IMDb > The Day of the Locust (1975)
The Day of the Locust
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The Day of the Locust (1975) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
7.2/10   3,439 votes »
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Up 76% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Nathanael West (novel)
Waldo Salt (screenplay)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Day of the Locust on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 August 1975 (France) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
By train. By car. By bus. They came to Hollywood... In search of a dream. See more »
Plot:
An art director in the 1930's falls in love and attempts to make a young woman an actress despite Hollywood who wants nothing to do with her because of her problems with an estranged man and her alcoholic father. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Plague Descends See more (65 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Donald Sutherland ... Homer Simpson

Karen Black ... Faye Greener

Burgess Meredith ... Harry Greener

William Atherton ... Tod Hackett

Geraldine Page ... Big Sister

Richard Dysart ... Claude Estee

Bo Hopkins ... Earle Shoop

Pepe Serna ... Miguel
Lelia Goldoni ... Mary Dove

Billy Barty ... Abe Kusich

Jackie Earle Haley ... Adore (as Jackie Haley)
Gloria LeRoy ... Mrs. Loomis (as Gloria Le Roy)
Jane Hoffman ... Mrs. Odlesh

Norman Leavitt ... Mr. Odlesh (as Norm Leavitt)
Madge Kennedy ... Mrs. Johnson
Ina Gould ... Lee Sisters
Florence Lake ... Lee Sisters
Margaret Willey ... The Gingos
John War Eagle ... The Gingos

Natalie Schafer ... Audrey Jennings
Gloria Stroock ... Alice Estee

Nita Talbot ... Joan
Nicholas Cortland ... Projectionist
Alvin Childress ... Butler
Byron Paul ... Guest
Virginia Baker ... Guest
Roger Price ... Guest
Angela Greene ... Guest
Robert O. Ragland ... Guest
Abbey Greshler ... Guest
Ann Coleman ... Girl
Gyl Roland ... Girl

Paul Stewart ... Helverston

John Hillerman ... Ned Grote

William Castle ... Director (as William C. Castle)
Fred Scheiwiller ... 1st Asst. Director
Wally Rose ... 2nd Asst. Director

Grainger Hines ... French Lt.
DeForest Covan ... Shoe Shine Boy (as De Forest Covan)
Michael Quinn ... Major Domo

Robert Pine ... Apprentice
Jerry Fogel ... Apprentice

Dennis Dugan ... Apprentice

David Ladd ... Apprentice

Bob Holt ... Tour Guide
Paul Jabara ... Nightclub Entertainer
Queenie Smith ... Palsied Lady
Margaret Jenkins ... Choral Director
Jonathan Kidd ... Undertaker
Kenny Solms ... Boy in Chapel
Wally K. Berns ... Theatre Manager (as Wally Berns)
Bill Baldwin ... Announcer at Premiere
Dick Powell Jr. ... Dick Powell
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Robert Jon Carlson ... Actor (uncredited)
Brent Dunsford ... Fan (uncredited)
Arlene Harris ... Aging bar customer (uncredited)
Vince Trankina ... Looter (uncredited)
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Directed by
John Schlesinger 
 
Writing credits
Nathanael West (novel)

Waldo Salt (screenplay)

Produced by
Jerome Hellman .... producer
Sheldon Schrager .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
John Barry 
 
Cinematography by
Conrad L. Hall  (as Conrad Hall)
 
Film Editing by
Jim Clark 
 
Casting by
Marion Dougherty 
 
Production Design by
Richard Macdonald 
 
Art Direction by
John J. Lloyd  (as John Lloyd)
 
Set Decoration by
George James Hopkins  (as George Hopkins)
Rick Simpson (uncredited)
 
Costume Design by
Ann Roth 
 
Makeup Department
Del Armstrong .... makeup artist
Lynn Del .... hair stylist
Graham Meech-Burkestone .... hair stylist (as Graham M. Birkstone)
Pascal .... hair stylist
Marlene D. Williams .... hair stylist (as Marlene Williams)
Michael Hancock .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Sheldon Schrager .... unit production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Arne Schmidt .... second assistant director (as Arnie Schmidt)
Barry Stern .... second assistant director
Charles Ziarko .... second assistant director
Tim Zinnemann .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Allan Gordon .... property master
Adam John Backauskas .... property maker (uncredited)
Gary Fettis .... carpenter (uncredited)
L. David Gordon .... draper (uncredited)
Carl Hansen .... leadman (uncredited)
Roger Irvin .... construction foreman (uncredited)
Robert Krume .... construction coordinator (uncredited)
Johnny Lattanzio .... stand-by painter (uncredited)
James F. McGuire .... set designer (uncredited)
Harold Michelson .... illustrator (uncredited)
Dean Edward Mitzner .... set designer (uncredited)
Gary Myers .... set designer (uncredited)
Ernie Sawyers .... assistant props (uncredited)
Rick Simpson .... leadman (uncredited)
Bill Sully .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Sig Tingloff .... set designer (uncredited)
J. Dennis Washington .... set designer (uncredited)
Ward Welton .... paint foreman (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
David Campling .... sound editor
Gerry Humphreys .... sound mixer
Dennis Johns .... sound assistant
Tom Overton .... sound recordist (as Tommy Overton)
Tennyson .... sound assistant
 
Special Effects by
Tim Smyth .... special effects
 
Visual Effects by
Albert Whitlock .... special photographic effects
 
Stunts
Phil Adams .... stunt coordinator
Jeannie Epper .... stunts (uncredited)
James M. Halty .... stunts (uncredited)
Tommy J. Huff .... stunts (uncredited)
Gene LeBell .... stunts (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Edesa .... assistant camera
Dave Friedman .... unit still photographer (as David Friedman)
Daniel R. Jordan .... key grip (as Danny Jordan)
Thomas Laughridge .... camera operator (as Tom Laughridge)
Rick Martens .... gaffer (as Richard Martens)
Danny Marzolo .... best boy
Ronald Vidor .... assistant camera (as Ron Vidor)
Thomas Del Ruth .... camera operator (uncredited)
Don Farnsworth .... second grip (uncredited)
Robert Jason .... electrician (uncredited)
Robert Moore .... dolly grip (uncredited)
 
Casting Department
Dianne Crittenden .... additional casting (as Diane Crittenden)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Robert De Mora .... wardrobe (as Robert de Mora)
G. Tony Scarano .... wardrobe (as Tony Scarano)
Patrick Cummings .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Alan Hoffman .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Carol Lunsford .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Donna Roberts .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Bill Slattery .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Don Vargas .... wardrobe (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Don Beckwith .... assistant editor
Christopher Greenbury .... assistant editor
Mary Kessel .... assistant editor
Barry McCormick .... assistant editor
Donald Freeman .... final colorist (uncredited)
Alan L. Shefland .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
John Barry .... conductor
Robert O. Ragland .... composer: additional music
 
Transportation Department
Eddie Baken .... driver (uncredited)
John Brumby .... driver (uncredited)
Jerry Cipperly .... transportation co-captain (uncredited)
Alan Falco .... driver (uncredited)
Bill Gray .... driver (uncredited)
Ed Heboian .... driver (uncredited)
Ben Reade .... driver (uncredited)
Jean Spray .... driver (uncredited)
James Thornsberry .... transportation captain (uncredited)
Dennis Yank .... driver (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Marge Champion .... dance supervisor
Michael Childers .... production associate
Karen Hale Wookey .... script supervisor (as Karen Wookey)
Michael Maslansky .... unit publicist
Dan Perri .... title designer
Ronald Shedlo .... presenter
Bruce Weintraub .... production assistant
Harry Winer .... observer: AFI
Noreen Beasley .... assistant: Dan Perri (uncredited)
Sam Bernstein .... controller (uncredited)
Melissa Clark .... secretary to producer (uncredited)
Charles W. Geiger .... location manager (uncredited)
Joanie Laine .... accounting clerk (uncredited)
Ruben Martinez .... craft service (uncredited)
Jane Raglan .... secretary to director (uncredited)
Barbara Spitz .... production secretary (uncredited)
Joanne W. Strangman .... teacher (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
144 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The character Dick Powell in the movie is portrayed by his son Dick Powell Jr.See more »
Goofs:
Miscellaneous: At the premiere of "The Buccaneer", the announcer (Bill Baldwin) says that the film stars Fredric March, Anthony Quinn, Douglas Dumbrille, Walter Brennan and Beulah Bondi, as if the last four actors named all had star billing. In reality, Quinn was a little-known 23-year-old at the start of his career and, like Dumbrille, Brennan and Bondi, had what was very much a supporting role. The most prominently-billed actors after March in the title role were Franciska Gaal, Akim Tamiroff and Margot Grahame.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Mrs. Odlesh:It isn't as splashy as some other places, but we pride ourselves on being a little classier.
Tod Hackett:[referring to a large crack in the plaster wall] Hmmm, the crack's real.
Mrs. Odlesh:Oh yes. We call this our earthquake cottage. Mrs. Porter had occupancy then. During the big one in '33. Property damage ran into the millions.
Tod Hackett:Will you fix it if I stayed for a while?
Mrs. Odlesh:Oh no! No! This is our showplace. Mrs. Porter wouldn't let us touch that wall. She worked that sampler herself to cover over the hole. Alrighty. I hope you'll be very happy here.
[...]
See more »
Movie Connections:
Features Triumph of the Will (1935)See more »
Soundtrack:
MAMA DON'T WANT NO PEAS AN' RICE AN' COCOANUT OILSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
28 out of 32 people found the following review useful.
A Plague Descends, 24 January 2009
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

It took over 35 years and the collapse of the big studio system before anyone in Hollywood, in this case Paramount, brought Nathanael West's novel The Day Of The Locust to the big screen. That climax at a Hollywood premiere is certainly not something the studios would want to show the public as a typical event.

The book is based on West's experiences while writing B pictures in Hollywood during the Thirties and some of the characters he knew. His main protagonist is William Atherton, an aspiring artist who is making a living doing set designs. That's one competitive business and he's got to go over his immediate supervisor John Hillerman's head to get his work noticed by producer Richard Dysart. Like the rest of West's characters, he's sacrificed pride a long time ago. It's his eyes that we see the other characters through.

But he's a paragon of virtue compared to starlet Karen Black who will do anything and anybody to advance her career. Atherton would love to get something going with her, but he's mindful of how amoral she's become. Her only real attachment is to her father, an ex-vaudevillian and now door to door salesman, Burgess Meredith. Even trying to do his shtick with sales doesn't gain him clients.

But the saddest one in the lot and the fellow with the best performance is Donald Sutherland who is an outsider to the film people, a businessman named Homer Simpson who Black uses and abuses. Sutherland's performance is not too different from the hapless cartoon character. Imagine the cartoon Homer Simpson dealing with real life heartbreak and you've got Sutherland's character. The line between tragedy and comedy can be a very thin one.

Geraldine Page has a brief role as an Aimee Semple McPherson like evangelist, shamelessly bilking the Depression's downtrodden. She's great in the part as is Jackie Earle Haley, a really rotten child star of whom I'd love to know who West's model was.

The Day Of The Locust was directed by John Schlesinger who got an Oscar for The Midnight Cowboy. Like that film, The Day Of The Locust deals with some fringe people just trying to get by. Burgess Meredith got an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor and the film also got a nomination for Costume Design.

Before Newton Minow referred to television as a vast wasteland. I think that's what Nathanael West had in mind in writing about his experiences in the movie capital. I'd recommend seeing the film to see how well Schlesinger put West's vision across.

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