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5 user 2 critic

The Miracle Worker (1979)

Unrated | | Drama | TV Movie 14 October 1979
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Devoted teacher Anne Sullivan leads deaf and blind Helen Keller into the light of learnedness.

Director:

Paul Aaron

Writers:

William Gibson (play), William Gibson (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Patty Duke ... Anne Sullivan
Diana Muldaur ... Kate Keller
Charles Siebert ... Captain Keller
Anne Seymour ... Aunt Ev
Stan Wells Stan Wells ... James Keller (as Stanley Wells)
Melissa Gilbert ... Helen Keller
Hilda Haynes Hilda Haynes ... Viney
Titos Vandis ... Anagnos
Byron Green Byron Green ... Percy
Noniece Williams ... Martha
Jonathan Gilbert ... Jimmy
James Lee Canady James Lee Canady ... Servant
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Storyline

Young Helen Keller, blind, deaf, and mute since infancy, is in danger of being sent to an institution. Her inability to communicate has left her frustrated and violent. In desperation, her parents seek help from the Perkins Institute, which sends them a "half-blind Yankee schoolgirl" named Annie Sullivan to tutor their daughter. Through persistence and love, and sheer stubbornness, Annie breaks through Helen's walls of silence and darkness and teaches her to communicate. Written by Christina Dunigan <minstrel@wf.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 October 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Miracle Worker See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Half-Pint Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Melissa Gilbert originally wanted to offer the part of Annie Sullivan to Meredith Baxter, but the adults working on the project suggested offering the part to Patty Duke, who had played Helen Keller in The Miracle Worker (1962). See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not bad, but the 1962 black & white classic is better...
3 January 1999 | by Lori SSee all my reviews

This NBC Hallmark Hall of Fame version was filmed in Southern California, which is obvious from the very sunny scenes both inside and out. The older movie version is much darker and moodier, which not only fits the subject matter, but which is more accurate, due to the fact they only had lamplight most of the time. The big trivia here is that Patty Duke now plays Annie Sullivan, whereas she was Helen Keller in the 1962 movie (and won an Oscar for it). Melissa Gilbert was 15 when she filmed this, but is about the same weight as and an inch taller than Patty Duke, which makes Melissa look too old for the role. Also, Melissa's very long hair gets in the way of her wild tantrums - it either should have been cut, or she should have worn a short wig. Both Gilbert & Duke were nominated for Emmys for their roles, but only Duke won the day. Original playwright William Gibson not only wrote this 1979 adaptation, but also the very first one, broadcast on "Playhouse 90" in 1957, starring Patty McCormack, Theresa Wright, Patricia Neal and Burl Ives. That pre-dated the 1959 Broadway version, which starred Duke and Anne Bancroft...


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