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Rosemary's Baby (1968)

R  |   |  Drama, Horror  |  12 June 1968 (USA)
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A young couple move into a new apartment, only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins controlling her life.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Terry (as Angela Dorian)
Mr. Nicklas (as Elisha Cook)
Dr. Hill
Hanna Landy ...
Dr. Shand (as Philip Leeds)
D'Urville Martin ...


Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse move into an apartment in a building with a bad reputation. They discover that their neighbours are a very friendly elderly couple named Roman and Minnie Castevet, and Guy begins to spend a lot of time with them. Strange things start to happen: a woman Rosemary meets in the laundry dies a mysterious death, Rosemary has strange dreams and hears strange noises and Guy becomes remote and distant. Then Rosemary falls pregnant and begins to suspect that her neighbours have special plans for her child. Written by Goth <brooks@odie.ee.wits.ac.za>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Pray for Rosemary's Baby


Drama | Horror


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

12 June 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El bebé de Rosemary  »

Box Office


$2,300,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Casting for this film presented its own problems: Roman Polanski at first saw Rosemary as an "All-American Girl" and sought Tuesday Weld for the lead, but she passed. Jane Fonda was then approached, but turned down the offer so she could make Barbarella (1968) in Europe with then-husband Roger Vadim. According to his memoirs, Polanski for a while had the idea of having his future wife Sharon Tate on the part of Rosemary, but he decided not to because it would have been unethical. Other actresses considered for the part were Julie Christie, Elizabeth Hartman and Joanna Pettet. Robert Evans suggested Mia Farrow based on her TV work and her media appeal (at the time she was Mrs. Frank Sinatra). Both men wanted Robert Redford for the role of Guy Woodhouse, but negotiations broke down when Paramount's lawyers blundered by serving the actor with a subpoena over a contractual dispute regarding his pulling out of Silvio Narizzano's film Blue (1968). Other actors considered were Richard Chamberlain, Jack Nicholson and James Fox. Laurence Harvey begged to do it, Warren Beatty turned it down claiming "Hey! Can't I play Rosemary?", before the part was offered to John Cassavetes. For Minnie and Roman Castevet, William Castle suggested Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, the famous Broadway acting duo. He even tried to convince Polanski to let him play the part of Dr. Sapirstein, a role eventually filled by Ralph Bellamy. See more »


At the funeral, one of the limousines is a 1968 though the movie is set in 1966. See more »


Guy Woodhouse: What the hell is that?
Rosemary Woodhouse: I've been to Vidal Sassoon.
Guy Woodhouse: You mean you actually paid for it?
See more »


Referenced in Roseanne: Satan, Darling (1996) See more »


Composed by Krzysztof Komeda
Sung by Mia Farrow
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A Landmark Horror film
1 November 2002 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

"Rosemary's Baby" is one of the best horror films ever made. This isn't because it's going to scare the pants off you with a series of sensational jolts. This isn't the shallow, gimmicky kind of horror movie we mostly get these days, and it isn't the traditional old-fashioned horror film of an earlier era. This is a movie that came out during a period of transition in Hollywood. The old production codes were breaking down and films could suddenly be more true to life in the way they showed how people really lived, acted and talked. 1968s "Rosemary's Baby" is a more sophisticated, less elegant thriller of the kind that Alfred Hitchcock patented, but it displays much more class and intelligence than the horror movies that would come out in its wake. Popular '70s films such as "The Exorcist" and "The Omen" are the prodigy of "Rosemary's Baby," but offer far less nuance and much greater vulgarity. What we get here is a more naturalistic depiction of modern life, but without the crassness that would soon explode into American cinema.

Most of the credit for what makes "Rosemary's Baby" such a successful film goes to Roman Polanski. Polanski is a master at conveying to an audience not just a sense of the uncanny but a vivid depiction of it. His earlier films like "Knife in the Water," "Repulsion" and "Dance of the Vampires," display the talents that would come to such a controlled mastery in "Rosemary's Baby."

Polanski very faithfully adapts Ira Levin's novel to the screen so that the viewer is, just as the reader was, free to interpret the eerie events of the story as either reality or a depiction of an isolated woman's decent into madness. At the same time the picture can be taken as a black joke on the human male's fears of the changes a woman goes through during pregnancy, both physically and emotionally. But Polanski seems most interested in presenting a normal world, in this case Manhattan in the mid 1960s, and then through subtle cinematic techniques get an audience to actually believe that the hysterical, fantastic ravings of the heroine could be true. It is this tour de force exercise in suspension of disbelief that makes the film a classic. The horror films that have come since have had to ratchet up the shock effects in order to thrill more desensitized audiences, but this deliberately paced film reminds us of how much better it is to leave things to the imagination of the viewer. That is where films really come alive and remain so.

The Paramount DVD presents an excellent print of the movie that looks as if it were shot yesterday, along with extras that include new interviews with Polanski, executive producer Bob Evans and production designer Richard Sylbert, and a featurette from the time of the film's original release that really works as a good time capsule.

73 of 91 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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