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The Night That Panicked America (1975)

A dramatization of the Oct. 30, 1938 mass panic that Orson Welles' radio play, "The War of the Worlds" accidentally provoked.

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(teleplay), (teleplay) | 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Hank Muldoon
...
Stefan Grubowski
...
Jess Wingate
Walter McGinn ...
Paul Stewart
...
Ann Muldoon
...
Linda Davis (as Meredith Baxter Birney)
...
Norman Smith
...
Reverend Davis
...
...
Walter Wingate
...
Carl Phillips
Burton Gilliam ...
Tex
Joshua Bryant ...
Howard Koch
Liam Dunn ...
Charlie
...
Toni
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Storyline

The true story of the night that Orson Welles broadcast his version of 'H.G. Welles'' classic ''The War of the Worlds'' on the radio. Designed to be as realistic as possible, many people were fooled into thinking that an alien invasion was actually taking place. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

31 October 1975 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La nuit qui terrifia l'Amérique  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The telefilm was produced by Paramount Television. The book "War of the Worlds" was actually filmed twice by Paramount Pictures, in 1953 and 2005, the second time around as a co-production with DreamWorks which Paramount soon acquired (although DreamWorks is independent again, its early film archive remains owned by Paramount). See more »

Goofs

The announcer introducing the Mercury Theatre on the Air's production of "The War of the Worlds" names Orson Welles and Howard Koch as the writer. While Koch did write the script, he was not named in the introduction to the original broadcast. See more »

Quotes

Ora Nichols: [to her assistant, assessing the Mercury Theater's show] Looks like another big night for Charlie Mc Carthy.
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Soundtracks

Mystery Theater Playoff
(10 seconds) (uncredited)
Music by Frank Comstock
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User Reviews

 
A cautionary tale about the power media
30 March 2007 | by (New Jersey) – See all my reviews

As the line between entertainment and news becomes increasingly blurred, this important film cautions us about the media's power over our lives. I was lucky enough to get a copy of this recently and am using it in a Western Studies class to teach my high school students about the role of radio in the Modern Age. Both FDR and Hitler understood very well how to use the radio, and this concept is even more relevant today in our age of sound bites and podcasts. More than ever, we need to teach our children how to wade through the information tidal wave that swamps them daily. This film serves as a powerful reminder that we must be far more discerning about what we read and hear, regardless of the source.


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