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Sam's Son (1984)

PG | | Drama | 17 August 1984 (USA)
A loosely-based autobiography of Michael Landon's teenage years as he struggles with his identity and eventually finds success on the school's track team.


Michael Landon


Michael Landon (screenplay)


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Eli Wallach ... Sam Orowitz
Anne Jackson ... Harriet Orowitz
Timothy Patrick Murphy ... Gene Orowitz
Hallie Todd ... Cathy Stanton
Clyde Hayes Clyde Hayes ... Robert Woods (as Alan Hayes)
Jonna Lee Jonna Lee ... Bonnie Barnes
Michael Landon ... Gene Orman
Howard Witt ... Cy Martin
William Boyett ... Coach Sutter
John Walcutt ... Ronnie Morgan
David Lloyd Nelson David Lloyd Nelson ... Lonnie Morgan
William Bassett ... Mr. Turner (as William H. Bassett)
Harvey Gold ... Jake Bellow
James Karen ... Mr. Collins
David Wakefield David Wakefield ... Buddy


Michael Landon's semi-autobiographical sketch of his earlier life. It's the story of Gene Orowitz, a high school student struggling with his bed-wetting, who finds success as a distance runner on the track team. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A father's dream. A son's triumph. [Ad Clipping] See more »




PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

17 August 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Throw It See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Originally intended as a made-for-TV movie for NBC, but the network ordered Michael Landon to create another pilot for a TV series, which would have been Highway to Heaven (1984). See more »


Though the flashback takes place in 1953, some teenagers in the film have 1980s-style haircuts. See more »


Sam Orowitz: I'm sorry, Sam. I can't have an usher managing a theater.
Sam Orowitz: Harold's been here three years. He knows how to run things.
Jake Bellow: Sam, I'm paying you to manage the theater.
[Turns around to leave the theater]
Sam Orowitz: Well, you don't pay me enough to miss my son's track meet!
Jake Bellow: [turns around] What?
Sam Orowitz: I work hard. I do a good job. I haven't asked for a raise in three years. If you can't let me take a couple hours off for something that's important to me, then I quit!
Jake Bellow: You'd quit your job over a track meet?
Sam Orowitz: I just told you ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

When NBC premiered this movie, the network cut out the entire sequence where Eugene and his friends go to a rowdy neighborhood bar and the fight scene that follows it. See more »


Featured in Michael Landon: Memories with Laughter and Love (1991) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A good biopic of Landon's early life, though occasionally sappy
8 September 2018 | by abbazabakyleman-98834See all my reviews

Michael Landon's early life as a teenager growing up in the New Jersey suburbs really is nice to watch. Back then, he was only known as Eugene Orowitz as he struggled with his identity, but eventually finds stardom, romance, and standing up to school bullies. Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson are superb as his parents, while Timothy Patrick Murphy hits it home as the teenaged Landon and Hallie Todd as his love interest.

Look for small parts by Joanna Lee, James Karen, Harvey Gold, and even Landon himself.

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