IMDb > Cocoon (1985)
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Cocoon (1985) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 10% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Tom Benedek (screenplay)
David Saperstein (story)
View company contact information for Cocoon on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
21 June 1985 (USA) See more »
Beyond the innocence of youth, and the wisdom of age, lies the wonder of... Cocoon See more »
When a group of trespassing seniors swim in a pool containing alien cocoons, they find themselves energized with youthful vigour. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 11 nominations See more »
(164 articles)
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User Reviews:
Another under-appreciated gem See more (78 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Don Ameche ... Art Selwyn

Wilford Brimley ... Ben Luckett

Hume Cronyn ... Joe Finley

Brian Dennehy ... Walter

Jack Gilford ... Bernie Lefkowitz

Steve Guttenberg ... Jack Bonner

Maureen Stapleton ... Mary Luckett

Jessica Tandy ... Alma Finley
Gwen Verdon ... Bess McCarthy
Herta Ware ... Rosie Lefkowitz

Tahnee Welch ... Kitty

Barret Oliver ... David

Linda Harrison ... Susan
Tyrone Power Jr. ... Pillsbury

Clint Howard ... John Dexter
Charles Lampkin ... Pops
Mike Nomad ... Doc
Jorge Gil ... Lou Pine
James Ritz ... DMV Clerk
Charles Rainsbury ... Smiley
Wendy J. Cooke ... Alien (as Wendy Cooke)
Pamela Prescott ... Alien
Dinah Sue Rowley ... Alien
Gabriella Sinclair ... Alien
Cyndi Vicino ... Bank Teller
Russ Wheeler ... Doctor
Harold Bergman ... Reverend
Ivy Thayer ... Waitress
Fred Broderson ... Kirk
Mark Cheresnick ... Salvatore
Bette Shoor ... Realtor
Mark Simpson ... Coast Guard First Class BM
Robert Slacum Jr. ... Coast Guard Second Class BM

Rance Howard ... St. Petersburg Dectective

Jean Speegle Howard ... Woman (as Jean Speegle)
Charles Voelker ... Leader, New Yorkers Dance Band
Irving Krone ... Jasper
Clarence Thomas ... Policeman
Ted Science ... Policeman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Fred Astaire ... Himself, film clip from 'The Gay Divorcee' (archive footage) (uncredited)

Jim Fitzpatrick ... Dock Worker (uncredited)
Reginald Gardiner ... Himself, film clip from 'Flying Deuces' (archive footage) (uncredited)

Oliver Hardy ... Himself, film clip from 'Flying Deuces' (archive footage) (uncredited)

Stan Laurel ... Himself, film clip from 'Flying Deuces' (archive footage) (uncredited)

Carmen Miranda ... Herself, Vocalist on Recording: 'Weekend in Havana' (archive sound) (uncredited)

Jean Parker ... Herself, film clip from 'Flying Deuces' (archive footage) (uncredited)
Tracy Roberts ... Bar Patron (uncredited)

Ginger Rogers ... Herself, film clip from 'The Gay Divorcee' (archive footage) (uncredited)

Directed by
Ron Howard 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Tom Benedek  screenplay
David Saperstein  story

Produced by
David Brown .... producer
Robert Doudell .... associate producer
Lili Fini Zanuck .... producer
Richard D. Zanuck .... producer
Original Music by
James Horner 
Cinematography by
Donald Peterman (director of photography) (as Don Peterman)
Film Editing by
Daniel P. Hanley  (as Daniel Hanley)
Mike Hill  (as Michael Hill)
Casting by
Penny Perry 
Production Design by
Jack T. Collis 
Set Decoration by
Jim Duffy 
Costume Design by
Aggie Guerard Rodgers 
Makeup Department
Greg Cannom .... special makeup effects
Janis Clark .... hair stylist
Kevin Haney .... makeup artist
Robert Norin .... makeup artist
Brian Penikas .... special makeup effects artist
Rick Stratton .... makeup artist
Michael Burnett .... creature effects crew (uncredited)
David B. Miller .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Robert Doudell .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Hans Beimler .... second assistant director
Jan R. Lloyd .... first assistant director
John N. Whittle .... additional second assistant director (as John Whittle)
Art Department
Eric A. Hulett .... lead man
Steven M. Levine .... property master
Ralph McQuarrie .... conceptual artist
Mickey Woods .... construction coordinator
John Alvin .... poster artist (uncredited)
Jerry Palermo .... painter (uncredited)
Jack Reeves .... painter (uncredited)
Harley Whitehurst .... painter (uncredited)
Sound Department
Clint Althouse .... boom operator
Richard S. Church .... sound mixer
William Hartman .... sound editor
Laurel Ladevich .... special sound designer
Godfrey Marks .... dialogue editor
Dennie C. Modes .... cable person
Michael O'Corrigan .... sound editor (as Michael Corrigan)
Richard Overton .... sound re-recording mixer
Gary Rydstrom .... special sound designer
Theodore Soderberg .... sound re-recording mixer
Gary Summers .... special sound designer
Paul Wells .... sound re-recording mixer
Marty Church .... foley mixer (uncredited)
Kathleen Korth .... assistant sound editor (uncredited)
Greg Smith .... machine room operator (uncredited)
Greg Smith .... sound recordist (uncredited)
Lionel Strutt .... adr mixer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Stuart Artingstall .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Greg Cannom .... special alien creatures and effects
Craig Caton .... creature crew
Robert Clark .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Tony Gardner .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Alec Gillis .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Camilla Henneman .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Tom Hester .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Shawn McEnroe .... creature effects crew: Cannom
Joseph A. Unsinn .... special effects coordinator (as Joseph Unsinn)
Kevin Yagher .... creature effects crew: Cannom
James Cummins .... story board (uncredited)
Adam Hill .... creature effects crew (uncredited)
Donald Pennington .... special effects (uncredited)
Bill Sturgeon .... creature effects crew (uncredited)
Tim Turner .... creature effects crew (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Peter Anderson .... creature development
Peter Anderson .... visual effects
Craig Barron .... matte photography supervisor
William Beck .... model maker
David Berry .... visual effects optical supervisor
Barbara Brennan .... rotoscope artist
Marty Brenneis .... model maker
Sean M. Casey .... stop-motion technician
Donald Clark .... optical camera operator
Christopher Evans .... matte painting supervisor
Scott Farrar .... visual effects cameraman
Robert Finley Jr. .... cloud tank technician
Pat Fitzsimmons .... visual effects supervising stage technician
Warren Franklin .... general manager: ILM
Michael Fulmer .... model maker
Steve Gawley .... visual effects supervising model maker
Ray Gilberti .... visual effects assistant cameraman
Ralph Gordon .... optical line-up
Caroleen Green .... matte artist
Robert Hill .... visual effects assistant cameraman
Edward Hirsh .... visual effects stage manager
Sandy Houston .... rotoscoper
Peg Hunter .... optical line-up
Paul Huston .... matte photography
Ed Jones .... optical line-up
Randy Jonsson .... visual effects assistant cameraman (as Randy Johnson)
Ira Keeler .... model maker
Bill Kimberlin .... visual effects editor
Tony Laudati .... stop-motion technician
Ellen E. Lichtwardt .... rotoscope artist
James Lim .... optical camera operator
Mike MacKenzie .... visual effects equipment engineering supervisor
Pamela Marcotte .... visual effects
Jack Mongovan .... rotoscope artist
Charlie Mullen .... visual effects animation supervisor
Kerry Nordquist .... visual effects still photography
Phillip Norwood .... visual effects art director
Terrence Peck .... visual effects assistant effects editor
Donald Pennington .... visual effects construction coordinator
Margot Phillips .... stop-motion technician
Ken Ralston .... visual effects supervisor
Kenneth Smith .... optical camera operator
David Sosalla .... stop motion supervisor
Tom St. Amand .... stop-motion technician
Mitch Suskin .... visual effects production supervisor
Laurie Vermont .... visual effects production coordinator
Robert Cooper .... stop-motion technician/sculptor (uncredited)
Catherine Craig .... effects camera operator (uncredited)
Ned Gorman .... effects production assistant (uncredited)
Jay Riddle .... animation camera: ILM (uncredited)
Thomas Rosseter .... optical lineup (uncredited)
Jerry Brutsche .... stunts
Denise Cheshire .... stunts
Ted Grossman .... stunt coordinator
Candice Orsini .... stunts
Jim O'Rear .... stunts (uncredited)
Donald Pennington .... stunt performer (uncredited)
Charlie Picerni .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Richard Dow .... grip
Sharon Smith Holley .... camera intern
Jordan Klein Jr. .... underwater assistant camera: Nassau
Jordan Klein Sr. .... underwater camera operator: Nassau (as Jordan Klein)
John LeBlanc .... camera operator: Chicago
Keith Peterman .... camera operator
Zade Rosenthal .... still photographer
Waverly Smothers .... grip
Calvin Sterry .... key grip
Ken M. Suzuki .... gaffer
Frank Tobin .... best boy electric (as Frank D. Tobin)
Clay H. Wilson .... grip
John Earl Burnett .... second assistant camera (uncredited)
Greg Patterson .... set lighting technician (uncredited)
Casting Department
Barbara Harris .... voice casting
Beverly McDermott .... casting: Florida
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Linda Henrikson .... costumer
Eddie Marks .... costume supervisor
Mort Schwartz .... costumer
Kristy Aitken Hernandez .... set costumer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Pamela Ghaleb .... apprentice editor
Carol Ann Jackson .... assistant editor
Mary McGlone .... assistant editor
Lydia Telo .... assistant editor
Music Department
Billy May .... orchestrator
Herbert W. Spencer .... orchestrator
Armin Steiner .... score mixer
Gwen Verdon .... special music & dance coordinator
James Horner .... conductor (uncredited)
James Thatcher .... musician: french horn (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Princess Clare .... transportation coordinator: Nassau
Michael Connolly .... transportation coordinator
Dean E. Mason .... transportation coordinator
Mike Robinson .... driver: insert car
Steve Bonner .... production driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Rick Baker .... special creature consultant
James Steven Claridge .... diving services: Nassau
Susan Cornell .... dance consultant
Thane Cornell .... dance consultant
Carline Davis-Dyer .... script supervisor
Al Ebner .... unit publicist
Kingsley Griffin .... dolphin trainer: Nassau
Kathy Krueger .... dolphin trainer: Nassau
Robert Maharis .... location manager
Louisa Marie .... assistant: Mr. Howard
Gavin McKinney .... diving services: Nassau
Fred Newman .... dolphin voices
Mike Nomad .... underwater consultant: Nassau
Giedra Rackauskas .... auditor
Caprice Rothe .... alien movement choreographer
Teresa Stokovic .... production coordinator
Fred Zendar .... marine coordinator (as Manfred Zendar)
Jay Roberts .... assistant accountant (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
117 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints) | Dolby (35 mm prints)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Ron Howard's brother, mother and father all appear in the film. His wife appears also, as a receptionist/nurse behind a desk, and she was pregnant with twin daughters at the time. The reception area desk was used to hide that fact.See more »
Revealing mistakes: Obvious stunt double for David when he jumps from the jetty to the boat.See more »
Jack Bonner:If this is foreplay I'm a dead man!See more »
Movie Connections:
Bridal ChorusSee more »


Which of the seniors choose to go with the mothership?
How does the movie end?
How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
See more »
37 out of 39 people found the following review useful.
Another under-appreciated gem, 1 April 2001
Author: TVholic from New York

"Do not go gentle into that good night, Old age should burn and rave at close of day; Rage, rage against the dying of the light." - Dylan Thomas

The senior characters of this modern day fable took this poem to heart.

When we first meet the motley group, they are as many of us dread one day becoming. Kept in a nursing home, days filled with vapid activities like shuffleboard or mah-jongg, whiling away hours floating in a deserted swimming pool, watching people your own age drop like flies. When that changes through the magic of alien technology, they become, if not the picture of reckless youth, at least a semblance of the people they were once upon a time, proving the old cliché: you ARE only as old as you feel. In that, it's a good lesson for people heading into their golden years or even those of us just having midlife crises. We can't help but grow old. But it's up to us whether we want to BE old or merely mature.

For a science fiction movie, it would appear to have few special effects. This is an illusion. There are quite a few effects shots, although the variety of effects is rather limited. The glowing aliens are quite good except for the all too familiar hand movements by Caprice Rothe, who first did the job for "E.T." Still, by and large the effects are impressive and convincing even when compared against the latest films of the 21st century. Even more impressive was the poolhouse, which was hastily constructed purely as a setpiece for the movie. It looks absolutely real, as if it had sat there among the Florida palms for decades.

Tahnee Welch, daughter of the seemingly ageless Raquel, was wholesomely fetching here. Whether she was a limited actress or merely underplaying the role is for others to decide. Ron Howard wisely kept Steve Guttenberg's role limited, focusing mainly on the older characters. A little Guttenberg goofiness goes a long way. Also present are the standard Howard family repertory, with brother Clint as the nursing home attendant and father Rance making a brief appearance as a detective. Much as already been said about the excellent performances of the older cast members. This was, after all, the role that finally won an Oscar for Don Ameche. But they're slowly slipping away from us, one by one. First Jack Gilford, then Ameche, then Jessica Tandy and recently Gwen Verdon. At least we'll have this movie to remember them by. Maybe they weren't at the peaks of their careers, but quite possibly the roles they fit most comfortably.

Two attempts to cash in on this movie failed. Both 1987's "*batteries Not Included," starring Tandy and Cronyn, and the 1988 sequel "Cocoon: The Return" flopped. Neither had the genuine warmth of this original. Ron Howard showed good judgement in turning down the chance to direct the sequel.

As for the musical score, it's one of James Horner's better works, mixing symphonic grandeur with childlike wonderment. Alas, he does fall into old habits and reuse some bars and measures from his "Wolfen" and "Star Trek II" scores.

It's a shame this movie never found the audience it deserved. I first saw this in a shopping mall four-plex a couple of weeks after its release. There couldn't have been more than 20 people in the entire theater. The whole movie holds up remarkably well in the 16 years since, except for the break dancing. My god, has it been 16 years already? Where can I find some Antarean life force?

Was the above review useful to you?
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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Cocoon (1985)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Funniest Lines Zach126
Filming Locations and Dates B25Mitch
Publix location? heppcat
Aliens trapped in 'Cocoons' on the bottom of the ocean floor? FrankNave
What are the names of the younger male aliens? idcatlady
i know its a work of fiction,but why.............. sandysandy1975
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