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The Towering Inferno (1974)

At the opening party of a colossal, but poorly constructed, office building, a massive fire breaks out that threatens to destroy the tower and everyone in it.

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Won 3 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lisolette
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Jernigan
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Bigelow
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Paula Ramsay (as Sheila Mathews)
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Giddings (as Normann Burton)
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Mayor Ramsay
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Storyline

Doug Roberts, Architect, returns from a long vacation to find work nearly completed on his skyscraper. He goes to the party that night concerned he's found that his wiring specifications have not been followed and that the building continues to develop short circuits. When the fire begins, Michael O'Halleran is the chief on duty as a series of daring rescues punctuate the terror of a building too tall to have a fire successfully fought from the ground. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One minute you're attending a party atop the world's tallest skyscraper. The next... you're trapped with 294 other guests in the middle of a fiery hell. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 January 1975 (Singapore)  »

Also Known As:

Flammendes Inferno  »

Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$116,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System) (5.0) (L-R)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The large sculpture that is part of the bar design in the Promenade Room was originally used in the Harmonia Gardens set in Hello, Dolly! (1969). See more »

Goofs

When Wess opens the electrical box that shorts out in the Utility Room, only the edge of the inside of the panel shows scorch marks (from the pyrotechnics that sparked). A real electrical short/explosion would have blackened the entire inside of the panel. See more »

Quotes

Chief O'Hallorhan: For what it's worth, architect, this is one building that I figured wouldn't burn.
Doug Roberts: Either did I.
[O'Hallorhan starts to walk toward Roberts's office on the 79th floor, so Roberts decides to add the kicker]
Doug Roberts: And they're celebrating! A party.
Chief O'Hallorhan: Party? What party? Where?
Doug Roberts: In the Promenade Room. 300 people.
Chief O'Hallorhan: Well, why didn't you get them the hell out of there?
Doug Roberts: Why don't you go on upstairs and talk to Duncan? He ain't exactly listening to me.
Chief O'Hallorhan: I will.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. Pictures logos don't appear in the beginning. See more »

Connections

Featured in Boom! Hollywood's Greatest Disaster Movies (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

We May Never Love Like This Again
Maureen McGovern sings
Words and Music by Al Kasha and Joel Hirschhorn
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Still impressive
27 December 2003 | by (london) – See all my reviews

When I was an impressionable teenager in 1975 I saw Towering Inferno 4 times at the cinema, Still a record for me, and despite the years and jaded view of middle age, this is still a thrilling film, mainly because the effects are so realistic, no CGI then, and the characters are so presented well (if a bit archly at times). I still cannot decide if the ending would actually put the fire out, but who cares, that countdown still gets to me. I forgot how good Paul Newman was in his role, and I can never forget Fred Astaire, such a smooth performance. Great cinema, daft in parts, but the best films always are.


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