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A Fire in the Sky

paul bill director effects

(NBC, 11/26/1978, 180 mins). A fiery comet is hurtling toward Phoenix, Arizona, and an astronomer’s desperate warnings fall on deaf ears among city officials in this lengthy disaster tale highlighted by some striking special effects and miniature work. Publicity releases for this movie, based on a story by Paul Gallico, insisted that a record (for a TV film) 5,700 extras were used in the exodus sequences and that the miniature work was the most extensive ever created for television. Emmy Award nominations went to this three-hour film for Special Effects and Sound Editing.

Production Companies Bill Driskill Productions, Columbia Pictures Television. Director Jerry Jameson. Executive Producer Bill Driskill. Producer Hugh Benson. Teleplay Dennis Nemec, Michael Blankfort. Based on a Story by Paul Gallico. Photography Matthew F. Leonetti. Music Paul Chihara. Editor J. Terry Williams. Art Directors Dale Hennessy, Ross Bellah. Special Effects Joe Unsinn.

Cast Richard Crenna (Jason Voight), Elizabeth Ashley (Sharon Allan), David Dukes (David Allan), Joanna Miles (Jennifer Dreiser), Lloyd Bochner (Paul Gilliam), Merlin Olsen (Stan Webster), Andrew Duggan (President), Maggie Wellman (Carol), Nicolas Coster (Governor), William Bogert (Lustus), Jenny O’Hara (Ann Webster), Michael Biehn (Tom Reardon), Diana Douglas (Mrs. Reardon), Cynthia Eilbacher (Paula Gilliam), Bill Williams (Dale Turner), Al White (Sergeant Lockett), George O. Petrie (Hank), Elta Blake (Coed), Roy Gainter (Dr. Jesse), Pat McMahon (News director), Cecelia Allen (Elizabeth Richie), Dine Bachelor (Danny), Hank Kendrick (Launch director), Bill Heywood (TV announcer), David Burke Rhind (Chief controller), Brad Zinn (Hutton), Bud Conlan (General Kloman).

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