6.6/10
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134 user 71 critic

Series 7: The Contenders (2001)

A TV program selects people at random to kill one another for fame and their freedom.

Director:

Daniel Minahan

Writer:

Daniel Minahan

On Disc

at Amazon

3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brooke Smith ... Dawn
Mark Woodbury Mark Woodbury ... Dairy Mart Clerk
Michael Kaycheck ... Tony
Marylouise Burke ... Connie
Richard Venture Richard Venture ... Franklin
Donna Hanover ... Sheila
Merritt Wever ... Lindsay
Glenn Fitzgerald ... Jeff
Angelina Phillips Angelina Phillips ... Doria
Tom Gilroy ... Dawn's Cameraman
Nada Despotovich Nada Despotovich ... Michelle
Stephen Michael Rinaldi Stephen Michael Rinaldi ... Craig
Alex Yershov Alex Yershov ... Nathan
Danton Stone ... Bob
Joe Barrett Joe Barrett ... Doctor
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Storyline

Ever seen the show "Survivor" and wished they would just start killing each other?? Series 7 literally gives its contestants the guns. The film is not merely a satire on reality TV. It is an example of just how far people will shamelessly go for fame. 6 contenders are pitted against each other in a no holds barred, kill or be killed contest. The reigning champ is Dawn, a hard-nosed, mother-to-be. We go back and forth between Dawn and the other 5 contenders to see if someone can dethrone Dawn and become the new Champion. What is the prize? How are the contestants picked? These questions are not as important as asking yourself how shameless has our society become? Written by Jeff Mellinger <jmell@uclink4.berkeley.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Are you game? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violent content and language | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Sensational Productions

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 May 2001 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Series 7 See more »

Filming Locations:

Danbury, Connecticut, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$28,844, 4 March 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$171,478, 1 April 2001
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Having seen her work in an off-Broadway production, director Daniel Minahan wrote the part of Dawn specifically for Brooke Smith. See more »

Goofs

The truck's tires are perfectly intact, despite during the helicopter shots sparks flying up and the commentator telling us his tires had blown out and he was riding on his rims. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Jeff: Shit!
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the title credits, a warning appears "Due to the graphic nature of this program, viewer discretion is advised." See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD version includes deleted scenes that are viewed seperately. They include:
  • The reunion with Dawn's family is extended.
  • A scene of Franklin refusing the radio/GPS rig and explaining why he lives in a lead-lined shack.
  • A scene where Franklin is looking in the mirror and mentally preparing himself before he receives the note.
  • Franklin's speech in the mall is extended.
  • A scene with Connie's priest, where he explains in an interview that he's a fan of the show, that he recognized Connie's voice in the confessional, and that he hopes that she confesses for the two murders before she herself dies.
  • 'Man-on-the-street' interviews.
  • The 'real' ending, which we are told in the film that the footage was destroyed and then are presented a dramatization of the events. The 'real' ending is, when presented with the choice of killing one another, Jeff and Dawn put the guns down, run out of the theatre, were they meet a crowd of disgruntled fans. The fans give chase after them and, after catching them entering their SUV, begin beating them, presumably to death. This explains why, at the end of the film, Doria is proclaiming that she's been framed and why Jeff survived.
  • An interview with Laura with Dawn's baby, where she renames the baby Dawn and says she's proud of her sister.
  • A PSA from Doria about checking for testicular cancer.
See more »

Connections

References America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Bulletproof Cupid
Written and Performed by Girls Against Boys
Published by Action Collar Music/BMI
Courtesy of Touch and Go Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Ultimate Reality Show
25 June 2002 | by dromascaSee all my reviews

This is the ultimate show of its kind - six people play a 'Survivor' game, but this is real survival - they will kill one another until only one survives. They are selected by chance, we have no clue why, and there seems to be no price. The only thing the winner earns is getting enrolled in another mortal round.

The formula works pretty well for the first half. Good, fast filming, credible acting, interesting characters. The problem is that by the second half the needed development of the characters does not happen, and for lack of anything else the script falls into previsible melodrama. It's a miss, but still the film is worth viewing, and it really says something about our sensation thirsty society.


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