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Cat's Eye

Theatrical poster
Directed by Lewis Teague
Produced by Dino De Laurentiis
Martha Schumacher
Written by Stephen King
Starring Drew Barrymore
James Woods
Alan King
Robert Hays
Kenneth McMillan
Candy Clark
James Naughton
James Rebhorn
Charles S. Dutton
Mike Starr
Music by Alan Silvestri
Cinematography Jack Cardiff
Editing by Scott Conrad
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer US
De Laurentiis Entertainment Group world wide
Release date(s) April 12, 1985
Running time 94 min.
Country United States
Language English
Budget $7,000,000

Cat's Eye (also known as Stephen King's Cat's Eye) is a 1985 horror film directed by Lewis Teague and written by Stephen King. It is based on three of King's short stories, "The Ledge", "Quitters, Inc.", and "The General" (the first two appeared in his Night Shift story collection).


Plot introduction

The film consists of three stories linked together by a cat as he wanders the city, seeking out a little girl (Drew Barrymore) in order to save her from a supernatural danger. As he searches, the cat plays minor roles in the first two stories, witnessing some bizarre events: smoker Dick Morrison (James Woods) who is cured of his nicotine addiction by a Mafia-style organization that guarantees a patient will stop smoking by any means necessary; and gambler Johnny Norris (Robert Hays) forced by his lover's jealous husband to play a deadly game on the ledge of a tall building. (The segments are based on Quitters, Inc. and The Ledge respectively, short stories found in King's collection Night Shift). Drew Barrymore also plays a small part in the first story.

In the final story, Barrymore and the cat are the lead characters. The cat finally finds the girl, who welcomes him and names him 'General'. Unfortunately, General soon runs afoul of her cat-hating mother, who treacherously sends him to the local animal shelter to be put to sleep. Undaunted, the cat escapes and returns to the girl, where he confronts a miniature troll who wishes to steal her breath. After a mighty struggle, General saves the girl's life by toppling the troll into a large fan. After the father finds irrefutable evidence of the troll's existence (its dismembered arm and the gore covered fan), the girl's mother finally accepts the cat, and all seems to end well.

As an epilogue, the cat enters the girl's room while everyone is asleep. Like the troll, General climbs onto the bed and approaches her face and looks at her in the same manner. He then settles on the girl's chest and licks her face to wake her up. Seeing him, she smiles happily.

Movie notes

  • This was Barrymore's second film based on King's writing; she had previously appeared in Firestarter in 1984: both De Laurentiis productions, filmed in Wilmington NC.
  • The film contains some references to other Stephen King works, namely The Dead Zone, Cujo, Christine, and Pet Sematary (at the start, Cujo, the dog from the film of the same name, chases the cat and, during the chase, is almost run over by Christine, the car from the movie of the same name).
  • The film is darkly comical in tone, with little gore or profanity.
  • The film makes extensive use of a Police song "Every Breath You Take." Since the original version was too expensive for this low-budget production, a cover was used instead.
  • Frank Welker played both the voices of General the Cat and the Troll. One of the balloons in Amanda's room the Troll attempts to make its getaway with has Baby Kermit from Muppet Babies on them, whom Welker also voiced.
  • The screenplay for "The General" is included in the book Screamplays, edited by Richard Chizmar and Martin H. Greenberg.
  • James Woods was a smoker in real life, and actually did quit smoking after shooting the movie. Alan King, also a smoker, died from lung cancer.
  • Sometimes They Come Back , another short story from Night Shift, was going to be adapted into the film, but producer Dino De Laurentiis said that the story itself would be stronger alone. The adaptation was made to a TV movie for CBS instead.


The film was nominated for the International Fantasy Film Award for Best Film in 1987. Drew Barrymore was nominated for the Young Artist Award for Best Starring Performance by a Young Actress in a Motion Picture in 1986.

See also

External links



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