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Poltergeist

Poltergeist (2015)

A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive. A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive. A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive.

  • David Lindsay-Abaire
  • Steven Spielberg
  • Michael Grais
  • Sam Rockwell
  • Rosemarie DeWitt
  • Kennedi Clements
  • 459 User reviews
  • 270 Critic reviews
  • 47 Metascore
  • 1 win & 6 nominations

International Trailer

  • Madison Bowen

Saxon Sharbino

  • Kendra Bowen

Kyle Catlett

  • Griffin Bowen

Jared Harris

  • Carrigan Burke

Jane Adams

  • Dr. Brooke Powell

Susan Heyward

  • Mrs. Stoller

Patrick Garrow

  • Mr. Stoller

Doug MacLeod

  • Older Gentleman
  • Older Woman

Soma Chhaya

  • (as Soma Bhatia)

John Stoneham Jr.

  • Young Realtor
  • All cast & crew
  • Production, box office & more at IMDbPro

More like this

Poltergeist II: The Other Side

Did you know

  • Trivia Rosemarie DeWitt wanted to do the film, after she experienced the engaged and lively audience reaction at the premiere of The Conjuring (2013) , which she attended because it featured her husband Ron Livingston .
  • Goofs (at around 1h 20 mins) When the family's car is pulled back into the house, Eric asks if everyone is okay but his mouth is not moving while he is stuck in the car.

Madison Bowen : They're here.

  • Crazy credits SPOILER: A scene is shown halfway through the end credits: Carrigan Burke is filming a new episode of his show. Dr. Powell (wearing the same glasses Tangina wore in the original trilogy) is his new co-host. He gets mad at her for messing up her line.
  • Alternate versions The U.S. Blu-ray release includes an "Extended Cut" that runs 7 minutes longer than the Theatrical Cut, which is also on the Blu-ray.
  • Connections Featured in Nostalgia Critic: Why Is Nothing Original Anymore? (2015)
  • Soundtracks Sugarcrush Written by Owen Williams Performed by Joanna Gruesome Courtesy of Slumberland Records, LLC

User reviews 459

  • Samirsbureau
  • May 20, 2015

Reboots & Remakes

Production art

  • How long is Poltergeist? Powered by Alexa
  • What are the differences between the Theatrical Version and the Extended Cut?
  • May 22, 2015 (United States)
  • United States
  • Official Facebook
  • Official Site
  • 1295 Upper Paradise Road, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (Exterior house shots)
  • Fox 2000 Pictures
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios
  • See more company credits at IMDbPro
  • $35,000,000 (estimated)
  • $47,425,125
  • $22,620,386
  • May 24, 2015
  • $95,437,994

Technical specs

  • Runtime 1 hour 33 minutes
  • Dolby Digital

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The 'Poltergeist' Curse: Inside the Mysterious Cast Deaths and Oddities On Set

JoBeth Williams looks on as Craig T Nelson holds Oliver Robins in a scene from the film 'Poltergeist', 1982. (Photo by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images)

Released in 1982, the original Poltergeist , directed by Tobe Hooper and produced by Spielberg, was an instant success and is considered to be a masterpiece of American horror cinema. The film focuses on the Freelings, a middle-class family (led by a youthful, dashing Craig T. Nelson) whose life is upturned when a number of paranormal and vicious events occur in their California home and their daughter Carol Anne is abducted through her bedroom closet by a group of ghosts who are under the control of a monster demon called the “Beast.”

After learning that their house sits atop a Native American burial ground, the Freelings spend their time attempting to retrieve Carol Anne and all the while stay sane as they get smacked around, terrorized and ultimately, “goobered” on in the bathtub.

With Poltergeist's success came a creepy mystique that the classic film is shrouded in real-life tragedies that some interpret as a curse.

Four cast members died during and soon after the filming of the series

The majority of the fuel for the alleged curse stems from the deaths of multiple cast members. In total, four cast members died during and soon after the filming of the series. Two of these tragic deaths were highly unexpected and puzzling, leading many fans to speculate on the trilogy’s eerie implications.

Heather O'Rourke screams as she is harassed by evil spirits in a scene from the film 'Poltergeist', 1982. (Photo by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images)

Heather O'Rourke

Carol Anne Freeling, the young focal point of the series, was played by Heather O’Rourke. Only six years old when the first Poltergeist film was released, O’Rourke captivated audiences with her stark blond hair, doll-like appearance, and big, inquisitive eyes. Sadly, however, she was misdiagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 1987. The following year, O’Rourke fell ill again, and her symptoms were casually attributed to the flu. A day later, she collapsed and suffered a cardiac arrest. After being airlifted to a children’s hospital in San Diego, O’Rourke died during an operation to correct a bowel obstruction, and it was later believed that she had been suffering from a congenital intestinal abnormality.

Dominique Dunne

Dominique Dunne, who played the original older sister Dana Freeling, met an equally tragic and unforeseen fate. In 1982, Dunne separated from her partner, John Sweeney. In November of that year, he showed up at Dunne’s house, pleading for her to take him back. When she refused, Sweeney grabbed Dunne’s neck, choked her until she was unconscious, and left her to die in her Hollywood home’s driveway. Sweeney was sentenced to six and a half years in prison but was released after three years and seven months.

Julian Beck and Will Sampson

The other two cast member deaths, while unfortunate, were not as unpredictable or mysterious. The evil preacher Kane from Poltergeist II was played by Julian Beck. In 1983, Beck had been diagnosed with stomach cancer, which took his life soon after he finished work on the second installment of the series. The same film was met with further tragedy, after Will Sampson, who played Taylor the Native American shaman, died after undergoing a heart-lung transplant, which had a very slim survival rate.

Other strange things happened on set

Cast deaths were not the only agents of the curse’s proliferation, as other peculiar and creepy legends surround the film franchise. JoBeth Williams, who played mom Diane Freeling in the first two films, claimed that director Spielberg insisted on using actual human skeletons as props in an attempt to save money (at the time, they were cheaper than plastic skeletons). Williams’ claim has never been verified, but it persists to this day in the lore surrounding the films’ curse.

Finally, in an effort to further creep out everyone involved, Sampson, the real-life medicine man who passed away due to circumstances mentioned above, performed an authentic exorcism after shooting wrapped up one night. One can only imagine how this made the other cast members feel.

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VIDEO

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  3. Poltergeist (1982) Movie Review & Spielberg Vs Hooper Discussion

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  6. Poltergeist movie (1982) 10 Facts

COMMENTS

  1. Poltergeist (1982 film)

    Poltergeist is a 1982 American supernatural horror film directed by Tobe Hooper and written by Steven Spielberg, Michael Grais and Mark Victor from a story by Spielberg. It stars JoBeth Williams, Craig T. Nelson and Beatrice Straight, and was produced by Spielberg and Frank Marshall.

  2. Poltergeist (1982)

    218 Play trailer 2:05 5 Videos 99+ Photos Horror Thriller A family's home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts. Director Tobe Hooper Writers Steven Spielberg Michael Grais Mark Victor Stars JoBeth Williams Heather O'Rourke Craig T. Nelson See production info at IMDbPro RENT/BUY from $3.99 search Amazon Add to Watchlist

  3. Poltergeist (1982)

    Directed by Tobe Hooper Writing Credits Cast (in credits order) verified as complete Produced by Music by Jerry Goldsmith Cinematography by Matthew F. Leonetti ... director of photography Editing by Michael Kahn Casting By Production Design by James H. Spencer Set Decoration by Cheryal Kearney Makeup Department Production Management Dennis E. Jones

  4. Poltergeist (2015)

    1h 33m IMDb RATING 4.9 /10 61K YOUR RATING Rate Play trailer 1:43 16 Videos 99+ Photos Horror Thriller A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive. Director Gil Kenan Writers David Lindsay-Abaire Steven Spielberg Michael Grais Stars Sam Rockwell

  5. Poltergeist (2015 film)

    Poltergeist is a 2015 American supernatural horror film directed by Gil Kenan, written by David Lindsay-Abaire, and produced by Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert, and Roy Lee. It is a remake of the 1982 film of the same name and is the fourth installment overall in the Poltergeist franchise.

  6. Poltergeist (franchise)

    Poltergeist is the original film in the trilogy, directed by Tobe Hooper, co-written by Steven Spielberg and released on June 4, 1982. The story focuses on the Freeling family, which consists of parents Steve (Craig T. Nelson) and Diane (JoBeth Williams); teenage daughter Dana (Dominique Dunne); eight-year-old Robbie (Oliver Robins); and five-year-old Carol Anne (Heather O'Rourke), who live in ...

  7. The 'Poltergeist' Curse: Inside the Mysterious Cast Deaths

    Dominique Dunne Dominique Dunne, who played the original older sister Dana Freeling, met an equally tragic and unforeseen fate. In 1982, Dunne separated from her partner, John Sweeney. In November...