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Toonhound presents...






British Movie Toons

Thunderbirds Are Go

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   Are Go
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     producers: UA / Associated Pictures
                       Century 21
supermarionation - string and
                       radio controlled puppets
        run time:
93 mins


"Their first big screen adventure in colour!"

    Zero-X, the first manned space exploration craft to Mars gets into difficulties
    when its landing gear gets jammed during take off. A committee of investigators
    call in International Rescue to supervise the second launch. This time Zero-X
    succeeds and progresses successfully to Mars. But things go wrong again
    during final re-entry, and the call goes out for help from International Rescue
    so that, once more, Thunderbirds are go!

    Filmed in Supermarionation, Gerry and Sylvia Anderson's hugely successful
    action tv series is translated into a big screen feature with all the puppets,
    gadgets and machines intact. Unfortunately, the film's release didn't prove quite
    as popular as the studio executives had hoped. This was principally down to
    the timing. The tough stance adopted when selling the TV series in America
    had dissuaded a purchase from the three big-hitting TV channels. "Thunderbirds"
    was playing very well on PBS, but its audience share was limited and that
    meant awareness and desire for this first theatrical feature was low across
    the pond. Still, the film's under-achievement didn't dissuade United Artists from
    greenlighting a 1968 sequel, Thunderbird 6...
» Trivia Hounds will recall the film's "groovy" dream sequence, in which we find
        Lady Penelope tapping her toes whilst puppet versions of Cliff Richard and
        the Shadows play for her!

» Listen out for that salubrious entertainer Bob Monkhouse, who provides
        the voice of Brad Newman.

» And talking of voices, the film voice of Virgil Tracy was here supplied by
       Jeremy Wilkin. That's because regular voice artiste David Holliday had
       returned to America, and wasn't available for the film...


     See also

Thunderbirds (series)
     Thunderbird 6


     Thunderbirds Are Go on DVD

     UK DVD Thunderbirds movie double-disc set

                Both movies in one box set / R2 / Carlton / July 2004

     USA DVD
Thunderbirds Are Go (International Rescue edition)
                Region 1 / MGM / July 2004


     director:          David Lane
     producers:     Sylvia Anderson, John Read
     writers:         Gerry Anderson, Sylvia Anderson
     vis fx dir:       Derek Meddings
     vis fx ast:      Richard Conway
     charac. ops:  Christine Glanville, Mary Turner
     voices:          Sylvia Anderson (Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward)
                         Ray Barrett (John Tracy)
                         Shane Rimmer (Scott Tracy)
                         Jeremy Wilkin (Virgil Tracy)
                         Matt Zimmerman (Alan Tracy)
                         David Graham (Gordon Tracy / Brains / Parker)
                         Peter Dyneley (Jeff Tracy)
                         Christine Finn (Tin-Tin)
                         Alexander Davion (Dr Ray Pierce)
                         Paul Maxwell (Paul Travers)
                         Neil McCallum (Space Pilot Greg Martin)
                         Bob Monkhouse (Brad Newman)
                         Charles 'Bud' Tingwell (Dr Tony Gray)


      On the web

       Anthony Clark
       Anthony's Thunderbirds fan-site is the best online. This link takes you
       to his concise, informative page on the two tie-in films, with some more
       handy points for Trivia Hounds...

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© Carlton International/ MGM UA / F2007