King Kong

Character: Dwan

Directed by: John Guillermin

Written by: Edgar Wallace, James Ashmore Creelman, Lorenzo Semple Jr., Merian C. Cooper, Ruth Rose

Produced by: Christian Ferry, Dino De Laurentiis

Cast Members: Jeff Bridges, Charles Grodin, John Randolph, Rene Auberjonois

Released date: December 17, 1976

Genre: Adventure, Horror

When a research ship is sent to explore an island thought to be rich in oil, paleontologist Jack Prescott sneaks aboard, having heard strange rumors about the island. En route, the crew rescues Dwan, the sole survivor of a shipwreck. When they arrive, they find native people living in fear of a monster called Kong. The natives kidnap Dwan and sacrifice her to what turns out to be an enormous ape. Dwan is eventually rescued, and the ape captured for a gala exhibit.


• The most exciting original motion picture event of all time is also one of the great love stories of our time.
• The most exciting original motion picture event of all time.


• For shots of Kong holding Jessica Lange, the filmmakers built giant hydraulic gorilla arms. The hands were six feet across, and the arms weighed 1,650 lbs. (750 kg.) each. They weren’t ready until shooting was well underway. When they were finally built, Dino De Laurentiis was invited to the set to witness a test. He walked into the studio, and a giant arm extended in his direction. Then the middle finger slowly uncurled and extended itself. De Laurentiis broke up. So did the arm; it was frozen, finger up, for a week.
• Jessica Lange received an “Introducing” credit, as this was her acting debut.
• The mechanical hands used each weighed 1,650 pounds. During filming of the scene where Kong caresses Dwan, the hand left Jessica Lange with a painfully pinched nerve in her neck.
• Jessica Lange’s screentest consisted of three scenes: Dwan’s discovery in the life raft by the Petrox crew. / Dwan convincing Fred Wilson to let her join the crew on the island. / Dwan throwing her fit, and hitting Kong in the nose, which was a pillow positioned above the camera at the time.
• The full-sized mechanical arms were suspended from a crane to extend and lift Jessica Lange 30 to 40 feet in the air.

Character’s Quotes

• How can I become a star because of… because of someone who was stolen off that gorgeous island and locked up in that lousy oil tank?
• I’m Dwan. D-W-A-N, Dwan. That’s my name. You know, like Dawn, except that I switched two letters to make it more memorable.
• [to Kong] You Goddamn chauvinist pig ape! What are you waiting for? You wanna eat me? Then go ahead! Do it! Go ahead and eat me! Go ahead! Choke on me!
• [to Kong] You know, we’re going to be great friends. I’m a Libra. What sign are you? No wait, don’t tell me. I bet you’re an Aries. Aren’t you? Of course you are.” I just knew it. That’s just wonderful.
• You know I had my horoscope done before I flew out to Hong Kong. And it said that I was going to cross over water and meet the biggest person in my life.
• Oh, I didn’t mean that. Honest, I didn’t. Sometimes I get too physical. It’s a sign of insecurity, you know, like, like when you knock down trees. Such a nice ape. Such a nice, sweet – nice, sweet, sweet monkey. You know, we’re gonna be great friends. I’m a Libra. What sign are you?
• Oh, come on, Kong. Forget about me. This things just never gonna work. Can’t you see?