|Directed by||Norman Taurog|
|Produced by||James H. Nicholson
Samuel Z. Arkoff
|Written by||Louis M. Heyward|
|Music by||Les Baxter|
Alta Vista Productions
|Distributed by||American International Pictures|
|Running time||90 mins|
Sergeant Deadhead is bumbling soldier who is accidentally blasted into space. When he returns home he is a national hero but has also developed a massive ego. A soldier who looks exactly like him, Sergeant Donovan, is found to take his place.
- Frankie Avalon as Sgt. O. K. Deadhead/Sergeant Donovan
- Deborah Walley as Airman Lucy Turner
- Cesar Romero as Admiral Stoneham
- Fred Clark as Gen. Rufus Fogg
- Gale Gordon as Captain Weiskopf
- Harvey Lembeck as Private McEvoy
- John Ashley as Private Filroy
- Buster Keaton as Private Blinken
- Reginald Gardiner as Lieutenant Commander Talbott
- Eve Arden as Lieutenant Kinsey
- Pat Buttram as The President
- Donna Loren as Susan
The movie was the first in a two-picture deal AIP signed with Norman Taurog in 1964.
Filming began in May 1965. Location work took place at the San Fernando Valley.
The script by Deke Heyward would not write in gags for Buster Keaton. It would simply say "Buster does a bit here" and Keaton would come up with something on his own and show it to the director.
Before the film came out, plans for a sequel were announced - Sergeant Deadhead Goes to Mars, meant to start 13 April 1966.
AIP made the film hoping that military comedies would provide them with a genre as popular as the beach party movies but it proved a commercial disappointment, Samuel Z Arkoff claiming it "bombed out". Norman Taurog's biographer claimed the film managed to recoup it's costs and make a small profit for the studio.
All the songs in the film were written by Guy Hemric and Jerry Styner:
- "Hurry Up and Wait" - sung by female cast over the opening credits
- "How Can You Tell" - sung by Deborah Walley, Donna Loren and Bobbi Shaw
- "You Should've Seen the One That Got Away" - sung by Eve Arden
- "Two Timin' Angel" - sung by Donna Loren
- "Let's Play Love" - sung by Deborah Walley and Frankie Avalon
- "Let's Play Love (Reprise)" - sung by Deborah Walley and Frankie Avalon
- "The Difference in Me Is You" - sung by Frankie Avalon
- Michael A. Hoey, Elvis' Favorite Director: The Amazing 52-Film Career of Norman Taurog, Bear Manor Media 2013
- MGM Buys Windsor Novel, Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 06 May 1965: d18.
- "AIP to Discontinue Second Features", Box Office, 5 July 1965
- Film Company Seeks a New Locale for Its Teen-Age Movies Special to The New York Times. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 06 Nov 1965: 18.
- Sergeant Deadhead at IMDB
- Sergeant Deadhead at the TCM Movie Database
- Sergeant Deadhead review at New York Times
- Soundtrack review at Beach Party movies