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The Missiles of October (TV Movie 1974) Poster

(1974 TV Movie)

Trivia

Three key actors in this film went on the play the American president elsewhere: Ralph Bellamy played President Franklin D. Roosevelt in War and Remembrance (1988); Martin Sheen played the fictional American President Josiah Bartlett in The West Wing (1999); and William Devane played a fictional President Hayes of the US on "Stargate: SG-1" (2004). All three American Presidents were Democrats, and all three actors portraying them have been Democrats.
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This tele-movie was originally shot on videotape, and first shown in this format, but when it was sold to local stations, it was transferred to film.
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Star Martin Sheen, who plays Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, went on to play American President John F. Kennedy in the television mini-series Kennedy (1983).
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In this production, actor William Devane played John F. Kennedy, the then President of the United States of America, whilst actor Martin Sheen played a member of his Cabinet. In the television series The West Wing (1999), this was the reverse, with Sheen playing the American President, and Devane portraying a member of his Cabinet.
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The title of this film is a reference to the book "The Guns of August," which had greatly impressed President John F. Kennedy and from which he drew inspiration in dealing with the Cuban Missile Crisis.
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This tele-movie was made and first broadcast about five years after its source book "Thirteen Days: A Memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis" by Robert F. Kennedy had been first published in 1969.
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This productions source book, "Thirteen Days: A Memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis" by Robert F. Kennedy, shares the same title as the later cinema movie about the Cuban Missile Crisis, Thirteen Days (2000).
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The opening title card of this tele-movie reads: "Tuesday Oct 16 - 0845".
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The acronym ExComm or EXCOMM stands for the "Executive Committee of the National Security Council" and has often been commonly abridged as just the "Executive Committee".
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The then Vice-President Lyndon B. Johnson of the United States of America, who was a member of the Executive Committee of the National Security Council, is not a character featured in this tele-movie. The real life VP Johnson character does however appear in Thirteen Days (2000), the later cinema movie about the Cuban Missile Crisis.
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Actor Martin Sheen, who plays Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy in this tele-movie, provides the opening narration in the Oliver Stone directed later theatrical feature film JFK (1991) about the assassination of American President John F. Kennedy.
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The role of John F. Kennedy was previously played by Cliff Robertson in PT 109 (1963), making the television mini-series Kennedy (1983) the first role that he and Martin Sheen had shared. They would later both play Peter Parker's Uncle Ben in Spider-Man (2002) (Robertson) and The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) (Sheen). Actor Martin Sheen portrays JFK's brother Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy in this tele-movie The Missiles of October (1974).
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Emilio Estevez, a son of star Martin Sheen, the latter of whom plays Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy in this tele-movie, went on to write, star in and direct a feature film about RFK, which was the cinema movie Bobby (2006). In this later movie, Sheen plays a character called Jack.
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This tele-movie was made and first broadcast about six and a half years after Robert F. Kennedy, the novelist of its source book "Thirteen Days: A Memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis", had been assassinated in 1968.
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Director Anthony Page, who directed this tele-movie starring actor William Devane playing American President John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis, later went on to direct F.D.R.: The Last Year (1980), where actor Jason Robards portrayed former American President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
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The production was nominated for eight Primetime Emmy Awards winning one for Outstanding Achievement in Technical Direction.
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Actor Bruce Greenwood would go on to play JFK years later, and he and William Devane (both actors who portrayed the president) worked together on the long running show 'Knots Landing' together.
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