1988 in film

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The following is an overview of events in 1988 in film, including the highest-grossing films, award ceremonies and festivals, a list of films released and notable deaths. Rain Man was awarded the Academy Award for Best Picture, marking one of the few instances where the top-grossing film of the year was also the winner of such an award that year.

Highest-grossing films (U.S.)[edit]

The top ten 1988 released films by box office gross in North America are as follows:

Highest-grossing films of 1988[1]
Rank Title Studio Domestic gross
1. Rain Man United Artists $172,825,435
2. Who Framed Roger Rabbit Touchstone Pictures / Amblin Entertainment $156,452,370
3. Coming to America Paramount Pictures $128,152,301
4. Big 20th Century Fox / Gracie Films $114,968,774
5. Twins Universal Pictures $111,938,388
6. "Crocodile" Dundee II Paramount Pictures $109,306,210
7. Die Hard 20th Century Fox / Silver Pictures $83,008,852
8. The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! Paramount Pictures $78,756,177
9. Cocktail Touchstone Pictures $78,222,753
10. Beetlejuice Warner Bros. / Geffen Pictures $73,707,461


Academy Awards[edit]

Best Picture: Rain Man - Mirage Entertainment, Star Partners II, United Artists
Best Director: Barry Levinson - Rain Man
Best Actor: Dustin Hoffman - Rain Man
Best Actress: Jodie Foster - The Accused
Best Supporting Actor: Kevin Kline - A Fish Called Wanda
Best Supporting Actress: Geena Davis - The Accidental Tourist
Best Foreign Language Film: Pelle the Conqueror (Pelle erobreren), directed by Bille August, Denmark

Golden Globe Awards[edit]


Best Picture: Rain Man
Best Actor: Dustin HoffmanRain Man
Best Actress (tie): Jodie FosterThe Accused
Best Actress (tie): Sigourney WeaverGorillas in the Mist
Best Actress (tie): Shirley MacLaine - Madame Sousatzka

Musical or comedy[edit]

Best Picture: Working Girl
Best Actor: Tom HanksBig
Best Actress: Melanie GriffithWorking Girl


Best Director: Clint EastwoodBird
Best Foreign Language Film: Pelle the Conqueror, Denmark

Palme d'Or (Cannes Film Festival)[edit]

Pelle the Conqueror (Pelle erobreren), directed by Bille August, Denmark

Golden Lion (Venice Film Festival)[edit]

La leggenda del santo bevitore (The Legend of the Holy Drinker), directed by Ermanno Olmi, Italy / France

Golden Bear (Berlin International Film Festival)[edit]

Red Sorghum (Hong gao liang), directed by Zhang Yimou, China

Golden Raspberry Awards[edit]

Worst Picture: Cocktail (Touchstone)
Worst Actor: Sylvester Stallone in Rambo III
Worst Actress: Liza Minnelli in Arthur 2: On the Rocks and Rent-a-Cop
Worst Supporting Actor: Dan Aykroyd in Caddyshack II
Worst Supporting Actress: Kristy McNichol in Two Moon Junction
Worst Director: Blake Edwards for Sunset, and Stewart Raffill for Mac and Me (tie)
Worst Screenplay: Cocktail, screenplay by Heywood Gould, based on his book
Worst New Star: Ronald McDonald (as himself) in Mac and Me
Worst Original Song: "Jack Fresh" from Caddyshack II, written and performed by Full Force

Notable films released in 1988[edit]

U.S.A. unless stated

Numerals and A-B[edit]








Wide-release films[edit]






Notable deaths[edit]

Month Date Name Age Country Profession Notable films
January 1 Al Gaynor 76 USA Scenic Artist Back to the FutureThe Sound of MusicMary PoppinsDown and Out in Beverly HillsTough Guys
3 Joie Chitwood 75 USA Stuntman, Actor Live and Let Die
7 Michel Auclair 65 France Actor The Day of the JackalBeauty of the BeastFunny FaceDeux heures moins le quart avant Jésus-Christ
7 Trevor Howard 74 UK Actor GandhiSupermanThe Third ManBrief EncounterAround the World in 80 DaysBattle of BritainMutiny on the BountyVon Ryan's ExpressRyan's DaughterGreen for DangerThe OffenceHennessyThe Sea WolvesThe LionWhite MischiefThe Great Muppet Caper
8 Boyd Morgan 72 USA Stuntman, Actor Dirty HarrySpartacusBlazing SaddlesThe Ten CommandmentsMagnum ForceKelly's HeroesTrue GritAround the World in 80 DaysHow the West Was WonThe Great RacePillow TalkCat BallouThe AlamoThe Sons of Katie ElderThe Defiant OnesAuntie MameMcLintock!Support Your Local Sheriff!The Fountainhead
8 Gerard Buhr 59 France Actor, Writer A View to a KillThe Day of the JackalLove and DeathThe TrainBob le flambeurJuliaThe Earrings of Madame de...The Night of the GeneralsLe clan des siciliensCondorman
16 Ballard Berkeley 83 UK Actor National Lampoon's European VacationStag FrightNight of the DemonIn Which We ServeThe BFGLittle Lord FauntleroyStar
16 Robert Keegan 63 UK Actor Straw DogsFrenzyJulius Caesar
25 Colleen Moore 88 USA Actress, Soundtrack Ben-HurElla Cinders
February 1 Heather O'Rourke 12 USA Actress PoltergeistPoltergeist II: The Other SidePoltergeist III
5 Emeric Pressburger 85 UK Writer, Director The Red ShoesBlack NarcissusA Matter of Life and DeathThe Life and Death of Colonel BlimpThe Tales of Hoffmann
8 Allan Cuthbertson 67 UK Actor The Guns of NavaronePerformanceAnastasiaHopscotchThe Mirror Crack'dIce Cold in AlexRoom at the TopOperation CrossbowThe Man Who Never WasTunes of GloryThe Sea WolvesCast a Giant ShadowFreud: The Secret PassionNorth West FrontierThe Devil's DiscipleThe Mouse on the MoonThirteen at DinnerCaptain Nemo and the Underwater City
10 Ron Ellis 47 USA Stuntman, Actor Beverly Hills CopAn Eye for an Eye
March 6 Jeanne Aubert 82 France Actress, Soundtrack
12 Karen Steele 56 USA Actress MartyRide LonesomeDecision at SundownThe Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond
13 John Holmes 43 USA Actor, Production Manager InsatiableFantasm
13 Olive Carey 92 USA Actress, Writer The SearchersThe AlamoGunfight at the O.K. CorralMonkey BusinessOn Dangerous GroundTwo Rode TogetherThe Wings of EaglesNight PassageRun of the ArrowBilly the Kid vs. DraculaThe Cobweb
18 Alan Gibbs 47 USA Stuntman, Actor One Flew Over the Cuckoo's NestScarfaceChinatownThe Witches of Eastwick"Crocodile" Dundee IITerms of EndearmentSmokey and the BanditBeneath the Planet of the ApesLittle Big ManDeath WishConquest of the Planet of the ApesThe Postman Always Rings TwiceMoonwalkerCannonball Run IIConvoyJagged EdgeThe Green BeretsHeaven's GateArmed and Dangerous
23 Reg Lye 75 Australia Actor 10 Rillington PlaceTarka the Otter
April 6 John Clements 77 UK Actor, Writer, Director GandhiThings to ComeThe Four FeathersOh! What a Lovely WarRembrandtKnight Without ArmourThe Silent Enemy • 'The Mind BendersTrain of Events
11 Jeff Donnell 66 USA Actress In a Lonely PlaceGidget Goes HawaiianEasy LivingSweet Smell of Success
15 Kenneth Williams 62 UK Actor, Writer Carry On... Up the KhyberCarry On CampingCarry On Screaming!Carry On CleoThe Thief and the CobblerCarry On DoctorCarry On AbroadCarry On at Your ConvenienceCarry On MatronCarry On BehindDon't Lose Your HeadCarry On CowboyCarry On HenryCarry On DickCarry On CruisingCarry On NurseCarry On Again DoctorCarry On Spying
21 I. A. L. Diamond 67 USA Writer, Producer, Soundtrack Some Like It HotThe ApartmentOne, Two, ThreeIrma la DouceKiss Me, StupidAvanti!Cactus FlowerThe Private Life of Sherlock HolmesThe Front PageThe Fortune CookieBuddy Buddy
28 Andrew Cruickshank 80 UK Actor, Writer El CidThe Cruel SeaMurder Most FoulRichard IIIThe Battle of the River PlateThe 39 Steps
May 3 David Garth 67 UK Actor, Writer Superman IV: The Quest for Peace
15 Andrew Duggan 64 USA Actor, Writer What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?Splendor in the GrassSeven Days in MayIt's AliveDoctor DetroitIn Like Flint
18 Anthony Forwood 72 UK Actor Captain Horatio Hornblower R.N.Knights of the Round TableThe Story of Robin Hood and His Merrie MenAppointment in LondonPermission to KillThe Gambler and the Lady
30 Ella Raines 67 USA Actress Brute ForceHail the Conquering HeroPhantom LadyTall in the SaddleThe Senator Was IndiscreetImpact
June 5 Michael Barrington 63 UK Actor The Black Panther
11 Nathan Cook 38 USA Actor National Lampoon's Vacation
16 Kim Milford 37 USA Actor, Soundtrack, Composer LaserblastCorvette SummerBloodbrothers
16 Alf Mangan  ??  ?? Actor Star Wars Episode IV: A New HopeDragonslayer
July 1 Anton Leader 74 USA Director, Producer Children of the Damned
7 Jimmy Edwards 68 UK Actor, Writer The Bed-Sitting RoomThe Plank
12 Joshua Logan 79 USA Writer, Director Mister RobertsPaint Your WagonBus StopPicnicSouth Pacific
22 Patrick Newell 56 UK Actor Young Sherlock HolmesBecketThe Canterbury TalesA Study in TerrorThe Alphabet MurdersThe Rebel
22 Larry Clemmons 81 USA Writer The Jungle Book
25 Judith Barsi 10 USA Actress The Land Before TimeJaws: The RevengeAll Dogs Go to Heaven
25 Douglas Hickox 59 UK Director, Third Assistant Director Theatre of BloodZulu DawnMurder, She SaidBranniganFiend Without a FaceSundown: The Vampire in RetreatBehemoth, the Sea MonsterThe Haunted StranglerThe Hound of the BaskervillesSitting TargetSky RidersBlackoutAppointment in London
August 1 Florence Eldridge 86 USA Actress Inherit the WindLes MisérablesThe DivorceeMary of ScotlandThirteen WomenThe Story of Temple DrakeChristopher ColumbusAn Act of Murder
5 Colin Higgins 47 USA Director, Producer, Writer Harold and Maude9 to 5Foul PlayThe Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
5 Ralph Meeker 65 USA Actor Kiss Me DeadlyThe Dirty DozenPaths of GloryAdaThe DetectiveThe Naked SpurThe St. Valentine's Day MassacreI Walk the LineThe Anderson TapesBrannigan
7 Wilfred Jackson 82 USA Animator Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
8 Alan Napier 85 USA Actor, Soundtrack Mary PoppinsMy Fair LadyThe Sword in the StoneMarnieBatmanCat PeopleJourney to the Center of the EarthThe Court Jester
8 Jo Henderson 54 USA Actress Matewan
11 Anne Ramsey 58 USA Actress The GooniesScroogedThrow Momma from the TrainAny Which Way You CanDeadly Friend
17 Mike Mahoney 70 USA Actor Rear WindowBreakfat at Tiffany'sThe Day the Earth Stood StillThe War of the WorldsThe Big Heat • 'A Place in the SunBirdman of AlcatrazTwelve O'Clock HighThe Court JesterBorn YesterdayThe Desperate HoursI Was a Male War BrideDetective Story
24 Leonard Frey 49 USA Actor Fiddler on the RoofWhere the Buffalo RoamThe Magic ChristianThe Boys in the BandUp the Academy
September 5 Gert Fröbe 75 Germany Actor GoldfingerThe Longest DayChitty Chitty Bang BangThose Magnificent Men in their Flying MachinesMr. ArkadinThe Serpent's EggIt Happened in Broad DaylightLudwigIs Paris Burning?The Thousand Eyes of Dr. Mabuse$Decision Before DawnMonte Carlo or Bust!
6 Harold Rosson 93 USA Cinematographer The Wizard of OzGone with the WindSingin' in the RainThe Asphalt JungleEl DoradoOn the TownThe Bad Seed
11 John Sylvester White 68 USA Actor The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
12 Stephen B. Grimes 61 Italy Production Designer Never Say Never AgainOut of AfricaThree Days of the CondorMurder by DeathKrullOn Golden PondThe Way We WereUrban CowboyRyan's DaughterThe Electric HorsemanThe DeadTrue Confessions
14 Louis Quinn 73 USA Actor All the President's MenOcean's 11GypsyThere's No Business Like Show BusinessRaid on EntebbeTorpedo RunAl Capone
20 Roy Kinnear 54 Spain Actor Willy Wonka & the Chocolate FactoryWatership DownHelp!The Three MusketeersThe HillThe Four MusketeersA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the ForumPiratesScroogeThe Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter BrotherHerbie Goes to Monte CarloJuggernautTaste the Blood of Dracula
21 Henry Koster 83 USA Director, Writer, Producer HarveyThe Bishop's WifeThe RobeMr. Hobbs Takes a VacationThe Inspector GeneralNo Highway in the Sky
24 Raymond A. Klune 84 USA Production Manager Gone with the WindMy Darling ClementineGentleman's AgreementLeave Her to HeavenCall Northside 777Kiss of DeathThe Snake PitNothing SacredUnfaithfully YoursThe Razor's EdgeSince You Went AwayFallen AngelThat Hamilton Woman
October ?? Cyril Conway 73 USA Actor Evil Under the SunVenomDead Man's FollyThe Wicked LadyGetting It RightThe Runaway Bus
1 Lucien Ballard 84 USA Cinematographer The Wild BunchThe KillingTrue GritThe PartyLauraThe GetawayThe Parent TrapRide the High CountryThe Sons of Katie ElderThe Ballad of Cable HogueNevada SmithJunior BonnerBreakfast PassMorocco
4 Margaret Lacey 76 UK Actress Diamonds Are ForeverThe Ruling ClassSéance on a Wet AfternoonBilly LiarFar from the Madding CrowdYanksI'm All Right JackThe Deadly AffairThere's a Girl in My SoupIsland of TerrorThe Family WayOnly Two Can PlayBlack BeautyCarlton-Browne of the F.O.Bless This HouseSky West and CrookedAn Englishman AbroadMr. Forbush and the PenguinsBrothers in LawDentist on the JobLadies Who DoSecret PlacesRotten to the CoreSuspect
10 John C. Chulay 65 USA Director, Production Manager, Second Assistant Director Blazing SaddlesKelly's HeroesAround the World in 80 DaysAttack of the Giant LeechesThe Cheap Detective
12 Ken Murray 85 USA Actor, Producer, Soundtrack The Man Who Shot Liberty ValanceSon of FlubberFollow Me, Boys!The PowerWon Ton Ton, the Dog Who Saved HollywoodRed LightBill and Coo
13 Melvin Frank 75 USA Writer, Director Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream HouseRoad to UtopiaWhite ChristmasThe Road to Hong KongKnock on WoodLi'l AbnerThe Facts of LifeBuona Sera, Mrs. Campbell
14 Mary Morris 72 Switzerland Actress The Thief of Bagdad
24 Valerie Taylor 85 UK Actress, Writer RepulsionWent the Day Well?What a Carve Up!Berkeley SquareIn the Cool of the Day
25 Eric Larson 83 USA Animator Snow White and the Seven DwarfsThe Jungle BookMary PoppinsCinderellaAlice in WonderlandOne Hundred and One DalmatiansBambiFantasiaDumboPinocchioRobin HoodLady and the TrampPeter PanThe Sword in the StoneThe AristocatsThe Great Mouse DetectiveBedknobs and BroomsticksThe Many Adventures of Winnie the PoohThe Black CauldronSong of the SouthThe Three CaballerosThe Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. ToadMickey's Christmas CarolFun and Fancy FreeMelody TimeWinnie the Pooh and the Honey TreePeter and the Wolf
25 James Engle 81 USA Assistant Director The Man with the Golden ArmPanic in Year Zero!Artists and ModelsFear Strikes Out
27 Charles Hawtrey 73 UK Actor Sabotage
31 John Houseman 86 USA Actor, Producer The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!The FogThree Days of the CondorRollerballSeven Days in MayAnother WomanMy BodyguardBright Lights, Big CityGhost StoryThe Paper Chase
November 1 George J. Folsey 90 USA Cinematographer Forbidden PlanetAdam's RibSeven Brides for Seven BrothersMeet Me in St. LouisAnimal CrackersThe Band WagonThe CocoanutsThe Great ZiegfeldThe Smiling LieutenantThe World and His WifeExecutive SuiteThe Harvey GirlsMarie Antoinette
6 John Hubbard 74 USA Actor, Dialogue Director Herbie Rides AgainPal JoeyThe Tall TDuel at DiabloThe Satan Bug
9 Billy Curtis 79 USA Stuntman, Actor The Wizard of OzPlanet of the ApesHigh Plains DrifterSaboteurLimelightThe Incredible Shrinking ManHello, Dolly!The Court JesterMeet John DoeEating RaoulFriendly Persuasion
15 Mona Washbourne 84 UK Actress, Soundtrack My Fair LadyCasino Royaleif....The CollectorO Lucky Man!Billy LiarThe Brides of DraculaThe Million Pound NoteThe Bed-Sitting RoomDunkirkDoctor in the HouseBetrayedThe Winslow BoyThe Blue BirdCast a Dark ShadowNight Must Fall
27 Angela Aames 32 USA Actress ScarfaceBachelor PartyChopping Mall
27 John Carradine 82 Italy Actor Young FrankensteinThe Grapes of WrathThe Man Who Shot Liberty ValanceThe Ten CommandmentsBride of FrankensteinEverything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask)StagecoachPeggy Sue Got MarriedThe Secret of NIMHThe Shootist
December 7 Christopher Connelly 47 USA Actor BenjiMove Over, DarlingWhat a Way to Go!1990: The Bronx WarriorsManhattan BabyDjango 2
7 Dorothy Jordan 82 USA Actress The SearchersThe Wings of EaglesMin and BillThe Cabin in the CottonThe Sun Shines BrightThe Lost SquadronThe Taming of the ShrewOne Man's Journey
10 Richard S. Castellano 55 USA Actor The GodfatherLove with the Proper StrangerLovers and Other StrangersA Fine MadnessNight of the JugglerA Lovely Way to DieThree Rooms in Manhattan
10 Dennis Arundell 90 UK Actor, Writer, Soundtrack The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp"Pimpernel" SmithContrabandThe History of Mr. PollyThe Saint Meets the TigerPenn of Pennsylvania
16 Gayle Mellott 72 USA Actress In the NavyManpower
21 Bob Steele 81 USA Actor, Writer The Big SleepRio BravoThe Longest DayHang 'Em HighMcLintock!Charley VarrickRio LoboShenandoahThe ComancherosOf Mice and MenPork Chop HillMurder, Inc
22 Tucker Smith 52 USA Actor, Soundtrack West Side StoryThe ProducersHello, Dolly!To Be or Not to BeHow to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
22 Fred Slark 66  ?? First Assistant Director, Production Manager The Ipcress FileThe Boys in Company C1984Carve Her Name with PrideThe Sound BarrierI Was Monty's DoubleThe Admirable CrichtonThe Young OnesTarzan and the Lost SafariTown on TrialOn the FiddleWonderful LifeThe House Across the LakeThe Long HaulA Story of DavidChristmas Miracle in Caufield, U.S.A.Face the MusicThe Very Edge
24 Noel Willman 70 USA Actor Doctor ZhivagoThe Man Who Knew Too MuchThe Odessa FileThe ReptileThe Kiss of the VampireCarve Her Name with PrideBeau BrummellSeven Waves AwayMalta Story
25 Alistair Fullarton 38 UK Actor, Puppeteer Labyrinth
26 Charles Smith 68 USA Actor The Shop Around the CornerYankee Doodle DandyFather of the BrideBattlegroundThe Major and the MinorSuddenlyIn the Good Old Summertime
27 Hal Ashby 59 USA Director Harold and MaudeBeing ThereThe Last DetailComing HomeShampooBound for Glory

Film debuts[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "1988 Domestic Grosses". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  2. ^ "A Cry in the Dark (1988) - Release dates". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2012-06-15.