Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1970s Viva Knievel! (1977)

Viva Knievel! (1977)

Real-life motorcycle stunt rider Evel Knievel plays himself in a ridiculous PG-rated fictional adventure movie.

Some drug dealers in Mexico try to kill Knievel for his truck and he inspires miracles at an orphanage. Our hero also jumps over burning oil and lions.

The supporting cast includes Lauren Hutton, Gene Kelly, Leslie Nielsen, Red Buttons, Cameron Mitchell, Frank Gifford, Albert Salmi and Marjoe Gortner.

Warner had high expectations for this movie. Unfortunately, the film premiered just three months before Knievel and his associates attacked promoter Shelly Saltman with an aluminium baseball bat in September 1977.

Knievel was sentenced to six months in jail and lost most of his sponsorship and marketing deals as a result of the bad publicity.

The more difficult stunts in the film were performed by stunt man Gary Lee Davis, though that fact was kept under wraps during the original release of the film.

Evel Knievel
Will Atkins
Gene Kelly
Kate Morgan
Lauren Hutton
Ben Andrews
Red Buttons
Stanley Millard
Leslie Nielsen
Cameron Mitchell
Frank Gifford
Tommy Atkins
Eric Olson
Sister Charity
Sheila Allen
Albert Salmi
Ralph Thompson
Dabney Coleman
Norman Clark
Ernie F. Orsatti
Sidney Clute
Governor Garcia
Robert Tafur
Marjoe Gortner

Gordon Douglas