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Movies and TV Shows

Popeye

United States
1980


I Am What I Am

Released in 1980 by Walt Disney and Paramount

Directed By Robert Altman
Written by Jules Feiffer and E. C. Segar
Starring Robin Williams and Shelley Duvall

Music by Harry Nilsson

Paramount Home Video released the film Popeye on DVD in the US on June 24, 2003. You can order the DVD from Amazon.com.

"Popeye" is a live action film which features Robin Williams and Shelley Duvall as Popeye and Olive Oyl. In the film, everyone's favorite spinach-eating sailor (although he hates spinach at the start of this film) falls for Olive Oyl and battles his arch-rival Bluto.


Paul L. Smith as "Bluto"
[Click photo to enlarge]

Near the end of the 1970's, Producer Robert Evans commissioned screenwriter (and political cartoonist, novelist, and playwright) Jules Feiffer to write a script for a live action version of "Popeye." The script was passed from one director to another (including Hal Ashby, Arthur Penn and Mike Nichols) before Robert Altman ("M*A*S*H", "Nashville") ended up heading the project. At one point Dustin Hoffman and Lily Tomlin were signed on as Popeye and Olive.


Ray Walston (as "Poopdeck Pappy") and Robin Williams (as "Popeye")
[Click photo to enlarge]

Altman took the cast and crew to Anchor Bay on the island of Malta. Over 100 men worked seven months to construct the Popeye set. Wood had to be imported from Canada. When they finished, the fictional village of Sweethaven consisted of nineteen buildings including a hotel, a school-house, a store, a post office, a church, and, of course, a tavern.

The film's score and songs are by Harry Nilsson. "Nobody wanted him at first except Robin Williams. Everyone said 'You'll get in trouble with him -- he'll get drunk; he won't do it; he's all washed up.' As a matter of fact I said all of those things about Harry to Robin myself one day. Then I went home and thought about it and said to myself, 'Jesus, that's what some people are saying about me!' So I called Harry Nilsson, because I had never met him in my life, and we got along terrifically." -- Robert Altman.

Harry Nilsson took the musicians to Malta where a studio was constructed for their use. The musicians dubbed themselves, "The Falcons." Ray Cooper, Doug Dillard, Harry Nilsson, Van Dyke Parks, Klaus Voormann, and "The Mysterious Karsten" recorded the basic tracks on the island as the set was finished and filming began. Van Dyke Parks arranged and conducted the music. Ray Cooper, Doug Dillard, Van Dyke Parks, and Klaus Voormann make brief appearances in the film.

The climatic octopus fight was filmed in Fifla. The Sweethaven set still stands in Anchor Bay as a tourist attraction.

Soundtrack

Popeye Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Album
A Nilsson House Production
Manufactured by Boardwalk Records, Inc. a division of The Boardwalk Entertainment Company
Copyright 1980 Paramount Pictures Corporation and Walt Disney Productions

The soundtrack album was engineered by Rick Riccio and Mike Hatcher. Harry Nilsson wrote all of the songs except for "I'm Popeye the Sailor Man". The album was released on LP and may have been briefly available as a CD in Europe.

Mark Guerrero, son of singer/composer Lalo Guerrero, provided background vocals for the demo of "I'm Mean".

The New Jersey group Guitari incorporated samples of "I Yam What I Yam", "Sailin'", and "It's Not Easy Being Me", from the Popeye soundtrack album in their songs "Hero" and "I Yam What I Yam (Popeye Rap)."

Home Video

"Popeye" is available on VHS video tape. You can find it at your local video store or order it online from retailers such as Amazon.com. Popeye was released on DVD in June of 2003. You can order the DVD from Amazon.com

"If you watch it backwards, it has a plot." -- Robin Williams


 


Credits:

Actor ("Bear, the Hermit"): John E. Bristol
Actor ("Bill Barnacle"): Robert Fortier
Actor ("Blossom Walfleur"): Nathalie Blossom
Actor ("Bluto"): Paul L. Smith
Actor ("Bolo"): Pietro Torrisi
Actor ("Butch"): Ned Dowd
Actor ("Castor Oyl"): Donovan Scott
Actor ("Cherry, his Moll"): Sharon Kinney
Actor ("Chico"): Larry Pisoni
Actor ("Chizzelflint"): Wayne Robson
Actor ("Cindy"): Valerie Velardi
Actor ("Clem, the Banjo Player"): Doug Dillard
Actor ("Cole Oyl"): MacIntyre Dixon
Actor ("Daisy"): Margery Bond
Actor ("Daphne"): Barbara Zegler
Actor ("Geezil"): Richard Libertini
Actor ("Gozo"): Roberto Messina
Actor ("Ham Gravy, the Old Boyfriend"): Bill Irwin
Actor ("Harry Hotcash, the Gambler"): David McCharen
Actor ("Hoagy, the Piano Player"): Van Dyke Parks
Actor ("La Verne, the Waitress"): Susan Kingsley
Actor ("Mayor Stonefeller"): Paul Zegler
Actor ("Mena Walfleur"): Julie Janney
Actor ("Min"): Eve Knoller
Actor ("Mina Walfleur"): Patty Katz
Actor ("Mona Walfleur"): Diane Shaffer
Actor ("Mort"): Hovey Burgess
Actor ("Mrs. Oxheart, his Mother"): Linda Hunt
Actor ("Mrs. Stonefeller"): Pamela Burrell
Actor ("Nana Oyl"): Roberta Maxwell
Actor ("Olive Oyl"): Shelley Duvall
Actor ("Oscar"): Stan Wilson
Actor ("Oxblood Oxheart, the Fighter"): Peter Bray
Actor ("Petunia"): Judy Burgess
Actor ("Pickelina"): Peggy Pisoni
Actor ("Poopdeck Pappy"): Ray Walston
Actor ("Popeye"): Robin Williams
Actor ("Rosie, the Milkmaid"): Karen McCormick
Actor ("Rough House"): Allan F. Nicholls
Actor ("Scoop, the Reporter"): Geoff Hoyle
Actor ("Slick"): Noel Parenti
Actor ("Slug"): Carlos Brown
Actor ("Spike"): Dennis Franz
Actor ("Splatz, the Janitor"): Michael Christiansen
Actor ("Swee'pea"): Wesley Ivan Hurt
Actor ("Swifty"): Carlo Pellegrini
Actor ("The Chimneysweep"): Roberto Dell'acqua
Actor ("The Mailman"): David Arkin
Actor ("The Policeman"): David Arkin
Actor ("The Preacher"): Ray Cooper
Actor ("The Taxman"): Donald Moffat
Actor ("Violet"): Saundra MacDonald
Actor ("Von Schnitzel, the Conductor"): Klaus Voormann
Actor ("Wimpy"): Paul Dooley
Additional Editor: Raja R. Gosnell
Additional Score: Tom Pierson
Animated Artifacts Creator: Bob Williams
Animated Artifacts Creator: Ellis Burman Jr.
Assistant Art Director: Reg Bream
Assistant Art Director: Stephane Reichel
Assistant Camera: Robert Reed Altman
Assistant Camera: Luigi Bernardini
Assistant Camera: Mauro Marchetti
Assistant Camera: Maurizio Zampagni
Assistant Camera: Gianmaria Majorana
Assistant Editor: Jacque Elaine Toberen
Assistant Editor: Robert Lederman
Assistant Editor: Stephen Tucker
Assistant Editor: Eric Whitfield
Assistant Editor: Paul Rubell
Assistant Hair Stylist: Rita Innocenzi
Assistant Makeup Artist: Alvaro Rossi
Assistant Makeup Artist: Gilberto Provenghi
Assistant Music Editor: Leslie A. Whitfield
Assistant Sound Effects Editor: John Benson
Assistant Sound Effects Editor: Edward A. Warschilka
Assistant Sound Effects Editor: Roxanne Jones
Assistant Sound Effects editor: Karen Rasch
Assistant Special Effects Coordinator: Robert Willard
Assistant to Mr. Altman: Ed Horwitz
Assistant to Mr. Evans: Stephanie Aranas
Assistant to Mr. Evans: Cathy Chazan
Assistant to Mr. Williams: Mark Rutenberg
Associate Producer: Scott Bushnell
Boom Operator: Don Merritt
Camera Operator: Giovanni Fiore
Camera Operator: Gianfranco Transunto
Caterer: Mickey Chonos
Choreographer: Sharon Kinney
Choreographer: Hovey Burgess
Cinematography: Giuseppe Rotunno
Conductor: Van Dyke Parks
Construction Coordinator: Stephane Reichel
Construction Manager: Alvaro Belsole
Costume Design: Scott Bushnell
Dance Style Creator: Lou Wills
Dialogue Loop Editor: Larry Singer
Director: Robert Altman
Draftsman: Stephen Bream
Draftsman: Lester Smith
Executive assistant to Mr. Evans: Barbara Kalish
Executive Producer: C.O. Erickson
Film Editing: David Alan Simmons
Film Editing: John W. Holmes
First Assistant Director: Bob Dahlin
First Assistant Director: Victor Tourjansky
Gaffer: Rodolfo Bramucci
Hair Stylist: Aldo Signoretti
Hair Stylist: Gabriella Borzelli
Key Grip: Vladimiro Salvatori
Key Grip: Alberto Emidi
Key Hair Stylist: Maria Teresa Corridoni
Location Auditor: Luciano Tartaglia
Location Auditor: Tim Engel
Location Auditor: Dick Dubuque
Location Engineer: Randy Honaker
Location Manager: Robert Eggenweiler
Makeup Artist: Alfredo Tiberi
Makeup Supervisor: Giancarlo Del Brocco
Master Carpenter: Bert Bowers
Master Carpenter: Gaetano Mirante
Master Painter: Guglielmo Modestini
Music Arranger: Van Dyke Parks
Music Editor: Richard Whitfield
Music Re-recording Mixer: Dan Wallin
Original Music: Harry Nilsson
Physical Therapist: James A. Rumsey
Post-production Coordinator: Suzanne Hines
Producer: Robert Evans
Production Design: Wolf Kroeger
Production Manager (Europe): Frederick Muller
Property Man: Tony Maccario
Property Man: John Bucklin
Property Master: Stephen Altman
Publicist: Bridget Terry
Publicity assistant: Cathy Keller
Publicity Assistant: Rita Galea
Screenplay: Jules Feiffer
Script Supervisor: Luca Kouimelis
Sculptor: Angelo Marta
Sculptor: Angelo Zaccaria
Sculptor: Michael Stroud
Set Decoration: Jack Stephens
Sound: Robert Gravenor
Sound Editor: Hal Sanders
Sound Editor: Bill Phillips
Sound Editor: Sam F. Shaw
Sound Editor: Michael Ford
Sound Editor: John A. Larsen
Sound Effects Consultant: Rodney Holland
Sound Effects Editor: Andy Patterson
Sound Effects Editor: Teresa Eckton
Sound Re-recording Engineer: Steven Brimmer
Sound Recordist: Doug Schulman
Special Effects: R.J. Hohman
Special Effects Coordinator: Allen Hall
Stunt Co-ordinator: Roberto Messina
Supervising Editor: Tony Lombardo
Supervising Music Editor: Ted Whitfield
Supervising Re-recording Mixer: Michael Minkler
Supervising Sound Editor: Sam Gemette
Talent Coordinator: Rick Sparks
Technical Advisor: Steve Foster
Title Designer: Patrice Ryan
Transportation Captain: Bill Turner
Underwater Camera Operator: Lorenzo Battaglia
Unit Coordinator: Peter Bray
Unit Coordinator: David Levy
Unit Manager: Paolo Lucidi
Unit Photographer: Paul Ronald
Wardrobe Consultant: Kate McDermott
Wardrobe Mistress: Yvonne Zarb Cousin
Wardrobe Supervisor: John Hay

Songs:

---"Blow Me Down"
---"Popeye Cues"
---"Swee' Pea's Lullaby"
---"Sailin'"
---"Kids"
---"It's Not Easy Being Me"
---"I Yam What I Yam"
---"I'm Popeye the Sailor Man"
---"I'm Mean"
---"He Needs Me"
---"He's Large"
---"Din' We"
---"Everything is Food"

Links:

On Popeye, the Movie
Popeye Village photographs
Internet Movie Database - Cast, Crew, Etc.
Search Amazon.com for Popeye
Pictures of Malta
The Denmark Comics Museum's Popeye Film Page (mostly in English)

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