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Escape From New York > Details

AKA: John Carpenter's Escape From New York
Year: 1981
Runtime: 99 min
Country: USA
Language: English
MPAA Rating: R

Filming Dates
August 04, 1980 - October 09, 1980

Copyright Holder
Avco-Embassy Pictures Corp. 1981

StudioCanal (Current)

By 1997, the island of Manhattan has been turned into a maximum security prison for the worst criminals in the USA. When the President's aircraft crashes on the island and he's taken hostage by the self-styled Duke of New York, the authorities send war hero turned criminal Snake Plissken in to get him out.

The world's greatest leader is a hostage in the most dangerous place on Earth. Now only the deadliest man alive can save him.
1997. New York City is now a maximum security prison. Breaking out is impossible. Breaking in is insane.
New York City has Become the Only Maximum Security Prison for the Entire Country. Once You go In, You don't Come Out... Until Today.

New York is a disease. Meet the cure.

Poster Tags
1997. New York city is now a maximum security prison. Breaking out is impossible. Breaking in is insane.

Technical Specifications
Sound Mix: Dolby Stereo
Color: Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Camera: Panavision Panaflex Gold, Panavision Super High Speed Lenses
Laboratory: Metrocolor, Culver City (CA), USA
Film Length: 2720 m
egative Format: 35 mm (Eastman 100T 5247)
Cinematographic Process: Panavision (anamorphic)
Printed Film Format: 35 mm

Business Data

Budget: $6.000.000
Opening Weekend: $4.162.000 (USA) (July 12, 1981) (579 Screens)

Australia: AUD 1.444.000
Hong Kong: HKD 1.864.842
Italy: ITL 2.825.000,000
Sweden: SEK 8.534.336
West Germany: €9.458.900

Release Dates
USA: April 01, 1981 (USA Film Festival) (Cancelled)
USA: May 22, 1981 (Test Showing) (Victoria)

May 23, 1981
USA: May 27, 1981 (
Test Showing) (Hartford)
USA: May 29, 1981
(Test Showing) (Newport)
June 24, 1981
USA: June 26, 1981 (St. Louis)

USA: July
10, 1981
Denmark: July 24, 1981
Sweden: July 27, 1981
Brazil: August 07, 1981
Netherlands: August 13, 1981
West Germany: September 03, 1981
Spain: September 15, 1981

Portugal: September 18, 1981
UK: September 24, 1981
Australia: October 08, 1981
Italy: October 15, 1981
Spain: October 26, 1981 (Madrid)
Portugal: October 30, 1981 (Porto)
Mexico: November 19, 1981
Finland: November 26, 1981
Greece: December 04, 1981
Argentina: December 17, 1981
Norway: December 26, 1981
Hong Kong: April 09, 1982
Turkey: April, 1982
Brazil: May 20, 1982
Belgium: September 22, 1983

Awards and Nominations
1982, Production Design: Joe Alves (Apex Scroll)
1982, Achievment In Sound Effects (Apex Scroll) (Fennecus Award)
1982, Achievment In Stunt Co-ordination (Fennecus Award)
1982, Best Costums: Stephen Loomis (Saturn Award) (Nominated)
1982, Best Director: John Carpenter (Saturn Award) (Nominated)
1982, Best Make-Up: Ken Chase (Saturn Award) (Nominated)
1982, Best Science Fiction Film (Saturn Award) (Nominated)

Alternate Titles
Fuga De New York/Escape De New York

Austria: Die Klapperschlange
New York 1997
Brazil: Fuga de Nova York/
Nova Iorque 1997
Бягство от Ню Йорк
Canada (French Title): New York 1997
Croatia: Bijeg Iz New Yorka
Czech Republic: Útek z New Yorku
Flugtaktion New York/Flugten fra New York
Finland: Pako New Yorkista
France: New York 1997
Germany: Die Klapperschlange
Απόδραση από τη Νέα Υόρκη
Hungary: Menekülés New Yorkból
Ha-Briha M'New-York (Hebrew Title)
Italy: 1997: Fuga da New York
ニューヨーク 1997
뉴욕에서 탈출

Lithuania: Pabegimas iš Niujorko
Macedonia: Бегство од Њујорк
Escape mill New York
Escape de Nueva York
Norway: Flukten fra New York
Poland: Ucieczka z Nowego Jorku
Portugal: Nova York 1997
Evadare din New York
Побег из Нью - Йорка

Bekstvo iz Njujorka

Útek z
New Yorku
Pobeg iz New York

Spain: 1997: Rescate en Nueva York
Sweden: Flykten från New York
Turkey: New York'tan Kaçis
Втеча з Нью-Йорка
Venezuela: Escape de Nueva York
Thoát khỏi New York
Yugoslavia: New York 1997

Factual errors: The most common rifle used by the United States Police Foirce is the M-16 with the front handgrips removed. Apart from making firing very uncomfortable, the hands of the shooters would be in direct contact with the barrel, which becomes very hot.

Factual error: While briefing Bob Hauk about "David 14," Rehme says the jet is "Seven miles out and closing." Even at a leisurely 300mph (the cruising speed of the Convair 580 aircraft the Air Force One model was based on), the plane would have reached them in under a minute and a half. Yet they have plenty of time to get to the control center and ID the aircraft before it even crosses the river.

Factual error: When Air Force One is heading towards New York City (but before it is identified as the President's plane), it is described as a "small jet". Besides the real-world fact that Air Force One is and always has been a large passenger airplane, the footage of the plane makes it clear it is a larger aircraft than described. It would have been more accurate to describe it as a "commuter" or "passenger" aircraft even before they found out it was Air Force One.

Continuity: The Air Force One plane exterior was shown to be Sud Aviation SE210 Caravelle. However the interior was actually a Boeing 747.

Incorrectly regarded as goof: The American flag on the right-hand side of Air Force One's tail is not reversed. In reality it would have the stars in the upper right to represent a real flag moving forward. However, the flag could have been changed in the alternate history within the movie.

Incorrectly regarded as goof: The President is clearly British. In order to qualify for US presidency you must be a natural-born US citizen and have lived in the US for 14 years, but he could have been born in the US and grown up in the UK, moving back as an adult, or even born abroad to US parents.

Continuity: When the United States Police Force initially go into New York immediately after Air Force One crashes, helicopter three is shown landing, and a large chunk of the sticky back black plastic used to create its USPF livery is peeling off and missing from the tail section, revealing the green US Army livery underneath. (The UH1 Huey used in this scene was on loan from the Missouri National Guard.) When it takes off again a few moments later, the tail is back to perfect black.

Factual error: Actor Lee Van Cleef (Bob Hauk) mispronounces Black Flight (the Special Forces unit Snake served in) to Black Lights during his first meeting with Snake. Black Flight is clearly in the script.

Continuity: Plissken's time limit was stated as 22 hours, but his countdown timer started at 22:59:57, or 23 hours.

Factual error: Plissken carries an Ingram Mac-10 machine pistol with a rifle-type scope fitted on it. This is useless, since this weapon is very inaccurate. Also, the distance to the eyepiece is too large to be useful in any way.

Factual error: Gliders without engine tend to descend constantly most of the time. The glider after being released flies all the way to one of the streets of Manhattan and very close to the ground. Afterwards it starts ascending and there's no way it could have reached the top of the World Trade Center without stalling from there.

Factual Error: When Plissken lands on top of the World Trade Center tower, his altimeter indicates less than 200. The tower was over 1300 feet.

Continuity: Air Force One is shown in flight as an aircraft with engines mounted at the back either side of the tail. The wreckage on the ground and the computer image on the United States Police Force computer as it crashes are of a 737 type aircraft with the engines mounted on the wings.

Continuity: The interiors shots of the plane before the crash are from a wide-body airliner. However, the wrecked fuselage seen on the ground is not a wide-body.

Continuity: When Plissken first receives a signal on the President's life signs transponder, he radios Bob Hauk then checks his countdown timer. The timer reads 18:50:18 (and counts down to :14 seconds). As the scene is fading (at the :14 sec. mark), the timer changes to 17:50:14.

Revealing mistake: Walls in the Chock full o' Nuts building are clearly made of styrofoam.

Revealing mistake: During the sequence where Plissken is being chased by the Crazies (and is about to shoot an oval pattern in a wall so he can break through), his eye patch shifts enough to reveal a perfectly good eye.

Continuity: When Cabbie takes Plissken to see Brain, Maggie answers the door. She goes inside first. Plissken follows her and Cabbie goes in last, shutting the door behind him. But now in the indoor shot, Cabbie and Plissken are in front and Maggie is way behind them.

Revealing mistake: When Plissken gets into the Ford LTD after knocking out the driver, you can see the bars in the windows jiggle revealing them to be rubber. This is especially noticeable in the shot from the front of the car.

Continuity: When Plissken get into a car to steal it to take himself, Brain and Maggie to The Duke's place the headlights are on. However when he starts to drive the car away the lights are off. The next shot shows the car font the front with the lights on. After crashing the car through the barrier after the run down Broadway the lights are off again but when the car stops the lights are on again.

Continuity: When Plissken drives the station wagon through the gauntlet of convicts on Broadway, they pelt the car thoroughly with broken bricks. Immediately afterwards we see the vehicle from several angles, filthy but not actually dented.

Error in geography: The scene at the train station is clearly not in New York. The city's two rail stations, Pennsylvania Station and Grand Central Terminal both have their tracks located below ground level.

Audio/visual unsynchronized: When The Duke is shooting at the handcuffed President, we hear the sound of very loud, echoing gunfire even though he is conspicuously using Plissken's submachine gun equipped with a rather large silencer.

Crew or equipment visible: You can see a crew member giving Isaac Hayes (The Duke) a "stand-up" cue quite visibly in the left side of the screen when The Duke is quieting the Grand Central Station crowd.

Continuity: After the baseball bat gets imbedded into Slag's head, it disappears and reappears in subsequent shots.

Continuity: When Plissken triggers the tracer after the fight in Grand Central Station, Bob Hauk follows the signal to the World Trade Center. But Snake did not take the tracer bracelet with him, he left it on the man at Grand Central Station. It is not on his wrist for the rest of the film.

Crew or equipment visible: Crew fingers visible closing elevator door after failed escape run to glider.

Factual error: As The Duke drives his car toward Maggie on the bridge, she fires her six shot revolver seven times at the car.

Continuity: Immediately before Plissken goes into the city, Bob Hauk gives him the countdown timer that gives Plissken just under 23 hours to get The President and get out. After Plissken is injected with the microcapsules, Hauk tells him them will be fully dissolved in 22 hours. At the end, when the doctor neutralizes the microcapsules, we watch the timer on Plissken's wrist countdown to zero. That means he should have been dead less than one hour ago.

Continuity: When the bombs in Plissken's arteries are deactivated, he raises his right hand to his left wrist to display the time on his countdown timer. When we see a close-up of the timer as time runs out, Plissken's right hand is not there. But when we switch back to the previous view, his right hand is still pressed against the clock.

Saturday Night Live: Bernadette Peters/Billy Joel/The Go-Go's (1981) (TV Episode)
A trailer parody comprised entirely of movie stills and stock footage for a movie where an audience attempt to flee a Maximum Security Prison Cinema where they are forced to see Escape From New York only to be trapped in another cinema showing a nine hour long version of the movie New York, New York instead is featured in this episode.

New York Ripper (1982)
Title shown on theater marquee.

Take One: Fear on Film (1982) (TV Movie)

The Last Horror Film (1982)
Title shown on Starburst magazine.

2019: After the Fall of New York (1983)
Similar plot and themes./It was marketed as 2099: Escape De Nueva York 2 in Mexico.

Daicon IV Opening Animation (1983) (Short)
Snake Plissken appears.

Neuromancer (1984) (Book)
Armitage who also forces the protagonist to cooperate is inspired by Bob Hauk played by Lee Van Cleef.

Night of the Comet (1984)
Poster shown in cinema.

Jail Break (Manhattan 24 Bunsho: New York City 151 Nishi Dai 100 Street) (1986) (Video Game)
Similar plot and themes.

Kiraathakudu (1986)
Second half is basically a remake.

Making of They Live (Video) (1988)
Producer/First Assistant Director Larry J. Franco is seen wearing an Escape From New York
crew t-shirt.

Class of 1999 (1990)
Similar plot and themes as well as graphics.

Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake (1990) (Video Game)
Similar plot and themes.

Saibâ shiti Oedo 808 (1990) (TV Mini-Series)
Similar plot and themes.

Captain Ron (1992)
Captain Ron wears an eye patch which was Kurt Russell's idea and he joked about Ron being a brother to Snake.

Married with Children: The Goodbye Girl (1992) (TV Episode)
Al Bundy watches this movie.

Nemesis (1992)
Similar plot and themes.

The Kids in the Hall: Episode #3.13 (1992) (TV Episode)
Poster shown on wall.

Mad About You: Escape From New York (1994) (TV Episode)
Title reference.

New Crime City (1994)
Similar plot and themes./Stacy Keach who played Malloy in Escape From L.A. has a similar role.

No Escape (1994)
Similar plot and themes.

ReBoot (1994-2002) (TV Series)
Enzo Matrix was very likely inspired by Snake Plissken and also says: "Call me Matrix!".

The Critic: The Pilot (1994) (TV Episode)
Jay Sherman and his son Marty play a videogame called Escape from the Big Apple.

Hunter Hunted (1996) (Video Game)
Graffiti on the wall that reads: "Snake P. was here." and "Snake. I thought you were dead." can be seen in the intro and throughout the game.

Wings: Escape From New York (1997) (TV Episode)
Title reference.

Reboot (1998) (Video Game)
Matrix was very likely inspired by Snake Plissken and also says: "Call me Matrix!".

Soldier (1998)
Todd 3465's service awards
on a statistic screen are called: Cash Medal of Bravery, Plissken Patch, O'Neil Ring Award and MacReady Cross.

Premutos: Lord of the Living Dead
German poster shown on wall.

Schizophreniac: The Whore Mangler (1999) (Video)
Poster shown on wall.

Super Hero Operations (1999) (Video Game)
Ingram Prisken's name may be inspired by Snake Plissken.

Sex and the City: Escape From New York (2000) (TV Episode)
Title reference.

Grand Theft Auto III (2001) (Video Game)
The Borgnine Taxi Company and the cabs The Borgnine Taxi and Cabbie is a reference to Ernest Borgnine who played Cabbie.

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (2001) (Video Game)
Solid Snake goes by the alias of Iroquois Pliskin.

Abenobashi mahô shôtengai: Huge Reversal?! Abenobashi Hollywood Shopping Arcade (2002) (TV Episode)
Arumi Asahina's grandfather Masayuki is dressed as Snake Plissken and says: "Friends call me Snake".

Assembling the League (2003) (Video)
Director Stephen Norrington is seen wearing a Snake Plissken t-shirt on the set of
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

Aqua Teen Hunger Force: Kidney Car (2003) (TV Episode)
Boxy Brown makes Meatwad call him: "Duke of New York,

Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over (2003)
Juni Cortez wears a similar countdown watch as Snake Plissken.

The Ghouls (2003)
Poster shown.

B13 - 13th District (2004)
Similar plot and themes.

Christine: Fast and Furious (Video) (2004)
Co-Producer/First Assistant Director Larry J. Franco is seen wearing an Escape From New York crew t-shirt.

Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (2004) (Video Game)
Naked Snake AKA Big Boss gets an arrow in his leg while fighting The Fear just like Snake Plissken.

The Last Shot (2004)
Poster shown on wall.

Tango and Thrash (2004) (EP)
Snake Plissken on cover.

American Dad!: Con Heir (2005) (TV Episode)
Roger the Alien says: "Yeah, can someone tell Snake Plissken here to back off." when Stan Smith's father Jack jumps on him wearing an eye patch.

Film Geek (2005)
Title shown on screen.

Horror Business (2005) (Video)
Mentioned in a magazine.

Jeopardy!: Episode #22.187 (2006) (TV Episode)
Referenced in "Memorable Roles" category.

L'ispettore Coliandro: In trappola (2006) (TV Episode)
Ispettore Trombetti watches this movie.

Metal Gear Solid 4: Portable Ops (2006) (Video Game)
Solid Snake sits down in a chair in a similar way Snake Plissken does in trailer./Naked Snake AKA Big Boss and Solidus Snake wears an eye patch./Lee Van Cleef who played Bob Hauk is an inspiration for the villain Revolver Ocelot./
Solid Snake says: "Call me Snake".

Super Robot Wars Original Generation: Divine Wars (2006-2007) (TV Series)
Ingram Prisken's name may be inspired by Snake Plissken.

Die Hard with a Sponsor (2007) (Short)
One of the characters is a spoof of Snake Plissken.

Planet Terror (Grindhouse) (2007)
"Black Flight" is featured on the back of a humvee'. It is the name of the Special Forces unit Snake Plissken served in./
Back To The Pod/The Crazies Come Out (The Crazies Come Out) from the soundtrack is heard.

Anatomy of Catastrophe: The Making of Doomsday (2008) (Video)
Writer/Director Neil Marshall mentions it as an influence.

Cloverfield (2008)
Statue of Liberty's decapitated head was inspired by the poster.

Doomsday (2008)
Similar graphics and the way weapons and mission are presented to Eden Sinclair.

Face Eater (2008)
Romero wears an eye patch and Harold Hellman is a reference to Brain played by Harry Dean Stanton.

Jellyscream! (2008)

Kevin Smith: Sold Out - A Threevening with Kevin Smith (2008) (Video)

The Middleman: The Palindrome Reversal Palindrome (2008) (TV Episode)
The Mirror Middleman looks and talks like Snake Plissken./The Middleman's and Wendy Watson's aliases are Russell and Van Cleef/1997 Plissken Circle is a reference to Snake Plissken and the year the movie takes place./Villain's house address is 199 Plissken Ave. is a reference to Snake Plissken./The Duke of New York Toy Factory is a reference to The Duke played by Isaac Hayes/Carpenter Rd. is a reference to John Carpenter.

Contra Re-Birth (2009) (Video Game)
Plissken is inspired by Snake Plissken and also says: "Too tired." at the end refraining to kill his employer.

Jeopardy!: Episode #26.77 (2009) (TV Episode)
Reference in the category "Actors & Their Roles".

Micmacs (2009)
DVD shown in video store.

The Angry Video Game Nerd: Metal Gear (2009) (TV Episode)
Snake Plissken is mentioned.

Casino Jack (2010)
Jack Abramoff has the title written on a blackboard when he is teaching a screenwriting class in prison.

Deadpool: Merc with a Mouth (2010) (Comic Book)
Snake Plissken is mentioned and the story takes place in a destroyed New York. 

Dragonetti the Ruthless Contract Killer (2010)
DVD shown in store.

IMDb's 20th Anniversary Star of the Day: Robert Rodriguez (2010) (TV Episode)
Robert Rodriguez mentions this movie.

Machete (2010)
Similar graphics and the way weapons and mission are presented to Machete.

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (2010) (Video Game)
Solid Snake says: "Call me Snake"

Sam & Max: The Devil's Playhouse (2010) (Video Game)
Sam says they can not escape bloodthirsty CHUDs unless they can... Escape from New York.

Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship & Videotape (2010) (Video)
VHS shown.

Duke Nukem Forever (2011) (Video Game)
Duke Nukem frequently says: "I am the Duke. I'm A-Number-One." which is similar to what The Duke forces The President to say.

Certified (2012) (Short)
Similar graphics.

Dead Shadows (2012)
Poster shown.

Lockout (2012)
Similar plot and themes.

New Lands (2012) (Music Video)
Snake Plissken appears in a futuristic sport.

Noel Fielding's Luxury Comedy: Tiger with Chlamidya (2012) (TV Episode)
Snake Plissken appears as one of the people getting chlamidya.

Twisted Metal (2012) (Video Game)
Statue of Liberty's decapitated head can be seen in the Metro Square level.

Drew: The Man Behind the Poster (2013)
Snake Plissken artwork shown.

Apocalypse Marathon (2013) (Short)
Similar graphics.

Rewind This! (2013)
VHS shown.

La gente es imbécil (2013) (TV Series)

Archer: Archer Vice: Palace Intrigue - Part I (2014) (TV Episode)

Broforce (2014) (Video Game)
Snake Brosken is a parody of Snake Plissken.

Carl's Stone Cold Lock of the Century of the Week: Saints Vs. Browns 2014 (2014) (TV Episode)
Carl Brutananadilewski compared LeBron James coming back to Cleveland to Snake Plissken returning from New York right after he escaped New York.

Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff (2014) (Video Game)
Snake Plissken is an unlockable character.

The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson: Kurt Russell/Aimee Garcia (2014) (TV Episode)
Snake Plissken is mentioned.

Pretty Little Liars: EscApe From New York (2014) (TV Episode)
Title reference.

Top 40 Ultimate Action Movies (2014) (TV Movie)
Number 20.

Bob's Burgers: Adventures in Chinchilla-sitting (2015) (TV Episode)
Trivia answer.

Fallout 4 (2015) (Video Game)
Codsworth can say: "Snake" and "Plissken".

Gunship: Tech Noir (2015) (Video)
VHS shown and cassette is swapped with The Care Bears (1985).

Hell House LLC (2015)

Lead Me Astray (2015)
Alexis Willard mentions watching this movie.

Regular Show: Terror Tales of the Park V (2015) (TV Episode)
Muscle Man is dressed up as Snake Plissken.

Night City (2015)
Nick the Pimp says: "Now, who am I?" to Angel in a similar way to what The Duke forces The President
to say.

The Graham Norton Show: Kurt Russell/Tina Fey/Josh Widdicombe/Sia (2015) (TV Episode)

24x36: A Movie About Movie Posters (2016)
Poster shown.

Camp Camp: Scout's Dishonor (2016)
Billy Nikssilp is a parody of Snake Plissken.

Suicide Squad (2016)

Similar plot and themes.

Vice Guide to Film: John Carpenter (2016) (TV Episode)

The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Kate Hudson/David Oyelowo/De La Soul feat. Estelle (2016) (TV Episode)

Alex Meyers: Riverdale is a mess... (2017) (TV Episode)

Homeland: Casus Belli (2017) (TV Episode)

The Goldbergs: A Night to Remember (2017) (TV Episode)
Photo of Adam Goldberg as Snake Plissken.

Talking Dead: The First Day of the Rest of Your Lives (2017) (TV Episode)

Riverdale: Chapter Fourteen: A Kiss Before Dying (2017) (TV Episode)
Alice Cooper asks if it is Snake Plissken calling.

24 Hours to Live (2017)
Similar plot and themes.

Rina Ellis Saves the World: A XXX 90's Parody (2017) (Video)
Snake Plissken appears.

Stranger Things: Chapter Seven: The Lost Sister (2017) (TV Episode)
Bank Robbery from the expanded soundtrack is heard.

Pray for Death: A John Carpenter Tribute at the Leona Gallery (2017)

9-1-1: Haunted (2018) (TV Episode)
Eddie Diaz is dressed as Snake Plissken.

Death Race: Beyond Anarchy (2018) (Video)
Similar plot and themes.

Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Return: Atlantic Rim (2018) (TV Episode)
Crow T. Robot says: "Call me Snake." when a man with an eye patch is shown.

Ready Player One (2018)
The Map of Manhattan can be seen in the background at the IOI's headquarters.

Titans: Jason Todd (2018) (TV Episode)
Jason Todd's fake ID says: "Robert Plissken".

The Graham Norton Show: Kurt Russell/Claire Foy/David Walliams/Lee Evans/Mumford and Sons (2018) (TV Episode)

The Goldbergs: I Coulda Been a Lawyer (2019) (TV Episode)
Adam Goldberg's vídeo is a parody of the movie.