The Cars that Ate Paris (1974)

74m (USA – theatrical), 91m, 7,940 feet
35mm film, Panavision (anamorphic), Eastmancolor, 2.35:1
mono, English

An Australian horror film directed by Peter Weir.

Plot Summary

The small Australian outback town of Paris makes a macabre living by causing traffic accidents and salvaging what they can from the wreckage. Arthur survives the crash that kills his brother George and settles in Paris, working as a porter at the local hospital and finds himself drawn into a conflict with the town's youths and their souped-up, grotesquely decorated .


Director: Peter Weir
Salt Pan Films, The Australian Film Development Corporation, Royce Smeal Film Productions
Producers: Jim McElroy, Howard McElroy
Production Manager: Tom Hogan
Script: Peter Weir
Story: Peter Weir, Keith Gow, Piers Davies
Assistant Directors: Ross Matthews, Chris Noonan
Continuity: Gilda Baracchi
Director of Photography: John McLean
Camera Operators: Andrew Fraser, Peter James, Richard Wallace
Clapper Loader: Jimmy Allen
Focus Puller: David Burr
Gaffer: Tony Tegg
Best Boy: Robbie Young
Key Grip: Grahame Madell
Editor: Wayne LeClos
Assistant Editor: Tomash Pokorry
Negative Cutter: Margaret Cardin
Music: Bruce Smeaton
Sound Recordists: Michael Midlam, Ken Hammond
Sound Mixer: Peter Fenton
Sound Re-Recording: United Sound
Sound Editor: Sara Bennett
Dubbing Recorded at: United Sound
Wardrobe: Ron Williams
Make Up: Liz Michie
Qalar Effects: Anthony G. Furse
Art Director: David R. Copping
Set Decorator: Neil Angwin
Stand-by Propman: Monty Fieguth
Construction Manager: John Denton
Production Accountant: Pauline Ryan
Production Secretary: Pam Oliver
Action Vehicles: Alf Blight
Caterer: Harry Williams
Locations: Sofala, New South Wales, Australia
Location Manager: Tom Hogan
Stunt Coordinator: Peter Armstrong

John Meillon (The Mayor)
Terry Camilleri (Arthur Waldo)
Kevin Miles (Dr Midland)
Rick Scully (George Waldo)
Max Gillies (Metcalfe)
Danny Adcock (policeman)
Bruce Spence (Charlie)
Kevin Golsby (insurance man)
Chris Haywood (Darryl)
Peter Armstrong (Gorman)
Joe Burrow (Ganger)
Deryck Barnes (Al Smedley)
Edward Howell (Tringham)
Max Phipps (Mulray)
Melissa Jaffer (Beth)
Tim Robertson (Les)
Herbie Nelson (man in house)
Charlie Metcalfe (Clive Smedley – uncredited)
Frank Saba (Con Lexus – uncredited)

Alternative Titles

Die Autos, die Paris auffraßen – West Germany (television)
Cars – kun autot ottivat vallan – Finland
Cars That Eat People – USA
Die Killer-Autos von Paris – West Germany
Samochody, które pozarly Paryz – Poland

See also
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)



  • Cinema Papers no.3 (July 1974) p.275 – illustrated review (by John Flaus)
  • Films Illustrated vol.4 (May 1975) p.327 – review (by John Williams)
  • Screen International no.224 (19-26 January 1912) p.6 – illustrated note (Four-film package at Madrid by Anne Head)
  • Screen International no.254 (16-23 August 1980) p.9 – note (World news desk: Australia: Tax news puts film-men in a flap by Raymond Stanley)
  • Variety 26 June 1974 p.20 – review (by Stan)


  • The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Science Fiction by Phil Hardy (ed) p.317
  • Australian Film 1900-1977: A Guide to Feature Film Production by Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper p.354 – illustrated credits, synopsis
  • Australian Horror Films 1973-2010 by Peter Shelley pp.17-19 – illustrated credits, synopsis, review
  • Comedy-Horror Films: A Chronological History, 1914-2008 by Bruce G. Hallenbeck p.217 – credits
  • Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.52
  • Horror Films of the 1970s by John Kenneth Muir p.316 – credits, note
  • Terror Tracks: Music, Sound and Horror Cinema by Philip Hayward (ed) p.238