IMDb > They're Playing with Fire (1984)
They're Playing with Fire
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They're Playing with Fire (1984) More at IMDbPro »

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Howard Avedis (written by) &
Marlene Schmidt (written by)
View company contact information for They're Playing with Fire on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
April 1984 (USA) See more »
From his French maid, he got Private Lessons. Now his English professor is giving him a REAL education.
A married college professor decides to seduce her student, whom she hired as a handyman for her yacht. The hesitant student succumbs to his buxom professor, but their romance is interrupted by her corrupt husband and a masked murderer. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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User Reviews:
"You're playing with fire Jay" See more (15 total) »


  (in credits order)

Sybil Danning ... Diane Stevens
Eric Brown ... Jay Richard

Andrew Prine ... Michael Stevens
Paul Clemens ... Martin 'Bird' Johnson
K.T. Stevens ... Lillian Stevens
Gene Bicknell ... George Johnson
Curt Ayers ... The Bartender

Dominick Brascia ... Glenn
Bill Conklin ... Preacher
Terese Hanses ... Pub Singer
Greg Kaye ... Dale
Suzanne Kennedy ... Janice
Violet Manes ... Jenny
Alvy Moore ... Jimbo
Joe Portaro ... Professor
Beth Scheffell ... Cynthia (as Beth Schaffel)
Marlene Schmidt ... Gas Station Customer
Margaret Wheeler ... Lettie Stevens

Directed by
Howard Avedis 
Writing credits
Howard Avedis (written by) &
Marlene Schmidt (written by)

Produced by
Howard Avedis .... producer
Ernest Kaye .... associate producer
Marlene Schmidt .... producer
Tim Siu .... associate producer
Original Music by
John Cacavas 
Cinematography by
Gary Graver (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Jack Tucker 
Art Direction by
Rosemary Brandenburg 
Makeup Department
Sylvia Flores .... makeup artist
Lorraine Polak .... makeup artist (as Lorraine Pollack)
Jill Rockow .... makeup artist
Production Management
Lance Dickson .... unit manager
Herman Grigsby .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Herman Grigsby .... assistant director
Bayard Storey .... third assistant director
John R. Woodward .... first assistant director
Art Department
Clark Hunter .... assistant art director
Sound Department
Rick Alexander .... sound re-recording mixer (as Dick Alexander)
Beau Biggart .... sound editor
Bob Biggart .... supervising sound editor
Jean Clark .... boom operator (as Jean L. Clark)
Mary Jo Devenney .... boom operator
William Fiege .... sound mixer (as Bill Fiege)
Les Fresholtz .... sound re-recording mixer
Vern Poore .... sound re-recording mixer
William Shaffer .... boom operator
Special Effects by
Chuck E. Stewart .... special effects (as Charles Stewart)
Greg Robbins .... stunt double: Paul Clemens (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Frank D'Angelo .... first assistant camera
Ben Felthouse .... electrician (as Ben Feldthouse)
Ron Halpern .... second assistant camera
Jono Kouzouyan .... gaffer
Andrew Roach .... grip
Michael Stocks .... best boy grip
Suzanne Tenner .... still photographer
Terry Wimmer .... key grip
Jack Yanekian .... best boy electrician
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Elizabeth Dibene .... wardrobe assistant
Verkina Flower .... wardrobe coordinator
Violet Manes .... wardrobe assistant
Editorial Department
Barry Dresner .... assistant film editor
Jack Hooper .... negative cutter
Music Department
John Cacavas .... conductor
Morris I. Diamond .... music coordinator (as Morris Diamond)
Stephen A. Hope .... music editor
Ken Suesov .... music recordist: Brittania Studios
Transportation Department
Lance Dickson .... transportation
Other crew
Connie Barzaghi .... script supervisor
John Cacavas Jr. .... production assistant
Ruth E. Campbell .... assistant to producer
Stefani N. Deoul .... production coordinator
Michael Donner .... location auditor
Jeff Gonzales .... production assistant
Elwin Hughes .... assistant to producer
David Littell .... production assistant
Teri Parker .... production assistant
Donna Schaffel .... assistant to producer
Donna Tollefson .... dialogue supervisor
John E. Vohlers .... production assistant
Bob Hadler .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
96 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Cameo: [Marlene Schmidt]One of the movie's screenwriters as a Gas Station Customer.See more »
Continuity: In a scene where Diane has finished her shower, she steps out, grabs a towel and dries herself. In the next scene where we see her husband and we see her in the mirror, she is inside the shower again with the towel.See more »
Movie Connections:
Playing With FireSee more »


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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
"You're playing with fire Jay", 11 July 2010
Author: lost-in-limbo from the Mad Hatter's tea party.

But I guess you'd be hard press not to take the risk of getting burnt! "I don't know what he sees in her?" Huh! Well simply who would want to knock back the advancements of the Austrian born blonde buxom Sybil Danning. Oh she sizzles and it's difficult not to ogle, as the director takes every opportunity to focus on her curvy shape in a very desirable manner. Plenty of instances we find Danning in the buff and everything seems to play secondary to her T&A.

The highly attractive English professor Diane Stevens seduces her gullible student Jay in a plan crafted by her husband Michael to inherit his family's fortune. However things turn pear shape when murder becomes apart of it.

In the 80s Eric Red was living every teenage boy's wet dream, as only years before he was getting it on with another European goddess Sylvia Kristel in "Private Lessons". So the hormones go crazy once again. But while the two films share some similarities, "They're Playing with Fire" is less light-headed being a lot more sleazy and spiteful in mixing elements of popular teenage sex comedies and jarring slasher traits. Holding this exploitation together is a deviously plotted murder-mystery soapish narrative. Even with the paranoid reactions, deceitful manipulation and masked intentions where nothing seems quite as it is. It kind of gets obvious just who's behind it due to the minor red herrings and the clues that sprung up, so we're left to hang around to wait for the motivation for the homicidal madness. It's quite overlong in its quest to reach its messy, silly revelation too. As for the shocks they're surprisingly nasty and bloody, but still clumsily handled by director Howard Avedis and the eccentric script consists of plenty sharp stabs of irony. Covering the film's soundtrack is numerous cheese-grated rock ballads with the seductive title song leading the way. The acting is colourful enough; Danning is a talented actress than just a figure and her strong presence shows it. Red is fitting and Andrew Prine is great as her vain husband. Offering fine support are Paul Clemens, K.T Stevens, Dominick Brascia and Alvy Moore.

It's an odd, neurotic and junky combination altogether, but incredibly amusing nonetheless.

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