IMDb > The Principal (1987)
The Principal
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The Principal (1987) More at IMDbPro »

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The Principal -- Tough inner-city high school principal (James Belushi) butts heads with gang members in a crusade which may cost him his career and his life.


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Down 45% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Frank Deese (written by)
View company contact information for The Principal on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
18 September 1987 (USA) See more »
An educator who never plays by the rules. A high school where the only law is survival. Will he break it before it breaks him? See more »
A teacher is assigned to be the principal of a violence and crime ridden high school. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
An Overlooked Eighties Classic See more (53 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

James Belushi ... Rick Latimer

Louis Gossett Jr. ... Jake Phillips

Rae Dawn Chong ... Hilary Orozco

Michael Wright ... Victor Duncan

J.J. Cohen ... White Zac

Esai Morales ... Raymi Rojas
Troy Winbush ... 'Baby' Emile

Jacob Vargas ... Arturo Diego

Thomas Ryan ... Robert Darcy
Reggie Johnson ... Jojo

Kelly Jo Minter ... Treena Lester (as Kelly Minter)
Ruth Beckford ... Mrs. Jenkins
Julian Brooks ... Kevin
Joan Valderrama ... Secretary
Rick Hamilton ... Mr. Harkley
Marty Pistone ... Security Guard (as Martin Pistone)
Richard Dupell ... Buddy (as Richard Duppell)

Peter Fitzsimmons ... Buddy

Joe Flood ... Terhune
Annabel Armour ... Mrs. Ripton (as Ann Armour)
Tony Haney ... Police Officer
Sharon Thomas Cain ... Kimberly (as Sharon Thomas)
Daniel Royal ... Will
Delores Mitchell ... Mrs. Coswell
Zoltan Gray ... P.E. Teacher
John Allen Vick ... Frank Valdis
Sean Michael Allen ... Rolf (as Sean Allen Barnes)
Yuri Lane ... Lance Woodbury
Steve Birger ... Stevie B. (as Steve W. Birger)
Gus Dimas ... Gus
Leo Downey ... George Pierce
Tom Winston ... Principal O'Connor
Kathryn Knotts ... Jan Buchanan
Marshall Jones ... Gang Member
Josh Wood ... Charles Lester
Mark Anger ... Desk Officer

Frank Deese ... Mr. Petersen
J.J. Johnston ... Will (as J.J. Johnson)
Doug White ... Eric
Wat Takeshita ... Maintenance Man
Elliott S. Valderrama ... Drug Dealer
Joel Valentin ... Kid

Jessica Looney ... Girl (as Jessica Wilson)
Kaprice Wilson ... Girl
Bridgette Rodriguez ... Girl
Tom Bryant ... Shocked Teacher
Danny Kovacs ... Substitute Teacher
Charmaine Anderson ... Hilary's Student
Terry Coleman ... Student
Melissa Lee Holloman ... Student
Luis Zuno ... Student
Nemon Wade ... Student
Eural Wills ... Student
James Edward Griffin ... Gang Student
David Williams ... Gang Student
Melanie G. Muters ... Alley Girl
Linda Trowbridge ... Nurse
Danny Williams ... Dangerous Danny
Bill Yarbrough ... Randall

Directed by
Christopher Cain 
Writing credits
Frank Deese (written by)

Produced by
Thomas H. Brodek .... producer
Original Music by
Jay Gruska 
Cinematography by
Arthur Albert (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Jack Hofstra 
Casting by
Penny Perry 
Art Direction by
Mark Billerman 
Set Decoration by
Rick Brown 
Costume Design by
Marianna Åström-De Fina  (as Marianna Aström-DeFina)
Makeup Department
Steven E. Anderson .... key makeup artist
Karoly Balazs .... makeup advisor (as Balazs)
Candace Neal .... hair stylist
Production Management
James T. Davis .... unit production manager
Trevor Jolly .... post-production supervisor
Ted Zachary .... executive in charge of production (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Charles Myers .... first assistant director (as Charles D. Myers)
W. Thomas Snyder .... second assistant director (as Tom Snyder)
Art Department
F.X. Crowley .... assistant property master (as Frances X. Crowley)
Jeffrey P. Cude .... set dresser
Sean Everett .... property assistant (as Sean E. Markland)
Jack Kostelnik .... leadman
Teresa Nielsen .... set painter
Daniel J. Nilles .... set dresser
Michelle Souza .... set dresser (as Michelle L. Souza)
J. Michael Speakman .... assistant property master
Philip Steuer .... property master
I.J. Van Perre .... construction coordinator (as I.J. Van Perre Jr.)
Sound Department
Stephen Balliet .... boom operator
Gregg Barbanell .... foley artist
David E. Campbell .... sound re-recording mixer (as Dave Campbell)
Gordon Daniel .... sound editor
G.W. Davis .... sound editor
Denis Dutton .... sound editor
Dan Gleich .... boom operator
John Paul Jones .... foley editor
Horace Manzanares .... assistant sound editor (as Horace Manzaneres)
Gilbert D. Marchant .... supervising sound editor
John T. Reitz .... sound re-recording mixer (as John Reitz)
Gregg Rudloff .... sound re-recording mixer
Edward L. Sandlin .... sound editor (as Edward Sandlin)
Richard Stewart .... assistant sound editor
Andy Wiskes .... production sound mixer
Jerry Trent .... foley artist (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Douglas Cattaneo .... special effects
Allen S. Gross Jr. .... special effects
David Pier .... special effects supervisor
Mickey Alzola .... stunts
Bobby Angelle .... stunts
Michael Bransfield .... stunts
Lyle Byrum .... stunts
Everett Creach .... stunt coordinator
Everett Creach .... stunts
Laurie Creach .... stunts (as Lauri Creach)
Gregg Dandridge .... stunts
Kirk Elam .... stunts (as Kirk A. Elam)
Taylor Gilbert .... stunts
Len Glascow .... stunts
Scott Howell .... stunts (as Scott A. Howell)
Eileen Lane .... stunts
Shawn Lane .... stunts (as Shawn Patrick Lane)
William T. Lane .... stunts
Tyann Means .... stunts
Eddie Mulder .... stunts
Norma Nobile .... stunts
Kristen Suzanne Raden .... stunts (as Krissy Raden)
Michael Raden .... stunts (as Mike Raden)
Don Ruffin .... stunts
Vicki Swindell .... stunts
Shirley Walker .... stunts (as Shirley A. Walker)
Tom Wright .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Sharon Alley .... second assistant camera
Anthony F. Balderrama .... first assistant camera
Gary M. Brickley .... best boy
Gregory M. Childers .... best boy grip
Greg Davies .... gaffer
Philip Holahan .... additional photographer
Barbara Lakin .... still photographer
Dennis Pope .... dolly grip
Jani Vournas .... electrical best boy
Casting Department
Terri Pappas .... extras casting
Cate Praggastis .... extras casting
Mae Williams .... casting assistant
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Judy Feil .... costumer
Barbara Kassal .... costumer
Sue Miller .... costume supervisor
Editorial Department
Denise Cochran .... apprentice film editor
Marlys James .... apprentice film editor
Frank Kniest .... assistant film editor
Music Department
Jellybean Benítez .... music supervisor (as Jellybean)
Ian Eales .... music recordist
Ken Johnson .... music editor
Steve Livingston .... music editor
Timothy R. Sexton .... executive in charge of music
Daniel J. Johnson .... music editor (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Jon Thorgusen .... transportation captain
Randy White .... transportation coordinator
Other crew
Nandi Bowe .... production assistant
Randi Lynn Braun .... titles
Jane Bucklin .... assistant: Mr. Brodek
Dulanie M. Ellis .... script supervisor (as Dulanie Ellis)
Terry Gusto .... location manager
Barbara Gutman .... assistant accountant
Doris Hellmann .... assistant production coordinator
Arlene Johnson .... assistant: Mr. Cain
Jennifer Neiman .... production accountant
Steve Scheutzow .... production assistant (as Stephen Scheutzow)
Peter Steinfeld .... physical trainer: Body by Jake
Lauren Beth Strogoff .... unit publicist
Eugene M. Texeira .... craft service (as Eugene Texeira)
Elliott S. Valderrama .... production assistant (as E.S. Valderrama)
Thomas Vranesich .... production assistant
Laurel Walter .... production coordinator
Dara Weintraub .... production assistant (as Dara L. Weintraub)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
109 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Phillips (Louis Gossett JR) talks about his days as a player for the New York Titians. The Titians were an original team in the American Football League. The team later was under new ownership, and renamed the Jets.See more »
Continuity: Several times through out the film, White Zac is referred to as the only white student in the school. However, several times throughout the film, you can see multiple other white students in the halls of the school.See more »
[Latimer has the upper-hand in a scuffle with Duncan]
Victor Duncan:Please! No more!
Rick Latimer:You got that right!
[Latimer throws Duncan out of the school via a double-door]
Rick Latimer:[shouts] No more!
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Unikal'noe pozdravlenie (2014)See more »
Hello HeavenSee more »


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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
An Overlooked Eighties Classic, 27 October 2010
Author: SensationalismFanatic from United States

I first saw The Principal as a young boy. It made quite an impression on me, and now as an adult, I can't help but revisit it every now and then. Despite having lost some of its shock value over time, the movie has retained its suspense. The style is unmistakably Eighties (I think in an endearing way) and James Belushi's charisma and drama chops carry the story- which occasionally gets silly (also endearingly). The plot is delivered in a compelling way, and evenly divides it focus between character development and the central conflict. By today's standards, the exaggeration and melodrama would probably lead most to dismiss The Principal as stupid. Although I partially appreciate it in the way it was intended, a lot of what makes the movie entertaining is how easily it can be laughed at.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (53 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Principal (1987)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
we need a hardcore remake campblood1981
James Belushi matthewhwolf
Where's the rest of the security staff? jeremynicholsv1
whats that song bb3raver
Song at the begining of the movie in the school Lespaul2891
The Principal MikeTuinstra
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