Rudy has always been told that he was too small to play college football. But he is determined to overcome the odds and fulfill his dream of playing for Notre Dame.


David Anspaugh


Angelo Pizzo
4,005 ( 505)
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Sean Astin ... Daniel E. 'Rudy' Ruettiger
Jon Favreau ... D-Bob
Ned Beatty ... Daniel Ruettiger
Greta Lind Greta Lind ... Mary
Scott Benjaminson Scott Benjaminson ... Frank Ruettiger
Mary Ann Thebus Mary Ann Thebus ... Betty
Charles S. Dutton ... Fortune
Lili Taylor ... Sherry
Christopher Reed Christopher Reed ... Pete
Deborah Wittenberg ... Young Sherry
Christopher Erwin Christopher Erwin ... 7-Year-Old Mark
Kevin Duda Kevin Duda ... 9-Year-Old Bernie
Robert Benirschke Robert Benirschke ... 11-Year-Old Mark
Luke Massery Luke Massery ... 13-Year-Old Rudy
Robert J. Steinmiller Jr. ... 13-Year-Old Pete


Rudy grew up in a steel mill town where most people ended up working, but wanted to play football at Notre Dame instead. There were only a couple of problems. His grades were a little low, his athletic skills were poor, and he was only half the size of the other players. But he had the drive and the spirit of 5 people and has set his sights upon joining the team. Written by Brian W Martz <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Sometimes a winner is a dreamer who just won't quit. See more »


Biography | Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Ned Beatty plays Sean Astin's father. The year before, he appeared in Prelude to a Kiss (1992), in which he played the husband of Astin's real-life mother, Patty Duke. See more »


When Rudy and Pete are talking in the lunch room at the plant, Pete lights a cigarette with a match. The match burns down almost half-way, but when he sticks it into the cupcake, it hasn't burnt nearly as much. See more »


Rudy: We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. We're gonna get 'em on the run boys and once we get 'em on the run we're gonna keep 'em on the run. And then we're gonna go go go go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline. This is a team they say is... is good, well I think we're better than them. They can't lick us, so what do you say men?
See more »

Crazy Credits

This is one of the few films in which the infamous "Alan Smithee" is given directorial credit for ONLY the commercial TV version. If viewed on VHS, DVD, pay cable etc... David Anspaugh is given his proper credit as director in the opening credits. However the editing for extra commercials on the free TV version is done so heavily -which alters the context- that Mr Smithee is the "director" when this film is shown there. See more »

Alternate Versions

Sundance broadcasts in the US use the sped-up 25 fps PAL video from a 24 fps film source. See more »


Notre Dame Victory March
Written by John F. Shea and Michael J. Shea (as Rev. Michael J. Shea)
Performed by The Notre Dame Glee Club (as University of Notre Dame Glee Club)
Courtesy of University of Notre Dame
See more »

User Reviews

Brick walls aren't to keep you out
14 March 2009 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Sean Astin is "Rudy" in this 1993 true story of Rudy Ruettiger, a short, average kid who wanted to dress for the Notre Dame football team. Rudy's story is one that is used to demonstrate the power of single-mindedness and determination in the face of all odds. His story provides a great lesson - the brick walls aren't there to keep you out, they're only there to keep out the people who don't want something badly enough.

Rudy grows up obsessed with Notre Dame football, but he lacks the physical prowess for the game and the grades for Notre Dame. He also comes from a family, headed by Ned Beatty, whose attitude is, know your place and stay there, and whose goals are to join the union, work a union job, and have a home and family. Rudy's girlfriend wants to get married, and the only person who understands his dream is his best friend. When tragedy strikes, Rudy realizes that he has to pursue his dream or he'll never be happy.

This is a very inspirational film, all the more inspirational because it's true. Sean Astin gives a very natural performance as Rudy - he doesn't "act" in the sense of giving an emotional, big performance, but rather behaves like a young man from a lower middle class family in Joliet, Illinois, probably much as the real Rudy acted.

Life can be pretty frustrating and when trying to break through a glass ceiling or a brick wall like Rudy did, it's tempting to want to give up. People today want things to happen fast, too. Rudy's compelling story says that passion and perseverance can bring you a long way. Here was a kid with no money, no family support, dyslexia, average grades, who was too wimpy for football. Watch what happens to him.

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English | Spanish

Release Date:

22 October 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rudy See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$881,191, 17 October 1993

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

TriStar Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | SDDS (8 channels)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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