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Caravans (1978)

In 1948, at the U.S. embassy in Zadestan, a young diplomat is ordered to find the missing daughter of an influential U.S. Senator.


James Fargo


James A. Michener (novel), Nancy Voyles Crawford (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Quinn ... Zulffiqar
Michael Sarrazin ... Mark Miller
Christopher Lee ... Sardar Khan
Jennifer O'Neill ... Ellen Jasper
Joseph Cotten ... Crandall
Behrouz Vossoughi ... Nazrullah
Barry Sullivan ... Richardson
Jeremy Kemp ... Dr. Smythe
Duncan Quinn Duncan Quinn ... Moheb
Behrouz Gramian Behrouz Gramian ... Peasant Boy (as Behrooz Gueramian)
Mohamad Ali Keshavarz ... Shakkur
Parviz Gharib-Afshar Parviz Gharib-Afshar ... Nur Mohammad
Fahimeh Amouzandeh Fahimeh Amouzandeh ... Mira
Mohammad Taghi Kahnemoui Mohammad Taghi Kahnemoui ... Maftoon (as Mohammad Taghi Kahnemout)
Khosrow Tabatabai Khosrow Tabatabai ... Dancing Boy


The story happens in 1948, in a fictional country, called Zakharstan (in the novel "Caravans" is probably Afghanistan). Mark Miller (Michael Sarazyn) is a young U.S. Embassy employee who is responsible to follow Ellen Jasper (Jennifer O'Neill), the daughter of Senator Jasper, who later has married Colonel Nazrullah (Behrouz Vossoughi) and disappeared. During the investigation, Mark Miller (Michael Sarazyn) realizes that Ellen Jasper (Jennifer O'Neill) has escaped from her husband, Colonel Nazrullah (Behrouz Vossoughi), living among a tribe whose leader is Zulffiqar (Anthony Quinn). He will fail to convince her to be reunited with his father. But, Mark Miller (Michael Sarazyn) has realized that the leader of tribe is an outlaw who resists against the government's proposals for a permanent settlement of his tribe and also with cooperation of another rebel man, Shakkur (Mohamad Ali Keshavarz), are engaged to Russian arms trafficking ... Written by Persian Star

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Power, the Sweep, the Spectacle of James Michener's Epic Desert Adventure!


PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Richard Fleischer was scheduled to direct this for MGM as a major roadshow production in 1968, but it was cancelled when a new management regime took over the studio. See more »

Alternate Versions

ABC edited 27 minutes from this film for its 1982 network television premiere. See more »


Referenced in MGM 40th Anniversary (1964) See more »

User Reviews

It's romantic nonsense, but I adore it!
9 July 2002 | by deadlyddSee all my reviews

The film's scenario would never happen except in a novel, or a soap opera where the central character has to "find herself".

An USA Intelligence operative goes into the Persian desert to find a missing diplomat's daughter. His journey involves gun-running Arab nomads, flash floods and lots of camels.

Nevertheless Caravans is good escapist fun. I could watch this film again and again, as it is great cinema. Two good bonuses are the scenery and the soundtrack. Mike Batt (a fellow Brit) composed the stirring music and it is worth buying the soundtrack CD alone (you may recall the minor pop chart hit-single by Babara Dickson, called Caravans).

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Iran | USA


English | Persian

Release Date:

2 November 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Caravans See more »

Filming Locations:

Isfahan, Iran See more »


Box Office


$14,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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