International Velvet (film)

International Velvet is a 1978 picture and a sequel to the 1944 picture National Velvet starring Tatum O'Neal, Christopher Plummer, Anthony Hopkins and Nanette Newman, and directed by Bryan Forbes.[1] The film received mixed reviews. International Velvet was partly filmed at Birmingham University, England.

International Velvet
the picture's Theatrical poster
Directed byBryan Forbes
Produced byBryan Forbes
Written byBryan Forbes
Based onNational Velvet
1935 novel
by Enid Bagnold
StarringTatum O'Neal
Nanette Newman
Anthony Hopkins
Christopher Plummer
Jeffrey Byron
Sarah Bullen
Richard Warwick
Music byFrancis Lai
CinematographyTony Imi
Edited byTimothy Gee
Distributed byUnited Artists (United States/Canada)
Cinema International Corporation (International)
Release date
  • July 19, 1978 (1978-07-19) (Los Angeles & New York)
Running time
127 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$7,009,238


After her parents are killed in a car crash, teenage Sarah Velvet Brown is forced to leave her home in Cave Creek, Arizona, to go to England to live with her aunt Velvet Brown and Velvet's boyfriend John. After the events of National Velvet Donald got married, had Sarah, and moved from England to Arizona.

When Velvet was a similar age to Sarah, she and her horse, The Pie, entered the legendary Grand National horse race and crossed the finish line first; however, Velvet and The Pie were instantly disqualified because Velvet fainted and fell off her mount prior to reaching the paddock. The Pie is ultimately put out to stud upon his retirement. He sires his last foal after Sarah's arrival in England. Sarah and Velvet are present for the birth of this foal and Sarah eventually decides that she'd like to purchase him. She later finds out that Velvet has bought him for her. Sarah aptly names him Arizona Pie.

She shows enough talent to be selected for the British Olympic team, where she is the junior, but she does well under the stern guidance of Captain Johnson. Sarah lives up to her dream and enters the Olympic Three Day Event helping Great Britain win the team competition. She falls in love with an American competitor named Scott Saunders and moves back to America with him. At the conclusion of the film Sarah is engaged to Scott and she gives her Olympic gold medal to Velvet. Sarah eventually returns to England and introduces Scott to Velvet and John.



It was the first film shot in England financed by MGM since 1971.[2]


International Velvet was released in New York and Los Angeles on July 19, 1978.[3]

Bryan Forbes's novelization of "International Velvet" was published to coincide with the film's release. [4]


  1. "International Velvet (1978) | BFI". Retrieved 2014-06-07.
  2. Can Rank say they 'proudly' present this film? Barker, Dennis. The Guardian 26 Nov 1977: 17.
  3. "International Velvet". American Film Institute. Retrieved September 2, 2016.
  4. International Velvet
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