Piranha


1h 32m 1978
Piranha

Brief Synopsis

When flesh-eating piranhas are accidently released into a summer resort's rivers, the guests become their next meal.

Film Details

MPAA Rating
R
Genre
Horror
Release Date
1978

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 32m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.85 : 1

Synopsis

When insurance investigator Maggie McKeown is sent to find two missing teenagers who were hiking near Lost River Lake, she hires a local man named Paul Grogan to be her guide in the area. The two come across an abandoned military facility whose only resident if Dr. Robert Hoak, who was formerly in charge of a secret project to breed piranha to be used in the Vietnam War. Although the project has been defunct for years, Hoak continued to raise the killer fish. When the doctor is knocked out, Maggie and Paul accidentally release the fish into a river that feeds into a lake which is used as a children's summer camp and a new tourist resort. Maggie and Paul try to warn the local citizens, and are met with skepticism until the piranha begin to attack.

Film Details

MPAA Rating
R
Genre
Horror
Release Date
1978

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 32m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.85 : 1

Quotes

The piranhas...
- Whitney
What about the goddamn piranhas?
- Buck Gardner
They're eating the guests, sir.
- Whitney
People eat fish, Grogan. Fish don't eat people.
- Dumont
Terror, horror, death. Film at eleven.
- Reporter
C'mon, let's go!
- Maggie McKeown
What?
- Paul Grogan
You're taking me up there!
- Maggie McKeown
Oh NO I'm not!
- Paul Grogan
I'm looking for two teenagers that disappeared a few weeks ago. So, I was wondering if there are any places around here they might be or if they may have gone for a swim.
- Maggie McKeown
Well, if they drowned, they'd be swept down to the dam. So, you're starting off at the wrong end.
- Paul Grogan
Boy, you're the wrong end around here!
- Maggie McKeown
That guard is still out there.
- Maggie McKeown
Fine, I need you to distract him.
- Paul Grogan
What for?
- Maggie McKeown
So I can get away.
- Paul Grogan
So YOU can get away?! What about me?
- Maggie McKeown

Trivia

Eric Braeden was originally cast as Paul Grogan, but he pulled out to pursue another project. Ha had already shot some underwater swimming footage which is used in the film.

A waitress from the Holiday Inn where the director and crew were staying stood in for Heather Menzies during the topless shots because Menzies was concerned that her husband might not approve of the nude scene.

This film was reported to have been shot in 30 days for $660,000.

Bradford Dillman was originally unhappy with characters 2D nature, and asked writer John Sayles why his character was so thin. Sayles responded that Roger Corman regularly did not use good actors in his film, so he deliberately didn't elaborate on characters. But since Dillman was a "real" actor, he was more than happy to enhance his characters depth.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Winter January 1, 1978

Released in United States September 1996

Released in United States Winter January 1, 1978

Released in United States September 1996 (Shown in New York City (American Museum of the Moving Image) as part of program "Corman's Children" September 7-28, 1996.)