This week, Zach is going to need a bigger boat, as we talk Jaws and the summer blockbuster.

Jaws is a 1975 American thriller film[1] directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Peter Benchley’s novel of the same name. The prototypical summer blockbuster, its release is regarded as a watershed moment in motion picture history. In the story, a giant man-eating great white shark attacks beachgoers on Amity Island, a fictional summer resort town, prompting the local police chief to hunt it with the help of a marine biologist and a professional shark hunter. The film stars Roy Scheider as police chief Martin Brody, Richard Dreyfuss as oceanographer Matt Hooper, Robert Shaw as shark hunter Quint, Murray Hamilton as the mayor of Amity Island, and Lorraine Gary as Brody’s wife, Ellen. The screenplay is credited to both Benchley, who wrote the first drafts, and actor-writer Carl Gottlieb, who rewrote the script during principal photography.


During the episode, Stephen makes reference to a Steven Spielberg/George Lucas talk at USC.

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About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...


  1. A great thriller, though I’ve always felt a bit conflicted with the film since it really popularized that image of sharks as mindless death-machines. That said, at the rate we’re going Zach’s kids will have no idea what a “shark” is or why this movie was so scary.

  2. So my daughter came up with an interesting twist that I had not thought of. Bruce is also the name of the shark in finding Nemo. I am sure that was obvious to a bunch of folks, but not me….

  3. Hello,
    I read that article with Spielberg and Lucas and thought it was evidence that they were truly old and out of touch. If a plan is put in place to charge upwards to $50 for a movie ticket, most people will simply stop going to theaters. They will wait for home theater release. It’s absolute nonsense the plan they lay out and it will never happen. Studios might like the idea, but the audience won’t be there. They just won’t. I’m shocked that you guys are even entertaining this as a possibility.

  4. I really enjoy listening to what you guys have to say. I learn a lot about the film making process when listening. I would suggest that Jaws can be seen as Spielberg’s take on a Western. Outside of the stereotypical characters and settings involved in Westerns (good guy = sheriff (Brody), bad guy = robber/villain (Bruce), and landscape = plains/desert (ocean)), you have the same types of plot developments in Jaws that you would see in a Western. Mainly, a threat to the town and its economic existence that needs to be eradicated by the hero….Sheriff Brody. Just a thought.

  5. What I like about Jaws is that it is loosely based on a true story that happened in the early twenties. The shark spent several months terrorizing the east coast. It even swam up a river several miles and visited terror on a separate community at their swimming hole. In the end it was a hunter who killed the shark. After it attacked his boat and bit the other person onboard… he beat it to death with a broken oar! Talk about bragging rights!

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