A young farmer is chosen to undertake a perilous journey in order to protect a special baby from an evil queen.

Director:

Ron Howard

Writers:

George Lucas (story by), Bob Dolman (screenplay by)
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932 ( 86)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Val Kilmer ... Madmartigan
Joanne Whalley ... Sorsha
Warwick Davis ... Willow Ufgood
Jean Marsh ... Queen Bavmorda
Patricia Hayes Patricia Hayes ... Fin Raziel
Billy Barty ... High Aldwin
Pat Roach ... Gen. Kael
Gavan O'Herlihy ... Airk Thaughbaer
David Steinberg ... Meegosh
Phil Fondacaro ... Vohnkar
Tony Cox ... Vohnkar Warrior
Robert Gillibrand Robert Gillibrand ... Vohnkar Warrior
Mark Northover ... Burglekutt
Kevin Pollak ... Rool
Rick Overton ... Franjean
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Storyline

A baby girl is discovered in a river by Ranon and Mims, the children of Willow Ufgood, a dwarf farmer and magician and the baby girl is taken into the care of Willow's family. But when a terrifying dog-like creature attacks Willow's village, whilst tracking down the baby. Willow consults the village council and the wizard The High Aldwin. The High Aldwin gives Willow a task and Willow leaves the village and embarks on the task to give the baby girl to a responsible person. But Willow soon learns the baby is Elora Danan, the baby girl destined to bring about the downfall of the evil sorceress Queen Bavmorda. Joined by his allies: swordsman Madmartigan, sorceress Fin Raziel and the Brownies Franjean and Rool, Willow takes it upon himself to protect Elora from Queen Bavmorda, who intends to kill Elora and prevent Elora from fulfilling her destiny. And Willow and his allies are pursued by Queen Bavmorda's daughter Sorsha and the evil commander of Queen Bavmorda's army General Kael, whom ... Written by Dan Williams

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Adventure doesn't come any bigger than this. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The fact the main character (played by Warwick Davis) didn't get first billing is quite common: Christopher Reeve, despite being the title character in Superman and Superman II, was billed third after Marlon Brando and Gene Hackman in the original and second after Hackman in the sequel. Other main stars given third billing include Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now (after Brando and Robert Duvall) and his son Charlie Sheen in Platoon (after Tom Berenger and Willem Dafoe). See more »

Goofs

Obvious stunt double and doll in some shots during the sled scene. See more »

Quotes

Sorsha: What are you looking at?
Madmartigan: Your leg. I'd like to break it.
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Crazy Credits

Although he played the title role, Warwick Davis took just third billing. Val Kilmer and Joanne Whalley took first and second billing respectively. See more »

Alternate Versions

In order to obtain a PG certificate by the BBFC in the UK, 34 seconds were edited for the theatrical version.
  • The boars killing the midwife early in the film was cut entirely.
  • The scene of Bavmorda turning people into pigs was toned down. One shot of Madmartigan's transformation was cut, and a shot of Sorsha collapsing to the ground was cut.
  • Also, during the fight at the castle towards the end, Willow zaps the troll with his wand, and 2 creatures emerge from its skin. In the UK version of this film, the bit where the creatures quickly rip the skin off of the troll is missing.
  • General Kael's stabbing of Airk was shortened.
  • Some of the bloodiest moments in the fight between Madmartigan and Kasel were cut. Also, cut was the second sword thrust into General Kael when Madmartigan steps on the sword and drives it through him.
  • Shots of Raziel punching Bavmorda in the face was cut and Bavmorda strangling Raziel was shortened.
  • The distributors also reduced the redness of the blood in some fight scenes and toned down certain sound effects. The film was only available in the UK in this censored form until 2002, when the BBFC passed the film uncut with a PG rating.
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Connections

Featured in The Cinema Snob: Beware! Children at Play (2011) See more »

User Reviews

Watch this movie... You'll feel BETTER!!
12 November 2001 | by Eric-1226See all my reviews

(At least I do, every time I see it.) I first watched this movie a long time ago, and have seen it several more times over the years (it pops up on TV somewhat frequently). I have enjoyed it with each viewing, mainly because I just take it for what it is to me – namely, just a fun, escapist fantasy flick that whisks you away to a magical kingdom where all kinds of mystical, cute, clever, and at times even sinister things are happening, all against a backdrop of remarkably beautiful scenery. Oh, yeah: you also get to see Val Kilmer (Madmartigan) step squarely into a fresh pile of troll poop – truly a classic moment in cinema history!

I noticed that other reviewers herein went to great efforts to point out glaring similarities between Willow and Star Wars, and these similarities apparently ruined the movie for them (or at least, they just didn't *like* Willow). Well, to each their own… As for me, I won't even begin to compare Willow to Star Wars, because: (drum roll please...) I've never even seen Star Wars. Not even once. So there!! ("You've never seen STAR WARS!!" I can hear the collective gasp of all you moviegoers out there. Yeah, okay, so just shoot me already!). But similarities shmimilarities! As Bill Murray said in Meatballs, "It just doesn't matter! It just doesn't matter! It just doesn't matter!..."

Anyway, if you haven't seen Willow, then I would recommend you see it at once and enjoy it for what it is: a fun, escapist fantasy movie that (heaven knows, current events and all...) we could all use a little more of in this day and age. If you have already seen it and love it, well, go see it again! And finally, if you have seen it but don't like it because of annoying similarities between it and Star Wars, well, what can I say? I would hazard that, all things considered, Willow nevertheless DOES have its own special charms that you probably won't find in Star Wars. At the very least I haven't heard that Madmartigan's counterpart in Star Wars, Han Solo, stepped in a big wet pile of troll poop!

Well, I'm glad I got all this off my chest. I feel BETTER!!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 May 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Willow See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,300,169, 22 May 1988

Gross USA:

$57,269,863

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$57,269,863
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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