IMDb > Black Sunday (1977)
Black Sunday
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Black Sunday (1977) More at IMDbPro »

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Black Sunday -- Black Sunday is the powerful story of a Black September terrorist group attempting to blow up a Goodyear blimp hovering over the Super Bowl stadium with 80,000 people and the President of the United States in attendance.


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Up 13% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Thomas Harris (novel)
Ernest Lehman (screenplay) ...
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Release Date:
11 March 1977 (USA) See more »
There has never been a motion picture adventure like... See more »
Black Sunday is the powerful story of a Black September terrorist group attempting to blow up a Goodyear blimp hovering over the Super Bowl stadium with 80,000 people and the president of the United States in attendance. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Top notch excitement See more (71 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Robert Shaw ... Kabakov

Bruce Dern ... Lander

Marthe Keller ... Dahlia

Fritz Weaver ... Corley
Steven Keats ... Moshevsky
Bekim Fehmiu ... Fasil

Michael V. Gazzo ... Muzi

William Daniels ... Pugh

Walter Gotell ... Colonel Riat
Victor Campos ... Nageeb
Joseph Robbie ... Joseph Robbie
Robert J. Wussler ... Robert Wussler (as Robert Wussler)

Pat Summerall ... Pat Summerall

Tom Brookshier ... Tom Brookshier
Walter Brooke ... Fowler
James Jeter ... Watchman

Clyde Kusatsu ... Freighter Captain
Tom McFadden ... Farley
Robert Patten ... Vickers
Than Wyenn ... Israeli Ambassador
Jack Rader ... Pearson
Nick Nickolary ... Simmons (as Nick Nicolary)
Michael Joseph Reynolds ... Jackson
Hunter von Leer ... T.V. Cameraman
Sarah Fankboner ... V.A. Receptionist
Kathy Thornton ... Head Nurse
Frank Logan ... Lansing
Frank Man ... Desk Clerk - Miami
Kenneth I. Harms ... S.W.A.T. Captain
Kim Nicholas ... Girl Hostage
Bert Madrid ... Bellhop
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Kristy McNichol ... (scenes deleted)
Sherman 'Big Train' Bergman ... Football Fan (uncredited)

Terry Bradshaw ... Himself (uncredited)

Ian Bulloch ... Secret Service Agent (uncredited)

Paul Fahrenkopf ... Spectator (uncredited)

John Frankenheimer ... TV Director (uncredited)
George Golden ... Man in Waiting Room (uncredited)

Robert Ito ... Japanese Man (uncredited)
Jay W. Jensen ... Football Fan (uncredited)

D'Janine King-Lasky ... Spectator (uncredited)
January L'Angelle ... Young Football Fan (uncredited)
Joseph Oliveira ... Spectator (uncredited)

Jim Robertson ... Football Stadium Fan (uncredited)
Arthur Tovey ... White-haired Man in Lobby (uncredited)

Directed by
John Frankenheimer 
Writing credits
Thomas Harris (novel)

Ernest Lehman (screenplay) &
Kenneth Ross (screenplay) and
Ivan Moffat (screenplay)

Produced by
Robert Evans .... producer
Alan Levine .... associate producer
Robert L. Rosen .... executive producer
Original Music by
John Williams 
Cinematography by
John A. Alonzo (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Tom Rolf 
Casting by
Lynn Stalmaster 
Art Direction by
Walter H. Tyler  (as Walter Tyler)
Set Decoration by
Jerry Wunderlich 
Costume Design by
Ray Summers 
Makeup Department
Sugar Blymyer .... hair stylist
Robert Dawn .... makeup artist (as Bob Dawn)
Brad Wilder .... makeup artist
Production Management
Jerry Ziesmer .... unit production manager
Lindsley Parsons Jr. .... executive production manager: Paramount (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Larry J. Franco .... second assistant director (as Larry Franco)
Marc Monnet .... second unit director
Jerry Ziesmer .... assistant director
Art Department
Nikita Knatz .... production illustrator
Ray Mercer Jr. .... property master (as Ray Mercer)
Sound Department
Howard Beals .... sound effects editor
Gene S. Cantamessa .... sound mixer (as Gene Cantamessa)
John Wilkinson .... sound re-recording mixer (as John K. Wilkinson)
Special Effects by
Logan Frazee .... special effects man
Visual Effects by
Bill Hansard .... process consultant
Pete Kleinow .... visual effects (uncredited)
Harry Walton .... visual effects (uncredited)
Gene Warren Jr. .... visual effects (uncredited)
Gene Warren .... visual effects (uncredited)
Everett Creach .... stunt coordinator
Jay Amor .... stunts (uncredited)
Richard E. Butler .... stunts (uncredited)
Mickey Caruso .... stunts (uncredited)
Bobby Clark .... stunts (uncredited)
Erik Cord .... stunts (uncredited)
Everett Creach .... stunts (uncredited)
Howard Curtis .... stunts (uncredited)
Jeannie Epper .... stunts (uncredited)
Roberto Escobar .... stunts (uncredited)
Larry Holt .... stunts (uncredited)
Gene LeBell .... stunts (uncredited)
Bob Minor .... stunts (uncredited)
John Moio .... co-stunt coordinator (uncredited)
Dean Smith .... stunt double Bruce Dern (uncredited)
Dean Smith .... stunts (uncredited)
Paul Stader .... stunts (uncredited)
Greg Walker .... stunts (uncredited)
Richard Washington .... stunts (uncredited)
Dick Ziker .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Steve Sabol .... cameraman: N.F.L. Films, special football sequences
Norman Lang .... electrician (uncredited)
Rexford L. Metz .... camera operator: second unit (uncredited)
Casting Department
Beverly McDermott .... location casting: Miami
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Shelly Levine .... costumer: men (uncredited)
Music Department
June Edgerton .... music editor
Herbert W. Spencer .... orchestrator
Larry Bunker .... musician: percussion (uncredited)
Louis Kaufman .... musician: violin (uncredited)
Milton Kestenbaum .... musician: bass (uncredited)
Michael Lang .... musician: keyboards (uncredited)
Virginia Majewski .... musician: viola (uncredited)
Richard Nash .... musician: trombone (uncredited)
Emil Richards .... musician: percussion (uncredited)
John Williams .... conductor (uncredited)
Other crew
Charlsie Bryant .... script supervisor
James W. Gavin .... helicopter pilot (as James Gavin)
Nat Moore .... football technical advisor
Nick Nickolary .... pilot: Goodyear blimp (as Nick Nicolary)
Cathy Chazan .... assistant: Mr. Evans (uncredited)
Peter Mastrorio .... production assistant (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
143 min
Color (Movielab)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:18 | Australia:M | Canada:18A (Ontario) | Finland:K-16 | France:12 | Iceland:16 | Netherlands:16 | Norway:18 | Singapore:NC-16 | Sweden:15 | UK:AA (original rating) | UK:15 (1987) | USA:R (certificate #24543) | West Germany:18 (nf)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

On 3rd February 2002, around twenty-five years after this movie was made, and within six months of "September 11" (2001), the US Department of Homeland Security officially made the Super Bowl (which is the major sports match threatened by terrorists in this film) to be a National Special Security Event (NSSE). This is defined by Wikipedia as being "an event of national or international significance deemed by the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to be a potential target for terrorism or other criminal activity".See more »
Revealing mistakes: Two Goodyear blimps were used for the suspenseful conclusion. The base scenes where shot in Carson, CA using the Columbia. The Super Bowl scenes were shot in Miami, FL using the Mayflower being a much smaller blimp than Columbia. So the blimp shrinks, gets big again and then shrinks again in size.See more »
Major David Kabakov:Now, just blink for "yes", or die for "no".See more »
Movie Connections:
HatikvahSee more »


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27 out of 30 people found the following review useful.
Top notch excitement, 15 May 2002
Author: jrs-8 from Chicago

"Black Sunday" is a flat out exciting motion picture about the planning and execution of a terrorist attack during the Super Bowl. Robert Shaw plays the head of an agency trying to prevent the attack. Bruce Dern is at his creepy best as a brainwashed Vietnam vet enlisted by the lovely Marthe Keller to help carry out the sinister plan. Dern is a blimp pilot and the perfect person to help detonate a contraption that will send thousands of deadly needles into the unsuspecting crowd. Dern was born to play parts like this and it's a reminder of how terrific an actor he is and how sad it is that he doesn't work as much as he used to.

The final 40 minutes is intercut between the game (actually shot during the real Cowboys-Steelers Super Bowl game of 76) and the unfolding of the final stages of the plot. It's tense and exciting as Shaw and cohorts commandeer helicopters to try to catch the blimp heading to the big game to unleash its deadly attack.

Kudos to director John Frankheimer for keeping the pacing on this 2 hour 25 minute thriller moving. The editing is first rate and the music score by John Williams is one of his best though it is never mentioned when his name comes up.

If you like a good thriller that is never boring and will keep you on the edge of your seat, I highly recommend "Black Sunday."

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