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The Changeling (1980)

A man staying at a secluded historical mansion finds himself being haunted by the presence of a spectre.



(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
4,143 ( 688)

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10 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Madeleine Sherwood ...
Mrs. Norman (as Madeleine Thornton-Sherwood)
Helen Burns ...
Frances Hyland ...
Ruth Springford ...
James B. Douglas ...
Security Guard


It was the perfect family vacation for composer John Russell and his family when a freak automobile accident claims the lives of his wife and daughter. Consumed by grief, John, at the request of friends, rents an old turn of the century house. Mammoth in size, the house seems all the room that John needs to write music and reflect. He does not realize that he is not alone in the house. He shares it with the spirit of a murdered child who has homed in on John's despair and uses him to uncover decades of silence and deceit. With the help of Claire Norman, the one who aided John in procuring the house, they race to find the answers and soon learn that a devious and very powerful man guards them. Written by Vampire-Sharpshooter

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Whatever you do...DON'T GO INTO THE ATTIC. See more »


Fantasy | Horror


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 March 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

House on Chessman Park  »

Box Office


CAD 7,600,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Censorship certificate in Spain: 14. See more »


(at around 32 mins) When John discovers the door hidden by shelving, when he is removing the shelving and items from in front of the door, after he removes the second shelf suddenly the door is completely uncovered despite there being many more things he would've first had to remove. See more »


Claire Norman: [On the phone with John] I was driving by and I recognized the car. I don't know how it happened... I don't know how it could have happened there were no other cars, there's nothing. And it's upside down in the middle of the road! It's that man who was just at your house! It's Dewitt! He's dead!
See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #19.122 (2011) See more »


Rondo in A minor for Piano, K. 511
Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as Mozart)
Played by Jan Latham-Koenig
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User Reviews

Absolutely Horrifying.
30 January 2003 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

The first time I saw this film, I was about four years old. I'm not sure if I have slept right since, I am now twenty four and it still haunts me.

The tale of a lonely musician, who loses his wife and daughter in a terrible accident, and then decides to rent an old mansion in the pacific norhtwest, only to find the house has a history of it's own. The film is paced well, set perfectly, and reveals a darker side of the bourgeouis than most are willing to explore. A masterpiece.

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