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Visit to a Small Planet

Catalog Number
Primary Distributor (If not listed, select "OTHER")
Release Year
VHS | SP | Slipcase
85 mins (NTSC)
N/A | N/A | N/A
N/A | N/A
Second Distributor
Visit to a Small Planet (1960)

Additional Information

Additional Information
Jerry the flying saucer fool.

Flying saucers down to earth

When a space alien's fascination with Earthlings gets the better of him, he breaks one of his planet's laws and speeds off to visit the blue planet. Once there the alien (Jerry Lewis) encounters a nice family who kindly take him in. The father is a news commentator. Ironically, just prior to meeting the visitor, he had just aired a piece in which he derided all notions of extraterrestrial visits. In exchange for having them teach him about human ways, he uses his many fantastic powers to help them

Gore Vidal wrote this as a television play in which form it debuted on May 8, 1955 on Goodyear Television Playhouse. Later he reworked it for the Broadway stage, where it debuted on February 7, 1957 and ran for 388 performances. Star Cyril Ritchard, who also directed, received a Tony Award nomination for his performance as Kreton. Eddie Mayehoff also received a nomination for Best Performance by a Featured Actor.
Before playing on Broadway the play was performed at the Shubert Theatre in New Haven, Connecticut January 16–19, 1957. Starring Cyril Ritchard and Eddie Mayehoff.
Vidal intended the play as a satire on the post-World War II fear of communism in the United States, McCarthyism, Cold War military paranoia and the rising importance of television in American life. A major critical success, it was subtitled A Comedy Akin to Vaudeville.
The play tells the story of Kreton, an alien from an unnamed planet who lands on Earth intending to view the American Civil War. He miscalculates and lands instead 100 years later. Having missed the opportunity to see conflict first hand, but delighted with all the new playthings the 20th century has invented for war-making, he decides to create a war for himself.

Release Date: April 13, 1960

Distrib: Paramount


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