6.2/10
30,281
120 user 54 critic

The Cannonball Run (1981)

PG | | Action, Comedy, Sport | 19 June 1981 (USA)
A wide variety of eccentric competitors participate in a wild and illegal cross-country road race. However, the eccentric entrants will do anything to win the road race, including low-down, dirty tricks.

Director:

Hal Needham

Writer:

Brock Yates
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Popularity
3,577 ( 414)

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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Burt Reynolds ... J. J. McClure
Roger Moore ... Seymour
Farrah Fawcett ... Pamela
Dom DeLuise ... Victor Prinzim
Dean Martin ... Jamie Blake
Sammy Davis Jr. ... Fenderbaum
Jack Elam ... Doctor Nikolas Van Helsing
Adrienne Barbeau ... Marcie
Terry Bradshaw ... Terry
Jackie Chan ... Subaru Driver #1
Bert Convy ... Brad
Jamie Farr ... Sheik
Peter Fonda ... Chief Biker
George Furth ... A. F. Foyt
Michael Hui ... Subaru Driver #2
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Storyline

This comedy film brings Burt Reynolds, Sir Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett, Dom DeLuise, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr. and an all-star cast to the starting line of the ultimate auto race, a madcap cross-country scramble that roars full-speed ahead. This action-comedy was inspired by an actual event: the Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, an anything goes, all-stops-out, and very much illegal, competition that has grown to legendary proportions within the last ten years. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You'll root for them all...but you'll never guess who wins.

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Sport

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Hong Kong

Language:

English | Cantonese | Japanese | Arabic

Release Date:

19 June 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Cannonball Trophy See more »

Filming Locations:

St. Louis, Missouri, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,765,654, 21 June 1981

Gross USA:

$72,179,579
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ron Rice, owner of Hawaiian Tropic, loaned his black Lamborghini to his buddies Burt Reynolds and Hal Needham. The same Lamborghini can be briefly seen in the background at the party of Big and Little Enos Burdette near the end of Smokey and the Bandit Part 3 (1983). See more »

Goofs

When Captain Chaos saves the Lamborghini Babes, we hear a female voice say "You're so macho", but neither woman was speaking. See more »

Quotes

Organizer: Of course you know certain sceptics note that perhaps 10,000 of the nations's most elite highway patrolmen are out there waiting for us after we start, but let's stay positively: Think of the fact that there's not one state in the 50 that has the death penalty for speeding... although I'm not so sure about Ohio.
See more »

Crazy Credits

An animated car drives around the 20th Century Fox logo, hiding out in the zero. It is chased by a police car, which crashes into one of the searchlights. The sequence ends with Burt Reynold's trademark laugh. See more »

Alternate Versions

A 1981 laserdisc version from CBS/Fox replaces strong language with "tamer versions" of the words (darn for damn, heck for hell, etc.), although all later laserdisc reissues have the unedited film as does the 1997 HBO VHS. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Scumrun III (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

You've Gotta Have a Dream
Written by Phyllis Molinary (as P. Molinary), Al Capps (as A. Capps) and Snuff Garrett (as S. Garrett)
Performed by The California Children's Chorus
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
What a pile-up....
15 August 1999 | by Mister-6See all my reviews

If you're looking for a movie loaded with cars, crashes, 1/8th of the Rat Pack, Adrienne Barbeau's best assets... oh yeah, and Burt Reynolds, look no further than "The Cannonball Run".

It was a hit back in 1981 and no wonder: Burt was on top of his game and we were all young and naive back then. Heck, I have a warm spot for all the rampant stupidity, myself.

All the better that Roger Moore plays a deft parody of his own James Bond persona, complete with an Aston Martin.

If you've seen this film way back when, no doubt you remember it with some fondness. Let's face it: it may not have been on par with films like "The Gumball Rally" or even "Death Race 2000", but in its own way and on its own terms, it works just fine.

A word of sage advice: if you watch this film, skip "Cannonball Run 2". It'll only ruin your good memories of the first. And if you didn't like the original, well....

Five stars. Plus one star extra for adding Jackie Chan for what adds up to mostly as a cameo as a karate-kicking racer. And a half star more for Adrienne Barbeau's fancy work with a jump suit zipper. Altogether, six and a half stars.

Wish she would have made it a seven.


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