Once an Eagle (1976)

TV Mini-Series  -   -  Drama | War
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The story of two Army officers, one a ruthless, career-obsessed schemer, the other his exact opposite, and their personal and professional lives from the end of World War I to the beginning of Vietnam.

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Title: Once an Eagle (1976–1977)

Once an Eagle (1976–1977) on IMDb 7.7/10

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1977 | 1976
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Series cast summary:
 Courtenay Massengale (7 episodes, 1976-1977)
Darleen Carr ...
 Tommy Caldwell (7 episodes, 1976-1977)
 Emily Pawlfrey Massengale (7 episodes, 1976-1977)
 George Caldwell (7 episodes, 1976-1977)
 Sam Damon (7 episodes, 1976-1977)


The story of two Army officers, one a ruthless, career-obsessed schemer, the other his exact opposite, and their personal and professional lives from the end of World War I to the beginning of Vietnam.

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis


Duty. Honor. Country.


Drama | War





Release Date:

2 December 1976 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eens een adelaar  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the World War One scenes (set in 1918), the German soldiers are shown wearing the 1914-style uniforms with spiked helmets, which were phased out in 1916. See more »

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User Reviews

Old Movies are to Die For
1 December 2002 | by (Junction City, Oregon) – See all my reviews

I have for several years kicked me for not having a VCR in the late 1970's when I was stationed at the Military Academy and the Mini-series "Once An Eagle" first was on TV. The comments about the story and the actors who played the parts were pretty much true to life. The Massengales of the world said the book and now the TV series are not correct, that the director used his actors to show his political views. The Sam Damon's, said that the mini-series was true to life and True Soldiers really did take care of their men. I have recently been able to view the series again , and it reminds me of the men I served with and the true soldiers our country was very fortunate to have. The book is now being used as a text at the U S Army War College and at West Point. The U S Army College has a new version out with forwards from active and retired officers. Sam Damon as written in the book and to some extent in the TV series should be a guide to young and old officers a like. Take care of your soldiers and they will take care of you.

I agree with Airborne Mike, when he said " I used to be troubled by the movie and book having different endings, not anymore. They are best viewed as ALTERNATIVE ENDINGS, a positive or a negative one. The people who adapted the best-selling book to TV did an excellent job of understanding the book's true meaning---which is to fight evil when you see it immediately!---regardless of the cost".

To those of you that have been lucky enough to record the series and still have a copy, I salute you. You have a piece of history the movie world has not seen fit to rebroadcast or release on VHS/DVD for the rest of us. I rank it up there with Sam Elliott's best work. Maybe he or his agent (The William Morris Agency) will be able to get Universal to re-release it to the Sam Elliott and good film fans every where.

Smiling Jack (U S Army Retired)

27 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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