Poster

Fail-Safe ()


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American planes are sent to deliver a nuclear attack on Moscow, but it's a mistake due to an electrical malfunction. Can all-out war be averted?

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Gen. Black
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Dr. Groeteschele
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Gen. Bogan
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Col. Grady (as Ed Binns)
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Col. Cascio
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The President
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Buck
William Hansen ...
Secretary Swenson
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Gen. Stark (as Russell Hardy)
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Knapp
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Congressman Raskob
Nancy Berg ...
Ilsa Wolfe
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Thomas
Frank Simpson ...
Sullivan
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Betty Black
Janet Ward ...
Mrs. Grady
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Sgt. Collins
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Foster
Stewart Germain ...
Mr. Cascio
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Mrs. Cascio
Frieda Altman ...
Jennie
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Geri Miller ...
Go-Go Dancer (uncredited)
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Jet Fighter Pilot (uncredited) (voice)

Directed by

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Sidney Lumet

Written by

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Walter Bernstein ... (screenplay)
 
Eugene Burdick ... (from the novel by) &
Harvey Wheeler ... (from the novel by)
 
Peter George ... () (uncredited)

Produced by

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Charles H. Maguire ... associate producer
Max E. Youngstein ... producer

Cinematography by

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Gerald Hirschfeld ... director of photography

Film Editing by

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Ralph Rosenblum ... film editor

Art Direction by

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Albert Brenner

Set Decoration by

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J.C. Delaney ... (as J.C. DeLaney)

Costume Design by

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Anna Hill Johnstone ... (costumes by)

Makeup Department

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Harry Buchman ... makeup
Bill Herman ... makeup department head

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

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Harry Falk ... assistant director (as Harry Falk Jr.)

Sound Department

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Jack Fitzstephens ... sound editor
William Swift ... sound mixer

Camera and Electrical Department

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Howard Fortune ... chief electrician
Edward Knott ... chief grip
Albert Taffet ... camera operator (as Al Taffett)

Other crew

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Marguerite James ... continuity
Eugene Burdick ... script consultant (uncredited)
Lillian Michelson ... researcher (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production Companies

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Distributors

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Special Effects

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Other Companies

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Storyline

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Plot Summary

A series of human and computer errors sends a squadron of American 'Vindicator' bombers to nuke Moscow. The President, in order to convince the Soviets that this is a mistake, orders the Strategic Air Command to help the Soviets stop them. Written by KC Hunt

Plot Keywords
Taglines The screen zeros in on the most suspenseful adventure drama of our age! See more »
Genres
Parents Guide View content advisory »
Certification

Additional Details

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Also Known As
  • Fail Safe (United States)
  • Fail Safe (World-wide, English title)
  • Point limite (France)
  • Angriffsziel Moskau (Germany)
  • Punto límite (Spain)
  • See more »
Runtime
  • 112 min
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Filming Locations

Did You Know?

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Trivia The "computer-generated" image on the control-room screen (including the map of the world, the planes and the explosions) was entirely drawn and animated by hand. See more »
Goofs The interior shots of the bombers, Convair B-58 Hustlers (see Trivia), actually were shot inside of a commercial airline simulator then under repair at a a New York airport. The three crew members sit within feet of each other, in an open cockpit layout. In an actual B-58, the world's first supersonic bomber (and capable of twice the speed of sound), the three-man crew of pilot, bombardier/navigator, and defense systems specialist were separated by banks of equipment, and had no physical contact with one another. To make survivable ejection possible on such a high-speed aircraft, each compartment was specifically designed as wholly contained clam-shell "pod" that would disengage intact if the need arose. As a result, the crew had to rely on an internal telecommunications system to talk, or a string-and-pulley system that ran along the cabin wall to exchange notes if those systems failed. It's speculated that this early "jettison pod" design was incorporated as a presidential safeguard on modern 747 versions of Air Force One, as implied in the 1997 Harrison Ford movie thriller "Air Force One", and that it also inspired the crew containment compartment of the space shuttle. See more »
Movie Connections Featured in Henry Fonda: The Man and His Movies (1982). See more »
Crazy Credits [FINAL CREDIT]: The producers of this film wish to stress that it is the stated position of the Department of Defense and the United States Air Force that a rigidly enforced system of safeguards and controls insure that occurrences such as those depicted in this story cannot happen See more »
Quotes US Ambassador: [over the phone] I can hear the sound of explosions from the north east. The sky is very bright. All lit up.
[phone melts and high pitched whining sound starts]
See more »

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