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Danny the Champion of the World (1989)

Somewhere in England, in the Autumn of 1955, a widowed father and his son live an idyllic life together. Only their gas station happens to sit on a piece of land that a local developer ... See full summary »


Gavin Millar


Roald Dahl (novel), John Goldsmith (screenplay)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Irons ... William Smith
Robbie Coltrane ... Victor Hazell
Samuel Irons ... Danny
Cyril Cusack ... Doc Spencer
Michael Hordern ... Lord Claybury
Lionel Jeffries ... Mr. Snoddy
Jean Marsh ... Miss Hunter
Jimmy Nail ... Rabbetts
Ronald Pickup ... Captain Lancaster
John Woodvine ... Tallon
Bill Armstrong Bill Armstrong ... Springer (as William Armstrong)
Ceri Jackson Ceri Jackson ... Mrs. Clipstone
James Walker James Walker ... Vicar
Phil Nice Phil Nice ... Postman
Anthony Collin Anthony Collin ... Wheeler


Somewhere in England, in the Autumn of 1955, a widowed father and his son live an idyllic life together. Only their gas station happens to sit on a piece of land that a local developer wants to buy. And when he won't take no for an answer, and sets government inspectors and social works onto Danny and his father, Danny and his father decide to get even with Hazell and his pheasant- shooting friends in a manner in keeping with their own family tradition. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

29 April 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Daantje de wereldkampioen See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film omitted several book characters, the most obvious omission being Charlie Kinch, the local Taxi driver who helps Danny and William with the heist and drives them to a place to stash the pheasants. Other characters omitted are Miss Birdseye and Mr. Carrado (the local Pre-School and Primary School teachers, respectively), as well as the Headmaster's wife Mrs. Snoddy and the shopkeeper Mr. Cooper (replaced by Mr. Wheeler who is an amalgamation of the book characters Mr. Cooper and Mr. Wheeler). See more »


Victor Hazell: My name's...
William Smith: Hazell.
Victor Hazell: Correct. Already famous round here, am I?
William Smith: Notorious.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Fabously feel-good stuff!
28 August 2005 | by doherty-elleSee all my reviews

Some say it's a little overly sentimental and perhaps a little dated but to me this film ranks as one of the best family films going. Maybe it's the nostalgia of watching it as a child or how calm and wonderful village life looked to a young city slicker. It tells the story of Danny Smith and the life he lives as a mechanic's son whose home is a caravan. Jeremy Irons plays William Smith, a widower who raises his son a bit more unconventionally than most


The plot is set around the Smiths' struggle against a greedy baron who wants the land that the garage sits on. After a few confrontations - one which ends up with the plucky Danny going after his father when he doesn't return from his midnight poaching - They come up with quite an ingenious idea to rid the village of the baron once and for all.

I can't praise this film enough, it's a perfect coming-of-age tale with a wonderful portrayal of a love between father and son. All he more charming when the leads are played by Jeremy and Samuel Irons. It's endearing and delightful to watch - Make sure you see it!

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