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Zodiac (2007)

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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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266 ( 159)
3 wins & 67 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 ... 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:

There's more than one way to lose your life to a killer 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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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, 3 May 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$84,785,914, 3 May 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although Toschi and Armstrong are San Francisco Police Department Inspectors, their actual responsibilities are identical to those of detectives in other municipal police organizations. The San Francisco Police Department calls their detectives "inspectors". (Which anyone who has ever seen a police drama set in San Francisco knows.) See more »

Goofs

(at around 14 minutes) When Robert and his son walk in, his son is carrying 6 books, with all the book spines facing toward him. He puts them on the desk. In the next shot, a close-up of the desk, there are now only 4 books, and the spines face away from him and toward the camera. See more »

Quotes

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

Crazy Credits

The end text reads as follows: Following Mike Mageau's identification of Arthur Leigh Allen, authorities scheduled a meeting to discuss charging him with the murders. Allen suffered a fatal heart attack before this meeting could take place. In 2002, a partial DNA profile, that did not match Allen, was developed from a 33 year-old Zodiac envelope. Investigators in San Francisco and Vallejo refused to rule out Allen as a suspect on the basis of this test. In 2004, the San Francisco Police Department deactivated their Zodiac investigation. Today, the case remains open in Napa County, Solano County, and in the city of Vallejo, where Arthur Leigh Allen is still the prime and only suspect. Inspector David Toschi retired from the San Francisco Police Department in 1989. He was cleared of all charges that he wrote the 1978 Zodiac letter. Paul Avery passed away on December 10, 2000 of pulmonary emphysema. He was 66. His Ashes were scattered by his family in the San Francisco Bay. Robert Graysmith lives in San Francisco and enjoys a healthy relationship with his children. He claims he has not received a single anonymous call since Allen's death. 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
  • New scene between Graysmith (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Avery (Robert Downey Jr.)
  • 3-Way Conversation laying Leigh as suspect to get search warrant
  • Extended audio montage (over a black screen)
  • Plus extra bits of dialogue
See more »

Connections

References Dr. No (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Tar Sequence
Written by Lalo Schifrin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Welcome Back, David Fincher.
2 March 2007 | by tman90See all my reviews

Audiences have waited a while for a new piece of work from Mr. David Fincher and now that hiatus is officially over. Straying away from his style that earned him a 'cult' following, he brings out a new side to himself, some techniques not yet observed in his repertoire.

ZODIAC feels like it was made by a perfectionist, everything flows so smoothly. The editing is pinch-perfect. Not only that, but Ficher shows that he is an actor's director as well, directing his cast into true life roles wonderfully. But the credit does not go all on to his shoulders. The actors have a lot to do with that themselves. Jake Gyllenhaal, who plays the author of the book of the same name, plays his character with an irresistible 'nerdi-ness' that is just fun to watch. Then it is amazing to watch Gyllenhaal transform that character into an obsessed wannabe detective, losing all focus and normal aspects of his life. Mark Ruffalo plays a humorous and overworked cop with incredibility. He really gets the job done. Downey Jr., however small his role was, plays on the screen with a witty insanity that brings most of the laughs of the movie. The acting really is a major pro. ZODIAC may come out at a long time slot but the viewer will never realize it because of the film pulling one in, and not wanting to leave until the case is solved. That is why ZODIAC is fantastic and a great welcome back gift from Fincher to not only his fans, but to everyone. ZODIAC is definitely the best film of 2007 so far.


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