This epic chronicle of the seven pilots chosen to become astronauts for Project Mercury is based on the novel by Tom Wolfe. Deep in the desert during the 1950s, army test pilots courageously fought to break the sound barrier. These maverick men would stop at nothing to achieve winning speed. Led by their champion, Chuck Yeager (Sam Shepard), they caroused at the local watering hole while sharing tales of extreme sport and bravery--until the Russians successfully sent their Sputnik satellite into the skies, and the United States government panicked, quickly launching a space program of its own. In an effort to find the right men for the job, the government searched the desert and the seas, compiling a crew of daredevil space cowboys willing to do anything for the chance to represent America in the space race. After grueling medical, physical, and psychological tests, seven men were left standing, led by American hero John Glenn (Ed Harris), test pilots Gordon Cooper (Dennis Quaid), Gus Grissom (Fred Ward), and Scott Carpenter (Charles Frank), and Navy man Alan Shepard (Scott Glenn). With the help of the media and the government, these men became overnight heroes, sacrificing their freedom and their families for the dream of space travel. This piercing exploration of the men and wives behind the mission serves as a testament to the determination of America to dominate the field of space exploration, while offering an intriguing portrait of a period in which America wanted to believe in perfect men and their perfect wives, even if the reality was vastly more complex. Philip Kaufman's gripping film also features fabulous special effects and stunning aerial cinematography.
1983 - Academy Awards - Best Film Editing Winner
1983 - Academy Awards - Best Sound Winner
1983 - Academy Awards - Best Sound Effects Editing Winner
1983 - Academy Awards - Best Original Score Winner
Chuck Yeager - Test Pilot, Character in THE RIGHT STUFF
Fred Ward - American Actor
Harry Shearer - American Screenwriter/Actor
Charles Frank - Supporting Actor
Barbara Hershey - American actress, PORTRAIT OF A LADY
Barbara Herzstein - American actress, PORTRAIT OF A LADY
Barbara Seagull - American actress, PORTRAIT OF A LADY
Philip Kaufman - Director/Screenwriter
Scott Glenn - Actor, JOURNEY TO THE END OF NIGHT, W.
Jeff Goldblum - American actor
Sam Shepard - Actor, playwright,
Samuel Shepard Rogers - Actor, playwright,
Ed Harris - American Actor/Director
THE RIGHT STUFF is the epic chronicle of the seven pilots chosen to be the astronauts of Project Mercury. Also featured is the story of Chuck Yeager, the test pilot who first broke the sound barrier.
Look for the cameo appearance by real-life pilot Chuck Yeager as a bartender. Film was originally rated R by the MPAA but received a PG on appeal.
"...Rousing....Probably the brightest and the best rookie/cadet movie ever made..." - 10/21/1983 New York Times, p.C5
Included in The New York Times "10 BEST FILMS OF 1983" - 12/25/1983 New York Times, p.II:15
"...Full of beauty, intelligence and excitement....[The film] provides a fresh, entertaining look back at the recent past....[The] cinematography is lustrous and impeccably clean..." - 10/12/1983 Variety
"...One of the best Hollywood movies of the past 20 years..." - 01/15/1993 USA Today, p.3D
"...Kaufman's love for the Yaeger character pays off in the magical closing sequence of the film..." - 02/16/2003 Chicago Sun-Times, p.4
"...Flying at its coolest..." - 12/19/2003 Entertainment Weekly, p.60
"[The film] delivers real exuberance....Time has been good to it." - 03/01/2004 Premiere, p.96