Edit
Firestarter (1984) Poster

(1984)

Trivia

This film was originally going to be directed by John Carpenter. According to Carpenter, Universal executives removed him from the project in the wake of the box-office and critical drubbing they received for The Thing (1982). Carpenter had reportedly talked to Darwin Joston about taking on the role of John Rainbird, which was ultimately played by George C. Scott.
Prophetically, when Drew Barrymore was six and a half years old before she was cast in this movie, her mother thought that Drew looked liked the girl on the source novel's paperback dust-jacket. Drew once said: My mom had seen this book at the grocery store with a picture of a little girl on it and she said 'Gee, this looks kinda like you'. She said it was okay if I bought it, and so I did. When I read it, I came into the kitchen where my mom was making dinner and said 'I'm the Firestarter. I'm Charlie McGee! But she didn't know what I was talking about."
In a 2010 interview, Director Mark L. Lester confirmed that this was the most difficult film that he ever made.
Charlie McGee was modelled on Stephen King's daughter Naomi.
Firestarter was the first Stephen King novel published in a limited edition. King later regretted this decision because of the copies' preciousness and unavailability.
One of six filmed adaptations of a Stephen King story produced in some capacity by Dino De Laurentiis. The other movies are Cat's Eye (1985), Silver Bullet (1985), Maximum Overdrive (1986), The Dead Zone (1983), and Sometimes They Come Back (1991).
First of two Stephen King filmed adaptations starring Drew Barrymore. The other being Cat's Eye (1985).
Martin Sheen took over at a late stage from Burt Lancaster, who had to withdraw following heart surgery.
Some movie posters for the film featured a long text preamble that read: "Charlie McGee is a happy, healthy eight-year-old little girl. Normal in every way but one. She has the power to set objects afire with just one glance. It's a power she does not want. It's a power she cannot control. And, each night, Charlie prays to be just like every other child. But there are those who will do everything in their power to find her...control her or destroy her. Charlie McGee is Stephen King's FIRESTARTER. Will she have the power...to survive?"
According to Director Mark L. Lester, Tangerine Dream never actually saw the film. They sent him some music and told him to choose whatever he liked.
Jennifer Connelly and Taylor Neff were considered for the role of nine year old Charlene "Charlie" McGee. Drew Barrymore won the part, and was around eight years old when she played it.
In Golden Years (1991) (also based on a Stephen King concept), the pursuer of Harlan and Gina Williams, Jude Andrews (R.D. Call) and their protector, Terry Spann (Felicity Huffman) both worked for the secret U.S. Government agency known as "The Shop" that kidnapped Charlie (Drew Barrymore) in this movie.
The cast featured three people who had won Academy Awards for acting. George C. Scott and Art Carney had won Best Actor Oscars for Patton (1970) and Harry and Tonto (1974), respectively, and Louise Fletcher had won a Best Actress Oscar for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975).
One of two Stephen King filmed adaptations released in 1984. The other was Children of the Corn (1984). Also, Christine (1983) , which was released in the U.S. at the end of 1983, still debuted in many territories around the world in 1984.
Second of two Stephen King filmed adaptations starring Martin Sheen. The first had been The Dead Zone (1983). Sheen played a bad guy in both.
Charlie is one of several characters in Stephen King novels (usually female) with mental powers. Others are Carrie, Frances Goldsmith and Abagail Freemantle in The Stand, and Dick Hallorann and Danny Torrance in The Shining, and its sequel Doctor Sleep.
9 of 11 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The film was released four years after its source novel had been published.
The name of the a secret government organization was "The Shop". Its real umbrella name was the Department of Scientific Intelligence.
Stanley Mann, who wrote the screenplay, had a minor acting role in the film.
7 of 9 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The sequel Firestarter 2: Rekindled (2002) wasn't released for another eighteen years after this movie.
Bridgette Andersen, the star of Savannah Smiles (1982), screentested for the role of Charlie, ultimately played by Drew Barrymore.
9 of 16 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
One of several movies which were part of a cycle of pictures involving ESP or telekinesis made during the late 1970s and early 1980s. The other films include Carrie (1976), Patrick (1978), Zapped! (1982), Scanners (1981), Modern Problems (1981), The Fury (1978), and The Medusa Touch (1978).
9 of 16 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The book "Creepshows" by Stephen King says that David Keith was fourteenth choice.
6 of 13 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
When being picked up by Irv Manders (Art Carney), Andy McGee (David Keith) states they are heading to Knoxville, Tennessee. David Keith was born in Knoxville, Tennessee, and is an avid Tennessee Volunteers football fan.
3 of 7 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
"Push", the word used in the novel and the film for how Andy uses his ability to influence the thoughts and actions of others, has been used by Stephen King quite often in his novels.
2 of 7 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Quite a few bad guys died in this movie, including agents, security guards, and technicians. But only three good guys died: an anonymous mail carrier, Charlie's father Andy, and her mother Vickie (the only female character to die). The audience only sees Vickie's body, as her death occurred off-screen.
2 of 8 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

Contribute to This Page