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Xanadu (1980) More at IMDbPro »

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Xanadu -- Open-ended Trailer from Universal Studios


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Down 14% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
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Release Date:
8 August 1980 (USA) See more »
The Music, The Film, A Place Where Dreams Come True. [UK] See more »
The story of a girl who makes dreams come true. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 win & 9 nominations See more »
(57 articles)
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User Reviews:
"Xanadu" is by no means the worst musical ever made. See more (288 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Olivia Newton-John ... Kira

Gene Kelly ... Danny McGuire

Michael Beck ... Sonny Malone

James Sloyan ... Simpson
Dimitra Arliss ... Helen
Katie Hanley ... Sandra
Fred McCarren ... Richie

Renn Woods ... Jo (as Ren Woods)

Sandahl Bergman ... Muse 1
Lynn Latham ... Muse 2
Melinda Phelps ... Muse 3
Cherise Bates ... Muse 4 (as Cherise Bate)
Juliette Marshall ... Muse 5
Marilyn Tokuda ... Muse 6
Yvette Van Voorhees ... Muse 7
Teri Beckerman ... Muse 8
Marty Davis ... Male Guard

Bebe Drake ... Female Guard (as Bebe Drake-Massey)
Mickey McMeel ... The Accountant

Aharon Ipalé ... The Photographer
Lise Lang ... Popcorn Girl / Xanadu Dancer
Melvin Jones ... Big Al

Matt Lattanzi ... Young Danny McGuire / Xanadu Dancer
Ira Newborn ... 40's Band Leader

Cynthia Leake ... 40's Singer #2 (as Cindy Leake)
Patty Keene ... 40's Singer #3
Fee Waybill ... 80's Rock Singer (as John 'Fee' Waybill)
Stephen Pearlman ... Foreman
Church Ortiz ... Worker #1
Randy T. Williams ... Worker #2
David Tress ... Nick
Madison Arnold ... Vargas

Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Male Heavenly Voice (voice)
Coral Browne ... Female Heavenly Voice (voice)
Marla V. Langston ... Dizzy Heights
Clyde J. Barrett ... Xanadu Dancer
Cheryl Baxter ... Xanadu Dancer
Hilary Beane ... Xanadu Dancer
Annie Behringer ... Xanadu Dancer
Judith Bernett ... Xanadu Dancer
Teda Bracci ... Xanadu Dancer
Ellen Cadwallader ... Xanadu Dancer
Stelio Calagias ... Xanadu Dancer
Lonny Carbajal ... Xanadu Dancer (as Lonny Carabajal)
Hillary Carlip ... Xanadu Dancer
Lynda Chase ... Xanadu Dancer
Contessa Cohn ... Xanadu Dancer
Derrick Cross ... Xanadu Dancer
Gary Dion ... Xanadu Dancer
Marisol García ... Xanadu Dancer
Miranda Garrison ... Xanadu Dancer
Sandy Gray ... Xanadu Dancer
Jei Guerrero ... Xanadu Dancer
Cheryl Hangland ... Xanadu Dancer
Yolanda Hernandez ... Xanadu Dancer
Susan Inouye ... Xanadu Dancer
Veda Jackson ... Xanadu Dancer
Michael James ... Xanadu Dancer
Deborah Jenssen ... Xanadu Dancer
Leroy Jones ... Xanadu Dancer
Fred Kirby ... Xanadu Dancer
Brenda Lee ... Xanadu Dancer
Dale Leeche ... Xanadu Dancer
Victoria Mansi ... Xanadu Dancer
Yvette Matthews ... Xanadu Dancer
Tykin Mikals ... Xanadu Dancer
Glenn Nash ... Xanadu Dancer
Christine Nazareth ... Xanadu Dancer
Tim O'Brien ... Xanadu Dancer
Jeff Osser ... Xanadu Dancer
Shelley Pang ... Xanadu Dancer
Sally Pansing ... Xanadu Dancer
Arlette Patterson ... Xanadu Dancer
Alan Peterson ... Xanadu Dancer
Lena Pousette ... Xanadu Dancer
Vic Prim ... Xanadu Dancer
Melody Santangello ... Xanadu Dancer (as Melody Santangelo)
Tony Selznick ... Xanadu Dancer (as Tony Selesnick)
Kathy Singleton ... Xanadu Dancer
Cindy Spooner ... Xanadu Dancer
Michael Springer ... Xanadu Dancer
Re Styles ... Xanadu Dancer
Jim Thompson ... Xanadu Dancer
Francisco Torres ... Xanadu Dancer
Bobby Walker ... Xanadu Dancer

Michael O. Watkins ... Xanadu Dancer (as Michael Watkins)
Adria Wilson ... Xanadu Dancer
Darcel Wynne ... Xanadu Dancer
Noreen Xavier ... Xanadu Dancer
Mark Ziebell ... Xanadu Dancer
Mum Brothers ... Xanadu Dancers (as The Mumm Brothers)
Chain Reaction ... Xanadu Dancers (as Chain Reaction Dancers)
Tom Sachelle ... Xanadu Dancer
Paul Sachelle ... Xanadu Dancer
Kyle Hanford ... Xanadu Dancer
Michael Donley ... Xanadu Dancer
Robert Winters ... Xanadu Dancer
Rick Anderson ... Member of The Tubes
Michael Cotten ... Member of The Tubes
Prairie Prince ... Member of The Tubes
Bill Spooner ... Member of The Tubes
Roger Steen ... Member of The Tubes
Vince Welnick ... Member of The Tubes
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Joe Mantegna ... (scenes deleted)

Cliff Richard ... Sonny Malone (voice)
Judith Burnett ... Raven (uncredited)
Alex Cole ... Xanadu Dancer (uncredited)
Debbie Fresh ... Xanadu Dancer (uncredited)
Jack Lindine ... (uncredited)

Adolfo Quinones ... Xanadu Dancer (uncredited)

Patrick Reynolds ... Xanadu Dancer (uncredited)
Dean Rubin ... Featured Dancer (uncredited)
Cynthia Windham ... Dancer (uncredited)

Directed by
Robert Greenwald 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Richard Christian Danus 
Marc Reid Rubel 

Produced by
Brendan Cahill .... co-producer
Lawrence Gordon .... producer
Lee Kramer .... executive producer
Terence Nelson .... associate producer (as Terry Nelson)
Joel Silver .... co-producer
Original Music by
Barry De Vorzon  (as Barry DeVorzon)
Cinematography by
Victor J. Kemper 
Film Editing by
Dennis Virkler 
Casting by
Phyllis Huffman  (as Phyllis Grennan Huffman)
Production Design by
John W. Corso 
Set Decoration by
Marc E. Meyer Jr. 
Costume Design by
Bobbie Mannix 
Makeup Department
Harry Blake .... makeup artist
Candida Conery .... hair stylist (as Candy Conery)
Koelle .... additional makeup
Martin Samuel .... hair stylist
Rick Sharp .... makeup artist
Craig Smith .... makeup artist
Production Management
Terence Nelson .... unit production manager (as Terry Neslon)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Patrick Cosgrove .... dga trainee
Dan Kolsrud .... first assistant director
Lisa Marmon .... second assistant director
Venita Ozols-Graham .... second assistant director (as Venita Ozols)
Art Department
James Allen .... assistant art director (as James F. Allen)
Michael Casey .... assistant property master
Jaroslav Gebr .... painter: special production paintings (as Jerry Gebr)
William Gowdy .... leadman
Mark Konkel .... painter (as Mark Conkel)
Sherman Labby .... production illustrator
Peter Lamppu .... construction foreman
Joseph P. Lucky .... set designer (as Joe Lucky)
Louis M. Mann .... set designer (as Lou Mann)
John Marshall .... assistant art director
Joseph C. Nemec III .... set designer (as Joe Nemec)
Bob Nohles .... construction foreman (as Robert Nohles)
George Osaki .... special graphic consultant
Vic Petrotta Jr. .... property master (as Victor Petrotta)
Steve Purdy .... painter
H. John Ramos .... assistant property master
Bert Rotter .... stand-by painter
Jack Shea .... painter
Mark Sparks .... propmaker
Laurie Stevens .... painter: special production paintings
John Tyrrell .... painter (as John Tyrell)
Edward Verga .... painter
Glenn Forbes .... set dresser (uncredited)
Peg McClellan .... illustrator (uncredited)
Marilyn Vance .... artist (uncredited)
Sound Department
Michael Boddicker .... special synthesized effects
Milton C. Burrow .... supervising sound editor
Scott Burrow .... assistant sound editor
Gary Cunningham .... sound mixer (additional photography)
Walter A. Gest .... post-production sound recordist (as Walter Gest)
Robert Gravenor .... production mixer
Robert Jackson .... boom operator (additional photography)
Roxanne Jones .... assistant sound editor
David J. Kimball .... sound post-production mixer (as David Kimball)
Rick Kline .... sound post-production mixer
William L. Manger .... sound editor (as William Manger)
Donald O. Mitchell .... sound post-production mixer
Bill Nicholson .... sound post-production mixer
Robert A. Reich .... sound editor
Gary Ritchie .... post-production sound recordist
Jerry Rosenthal .... sound editor
Jack Woods .... loop dialogue editor
Doc Goldstein .... sound mix engineer (uncredited)
Thomas Meloeny .... sound recordist (uncredited)
Donald C. Rogers .... technical director of sound (uncredited)
Douglas J. Schulman .... playback operator (uncredited)
Douglas J. Schulman .... utility sound (uncredited)
Mark Server .... boom operator (uncredited)
Jerry Trent .... choreo and dance foley (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Burt Dalton .... special effects
Andy Evans .... special effects (as Andy C. Evans)
Gary D. Bierend .... special effects crew (uncredited)
Wayne Rose .... special effects (uncredited)
Bruno Van Zeebroeck .... special effects crew (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Randall Balsmeyer .... animation designer: special visual effects unit (as Randy Balsmeyer)
Paul Chervin .... optical printer operator: special visual effects unit
Louis Goold .... layout artist: special visual effects unit
Richard Greenberg .... special visual effects producer/designer
Robert M. Greenberg .... special visual effects producer (as Robert Greenberg)
Frederick Greene .... optical printer operator: special visual effects unit
Joel Hynek .... optical photography supervisor: special visual effects unit
Jeffrey Kleiser .... layout artist: special visual effects unit
Dorse A. Lanpher .... special effects: animation sequence unit (as Dorse Lanpher)
John Lindahl .... animation camera: special visual effects unit
Liz Maihock .... assistant animator: special visual effects unit
Sandra Payne .... assistant animator: special visual effects unit
Janos Pilenyi .... layout artist: special visual effects unit (as Janos O. Pilenyi)
Larry Plastrik .... additional optical supervisor: special visual effects unit
Larry Plastrik .... effects editor
Mark Plastrik .... animation camera: special visual effects unit
Bill Roberts .... optical printer operator: special visual effects unit
Louie Schwartzberg .... time lapse photography (as Lou Schwartzberg)
Ruth Smerek .... visual effects editorial supervision
Kenneth Stytzer .... animation design supervisor: special visual effects unit
James Szalapski .... model photography: special visual effects unit (as Jim Szalapski)
Brian Williams .... model maker: special visual effects unit
Richard Epper .... stunts (uncredited)
Gene Kelly .... stunt dancer (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Larry Barbier .... still photographer
Garrett Brown .... Steadicam operator
Joly Erickson .... electrician
Earl Gilbert .... gaffer (as Earl R. Gilbert)
Donald Glenn .... grip (as Don Glenn)
Gary Goldman .... camera planning: animation sequence unit
Rhio Haessig .... best boy electrician
Joe Jiuliano .... animation camera: animation sequence unit
Stephen Johnstone .... electrician (as Steven Johnstone)
William Kenney .... dolly grip (as Bill Kenney)
Glade Knight .... electrician
Patrick Marshall .... rigging gaffer (as Pat Marshall)
Michael Orefice .... electrician
Jeff Purpus .... grip
James M. Pursell .... special camera operator
Bill Roe .... camera assistant (as William Roe)
Gaylin P. Schultz .... key grip (as Gaylin Schultz)
Bernie Schwartz .... best boy grip
Robert C. Thomas .... camera operator (as Bob Thomas)
Chuck Warren .... animation camera: animation sequence unit (as Charles Warren)
Ron Woodside .... electrician
Frank Detone Jr. .... rigging grip (uncredited)
Alan R. Disler .... camera assistant (uncredited)
Adam Glick .... set lighting technician (uncredited)
Joe Kelly .... grip (uncredited)
David Morton .... electrician (uncredited)
Michael J. Schwartz .... electrician (uncredited)
Emmanuel Vouniozos .... on-set technician (uncredited)
Richard Walden .... additional assistant camera (uncredited)
Animation Department
Don Bluth .... animator: animation sequence unit
Jim Coleman .... background artist: animation sequence unit
Lorna Cook .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit (as Lorna Pomeroy)
Fred Craig .... production associate: animation sequence unit
Milton Gray .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Heidi Guedel .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Bruce Heller .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Emily Jiuliano .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Skip Jones .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Dan Kuenster .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Diann Landau .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Linda Miller .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Steven Muller .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit (as Steve Muller)
Carmen Oliver .... color coordinator: animation sequence unit
Vera Pacheco .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit (as Vera Law)
Dave Spafford .... assistant animator: animation sequence unit
Olga Tarin-Craig .... production associate: animation sequence unit (as Olga Craig)
Casting Department
Gregg Smith .... dance casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Barbara Black-Sterne .... costume sketch artist
Deborah Curtis .... costumer (as Debbie Curtis)
Michael Fitzpatrick .... costumer
Shanan Harrell .... costumer
Mark Peterson .... costume supervisor
Marilyn Vance .... assistant costume designer
Chuck Velasco .... costumer
Pamela Wise .... costume supervisor (as Pam Wise)
Gregory B. Peña .... daily set costumer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Nathan Cohen .... assistant color timer
Lisa Day .... assistant film editor
Fletcher Harlan .... negative cutter
Joseph L. Hedgecock .... negative cutter
Tina Hirsch .... co-editor
Bob McRoy .... assistant color timer
Richard Ritchie .... color consultant (as Dick Ritchie)
Larry Rovetti .... supervising color consultant (as Larry J. Rovetti)
Robert Yamamoto .... apprentice film editor (as Rob Yamamoto)
Dennis Michelson .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
Allison Caine .... vocal effects advisor
Doreen A. Dixon .... assistant music editor
George Doering .... musician
Richard Hazard .... orchestrator: Barry DeVorzon (as Dick Hazard)
Richard Hewson .... big band and string arrangements: John Farrar
David J. Holman .... music engineer: John Farrar (as David Holman)
David J. Holman .... music mixing
Stephen A. Hope .... music editor
Kenneth Karman .... music editor
Reinhold Mack .... music engineer: Jeff Lynne (as Mack)
Fred Prior .... music editor
Michael Tronick .... music editor
Dennis S. Sands .... music scoring mixer (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Steve Hellerstein .... transportation captain
Dean E. Mason .... driver special effects
Chris Haynes .... driver (uncredited)
Frank Khoury .... driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Ann Ashcraft .... production assistant
Bill Butler .... technical assistance in skating sequences
Paul Cajero .... production assistant
Russell Clark .... assistant choreographer
Gilda Collins .... assistant to producer
Roger Davies .... assistant to executive producer
Kathy DeArmond .... assistant: Carol Shapiro Janson
Darcy Fleming .... special skating consultant
Mike Fleming .... special skating consultant
Richard Greenberg .... producer/designer: main title
Betty A. Griffin .... script supervisor (as Betty Abbott Griffin)
Brendan Higgs .... assistant: Jeff Lynne
Gus Hill .... caterer
Carol Shapiro Janson .... publicity coordinator
Judy Lynn .... technical assistance in skating sequences
Joan Marcus .... special promotion consultant
Jody Merl .... assistant: Robert Greenwald
Kenny Ortega .... choreographer
Chris Platel .... assistant to executive producer
Cliff Richard .... singing double: Michael Beck
Alex Romero .... dance effects supervisor
Dana Sharpe .... assistant: Olivia Newton-John
Greg Smith .... assistant choreographer
Elaine K. Thompson .... assistant to co-producer
Robert Thompson .... assistant choreographer (as Bob Thompson)
Jerry Trent .... choreographer
Jeff Winn .... craft service

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
96 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
4-Track Stereo (London premiere Print) | Dolby

Did You Know?

Since fantasy is Xanadu's main theme, certain mattes, including some time-lapsed cloud effects matted over one muse's departure along the highway, and another matted above Gene Kelly as he sits on a beach playing a clarinet, don't look 100% realistic. This was intentional, done with the hope that the sequences would look mythical and unreal, rather than phony.See more »
Continuity: The jacket, paintbrush, and palette held by Michael Beck when visited by Kira.See more »
Sonny:Tuesday's Wednesday.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in "Ed: Better Days (#1.5)" (2000)See more »
MagicSee more »


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61 out of 77 people found the following review useful.
"Xanadu" is by no means the worst musical ever made., 8 July 2006
Author: Emmett Glenn from United States

I have been a fan of ONJ since 1973. At that time, she had already been in three movies. She was only 18 years old when she appeared in an Australian flick called "Christmastime Down Under." In 1970, she starred in a film called "Toomorrow," a science-fiction fantasy that involved alien abduction. Then in 1972, she was in a movie with Cliff Richard where she sang her latest record ("Banks of the Ohio") and a duet with Cliff.

Flash forward 8 years and history is repeated with "Xanadu," only this time Olivia is the star and Cliff joins her for a song ("Suddenly").

Filming started on "Xanadu" with no script. All that existed was an 18-page treatment (plot summary) and an overarching theme: The Big Band Era meets the 80s Rock Era.

Because everyone hired to work on the film was given this overall theme to work with, they all went off to their respective departments and started working: Set designers began designing sets, location scouts went out looking for shooting sites, costume designers started their work...and while all this was going on, development of the script was largely ignored.

The music was written and recorded long before what can be called the "final script" was written. On each day of shooting, the actors were handed a few pages of the script that had been written only the night before. By the time principal filming was done and the film was assembled, so many incongruities and inconsistencies in the film were apparent that scenes had to be rewritten, re-shot, or cut entirely.

Olivia was somewhat of a phenomenon by 1980. She was already named the most successful female recording artist, out-selling even Barbra Streisand. And she happened to star in the most successful musical film of all time: "Grease." At the time, studios came at her from every which way, offering handsome deals so that they could cash in on her enormous commercial appeal.

The producers of "Grease" also approached Olivia with another project, but Olivia's management balked at the money they offered. Allan Carr, the more vocal of the "Grease" producers, said of Olivia's refusal, "She's a pretty face, but she ain't no Streisand." The film Allan Carr wanted Olivia Newton-John to star in was called "Disco Heaven," which was later retitled as "Can't Stop the Music." Instead, the lead role went to Valerie Perrine ("Superman: The Movie"). Her costars...none other than The Village People.

"Can't Stop the Music," although not without a charm of its own, is arguably THE worst musical motion picture of all time.

Another strong contender for worst musical motion picture of all time would have to be Olivia's other film, "Toomorrow." The movie was produced by the same folks who played a role in creating "The Monkees." Because "The Monkees" was such a money-making concept in the US, producers felt they could repeat the success in England. While The Monkees were enjoying success on television in the United States, Toomorrow (also the name of the musical quartet) would star in a series of big screen films in the cinema. Toomorrow would never enjoy such success. Their first outing lasted only a week in theaters before it was pulled from theaters.

Perhaps its failure had something to do with the music. The songs and the singing in "Toomorrow" are poor. The only member of the four-member group that does not sing off key is Newton-John. There is no choreography to speak of. Instead, people dance in place and, I must admit, it is amusing to see Newton-John gyrate like Goldie Hawn did on "Laugh-In." Don Kirshner, the man credited for having invented The Monkees, The Archies, and Toomorrow, still holds the rights to the 1970 movie. He is rumored to have said that he will never allow the film to be released as long as he is alive. In fact, during her own hey-day, Olivia refused to acknowledge she ever made the film. Today, however, she embraces it, having recently hosted a successful and fun midnight showing of the movie.

Many people feel the saving grace of "Xanadu" is its music. Critics said the only positive thing to say about "Toomorrow" was its special effects. For its time, the special effects were cutting edge (it was one of the first movies to incorporate CGI on film). Vic Kemper (who recently passed away) is the man behind the cinematography and special effects for both "Xanadu" and "Toomorrow." "Xanadu" effectively put a huge black mark on Newton-John's credibility as a big screen actress ("Two of a Kind" put to rest any doubt on the matter), but I am glad that Olivia is still alive to see "Xanadu" and "Toomorrow" finally get the acknowledgment and recognition the films deserve, even if their worth as works of art is found only in their nostalgic value.

For a musical that had its songs written before the script, the film came together nicely in the final analysis. And while Newton-John is no longer bad-mouthing the movie when asked, co-star Michael Beck ("Sonny") is still bitter. He made a telephone appearance during a "This Is Your Life" program honoring Newton-John a few years back and his snide comments made Newton-John squirm in her seat.

Gene Kelly never mentioned regret for having participated in the film, although he did say something was terribly wrong with the way modern movies are made. God rest his soul.

Sadly, it was announced that another member of the "Xanadu" cast has passed away. Fred McCarren, the young actor who played Richie (Sonny's co-worker artist friend) died of cancer on July 2, 2006. He was 45. God rest his soul.

I am deducting two stars because the makers of this film should have known better than to start filming without a script.

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