Deadman's Curve

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Deadman's Curve
Genre Biography
Written by Paul Morantz
Dalene Young
Directed by Richard Compton
Starring Richard Hatch
Bruce Davison
Wolfman Jack
Susan Sullivan
Dick Clark
Jan Berry
Theme music composer Fred Karlin
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
Executive producer(s) Roger Gimbel
Tony Converse
Producer(s) Pat Rooney
Jacob Zilberg (associate producer)
Cinematography William Cronjager
Editor(s) Aaron Stell
Running time 100 min
Production company(s) Roger Gimbel Productions
EMI Television
Distributor CBS Television Distribution
Original network CBS
Original release February 3, 1978

Deadman's Curve is a 1978 American made-for-television biographical film based on the musical careers of Jan Berry and Dean Torrence. The film was developed from a 1974 article published in Rolling Stone by Paul Morantz, who also helped write the screenplay.[1]


As Jan and Dean rise to the top of the music industry, a horrible car accident leaves Jan incapacitated and their dreams shattered. With the help of Dean and others, Jan slowly recovers, learning again to walk and talk. A comeback to the music industry is seen as a slim chance, but with Jan willing to try, and with Dean right by his side, the duo aim for another shot.


Also features cameo appearances by Dick Clark and Beach Boys Mike Love and Bruce Johnston. Also, Jan Berry himself and his parents appear in the audience at the end of the movie.

Featured Songs[edit]

All songs featured are the original recordings, except where indicated

Jan and Dean's latter-day back-up band, Papa Doo Run Run (featuring Dean Torrence), went into the studio to record some additional songs for the soundtrack. Songs included "Pipeline," "Wipe Out," "I Only Have Eyes for You," "Get a Job", "A Teenager in Love," and "One Summer Night", all of which can be heard playing in the background as incidental music.


Paul Mavis, of Drunk TV, reviewing Deadman's Curve after the death of Richard Hatch, wrote that although the made-for-TV movie skipped quite a few facts, and did little with Dean Torrence's character, the Jan & Dean music was still there, along with Richard Hatch's fine performance: "Cocky and exuberant at first, and then cold, sneering and manipulative as a domineering rock star, Hatch surprised me with the nasty edge he summoned up.... It’s a beautiful turn by Hatch in the classic biopic form: confidence, talent, and drive lead to success, but the ego needed to climb to the top proves to be an Achilles heel, leading to abuse of friends, loved ones, and self, and then to the inexorable downfall, before a painful but enlightening personal redemption."[2]


External links[edit]