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The Miracle Worker 

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A television remake of William Gibson's classic play about Annie Sullivan's efforts to draw Helen Keller from her world of darkness, blindness, deafness and silence.



(teleplay by), (based upon the play by)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »





Episode cast overview:
... Anne Sullivan
... Helen Keller (as Hallie Kate Eisenberg)
... James Keller
... Kate Keller
... Captain Keller
Damir Andrei ... Dr. Anagnos
... Farm Boss
Kevin Duhaney ... Percy
Neville Edwards ... Henry
... Aunt Ev
... Proctor
Twila Provencher ... Young Annie
Jackie Richardson ... Viney
Liam Robinson ... Jimmie
Stephanie Sams ... Martha


A television remake of William Gibson's classic play about Annie Sullivan's efforts to draw Helen Keller from her world of darkness, blindness, deafness and silence.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Behind her eyes is the power to change the world.


TV-PG | See all certifications »



Release Date:

12 November 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A kismadár  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The original Broadway production of "The Miracle Worker" opened at the Playhouse Theater on October 19, 1959, ran for 719 performances, and won the 1960 Tony Award for Best Play. Anne Bancroft (winner of the 1960 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play) and Patty Duke recreated their stage roles in the movie. William Gibson wrote the teleplay, the stage play and the screenplay. See more »


In the "Morning Tantrum" breakfast scene, Helen's plate of scrambled eggs somehow refills itself from shot to shot. See more »


[At Helen's 'Welcome Home' dinner, Helen throws her napkin on the floor. Annie replaces it]
Kate Keller: Pickles, Aunt Ev?
Aunt Ev: I should say so. You know my opinion of your pickles.
Kate Keller: [smiling] Well, this is the last of them, I'm afraid. I didn't put up nearly enough last summer, but this year I intend to.
[Kate doles some food out onto Helen's plate; Helen drops her napkin again. While the others talk, Helen repeatedly drops and Annie repeatedly replaces Helen's napkin. Annie takes Helen's plate away]
Kate Keller: Miss Sullivan,...
See more »


Version of Playhouse 90: The Miracle Worker (1957) See more »

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User Reviews

"Miracle Worker" Lite
24 May 2001 | by See all my reviews

This very vanilla and completely unnecessary remake (the 2nd) of the 1962 film does manage to achieve some solid dramatic moments, but much of Gibson's play has been overly softened and sentimentalized to achieve what passes as "family entertainment" these days. This is one time when smoothing out all the rough edges for the sake of the children (or is it for the over-concerned adults?) has a negative impact.

The original play and movie are not absolute masterworks: some of Gibson's writing is too melodramatic and the supporting characters have few dimensions (not helped by the overacting of Victor Jory and Inga Swensen in the '62 film). But the taut direction of Arthur Penn and the sheer intensity of the Bancoft-Duke pairing resulted in an extraordinarily effective piece nonetheless.

Here we have the good Alison Elliott as Sullivan and Hallie Kate Eisenberg as a too-scrubbed-clean Helen (when one character remarks at how clean she is after Sullivan has her to herself for a week, you really don't see a difference). Eisenberg is competent, but not moving. Hers is a Helen that would work well in a Disney animated version of the story.

Elliot fares better, but the mediocre direction and script undermine her at times. In trying to give the other characters some added dimensions not in the play, the teleplay feels the need to konk us over the head about some of their issues. When confronted about his jealousy of Helen, half-brother James actually says, "If Helen gets better, who else can I blame for my unhappiness?" Yikes. Lucas Black looks very uncomfortable saying that clunky line, and you can't blame him.

David Strathairn should have better things to do than play Captain Keller, and his performance has little energy or impact. Kate Greenhouse as Kate Keller loses her southern accent after less than a minute and is rather amateurish at times.

Another vote to stick with the original. I've never seen the 1979 remake - which I gather is better than this one.

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