The Great Escape ()

Reference View | Change View

Allied prisoners of war plan for several hundred of their number to escape from a German camp during World War II.

  • Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 10 nominations.
  • See more »

Photos and Videos

Cast verified as complete

Hilts 'The Cooler King'
Hendley 'The Scrounger'
Bartlett 'Big X'
Ramsey 'The SBO'
Danny 'Tunnel King'
Blythe 'The Forger'
Sedgwick 'Manufacturer'
Von Luger 'The Kommandant'
Ashley-Pitt 'Dispersal'
MacDonald 'Intelligence'
Willie 'Tunnel King'
Ives 'The Mole'
Cavendish 'The Surveyor'
Robert Graf ...
Werner 'The Ferret'
Hans Reiser ...
Herr Kuhn
Harry Riebauer ...
Capt. Posen
Ulrich Beiger ...
George Mikell ...
Lt. Dietrich
Haynes ('Diversions')
Robert Desmond ...
Griffith 'Tailor'
Heinz Weiss ...
Dai Nimmo ('Diversions')
S.S. Officer Steinach
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Arthur Atkinson ...
British Officer Charlie (uncredited)

Directed by

John Sturges

Written by

Paul Brickhill ... (based on the book by)
James Clavell ... (screen play by) and
W.R. Burnett ... (screen play by)

Produced by

James Clavell ... producer (uncredited)
Walter Mirisch ... executive producer (uncredited)
John Sturges ... producer

Music by

Elmer Bernstein

Cinematography by

Daniel L. Fapp ... director of photography

Film Editing by

Ferris Webster

Editorial Department

Don Tomlinson ... assistant film editor

Art Direction by

Fernando Carrere

Set Decoration by

Kurt Ripberger

Makeup Department

Emile LaVigne ... makeup artist
Jay Sebring ... hair designer: Steve McQueen, James Garner (uncredited)

Production Management

Allen K. Wood ... production supervisor
Hubert Fröhlich ... production manager (uncredited)

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

Jack N. Reddish ... assistant director
John Flynn ... assistant director (uncredited)
Robert E. Relyea ... second unit director (uncredited)

Art Department

Frank Agnone ... property
Frank McCarthy ... poster artist (uncredited)

Sound Department

Wayne Fury ... sound effects editor

Special Effects by

A. Paul Pollard ... special effects (as Paul Pollard)


Bud Ekins ... stunt double: Steve McQueen, motorcycle jump (uncredited)
Tim Gibbes ... stunts (uncredited)
Chuck Hayward ... stunts (uncredited)
Loren Janes ... stunt double: Steve McQueen (uncredited)
Roy Jenson ... stunts (uncredited)
Carey Loftin ... stunts (uncredited)
Robert E. Relyea ... stunt pilot (uncredited)
Roy Scammell ... stunt team (uncredited)
Roy N. Sickner ... stunts (uncredited)

Camera and Electrical Department

Léo L. Fuchs ... still photographer (uncredited)
Lothar Winkler ... still photographer (uncredited)

Costume and Wardrobe Department

Bert Henrikson ... wardrobe

Music Department

Richard Carruth ... music editor
Michael Andersen ... music copyist (uncredited)
Lloyd Basham ... music copyist (uncredited)
Saundra Berkova ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Elmer Bernstein ... conductor (uncredited)
Harold Brown ... musician: bass (uncredited)
Herman Clebanoff ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Manuel Compinsky ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Dominick Fera ... musician: clarinet (uncredited)
Dominic Fidelibus ... music copyist (uncredited)
Wolfgang Fraenkel ... music copyist (uncredited)
Sam Freed Jr. ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Benny Gill ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Jack Hayes ... orchestrator (uncredited)
Wally Heglin ... music copyist (uncredited)
Robert Helfer ... orchestra manager (uncredited)
Norman Herzburg ... musician: bassoon (uncredited)
Milt Holland ... musician: drums, percussion (uncredited)
Anatol Kaminsky ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Armand Kaproff ... musician: cello (uncredited)
Nathan Kaproff ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Pearl Kaufman ... musician: piano (uncredited)
Milton Kestenbaum ... musician: bass (uncredited)
Manny Klein ... musician: trumpet (uncredited)
Raphael Kramer ... musician: cello (uncredited)
Abe Luboff ... musician: bass (uncredited)
Mitchell Lurie ... musician: clarinet (uncredited)
Edgar Lustgarten ... musician: cello (uncredited)
Roman Maciejewski ... music copyist (uncredited)
Virginia Majewski ... musician: viola (uncredited)
Shelly Manne ... musician: drums, percussion (uncredited)
Jack Marsh ... musician: bassoon (uncredited)
G.R. Menhennick ... musician: viola (uncredited)
Peter Mercurio ... musician: bass (uncredited)
Erno Neufeld ... musician: violin (uncredited)
John Neufeld ... musician: clarinet (uncredited)
Richard Perissi ... musician: french horn (uncredited)
Lee Perrin ... musician: drums, percussion (uncredited)
Uan Rasey ... musician: trumpet (uncredited)
Dorothy Remsen ... musician: harp (uncredited)
Sam Rice ... musician: tuba (uncredited)
Gale Robinson ... musician: french horn (uncredited)
Meyer Rubin ... musician: bass (uncredited)
Martin Ruderman ... musician: flute (uncredited)
Sylvia Ruderman ... musician: flute (uncredited)
Ambrose Russo ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Eudice Shapiro ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Leo Shuken ... orchestrator (uncredited)
Lou Singer ... musician: drums, percussion (uncredited)
Eleanor Slatkin ... musician: cello (uncredited)
Felix Slatkin ... musician: violin (uncredited)
Raymond Turner ... musician: piano (uncredited)
Lloyd Ulyate ... musician: trombone (uncredited)
Paul Van Loan ... music copyist (uncredited)
Vinton Vernon ... music engineer (uncredited)
Seymour Zeldin ... musician: trombone (uncredited)

Script and Continuity Department

John Franco ... script supervisor

Additional Crew

Robert E. Relyea ... assistant to producer
Wally Floody ... technical advisor (uncredited)
Howard Vernon ... voice dubbing: Hannes Messemer (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production Companies




Special Effects


Other Companies



Plot Summary

Based on a true story, a group of allied escape artist-type prisoners-of-war are all put in an "escape proof" camp. Their leader decides to try to take out several hundred all at once. The first half of the movie is played for comedy, as the prisoners mostly outwit their jailers to dig the escape tunnel. The second half is high adventure as they use planes, trains, and boats to get out of occupied Europe. Written by John Vogel

Plot Keywords
Taglines put a fence in front of these men...and they'll climb it... See more »
Parents Guide View content advisory »

Additional Details

Also Known As
  • La Grande Évasion (France)
  • Gesprengte Ketten (Germany)
  • La gran evasió (Spain, Catalan title)
  • La gran evasión (Spain)
  • 大逃亡 (China, Mandarin title)
  • See more »
  • 172 min
Aspect Ratio
Sound Mix
Filming Locations

Box Office

Budget $4,000,000 (estimated)

Did You Know?

Trivia In this movie, several Americans (including Hilts and Henley) were amongst the escapees. In real life, American officers assisted with the construction of the escape tunnel, but weren't amongst the escapees, because the Germans moved them to a remote compound just before the escape. See more »
Goofs Timbers are needed to hold back thousands of pounds of dirt from a tunnel collapse. The three feet long, 1/2 inch thick pieces taken from the bed frames shown used in the tunnel could not withstand the weight. However documentary interviews and excavation of the actual Stalag Luft 3 site, shows that the films depiction of the tunnel's construction was accurate. While the material used may not have been adequate for a professional tunnel or mine, they were apparently adequate for the task and some are still holding up the tunnel even now. See more »
Movie Connections Edited into Return to 'the Great Escape' (1993). See more »
Quotes Sedgwick: Danny, do you speak Russian?
Danny: A little, but only one sentence.
Sedgwick: Well, let me have it, mate.
Danny: Ya vas lyublyu.
Sedgwick: Ya ya vas...
Danny: Lyublyu.
Sedgwick: Lyubliu? Ya vas lyubliu. Ya vas lyublyu. What's it mean?
Danny: I love you.
Sedgwick: Love you. What bloody good is that?
Danny: I don't know, I wasn't going to use it myself.
See more »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed