IMDb > Phenomenon (1996)
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Phenomenon (1996) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 48 | slideshow) Videos (see all 3)
Phenomenon -- A man is endowed with unusual powers of intelligence and perception when he sees a bright white light.  What starts as a blessing rapidly turns sour as friends become fearful and the military seeks to determine the source of his sudden genius.
Phenomenon -- Clip: George Names Mammals
Phenomenon -- Clip: George Learns Portuguese


User Rating:
6.4/10   61,345 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Up 11% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer (WGA):
Gerald Di Pego (written by)
View company contact information for Phenomenon on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 July 1996 (USA) See more »
Some things in life just can't be explained.
An ordinary man sees a bright light descend from the sky, and discovers he now has super-intelligence and telekinesis. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
7 wins & 8 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
An Inspiration! See more (113 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

John Travolta ... George Malley

Kyra Sedgwick ... Lace Pennamin

Forest Whitaker ... Nate Pope

Robert Duvall ... Doc Brunder

Jeffrey DeMunn ... Prof. John Ringold

Richard Kiley ... Dr. Wellin

David Gallagher ... Al Pennamin
Ashley Buccille ... Glory Pennamin

Tony Genaro ... Tito

Sean O'Bryan ... Banes

Michael Milhoan ... Jimmy

Troy Evans ... Roger

Bruce A. Young ... FBI Agent Jack Hatch (as Bruce Young)

Vyto Ruginis ... Ted Rhome

Brent Spiner ... Dr. Bob Niedorf

Elisabeth Nunziato ... Ella

Ellen Geer ... Bonnie

James Keane ... Pete the Cop

Susan Merson ... Nurse

James Anthony Cotton ... Cal, Hospital Orderly (as James Cotton)
Justin DiPego ... UFO Man
Mark Soper ... KCUD-TV Reporter

Daniel Zacapa ... Father at Book Fair
Cab Covay ... Book Fair Heckler
Tony A. Mattos ... Ella's Father
Mark Valim ... Alberto
Carl D. Parker ... Man in Orchard (as Carl Parker)

Beth Kennedy ... Female FBI Agent
Tom Fridley ... Male FBI Agent

Richard Gross ... Customer at Malley's
Jack Chouchanian ... MRI Technician
Michael Forner ... Charlie Shipper
Sage Callaway ... Female Officer
Jewel Benedict ... Townswoman (May)
Betsy Berryhill ... Townswoman (at bar)
Mariann V. Carothers ... Townswoman (furniture store owner)
Claudia Crespin ... Townswoman (in crowd)
Joseph A. Nicosia ... Townsman (man #2 at bar)
Dan Partain ... Townsman (man #3 at bar)
Isaac Reiswig ... Townsman (in crowd)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Joseph Amey ... Book fair spectator (uncredited)
Mike Justice ... College student (uncredited)

Noah Michael Levine ... FBI Agent (uncredited)
Anni Long ... Maj. Benz (uncredited)

Scott Mullin ... Agent (uncredited)
Will Prater ... Helicopter Pilot (uncredited)

Anthony Snow ... Interrogation Recorder (uncredited)

Theodore Carl Soderberg ... Officer (uncredited)
Sandy Stoltz ... Duck Carnie (uncredited)
Eric Tignini ... Agent (uncredited)
Derek Zemrak ... FBI Investigator (uncredited)

Directed by
Jon Turteltaub 
Writing credits
Gerald Di Pego (written by) (as Gerald Dipego)

Produced by
Barbara Boyle .... producer
Jonathan D. Krane .... executive producer (as Jonathan Krane)
Charles Newirth .... executive producer
Michael Taylor .... producer
Original Music by
Thomas Newman 
Cinematography by
Phedon Papamichael (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Bruce Green 
Casting by
Renee Rousselot 
Production Design by
Garreth Stover 
Art Direction by
Bruce Alan Miller 
Set Decoration by
Jay Hart 
Costume Design by
Betsy Cox 
Makeup Department
Fríða Aradóttir .... key hair stylist (as Frida Aradottier)
Michelle Bühler .... makeup artist: Mr. Travolta (as Michelle Buhler)
Hallie D'Amore .... key makeup artist
Susan V. Kalinowski .... hair stylist: Mr. Travolta
Production Management
Allegra Clegg .... production supervisor
Charles Newirth .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
George Bamber .... second assistant director
Geoffrey Hansen .... first assistant director (as Geoff Hansen)
Eric Tignini .... second second assistant director
Art Department
James Burke .... greensman
Victoria Carlson .... stand-by painter
Chris Cornwell .... assistant art director
Gary Deaton .... construction coordinator
Richard Fernandez .... set designer
Bobby Joe Garren .... greensman (as Bobby J. Garren)
Michael Gastaldo .... assistant property master
Gerald Lehtola .... art department coordinator (as Gerald R. Lehtola)
Kimberlee Lucas .... set estimator (as Kimberlee R. Lucas)
Robert Lucas .... leadman
Doni McMillan .... assistant property master (as Donald A. McMillan)
Robin L. Miller .... property master
Kenny Montante .... leadman (as Kenneth Montante)
Troy Alan Peters .... on-set dresser (as Troy Peters)
Lori Rowbotham .... set designer
Dwight Williams .... construction foreman
Craig B. Ayers Sr. .... greensman (uncredited)
William Boyd .... general foreman (uncredited)
Elixandro Diaz Jr. .... plaster foreman (uncredited)
Mary Locatell .... illustrator (uncredited)
Nanci Noblett .... set designer (uncredited)
Tom Richardson .... set painter (uncredited)
Doug Sieck .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sound Department
David Behle .... sound re-recordist
Michael Broomberg .... foley artist
Gary Dowling .... cableman
Julia Evershade .... sound editor
Howell Gibbens .... sound editor
Michael Herbick .... sound re-recording mixer
Robert Jackson .... boom operator (as Robert C. Jackson)
Ron Judkins .... sound mixer (as Ronald Judkins)
Doc Kane .... adr mixer
Jack Keller .... sound re-recordist
Robert J. Litt .... sound re-recording mixer
Mark A. Mangini .... supervising sound editor (as Mark Mangini)
Jeena M. Phelps .... assistant sound editor (as Jeena Phelps)
Joan Rowe .... foley artist
Elliot Tyson .... sound re-recording mixer
Scott Weber .... foley mixer
Donald C. Rogers .... technical director of sound (uncredited)
Special Effects by
David Blitstein .... special effects coordinator
Rod M. Janusch .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Nikki Bell .... production assistant: SPI
Mageara Cameron .... visual effects coordinator: SPI
Louis Cetorelli .... CG supervisor: SPI
Jerome Chen .... senior technical designer: SPI
Heather Davis Baker .... lead digital compositor: SPI (as Heather Davis)
Mark Holmes .... Flame artist: SPI
Ivo Horvat .... conceptual illustrator: SPI
Martin A. Kline .... visual effects art director: SPI (as Marty Kline)
Christopher Leone .... lead film recordist: SPI (as Chris Leone)
Raquel Morales .... digital matte painter: SPI
Mike Perry .... particle animator: SPI
Ken Ralston .... visual effects supervisor: SPI
Jody Rogers .... visual effects editor: SPI
Aileen Timmers .... visual effects producer: SPI
Ian Wosiski .... technical assistant: SPI
Michael Curtis .... digital compositor (uncredited)
Audrea Topps Harjo .... production software coordinator (uncredited)
David Cadiente .... stunts
Jeff Cadiente .... stunt coordinator
Anita Hart .... stunts
Mark Riccardi .... stunts
Erik Stabenau .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Joseph J. Allen .... grip
Audie Aragon .... dolly grip
Jack Chouchanian .... grip
Joseph Emanuele .... electrician (as Joseph G. Emanuele)
Robert Gray .... key grip
Khan Griffith .... electrician
Mark Hadland .... best boy electric
Bob Hall .... first assistant camera
D.J. Harder .... second assistant camera
Philip Ho .... grip (as Phil Ho)
Scott Howell .... best boy grip (as Scott A. Howell)
Doug Hunt .... video assist (as Douglas W. Hunt)
Ian Kincaid .... gaffer (as Ian R. Kincaid)
Cindy Lagerstrom .... electrician (as Cynthia K. Lagerstrom)
Robert 'Boomer' McCann .... grip (as Robert J. 'Boomer' McCann)
Thomas Nead .... rigging gaffer (as Thomas G. Nead)
Wally Pfister .... camera operator
Boris Price .... camera loader
Zade Rosenthal .... still photographer
Terry Sullivan .... electrician
John T. Connor .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Glenn Fishel .... grip (uncredited)
Chris Hood .... additional second assistant camera (uncredited)
Gregory Lundsgaard .... Steadicam operator (uncredited)
Dale Myrand .... first assistant camera: "b" camera (uncredited)
Casting Department
Beau Bonneau .... casting: San Francisco
Barbara Harris .... voice casting
Michele Juskowitz .... casting associate
Costume and Wardrobe Department
James P. Cullen .... costumer: Mr. Travolta
Lori DeLapp .... costumes (as Lori McClellen)
Kimberly Guenther Durkin .... costume supervisor (as Kimberly Guenther)
Elaine Perlmann .... costumes (as Elaine Davis)
Editorial Department
Theron Alford .... editorial intern
Tzarina V. Edillon .... assistant editor (as Tzarina V. Edillon Burrell)
Mark V. Phillips .... assistant editor
Bob Putynkowski .... color timer (as Robert Putynkowski)
David Rennie .... associate editor
Theresa Repola Mohammed .... negative cutter
Amy Tompkins .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
Bill Bernstein .... music editor
Julian Bratolyubov .... music preparation
David Campbell .... conductor
David Campbell .... music arranger
David Campbell .... orchestrator
Jordan Corngold .... assistant music editor
Norman Dlugatch .... technical score engineer (as Norm Dlugatch)
George Doering .... musician
Art Ford .... music consultant
Dominic Gonzales .... score floor person
Norman Ludwin .... musician (bass)
Leslie Morris .... music contractor
Stephanie Murray .... scoring stage administrator
Kathy Nelson .... music supervisor
Thomas Pasatieri .... orchestrator
Spencer Proffer .... music consultant
John Richards .... music recordist
Robbie Robertson .... executive soundtrack producer
Dennis S. Sands .... music mixer (as Dennis Sands)
Dennis S. Sands .... music recordist (as Dennis Sands)
Allen Sides .... music mixer
Allen Sides .... music recordist
James Thatcher .... musician: French horn
Paul Wertheimer .... score recordist
Tom Winslow .... additional music engineer
Tom Winslow .... additional music mixer
Brian Benison .... music preparation (uncredited)
Brad Gilderman .... music mixer (uncredited)
Matt Walker .... music executive (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Randy Cantor .... transportation captain
Joel Marrow .... transportation coordinator
Tony Brazas .... driver: Mr. Travolta (uncredited)
Joseph Sullivan .... driver (uncredited)
Mike H. Wilson .... picture car production assistant (uncredited)
Other crew
Alicia Accardo .... script supervisor
Matt Adler .... adr voice
Tony Alda .... adr voice
Michael Alexander .... animal trainer
Charles Bazaldua .... adr voice
Dale Becker .... production assistant
Tiger Bela .... assistant: Mr. Taylor/Ms. Boyle
Gray Beverley .... assistant: Mr. Whitaker (as John 'Gray' Beverly)
Mauro Blanco .... dubbing artist
Christine Bloomingdale .... studio teacher
Paul Boyle .... production assistant
George A. Cassell III .... production assistant (as George Cassell)
Denise Collins .... production assistant
Sheigh Crabtree .... production assistant
Robert Dawson .... main title sequence designed by
Sara Dee .... assistant: Mr. Newirth (as Sara B. Dee)
David Denison .... production assistant (as David C. Denison)
Michael Dermer .... production assistant (as Michael B. Dermer)
Holly Dorff .... adr voice
Peter Evangelatos .... craft service
Efrain Figueroa .... adr voice
Greg Finley .... adr voice
Vivian Gosnell .... assistant location manager
Barbara Harris .... adr voice (as Barbara Iley)
Debra James .... production coordinator
Michael R. Kern .... assistant accountant
Mara Kerum .... catering: Tony's Food Service
Jennie Latham .... production assistant (as Jennie Marie Latham)
Paul LaZebnik .... assistant production coordinator
Amy Leigh Johnson .... unit publicist
Kamala Lopez .... adr voice (as Kamala Dawson)
Kimberlyn Lucken .... assistant: Mr. Krane (as Kimberlyn M. Lucken)
Maria Helena Martins .... adr voice
Liz Matthews .... location manager
Susan Mieras .... assistant: Ms. Sedgwick
Mary Mooney .... assistant: Jon Turteltaub
Robert J. Morton .... on-set assistant: Mr. Travolta
Kathleen M. Murray .... assistant: Mr. Duvall
Diana Leigh Myers .... assistant location manager (as Diana Myers)
Christine Pawlowski .... assistant accountant
Randol Perelman-Taylor .... production assistant
Jolanta Piwowarczyk .... assistant accountant
David Randolph .... adr voice
Dale Raoul .... adr voice
Noreen Reardon .... adr voice
Douglas V.R. Shellow .... production secretary
Anthony Snow .... stand-in
Guy J. Snow .... production assistant
Rebecca Stefan .... production assistant
Cheryl A. Stone .... production accountant (as Cheryl Stone)
Susan Such .... executive assistant: Mr. Travolta
Philip Wood .... travel services: World Travel
David Zyler .... adr voice (as David Kramer)
Tony Brazas .... assistant: Mr. Travolta (uncredited)
Dylan J. Hay-Chapman .... production assistant (uncredited)
Michael Higham .... programmer (uncredited)
Edward Hodges .... production assistant (uncredited)
Tony Kerum .... caterer: Tony's Food Service (uncredited)
Staci Marengo .... production assistant (uncredited)
Sheree Green .... special thanks: commissioner, Sonoma County Film Office
Bill Hollibaugh .... special thanks
Jennifer Jasper .... special thanks: commissioner, Placer County Film Office

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG for language and mild sensuality
123 min
Color (FotoKem)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Nate Pope (Forest Whitaker) is an Amateur Radio operator with the call sign WB6QLF. QLF is amateur shorthand for "I am sending with my left foot", a reference to someone whose Morse Code sending skill is very bad. This is normally sent as a question "QLF?" meaning "Are you sending with your left foot?" to an operator who is very difficult to understand in Morse.See more »
Revealing mistakes: When George uses the tape recorder to record the Morse code signals, there's no tape in the recorder.See more »
George Malley:[this is from a scene cut from the normal version, after George has escaped from the hospital] ... and this I wrote for you, Nate. This is about soils and some of my own thoughts.
Nate Pope:Your thoughts?
George Malley:Yea.
Nate Pope:You write down the secret to life in here, George?
George Malley:Ahh Nate, you think I know that?
Nate Pope:I think you know something. What? You sum it up in this book here? Or maybe you didn't sum it up. Maybe you think I wouldn't get it, or that I wouldn't understand it.
George Malley:Ahh Nate, you already know it.
Nate Pope:I want you to tell me George.
George Malley:All right.
[pulls out an eraser]
See more »
A Thing Going OnSee more »


Why didn't George Malley real all the neurobiology books he could, to invent a procedure to save himself?
See more »
61 out of 73 people found the following review useful.
An Inspiration!, 6 September 2001
Author: jhazelett72 from Iowa

An ex-girlfriend talked me into seeing this movie, and I am happy she did. In my opinion, John Travolta deserved at least a nomination for an Oscar here, if not the award itself. The story was decent, but the performances of Travolta, Forest Whitaker, Robert Duvall, and Kyra Sedgwick made me care about what was happening on the screen. By no means is this a romantic comedy. It's romantic, probably the most romantic film I have seen in a long time. The reason for that is's real. In most movies you see the main characters sleep together within a day at the most, which rarely happens with two people who are really in love. True love has to take time and effort, which is exactly what you see here. Travolta's George is patient, but not because he wants to be. If you're a romantic at heart you will understand and relate to him, and you will hope for his success as you would for your own. Without giving anything away, I will tell you that the ending is sad, but also heartwarming. George has his "experience" for no other reason than to suggest what we as humans can become. Phenomenon is a story about our potential, the good and bad things that can happen to us if we achieve it. We could only be so lucky, and watching the movie is a good start. I give it 8 out of 10 stars.

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