A team of top scientists work feverishly in a secret, state-of-the-art laboratory to discover what has killed the citizens of a small town and learn how this deadly contagion can be stopped.

Director:

Robert Wise

Writers:

Michael Crichton (novel), Nelson Gidding (screenplay)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Arthur Hill ... Dr. Jeremy Stone
David Wayne ... Dr. Charles Dutton
James Olson ... Dr. Mark Hall
Kate Reid ... Dr. Ruth Leavitt
Paula Kelly ... Karen Anson
George Mitchell ... Jackson
Ramon Bieri ... Major Manchek
Kermit Murdock ... Dr. Robertson
Richard O'Brien Richard O'Brien ... Grimes
Peter Hobbs ... General Sparks
Eric Christmas ... Senator from Vermont
Mark Jenkins ... Lt. Shawn (Piedmont team)
Peter Helm ... Sgt. Crane (Piedmont team)
Joe Di Reda ... Wildfire Computer Sgt. Burk (as Joe DiReda)
Carl Reindel ... Lt. Comroe
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Storyline

When virtually all of the residents of Piedmont, New Mexico, are found dead after the return to Earth of a space satellite, the head of the US Air Force's Project Scoop declares an emergency. Many years prior to this incident, a group of eminent scientists led by Dr. Jeremy Stone (Arthur Hill) advocated for the construction of a secure laboratory facility that would serve as a base in the event an alien biological life form was returned to Earth from a space mission. Stone and his team - Drs. Dutton, Leavitt and Hall (David Wayne, Kate Reid, and James Olson, respectively)- go to the facility, known as Wildfire, and try to first isolate the life form while determining why two people from Piedmont (an old wino and a six-month-old baby) survived. The scientists methodically study the alien life form unaware that it has already mutated and presents a far greater danger in the lab, which is equipped with a nuclear self-destruct device should it manage to escape. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The picture runs 130 minutes!... The story covers 96 of the most critical hours in man's history!... The suspense will last through your lifetime! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The set used for the Wildfire patient 'hot' room and cage handling scenes was reused in 1979 for the TV series "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century." It can be found in season 1 episode 7 at 37min. See more »

Goofs

It has already been pointed out about the technical sergeant's stripes being the wrong color. In addition to that, his (and the captain's) name tags and rank insignia seem to be embroidered directly on the shade 1505 uniforms. In both cases the name tags would have been plastic and pinned above the right shirt pocket and the rank insignia a cloth patch sewn on the sleeve, in the case of the sergeant, or metal attached to the shirt collar, in the case of the captain. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Sgt. Crane (Piedmont team): Piedmont, New Mexico. Population, 68.
Lt. Shawn (Piedmont team): Come on.
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits read: "ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This film concerns the four-day history of a major American scientific crisis. We received the generous help of many people attached to Project Scoop at Vandenberg Air Force Base and the Wildfire Laboratory in Flatrock, Nevada. They encouraged us to tell the story accurately and in detail." "The documents presented here are soon to be made public. They do not in any way jeopardize the national security." See more »

Alternate Versions

Earlier VHS releases showed the scene where Stone and Hall search the town as full screen shots cutting back and forth from them to the victims inside their houses, and does not show the shot of the topless victim. The DVD release shows both searchers and victims simutaniously in reduced size split-screen shots and include the topless woman both in that scene as well as in a later flashback by Stone at Project Wild Fire. See more »

Connections

Featured in 12 Monkeys (1995) See more »

User Reviews

well what a surprise this is!
18 January 2004 | by gerritjankosterSee all my reviews

I saw this movie quite a while ago, but it made a cracking impression on me. Really if you like 60/70 sci-fi movies this is definitely the movie youve been searching for. Brilliant camerawork ,acting, scenary. And the story is so *****in good. Its too bad they dont make these anymore nowadays.

Believe me if i tell you that im a very critical moviefanatic but this movie is really the best sci-fi movie after A space Odyssey 2001.

9+ / 10 GREAT!!!!

Well on second hand 10 / 10


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 March 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Andromeda Strain See more »

Filming Locations:

Alamogordo, New Mexico, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (video)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints) (Westrex Recording System)| Mono (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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