mother’s lawyer, Dennis Riley. As they make love, Andy becomes distracted by the silhouette of the ten-year-old neighbor he suspects watches them through their bedroom window. The next afternoon, Jed stops by to invite Andy to lunch while he searches for a house in the neighborhood. Recalling Tracy’s idea to earn extra money by renting out the third floor bedroom of their renovated Victorian home, Andy offers the space to Jed. Tracy reluctantly agrees to let him stay, but is mortified to learn that Andy also told Jed she has been suffering from frequent abdominal pains. Jed’s presence quickly wears on Tracy after he sneaks up on her in the bathroom and engages in disruptive trysts with other women. When her pain worsens, however, Jed is forced to operate on her ruptured ovary, aborting a developing fetus in the process. Meanwhile, a female student misses her appointment with Andy, which causes him to worry. At the girl’s house, he finds her body in the backyard with all her hair cut off--the “trademark” of the serial rapist. Although she has been working ... +


Shortly after arriving in the Boston suburb of Westerly, Massachusetts, surgeon Dr. Jed Hill saves the life of a female college student who was victim to the attack of a serial rapist on campus. When Associate Dean Andy Safian inquires after her condition, he recognizes Jed as a former high school classmate. Later, as Andy meets his wife, Tracy, for lunch, the couple run into Jed and exchange pleasantries. That night, Andy is troubled when Tracy receives a ride home from a man he does not know, but she waves off his concerns, insisting he is her late mother’s lawyer, Dennis Riley. As they make love, Andy becomes distracted by the silhouette of the ten-year-old neighbor he suspects watches them through their bedroom window. The next afternoon, Jed stops by to invite Andy to lunch while he searches for a house in the neighborhood. Recalling Tracy’s idea to earn extra money by renting out the third floor bedroom of their renovated Victorian home, Andy offers the space to Jed. Tracy reluctantly agrees to let him stay, but is mortified to learn that Andy also told Jed she has been suffering from frequent abdominal pains. Jed’s presence quickly wears on Tracy after he sneaks up on her in the bathroom and engages in disruptive trysts with other women. When her pain worsens, however, Jed is forced to operate on her ruptured ovary, aborting a developing fetus in the process. Meanwhile, a female student misses her appointment with Andy, which causes him to worry. At the girl’s house, he finds her body in the backyard with all her hair cut off--the “trademark” of the serial rapist. Although she has been working closely with Andy on the case, Detective Dana Harris discovers forensic evidence connecting him to the victims, and requests he provide a sperm sample to rule him out as a possible suspect. When Andy hears of Tracy’s hospitalization, he speaks with Jed, who says she may die unless he removes her second, seemingly necrotic ovary, thus eliminating her ability to conceive again. The pathologist later determines that Tracy’s second ovary was actually healthy, but Jed stands by his decision and accepts the consequences. Blaming Andy for consenting to the extraction, Tracy moves out of the house and hires Dennis Riley to file a lawsuit against Jed. Dennis wins Tracy a $20 million settlement from the insurance company by painting her as a tragic victim and asserting that Jed had been drinking alcohol before the procedure. While working late one night, Andy finds several locks of hair among the personal belongings of the college handyman, Earl Leemus, and determines that he is the rapist. Leemus attempts to strangle him, but Andy knocks him unconscious. At the police station, Detective Harris tells Andy that his sperm sample reveals him to be sterile, suggesting the aborted baby was not his. Andy approaches Jed with the hope of using Tracy’s infidelity to seek revenge. Jed opts to stay out of the dispute, simply claiming that bad things often happen to good people without reason. Andy barges into Dennis Riley’s office, accusing him of having an affair with Tracy and conspiring to commit insurance fraud. The lawyer denies involvement, but discloses that Tracy’s estranged mother is still alive and living as a shut-in alcoholic across town. Andy tracks her down and offers her a bottle of single malt Scotch whisky in exchange for spilling Tracy’s secrets. Drunk, the old woman reveals that Tracy was once impregnated by a millionaire from Newport, Rhode Island, who paid her to have an abortion. After briefly working for a doctor named David Lillianfield, she absconded with $80,000 of the clinic’s money. Now convinced that Tracy was impregnated again by Dr. Lillianfield, Andy obtains his address and sneaks into his beachside cottage. Moments later, however, Andy learns that there is no Dr. Lillianfield, as Tracy enters the house in an intimate embrace with Jed. Heartbroken, Andy slips out the door and returns home, where he finds a hypodermic needle containing traces of a fertility drug that is prone to cause ovarian cysts. He confronts Tracy with the knowledge that she and Jed orchestrated her illness and manipulated the surgery with the intent of collecting the insurance money. Andy demands half of her settlement, warning that if she has him killed, his legal testament will direct police to the voyeuristic neighbor boy he believes has witnessed Jed and Tracy’s affair. Although Jed wants to meet Andy’s demands, Tracy refuses to split the money three ways, and considers murdering the child instead. When Jed slaps her for making such a suggestion, Tracy shoots him and telephones Andy, falsely promising to meet him with the money. That night, Tracy waits until the neighbor’s nurse has left the house before sneaking upstairs to suffocate the boy. As she grabs him, however, she discovers the body is a dummy placed by Andy, who is standing behind her. Tracy charges at her husband, sending them toppling over the second floor balcony, and Detective Harris appears in a nurse’s disguise to arrest her. As she is being led to the police car, Tracy sees the boy return to the house and realizes he is blind. With his broken arm in a sling, Andy suggests he and Detective Harris have a drink, declaring that he will order a glass of single malt whisky. +

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

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