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Operation: Daybreak (1975)

In 1942, Britain sends a group of British-trained Czech commandos to Prague to assassinate SS-General Reinhard Heydrich, head of the Nazi security services.


Lewis Gilbert


Alan Burgess (novel), Ronald Harwood (screenplay)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Timothy Bottoms ... Jan Kubis
Martin Shaw ... Karel Curda
Joss Ackland ... Janák
Nicola Pagett ... Anna
Anthony Andrews ... Jozef Gabcík
Anton Diffring ... Reinhard Heydrich
Carl Duering ... Karl Frank
Cyril Shaps ... Father Petrek
Diana Coupland Diana Coupland ... Aunt Marie
Ronald Radd ... Carl, Aunt Marie's Husband
Kim Fortune Kim Fortune ... Atá
Pavla Matéjuvská Pavla Matéjuvská ... Jindriska (as Pavla Matejovská)
Ray Smith Ray Smith ... Hájek
George Sewell ... Heinz Panwitz, Chief Investigator
Reinhard Kolldehoff ... Fleischer, Gestapo (as Rene Kolldehoff)


In 1942 Czechoslovakia, SS-General Reinhard Heydrich is appointed to become the Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia. The terror and oppression that follow cause Allied authorities in London to authorize a secret mission to kill the man who has come to be known as "The Butcher of Prague". The film shows the operation leading up to Heydrich's death as well as the massive German reprisals that followed it. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A hit-and-run operation with no place to run. See more »


Drama | History | War


PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


In 2016 and 2017, two versions of the Heydrich assassination were released, Anthropoid (2016) and The Man with the Iron Heart (2017). See more »


Just before Jozef Gabcík meets up with Jan Kubis after the parachute jump, it stops snowing for three seconds. See more »


[The last time they meet]
Anna: I never did get that red dress.
Jan Kubis: And I never saw that football match.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits show what happened to the real people portrayed in the film. See more »

Alternate Versions

BBFC cuts were made to the original UK cinema version to remove blood spurts from a machine gunning. The 1987 video release was uncut. See more »


Version of Opus Pro Smrtihlava (1984) See more »

User Reviews

Film Operation Daybreak
20 January 2006 | by john-thompson2See all my reviews

One of the best films I've ever seen.Normally I will only watch Factual films and this is one of the best. One of the strong points of the film is the haunting, moving music throughout.The acting I thought was excellent from the main characters, in particular from Anton Diffring as Heydrich with those steely cold eyes.I enjoyed the film so much that I ordered the book which is called "seven men at daybreak" and was as good as the film but without the music, which is such an integral part of the film itself. From the very beginning in the opening scenes where Heydrich is getting ready, it will have you on the edge of your seat,and from there on you do not want it to end The scene in the crypt at the end is very moving, and of course the music enhances the sadness of the situation. All in all a great movie well worth watching and i can guarantee most who watch it will want to see it again.


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English | German

Release Date:

29 February 1976 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Price of Freedom See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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