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ROCKETEER advance movie poster

June 1991 marked the premiere of THE ROCKETEER at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles (see below). The Joe Johnston film brings Stevens' characters to life. Bill Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Timothy Dalton star. Johnston's feature films include Honey I Shrunk the Kids, Jumanji, October Sky and Jurassic Park III.

They published an article detailing the making the the film's effects by ILM. Cinefex is a first class publication and is highly recommended!

Heros of the 1930s
Lots of images.

Hugo Nominations (1992)
Of course, the film was nominated. But the juggernaut Terminator 2 won.

Internet Movie Database
You want detailed information about any film? This is the place.

Jennifer Connelly
The talented actress appears here as Jenny Blake.

Location: Ennis House
Designed by Frank Llyodd Wright, and located in Los Angeles, has been used many times as a film location.

Location: Griffith Park
Currently undergoing restoration and expansion. The project is slated for completion in 2006.

Motion Picture Information
Reviews, plot summary, cast & crew, goofs, quotes, ratings, trivia, etc

Movie: Blu-ray
Rocketeer blu-ray coverFinally. On Blu-ray! The image and sound quality have never been better on your home screen!

Yes, there is room for improvement. For this 20th anniversary special edition, Disney did not add a plethora of special features but rather ported over what precious little they had on the DVD release which is to say, thanks for the trailer.

It would be great if they would add a commentary track from the director Joe Johnston, creator Dave Stevens, and the principal actors; documentaries and behind-the-scenes feauturettes such as the 1991 TV promo. Adding in the deleted scenes would make for a fabulous "Director's Cut", full-blown, Vista Series Special Edition! Please. Thank you.

And read the definitive review at Blu-ray.com.

Movie: DVD
Disney did release the film on DVD. My guess is they used the Laser Disc master.

Movie: Laser Disc (OOP)
AS The Rocketeer
1992, Walt Disney Home Video UPC: 17951-2390-6
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Format: CLV

CS The Rocketeer (2 LD set)
1992, Walt Disney Home Video UPC: 17951-2391-6
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Format: CAV

Movie: VHS (OOP)
As are most titles in this format, the image is pan & scan. Lo-res.

Poster: John Mattos
Who designed that fabulous movie poster: the immensely talented John Mattos!

Rocketeer: Excitement in the Air
1991 TV special documentary

Timothy Dalton
Before he played Neville Sinclair, he was Bond, James Bond.

El Capitan Premiere
Special thanks to Timothy Moy <tdmoy@unm.edu> for sharing his experience --

Seeing "The Rocketeer" at the El Capitan is probably my fondest movie-going memory. Here's what I remember:

The El Capitan is almost right across Hollywood Boulevard from the famous (formerly Grauman's) Chinese Theater, where all those handprints and footprints are preserved in cement, right in the heart of the Walk of Fame. It's one of the most celebrated spots of that celebrated street.

In 1991, we had been living in L.A. for about a year, and I remember reading that Disney had spent a huge amount of money to restore the El Capitan to its 1930-era glory; the idea was to make this Disney's flagship premier theater in southern California.

Boy, did they do a job. The interior, from the lobby right on into the theater, had been re-done in almost over-the-top art deco splendor. My wife remarked that it felt like we were inside a building made of solid gold.

The seats were lavish, the screen was huge and framed by enormous scarlet draperies. When the lights dimmed, we were treated to a surprise: A live song and dance number with chorus girls dressed in 1930s-style usherette costumes, singing and dancing to a song called (if I remember correctly), "Meet Me Down at the El Capitan." It was a hoot, and put the entire crowd into the perfect mood for this movie and this theater.

Then, the curtain opened. Yes, there was a curtain on the screen; or rather, there were about four layers of curtains, which opened in sequence. The lights went all the way down, there was a preview (but I can't remember what for - "The Lion King"?), and the black screen opened into those first frames of "The Rocketeer" as Cliff's crew is sliding open the hangar doors to roll out the GeeBee.

The movie was great, and was all the better for seeing in that theater and with that crowd. It was a very Hollywood crowd, which loved all of The Rocketeer's inside jokes about the movie industry (they were howling when Neville Sinclair, as the Laughing Bandit, takes that chandelier swing to the table and the dumb blond issues that terrible reading of her line, "Oh my prince, that you would drink from my lips as deeply!"). I found hilarious the captured Nazi film and animation of the rocket-troopers conquering America; it was a perfect knock-off of the animation that Disney itself did for Frank Capra in the "Why We Fight" series during World War II. Griffith Observatory, Howard Hughes's Spruce Goose, and the "Hollywoodland" sign all got laughs as prominent local icons, past and present.

All in all, I found it to be a perfect (and probably irreproducible) combination of movie and theater. "The Rocketeer" felt like it belonged on _that_ screen. It was a marvelous experience.
This site was created, written and is maintained by John Dziadecki 1995-2007. Images and quotes that are not the author's remain in the copyright of the originator. The information contained in this website is for educational purposes only. Additions and corrections are welcomed! Please send comments, suggestions and possible links to John.Dziadecki@colorado.edu.