Bang Bang You're Dead (film)

Bang Bang You're Dead is a 2002 American crime thriller drama film starring Tom Cavanagh and Ben Foster. It is based on the play of the same name by William Mastrosimone. The film was first screened publicly at the Seattle International Film Festival in June 2002.[1]

Bang Bang You're Dead
Film poster
Directed byGuy Ferland
Produced byNorman Stephens William Mastrosimone Deboragh Gabler
Written byWilliam Mastrosimone
Based onBang Bang You're Dead
by William Mastrosimone
StarringTom Cavanagh
Ben Foster
Randy Harrison
Janel Moloney
Jane McGregor
David Paetkau
Eric Johnson
Music byReinhold Heil
Johnny Klimek
CinematographyRobert Aschmann
Edited byJill Savitt
Distributed byShowtime
Release date
October 13, 2002
Running time
93 minutes
CountryUnited States


16-year-old Trevor Adams (Ben Foster) attends an American high school where he is one of the outcasts harassed and humiliated by the school's jocks. Probably to attract attention, he made a false threat to bomb the school a few months ago, narrowly escaping expulsion. Since then, Trevor has been trying to fit back in to normal high school life. He joined a theater group and has been chosen to star in a school play about school shootings called Bang Bang You're Dead as the main character, Josh. After parents and the community hear of the play and its lead actor, they call for it to be canceled.

But Trevor's theater activity, alone, is not sufficient to let off the steam of his boiling resentment. Using his video camera, he has been documenting bullying at school, creating a "diary of violence".

Trevor and his friends Sean, Mark and Kurt, make plans to storm the school with guns and kill as many of the hated athletes as possible. Trevor meets Jenny, also 16, who stays by him and stands up for him. Through her, Trevor begins to doubt whether the act he plans is right.

In the end, he is the only one to realize that bloodshed only fuels more violence and hatred, and evacuates the school with his art teacher, Mr. Duncan (Tom Cavanagh). At the last minute, Trevor prevents bloodshed by overwhelming Kurt, Sean and Mark.

The film ends with the play premiering successfully, despite the initial protests of the students' parents.



The song "Runaway Train" by post-grunge band Oleander was featured in the film. A music video for the song was then shot and incorporated footage from the movie. On November 19, 2002 the band released their Runaway Train EP. The film was released on DVD on January 27, 2004 without any special features.[2]


Year Award Title Recipient Result
2002 Nantucket Film Festival
Audience Award
Best Feature Guy Ferland
William Mastrosimone
2003 Peabody Award[3] Area of Excellence Showtime Networks Inc., in association with Viacom Productions Inc., and A Jersey Guys Production
Directors Guild of America Award Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's Programs Guy Ferland
Daytime Emmy Award Outstanding Children's Special William Mastrosimone
Norman Stephens
Paul Hellerman
Deboragh Gabler
Outstanding Directing in a Children's Special Guy Ferland
Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special Ben Foster
Outstanding Writing in a Children's Special William Mastrosimone
Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special Tom Cavanagh Nominated


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