In the late 1960s/early 1970s, a San Francisco cartoonist becomes an amateur detective obsessed with tracking down the Zodiac Killer, an unidentified individual who terrorizes Northern California with a killing spree.

Director:

David Fincher

Writers:

James Vanderbilt (screenplay), Robert Graysmith (book)
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Popularity
517 ( 34)
4 wins & 72 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jake Gyllenhaal ... Robert Graysmith
Mark Ruffalo ... Inspector David Toschi
Anthony Edwards ... Inspector William Armstrong
Robert Downey Jr. ... Paul Avery
Brian Cox ... Melvin Belli
John Carroll Lynch ... Arthur Leigh Allen
Richmond Arquette ... Zodiac 1 / Zodiac 2
Bob Stephenson ... Zodiac 3
John Lacy ... Zodiac 4
Chloë Sevigny ... Melanie
Ed Setrakian Ed Setrakian ... Al Hyman
John Getz ... Templeton Peck
John Terry ... Charles Thieriot
Candy Clark ... Carol Fisher
Elias Koteas ... Sgt. Jack Mulanax
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Storyline

A serial killer in the San Francisco Bay Area taunts police with his letters and cryptic messages. We follow the investigators and reporters in this lightly fictionalized account of the true 1970's case as they search for the murderer, becoming obsessed with the case. Based on Robert Graysmith's book, the movie's focus is the lives and careers of the detectives and newspaper people. Written by tom day

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When a series of murders terrorized California, one man took responsibility for them all. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong killings, language, drug material and brief sexual images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

(At around one hour and thirty-five minutes) Captain Lee tells Toschi to take some time off and "go to Candlestick". Candlestick Park was the home of the San Francisco Giants from its construction in 1960 to 2000, the San Francisco 49ers from 1971 to 2013, and the Oakland Raiders in 1961. In 2014, the 49ers moved to their new home at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara and Candlestick Park was demolished in 2015. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 40 mins) When Robert Graysmith visits Paul Avery at his boathouse, you can see "Pong" on Avery's TV. As the scene plays out, you can hear the Pong ball bouncing around for a while, then the sound of the ball scoring. But it's the same shot of the ball bouncing once, then going past the paddle on the right and scoring. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mike Mageau: Where have you been? I've been waiting since 7:00.
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Crazy Credits

Symbols similar to the ones used in the Zodiac letters can be seen when each opening title credit fades. See more »

Alternate Versions

The director's cut contains approximately 5 minutes of new footage, including:
  • Melvin Belli (Brian Cox) talks about his Safari trip (when the Zodiac letter came to his house)
  • Toschi (Mark Ruffalo) introduces himself to the Riverside Police Chief
  • A new scene between Graysmith (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Avery (Robert Downey Jr.)
  • A three-way conversation laying Leigh as a suspect to get a search warrant
  • Extended audio montage (over a black screen)
  • Plus extra bits of dialogue
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Connections

Referenced in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.14 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Tar Sequence
Written by Lalo Schifrin
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User Reviews

 
Terrific movie.
4 September 2020 | by Sleepin_DragonSee all my reviews

Based on the wonderful novel, this film brilliantly tells the story of the unknown Zodiac killer, who operated in the late 60's and early 70's.

You will easily lose a full night or afternoon with this movie, it's incredibly, it's engaging, dramatic, and captivating. I love how the time passes by on the film, everything changes accordingly, it's very well produced. At times it's very sinister, and creepy, but it's subtle, nothing is forced or heavy handed.

The acting is terrific, Ruffalo and Downey are brilliant, a fresh faced Jake Gyllenhaal is arguably the one that steals the show.

It really is a brilliant movie, I would recommend it highly. 9/10.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 March 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Chronicles See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$65,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,395,610, 4 March 2007

Gross USA:

$33,080,084

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$84,785,914
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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