The Taking of Flight 847: The Uli Derickson Story
|The Taking of Flight 847: The Uli Derickson Story|
Original print ad
|Written by||Norman Morrill|
|Directed by||Paul Wendkos|
|Music by||Gil Mellé|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Original language(s)||English, Arabic, German|
|Executive producer(s)||Jim Calio|
David Hume Kennerly
|Production location(s)||Stage 20, Warner Brothers Burbank Studios - 4000 Warner Boulevard, Burbank|
|Running time||100 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Columbia TriStar Television|
|Original release||May 2, 1988|
The Taking of Flight 847: The Uli Derickson Story (also marketed as The Flight for home video releases and DVD reissues) is a 1988 American made-for-television drama film based on the actual hijacking of TWA Flight 847 as seen through the eyes of Uli Derickson, the chief flight attendant. Derickson herself acted as a consultant for the film. The film was directed by Paul Wendkos.
The film showcases the first 48 hours of the hijacking, until Derickson's liberation. After the aircraft leaves Athens, Derickson is forced at gunpoint to the flight deck door by "Castro", one of the terrorists. She is able to defuse the situation by communicating with him in German and singing a folk song, convincing him to release hostages upon landing in Beirut and Algiers and pleading for the other hijacker to stop harming the passengers. Her efforts are shown to save the lives of all but one hostage, Robert Stethem, whose body was thrown on the tarmac in Beirut.
- Lindsay Wagner — Uli Derickson (Chief Flight Attendant)
- Eli Danker — "Castro" (Lead hijacker; based on Mohammed Ali Hammadi, real life hijacker of TWA 847)
- Sandy McPeak — John Testrake (Captain)
- Ray Wise — Phil Maresca (First Officer)
- Leslie Easterbrook — Audrey (Flight Attendant)
- Laurie Walters — Jane (Flight Attendant)
- Joseph Nasser — Saiid (Hijacker)
- Steven Eckholdt — Robert Stethem (U.S. Navy Diver)
In 1988, at the 40th Primetime Emmy Awards, the film received five Emmy nominations: for Outstanding Television Movie; Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special; Outstanding Makeup for a Limited Series or Movie (Non-Prosthetic); Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Limited Series or Movie; and David Yewdall for Outstanding Sound Editing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special.
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