Ghost Story (1981)

110m 29s
35mm film, Technicolor, 1.85:1
mono, English

An American horror film directed by John Irvin. Production began on 19 January 1981 1Daily Variety 16 January 1981 p.28

Plot Summary

Four elderly men form the Chowder Society but are united in another, more bizarre way – 50 years ago, they were responsible for the death by of a young woman. Now, as they are subjected to a series of strange happenings, they begin to suspect that they are being haunted by the woman's ghost looking for revenge…


Director: John Irvin
Copyright: Universal City Studios Inc
Universal Pictures
Producer: Burt Weissbourd
Co-Producer: Douglas Green
Associate Producer: Ronald G. Smith
Script: Lawrence D. Cohen
Novel: Peter Straub
Director of Photography: Jack Cardiff
Editor: Tom Rolf
Music: Philippe Sarde
Sound Recordist: Jim Alexander
Costume Designer: May Routh
Make-up: Irving Buckman, Albert Jeyte, Bob Jiras, Rick Sharp
Special Make-up: Dick Smith
Special Effects: Henry Millar Jr
Special Visual Effects: Albert Whitlock
Production Designer: Norman Newberry

Fred Astaire (Ricky Hawthorne)
Melvyn Douglas (Dr John Jaffrey)
Douglas Fairbanks Jr (Edward Charles Wanderley)
John Houseman (Sears James)
Craig Wasson (Don/David Wanderley)
Patricia Neal (Stella Hawthorne)
Alice Krige (Eva Galli/Alma Mobley)
Jacqueline Brookes (Milly)
Miguel Fernandes (Gregory Bate)
Lance Holcomb (Fenny Bate)
Mark Chamberlin (young Jaffrey)
Tim Choate (young Hawthorne)
Kurt Johnson (young Wanderley)
Ken Olin (young James)
Brad Sullivan (Sheriff)
Guy Boyd (Omar Norris)
Michael O'Neill (Churchill)
Robert Burr (principal)
Helena Carroll (Mrs Meredith)
Robin Curtis (Rea Dedham)

Alternative Titles

Cuento de fantasmas – Argentine title
Fantasma do Passado – Portuguese title
Historia macabra – Spanish title
Kummitusjuttu – Finnish title
Opowiesci o duchach – Polish title
Rache aus dem Reich der Toten – West German television title
Spökhistorien – Finnish title
Storie di fantasmi – Italian title
Zurück bleibt die Angst – West German video title


Daily Variety 16 January 1981 p.28 – credits (Film production chart)
Screen International no.325 (9-16 January 1982) p.2 – note (West End openings)
Screen International 16-23 January 1982 p.2 – note (West End openings)
Screen International no. 327 (22-30 January 1982) p.2 – note (West End openings)

The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.364
English Gothic: A Century of Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby pp.206, 374
Film Review 1982-1983 by F. Maurice Speed (ed.) p.151 – credits, review
The Films of the Eighties by Robert A. Nowlan and Gwendolyn Wright Nowlan p.217
and Angels in Hollywood Films by James Robert Parish pp.134-136 – illustrated credits, synopsis, review
Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.152
Horror Films of the 1980s by John Kenneth Muir pp.176-178 – credits, synopsis, review
The World of Fantasy Films by Richard Myers p.143