The Cay (film)

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The Cay
Directed by Patrick Garland
Produced by Frank O'Connor
Walter Seltzer
Russell Thacher
Written by Theodore Taylor (novel)
Russell Thacher (teleplay)
Based on The Cay
Starring James Earl Jones
Alfred Lutter
Gretchen Corbett
Music by Carl Davis
Cinematography Alric Edens
Rosalío Solano
Edited by Douglas Stewart
Distributed by Universal TV
Russell Thacher-Walter Seltzer Productions
Release date
October 21, 1974
Running time
50 minutes
Country  United States
Language English

The Cay is an American drama film based on the book titled The Cay.[1] It was released on October 21, 1974.[2]

Phillip is aboard the S.S Hato, which is torpedoed during World War Two. It soon sinks and Phillip awakens on a raft with Timothy, an older black man, and Stew Cat, a stray cat of a crew member on the S.S Hato. Phillip, who hit his head on the S.S Hato, soon becomes blind from the head injury. After days on the sea, they notice a Cay in the distance. They all survive on the island, but soon Timothy worries about Phillip if he dies. Timothy prepares him to be self reliant to fish and find food. As the novel goes on, a hurricane hits the Cay. Timothy shields Phillip from the strong winds and rain, flaying his whole body. Phillip regains consciousness and finds Timothy very weak. Timothy manages to get out his last words, "'Phill-eep... you.. all right... be true?' 'Terrible tempis.'" Phillip remains confident until a plane finds over the island, but doesn't stop for him. Phillip, who is still blind, becomes discouraged. When Phillip hears another plane, he realizes the fire is clear. He decides to put sea brush in the fire to make the smoke thicker and blacker. It becomes visible to the plane, and they call for help. A boat arrives to rescue Phillip and Stew Cat, and they get on a plane home. Phillip is reunited on the plane with his mother and father. He receives surgery on his eyes and his vision is restored. He reminisces about visiting the cay one day. Although not recognizing it by sight but by sound.


Universal TV, NBC and Russell Thacher-Walter Seltzer Productions produced and distributed this film.

The Cay was filmed on location in Belize.[3]


In the film (unlike the book), Phillip's father did not appear.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Show Category Result Recipient(s)
1975 Humanitas Prize 60 Minutes Nominated [4] Russell Thacher

See also[edit]


External links[edit]