Stewart Raffill

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Stewart Raffill
Stewart Raffill (2).png
Raffill in 2014.
Born (1942-01-27) January 27, 1942 (age 77)
United Kingdom
ResidenceCalifornia
OccupationWriter, director
Notable work
Spouse(s)Producer Diane Kirman (1993)
ChildrenMaria Walker (1978)
Relatives
  • Paul Walker V (1994) (grandchild)
  • Angela Walker (2008) (grandchild)

Stewart Raffill (born 27 January 1942)[citation needed] is a British screenwriter and film director.[1] He is best known for directing the cult classic Mac and Me.

Biography[edit]

Stewart Raffill and Raj.

Raffill was born in England. He grew up in the Midlands near Coventry, and spent a lot of time on his uncle's farm. He worked with horses and wanted to be a jockey but was too tall. When he was 18 years old, he moved to the United States.[2]

Animal supervisor[edit]

Raffill broke into the film industry as an animal supervisor, eventually owning his own company which would rent out animals to film and TV show. He did this on such films as The Lion (1962), Lt. Robin Crusoe, U.S.N. (1966) for Disney, Tarzan and the Valley of Gold (1966), and Monkeys, Go Home! (1967), again for Disney, as well as the TV series Tarzan (1966-68).[3]

Raffill was sued by Mike Henry, who portrayed Tarzan in Tarzan and the Valley of Gold, because a chimpanzee attacked the actor.[4]

Director[edit]

Raffill made his feature debut as director with The Tender Warrior (1971), starring Dan Haggerty. Raffill also helped write and produce, and handle animals. It was shot at the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia. Raffill sold it to Warner Bros, was unhappy with what they did with it, bought it back, and re-distributed it.[5]

His second script was Napoleon and Samantha (1972), which he sold to Disney. Raffill also worked on the film, which starred Jodie Foster and Michael Douglas, as a producer and animal supervisor.[6]

He wrote and directed When the North Wind Blows (1974). He shot animal footage for the documentary Wonder of It All (1974).

The Adventures of the Wilderness Family[edit]

Raffill wrote and directed The Adventures of the Wilderness Family (1975) with Robert Logan which was a popular success, leading to two sequels, and established Raffill as a maker of family adventure films with animals.[7]

He followed it with two films with Logan, Across the Great Divide (1976) and The Sea Gypsies (1978).

Raffill wrote and directed High Risk (1981), shot in Mexico, which he later described as a personal favorite.[5] The film was not widely distributed but it got him the job of writing and directing The Ice Pirates (1984), made for John Forman and David Begelman at MGM on a budget of $8 million.[3]

Raffill directed and did uncredited writing on The Philadelphia Experiment (1984). Raffill later said this was the film which he thought best represented his artistic tendencies.[8]

Raffill directed and wrote Mac and Me (1989), made to provide royalties to the McDonald's Foundation and to have a lead with spina bifida, which became a cult favorite and won Raffill a Golden Razzie for Worst Director.[2] [9]

Begelmen hired Raffill as a director only on Mannequin: On the Move (1991). Raffill wrote the original drafts for what became Passenger 57 (1992).[10]

Raffill wrote and directed Lost in Africa (1994) and Tammy and the T-Rex (1994).

Television[edit]

He moved into directing for TV with The New Adventures of Robin Hood and did the TV movie The New Swiss Family Robinson (1998) with Jane Seymour and David Carradine, which he also wrote. He directed Grizzly Falls (1999) with Bryan Brown.

Raffill directed episodes of Pensacola: Wings of Gold and 18 Wheels of Justice, and the movies A Month of Sundays (2001), Survival Island (2005), Croc (2007), Bad Girl Island (2010) and Standing Ovation (2010).

Novels[edit]

In 2018, Raffill's debut novel, Rage, was published.

Filmography[edit]

Year Film Director Screenwriter Notes
1971 The Tender Warrior
NoN
NoN
Starring Dan Haggerty.[11]
1972 Napoleon and Samantha
NoN
Starring Michael Douglas and Jodie Foster. Produced by Disney Studios.
National Association of Theater Owners Movie of the Month
1974 Snow Tigers (aka When the North Wind Blows)
NoN
NoN
Distributed by NBC
1975 The Adventures of the Wilderness Family
NoN
NoN
1976 Across the Great Divide
NoN
NoN
Winner - Outstanding Merit Award - So. California Motion Picture Council
1978 The Sea Gypsies
NoN
NoN
Winner - Film Advisory Board Award of Excellence
1981 High Risk
NoN
1984 The Philadelphia Experiment
NoN
Winner - Best Science Fiction Rome International Film Festival
Fantafestival Award for Best Film
The Ice Pirates
NoN
NoN
1988 Mac and Me
NoN
NoN
Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director (Tied with Blake Edwards of Sunset)
Nominated—Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screenplay (with Steve Feke)
1991 Mannequin Two: On the Move
NoN
1992 Passenger 57
NoN
#1 at the box office on opening weekend (boxofficemojo.com)
1994 Tammy and the T-Rex
NoN
NoN
Lost in Africa
NoN
NoN
1998 The New Swiss Family Robinson
NoN
NoN
Premiered on ABC's The Wonderful World of Disney
1999 Grizzly Falls
NoN
Award of Excellence Winner - Heartland Film Festival
Marco Island Film Festival - Audience Winner [12]
Golden Reel Award Nominee[13]
2001 Adjustments
NoN
NoN
Dramatic Short Film
A Month of Sundays
NoN
Winner - Feature Film Award for Best Actor - Rod Steiger - 2001 New York International Independent Film and Video Festival
Winner - Best of the Festival - Feature Film - Stewart Raffil - 2002 Atlantic City Film Festival
2002 While You Were Waiting
NoN
Winner - Silver Award for Dramatic Short Atlantic City Film Festival
2006 Survival Island
NoN
NoN
2007 Croc
NoN
Telemovie - Aired on Sci Fi Channel
Sirens of the Caribbean
NoN
NoN
Shot on location in the Bahamas
2010 Standing Ovation
NoN
NoN
Official Selection - Cape May Film Festival 2011
2014 New York City Cowboys
NoN
NoN
Currently in development.
2015 Through Maria's Eyes
NoN
NoN
Currently in development.

TV credits[edit]

Year Show Episode
1999–2000 Pensacola: Wings of Gold Episodes: True Stories, A Wing and a Prayer, Cuba Libre, Busted
2000–2001 18 Wheels of Justice Episodes: Two Eyes for an Eye, Through a Glass, Darkly, A Place Called Defiance, Hot Cars, Fast Women, Dance with the Devil

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Stewart Raffill". The New York Times.
  2. ^ a b "EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Stewart Raffill, director of TAMMY AND THE T-REX, MAC & ME and THE ICE PIRATES". Bristol Bad Film Club. 12 May 2018.
  3. ^ a b Taylor, Tadhg (2015). Masters of the Shoot-’Em-Up: Conversations with Directors, Actors and Writers of Vintage Action Movies and Television Shows. McFarland. p. 38-43.
  4. ^ CHIMPANZEE BITES HENRY, GETS SUED Los Angeles Times 22 July 1966: b5.
  5. ^ a b "Interview with Stewart Raffill Part 2". Slashfilm. 15 July 2016.
  6. ^ Filming Set in Oregon on Disney Movie Los Angeles Times 4 June 1971: f10.
  7. ^ Roughing It for Togetherness Gross, Linda. Los Angeles Times 23 Dec 1976: f10.
  8. ^ "Interview with Stewart Raffill Part 3". Slashfilm. 15 July 2016.
  9. ^ Patches, Matt (3 April 2017). "How the Hell McDonald's Bizarre 'E.T.' Knockoff Got Made". Thrillist.
  10. ^ DRESSED FOR SUCCESS: AMONG THE ESPRESSO MAKERS AND PATIO FURNITURE OF WANAMAKERS IN CENTER CITY, A MANNEQUIN HAS COME TO LIFE AGAIN. WHAT'S SHE DOING? WHY, MAKING A MOVIE, OF COURSE. Rea, Steven. Philadelphia Inquirer16 June 1990: D.1.
  11. ^ http://allmovie.com/work/the-tender-warrior-49049
  12. ^ http://www.dove.org/the-story-of-the-dove-foundation/a-list-of-the-officers-advisors-and-friends-of-the-dove-foundation/cindy-bond/
  13. ^ https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0303606/combined

External links[edit]