Saving Private Ryan


Saving Private Ryan

Infobox Film
name = Saving Private Ryan


caption = Film poster
director = Steven Spielberg
producer = Steven Spielberg
Ian Bryce
Mark Gordon
Gary Levinsohn
writer = Robert Rodat
starring = Tom Hanks
Edward Burns
Tom Sizemore
Barry Pepper
Adam Goldberg
Giovanni Ribisi
Jeremy Davies
Matt Damon
Vin Diesel
music = John Williams
cinematography = Janusz Kamiński
editing = Michael Kahn
distributor = DreamWorks (United States and Canada)
Paramount Pictures (elsewhere)
released = flagicon|United States July 24, 1998
runtime = 170 minutes
language = English, French, German, and Czech
budget = US$65,000,000 (production)
US$25,000,000 (marketing)
US$90,000,000 (total)cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.the-numbers.com/movies/1998/SVPRI.php|title=Saving Private Ryan |publisher=The Numbers ]
gross = US$481,840,909
amg_id = 1:163037
imdb_id = 0120815

"Saving Private Ryan" is a 1998 war film set during the invasion of Normandy during World War II. It was directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Robert Rodat. The film is notable for the intensity of its opening 24 minutes, which depict the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944. Afterward, it follows Tom Hanks as Captain John H. Miller and several Rangers (Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Giovanni Ribisi, and Adam Goldberg) as they search for a paratrooper of the United States 101st Airborne Division.

Robert Rodat first came up with the film's story in 1994 when he saw a monument dedicated to eight brothers who died during the American Civil War. Inspired by the story, Rodat decided to write a similar story set in World War II. The script was submitted to producer Mark Gordon, who then handed it to Hanks. It was finally given to Spielberg, who had previously demonstrated his interest in WWII themes with films such as "Schindler's List", and decided to direct "Saving Private Ryan" after reading the film's script. The film's premise is very loosely based on the real-life case of the Niland brothers.

"Saving Private Ryan" was well received by audiences and garnered considerable critical acclaim, winning several awards for film, cast, and crew as well as earning significant returns at the box office. The film grossed US$480 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing film of the year. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences nominated the film for eleven Academy Awards; Spielberg won the Academy Award for Best Director for directing the film. "Saving Private Ryan" was released on home video in May 1999, earning $44 million from sales.

Plot

The film begins with an elderly World War II veteran (Harrison Young) and his family visiting the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Normandy, France. The veteran collapses to his knees in front of a gravestone, overwhelmed by emotion. The scene then changes to the beginning of the Normandy invasion, with American soldiers landing on Omaha Beach and struggling against dug-in German Army infantry, machine gun nests and artillery fire. One of the men who survives the initial landing, Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks), commanding officer of the C Company, 2nd Ranger Battalion, assembles a group of soldiers and slowly penetrates the German defenses, leading to a breakout from the beach.

Meanwhile, in the United States, General George C. Marshall discovers that three of the four brothers of the Ryan family have all died within days of each other and that their mother will receive all three notices on the same day. He learns that the fourth son, Private First Class James Francis Ryan (Matt Damon) of Baker Company, 1st Battalion 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment is missing in action somewhere in Normandy. The drop target for Ryan's unit was Neuville-au-Plain, Manche. Marshall orders that he be found and sent home immediately.

Back in France, Miller receives orders from Lieutenant Colonel Walter Anderson (Dennis Farina) to find Private Ryan and assembles six Rangers (Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Giovanni Ribisi, and Adam Goldberg), plus one man detailed from the 29th Infantry Division (Jeremy Davies) to accomplish this task. With no information about Ryan's whereabouts, Miller and his men move out to Neuville. On the outskirts of Neuville they meet a platoon from the 101st. After entering the town Private Adrian Caparzo (Diesel) is fatally wounded by a sniper who is then killed by Private Daniel Jackson (Pepper) with a round through the eye. After finding James Fredrick Ryan from Minnesota (Nathan Fillion) by mistake, they find a member of Charlie Company 506th, who informs them that his drop zone was at Vierville. He also tells them that both Baker and Charlie companies have the same rally point. Once they reach the rally point, Miller locates a friend of Ryan's, who reveals that Ryan is defending a strategically-important bridge over the Merderet River in the fictional town of Ramelle. They also find Brigadier General Amend dead in a glider (based on the death of Brigadier General Don Pratt).

On the way to Ramelle, Miller decides to take the opportunity to neutralize a small German machine gun position close to an abandoned radar station. Technician Fourth Grade Irwin Wade (Ribisi), their medic, is fatally wounded in the ensuing skirmish. The last surviving German (Joerg Stadler) incurs the wrath of all the squad members except Upham (Davies), who protests to Miller about letting the squad kill the german soldier. Miller decides to let the German walk away and surrender himself to the next Allied patrol, a decision viewed by Reiben (Burns) as letting the enemy go free. No longer confident in Miller's leadership, Reiben declares his intention to desert, prompting a tense confrontation with Horvath (Sizemore) that threatens to tear the squad apart until Miller resolves the situation by revealing his origins, on which the squad had formed a betting pool. Reiben would remain with the group.

The squad finally arrives on the outskirts of Ramelle where they destroy a German reconnaissance unit with the help of some American paratroopers, one of them being Ryan. The unit regroups in Ramelle, joining with the American paratroopers defending the town, where Captain Miller informs Ryan of his brothers' deaths and of their mission to bring him home. Ryan adamantly refuses to leave his makeshift unit, demanding that he remain to help defend the bridge against an impending German counterattack. Miller reluctantly agrees and orders his unit to help defend the bridge in the upcoming battle, taking command and setting up the defense with what little manpower and resources they have. There are less than twenty American soldiers in the town.

The Germans arrive in force supported by tanks, a towed FlaK 38 cannon, and half-tracks. Miller leads the defense, but in spite of inflicting heavy German casualties, most of his remaining squad members are killed (Jackson and Parker are hit by a high explosive tank round in their perch, Mellish is stabbed to death in a close quarters fight, Henderson is shot in the throat, Horvath is fatally wounded after taking several shots from assorted small arms) and the American unit is slowly pushed back by superior numbers and firepower. The defenders retreat across the bridge, suffering further casualties, pursued by gunfire and an advancing German Tiger. In the middle of an American attempt to blow the bridge, Miller is shot and fatally wounded by the German man that Upham convinced him to release earlier. Just before the Tiger reaches the bridge, an American P-51 Mustang destroys the tank, followed by more Mustangs and advancing American infantry who assault the town and rout the remaining German forces. Ryan, Reiben and Upham are the only main characters to survive the battle. Ryan is with Miller as he dies and hears his last words, "James... earn this. Earn it."

Back in the present, the elderly veteran is revealed to be Ryan at Miller's grave. Ryan asks his wife to confirm that he has been a "good man" and thus worthy of Miller's and the others' sacrifice. He then salutes the Captain's grave as the camera pans down the gravestones to the American flag and fades out.

Cast

Main cast

* Tom Hanks as Captain John H. Miller
* Tom Sizemore as Platoon Sergeant Michael Horvath
* Edward Burns as Private First Class Richard Reiben, a BAR gunner
* Jeremy Davies as Technician Fifth Grade Timothy E. Upham, a cartographer and interpreter
* Barry Pepper as Private Daniel Jackson, a sniper
* Adam Goldberg as Private Stanley Mellish, a rifleman
* Vin Diesel as Private Adrian Caparzo, a rifleman
* Giovanni Ribisi as Technician Fourth Grade Irwin Wade, a medic
* Matt Damon as Private First Class James Francis Ryan, a paratrooper

upporting cast

* Ted Danson as Captain Fred Hamill, pathfinder
* Dennis Farina as Lieutenant Colonel Walter Anderson, Miller's commanding officer
* Nathan Fillion as Private James Frederick Ryan, mistakenly identified paratrooper
* Paul Giamatti as Staff Sergeant William Hill, paratrooper
* Joerg Stadler as "Steamboat Willie" (unnamed German soldier)
* Maximilian Martini as Corporal Fred Henderson, ranking non-commissioned officer at Ramelle
* Harve Presnell as General George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff of the United States Army
* Leland Orser as Lieutenant DeWindt, pilot of a crashed Waco CG-4 glider transport
* Bryan Cranston as "Colonel at the War Department"
* Dylan Bruno as Private Toynbe, paratrooper at Ramelle
* Demertri Goritsas as Private Parker, a soldier at Ramelle
* Hary Sefton as Private Rice, a soldier at Ramelle
* Julian Spencer as Private Garrity, a soldier at Ramelle
* Steve Griffin as Private Wilson, a soldier at Ramelle
* William Marsh as Private Lyle, a soldier Ramelle
* Marc Cass as Private Fallon, a soldier at Ramelle
* Markus Napier as Major Hoess
* Neil Finnighan as Ramelle Paratrooper
* Peter Miles as Ramelle Paratrooper
* Paul Miles as Field HQ Major
* Seamus McQuade as Field HQ Aid
* Ronald Longridge as Coxswain
* Adam Shaw as Delancey

Production

Development

In 1994, Robert Rodat saw a monument in Putney Corners, New Hampshire, dedicated to eight brothers who died during the American Civil War. Inspired by the story, Rodat did some research and decided to write a similar story set in World War II. Rodat's script was submitted to producer Mark Gordon, who liked the story but only accepted the text after 11 redrafts. Gordon shared the finished script with Hanks, who liked it and in turn passed it along to Spielberg to direct. A shooting date was set for June 27, 1997.cite web|url=http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,284082,00.html|title=Message in a Battle|publisher=Entertainment Weekly|date=1998-07-24|accessdate=2008-09-05] Before filming began, several of the film's stars, including Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg and Giovanni Ribisi as well as Tom Hanks, endured several days of "boot camp" training and work on the film set to prepare for their roles.cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.rzm.com/pvt.ryan/production/scenes/bootcamp.html|title=Boot Camp |publisher=Behind the Scenes ]

Spielberg had already demonstrated his interest in World War II themes with the films "1941", "Empire of the Sun", "Schindler's List", and the "Indiana Jones" series. Spielberg later co-produced the World War II themed television miniseries "Band of Brothers" with Tom Hanks. When asked about this by "American Cinematographer", Spielberg said, "I think that World War II is the most significant event of the last 100 years; the fate of the Baby Boomers and even Generation X was linked to the outcome. Beyond that, I’ve just always been interested in World War II. My earliest films, which I made when I was about 14 years old, were combat pictures that were set both on the ground and in the air. For years now, I’ve been looking for the right World War II story to shoot, and when Robert Rodat wrote "Saving Private Ryan", I found it."cite web|url=http://www.theasc.com/magazine/aug98/five/index.htm|title=Five Star General|publisher=American Cinematographer Online Magazine|date=August 1998|accessdate=2008-09-05]

The D-Day scenes were shot in Ballinesker Beach, Curracloe Stand, Ballinesker, just east of Curracloe, Wexford, Ireland. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sproe.com/o/omaha-beach.html|title=Omaha Beach |publisher=Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia ] [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sproe.com/d/dog-one.html|title=Dog One |publisher=Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia ] [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.iftn.ie/locations/sublinks_static/wexford/?act1=record&aid=70&rid=1493&tpl=filmography_dets&only=1&force=1|title= Saving Private Ryan |publisher=The Irish Film & Television Network ] Filming began June 27, 1997, and lasted for two months. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.wexfordpeople.ie/news/private--ryan-expo-697670.html|title=Private Ryan' expo |work=Wexford People|date=2007-06-06 ] [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.independent.ie/national-news/ryans-slaughter-434700.html|title=Ryan's slaughter |work=Independent|date=1998-08-03 ] [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.britannia.org/film/filmdetails.php?FilmID=00000506|title=Saving Private Ryan |publisher=Britannia Film Archives ] Some shooting was done in Normandy, for the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer and Calvados. Other scenes were filmed in English locations such as a former British Aerospace factory in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, London, Thame Park, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire. Production was due to also take place in Seaham, County Durham, but government restrictions disallowed this. [cite news|work=Sunderland Echo|date=1999-11-02|title=Saving Private Ryan]

Portraying history

"Saving Private Ryan" has been critically noted for its realistic portrayal of World War II combat. In particular, the initial 24-minute sequence depicting the Omaha landings was voted the "best battle scene of all time" by "Empire" magazine and was ranked number one on "TV Guide's" list of the "50 Greatest Movie Moments". [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.filmsite.org/tvguidemoments4.html|title=50 Greatest Movie Moments |work=TV Guide|date=2001-03-24 ] Filmed in Ireland at Ballinesker Beach, Curracloe Stand, Ballinesker, County Wexford (convert|4|km east of the village of Curracloe), the Omaha Beach scene cost US$12 million and involved up to 1,500 extras, some of whom were members of the Irish Army Reserve. Local reenactment groups such as the Second Battle Group were cast as extras to play German soldiers. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.matlockmercury.co.uk/news/Roaring-back-to-the-forties.4362770.jp|title=Roaring back to the forties |publisher=Matlock Mercury|date=2008-08-06 ] In addition, 20–30 actual amputees were used to portray US soldiers maimed during the landing.cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.independent.ie/unsorted/features/how-we-made-the-best-movie-battle-scene-ever-91583.html|title=How we made the best movie battle scene ever |work=Independent|date=2006-06-07 ]

The landing craft used included two actual World War II examples. The film-makers even used underwater cameras to better depict soldiers being hit by bullets in the water. Forty barrels of fake blood were used to simulate the effect of blood in the seawater. This degree of verisimilitude was more difficult to achieve when depicting World War II German armored vehicles, as few examples survive in operating condition. The Tiger tanks in the film were copies built on the chassis of old, but functional Soviet T-34 tanks. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sbg1.mistral.co.uk/spr1.htm|title=Ryan Tigers |publisher=Second Battle Group ] The two vehicles described in the film as 'Panzers' were meant to portray Marder III self-propelled guns. They were created for the film using the chassis of Czech-built Panzer 38(t) tanks [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sbg1.mistral.co.uk/spr2.htm|title=Marders |publisher=Second Battle Group ] similar to the construction of the original Marder III.

Inevitably, some artistic license was taken by the filmmakers for the sake of drama. One of the most notable is the depiction of the 2nd SS Division "Das Reich", as the adversary during the fictional Battle of Ramelle. The 2nd SS was not engaged in Normandy until July, and then at Caen against the British and Canadians, a hundred miles east. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.dasreich.ca/normandy.html|title=Normandy and Falaise - April to August 1944 |publisher=Das Reich ] Further, the Merderet River bridges were not an objective of the 101st Airborne Division but of the 82nd Airborne Division, part of Mission Boston. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.6juin1944.com/assaut/aeropus/en_index.php|title=U.S. Airborne in Cotentin Peninsula |publisher=D-Day: Etats des Lieux ] Much has been said about various 'tactical errors' made by both the German and American forces in the movie's climactic battle. Steven Spielberg responded, saying that in many scenes he opted to replace sound military tactics and strict historical accuracy for dramatic effect.cite book|title=Saving Private Ryan, The Men, The Mission, The Movie : A Steven Spielberg Movie|author= Sunshine, Linda |date=1998-07-24 |publisher=Newmarket Press |isbn=155704371X ] A very visible example of this is that the German soldiers are shown with shaven heads when in reality German military personnel were and still are forbidden to shave their heads.cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sproe.com/s/steamboat-comparison.html|title=Steamboat Willie vs. Waffen-SS soldier |publisher=Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia ]

To achieve a tone and quality that was not only true to the story, but reflected the period in which it is set, Spielberg once again collaborated with cinematographer Janusz Kamiński, saying, "Early on, we both knew that we did not want this to look like a technicolor extravaganza about World War II, but more like color newsreel footage from the 1940s, which is very desaturated and low-tech." Kaminski had the protective coating stripped from the camera lenses, making them closer to those used in the 1940s. He explains that "without the protective coating, the light goes in and starts bouncing around, which makes it slightly more diffused and a bit softer without being out of focus." The cinematographer completed the overall effect by putting the negative through an additional process that extracted more of the color. 90-degree or even 45-degree shutters were used for many of the battle sequences, as opposed to the standard of 180-degree shutters. Kaminski clarifies, "In this way, we attained a certain staccato in the actors' movements and a certain crispness in the explosions, which makes them slightly more realistic." [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-08|url=http://www.sproe.com/s/spr.html|title=Combat Footage |publisher=Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia ]

Release

The film was distributed by DreamWorks in North America and by Paramount Pictures internationally. As a result of Paramount's 2005 acquisition of DreamWorks, Paramount has gained North America distribution rights as well (though still through the DreamWorks division). "Saving Private Ryan" was a critical and commercial success and is credited with contributing to a resurgence in America's interest in World War II. Old and new films, video games, and novels about the war enjoyed renewed popularity after its release. [cite news|title=COVER STORY; It's the Invasion of the WWII Movies|work=Los Angeles Times|date=2001-05-20|author=Desowitz, Bill] The film's use of desaturated colors, hand-held cameras, and tight angles has profoundly influenced subsequent films. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.beyondhollywood.com/saving-private-ryan-1998-movie-review/|title=Saving Private Ryan (1998) Movie Review |publisher=Beyond Hollywood|date=2002-05-25|author=Nix ] "Saving Private Ryan" was released in 2,463 theatres on July 28, 1998, and grossed $30.5 million on its opening weekend. The film grossed $216.5 million domestically and $265 million at the foreign box office, bringing its worldwide total to about $480 million and making it the highest grossing film of the year.cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=savingprivateryan.htm|title=Saving Private Ryan |publisher=Box Office Mojo ]

Critical reception was also positive, with much praise for the realistic battle scenes [cite web|url=http://www.calendarlive.com/movies/reviews/cl-movie980723-5,0,6595970.story|author=Turan, Kenneth|title=Saving Private Ryan review|publisher="Los Angeles Times"|date=1998-07-24|accessdate=] and the actors' performances,cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19980724/REVIEWS/807240304/1023|title=Saving Private Ryan |publisher=Roger Ebert ] but earning some criticism for the script and for ignoring British contributions to the D-Day landings in general and at Omaha Beach specifically. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.totalfilm.com/cinema_reviews/saving_private_ryan|title=Saving Private Ryan - Film Review |publisher=Total Film ] The most direct example of the latter is that during the actual landing the 2nd Rangers disembarked from British ships and were taken to Omaha Beach by Royal Navy (LCAs) landing craft. The film depicts them as being United States Coast Guard-crewed (LCMs) craft from an American ship.cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/299784.stm|title=Veterans riled by Ryan |publisher=BBC|date=1999-03-19 ] [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.sproe.com/l/lcm.html|title=LCM |publisher=Saving Private Ryan Online Encyclopedia ] This criticism was far from universal with other critics recognizing the director's intent to make an "American" film. [cite news | author = Reynolds, Matthew | title = Saving Private Ryan | publisher = Channel 4 | url = http://www.channel4.com/history/microsites/H/history/e-h/film-saving.html | accessdate=2008-09-06] The film was not released in Malaysia after Spielberg refused to cut the violent scenes; [cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/263905.stm|title=Malaysia bans Spielberg's Prince|publisher=BBC|date=1999-01-27|accessdate=2008-09-05] however, the film was finally released there on DVD with an 18SG certificate much later in 2005. It currently scores 94% on Rotten Tomatoescite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/saving_private_ryan/|title=Saving Private Ryan (1998) |publisher=Rotten Tomatoes ] and 90% on Metacritic, [cite web|url=http://www.metacritic.com/video/titles/savingprivateryan|title=Saving Private Ryan reviews|publisher=Metacritic|accessdate=2008-09-06] two movie review aggregate sites. Many critics associations, such as New York Critics Circle and Los Angeles Film Critics Association, chose "Saving Private Ryan" as Film of the Year. Roger Ebert called it "a powerful experience".

The film was later nominated for eleven Academy Awards, with wins for Best Cinematography, Best Sound, Best Sound Editing, Best Editing and Best Director for Spielberg, but lost the Best Picture award to "Shakespeare in Love", being one of a few that have won the Best Director award without also winning Best Picture. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://us.imdb.com/Sections/Awards/Academy_Awards_USA/1999|title=Academy Awards, USA: 1999 |publisher=IMDB ] The film also won the Golden Globes for Best Picture - Drama and Director, the BAFTA Award for Special Effects and Sound, the Directors Guild of America Award, a Grammy Award for Best Film Soundtrack, the Producers Guild of America Golden Laurel Award, and the Saturn Award for Best Action/Adventure/Thriller Film.cite web|url=http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120815/awards|title=Awards for Saving Private Ryan|publisher=Internet Movie Database|accessdate=2008-09-06] In June 2008, the American Film Institute revealed its "Ten top Ten"—the best ten films in ten "classic" American film genres—after polling over 1,500 people from the creative community. "Saving Private Ryan" was acknowledged as the eighth best film in the "epic films" genre. [cite news | publisher = American Film Institute | title = AFI's 10 Top 10 | date = 2008-06-17 | url = http://www.afi.com/10top10/epic.html | accessdate=2008-06-18]

Home video and television

The film debuted on home video in May 1999 with a VHS release that earned over $44 million. A later special edition, the D-Day 60th Anniversary Commemorative Edition, was released featuring an extra tape with documentary footage of the actual D-Day landings as well as the making of the film. [cite web|url=http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117744320.html?categoryid=13&cs=1|title='Ryan's' next attack: sell-through market|publisher=Variety|date=1999-07-29|accessdate=2008-09-06] The DVD was released in November of the same year, [cite web|url=http://www.thedigitalbits.com/articles/ryanpress.html|title=Dreamworks' "Saving Private Ryan" DVD press release|date=1999-09-13|accessdate=2008-09-06] and was one of the best-selling titles of the year, with over 1.5 million units sold. [cite web|url=http://www.videobusiness.com/article/CA621040.html|title=The Matrix disc soars beyond 3 million mark|date=2000-01-08|accessdate=2008-09-06] The original DVD was released in two separate versions: one with Dolby Digital and the other with DTS 5.1 surround sound. Besides the different 5.1 tracks, the two DVDs are identical. The film was also issued in a very limited 2-disc Laserdisc release in November 1999, making it one of the very last feature films to ever be issued in this format, as Laserdiscs ceased manufacturing and distribution by the year's end, due in part to the growing popularity of DVDs. [cite news|title=``PRIVATE RYAN" IS A NO-SHOW ON DVD FORMAT |work=Virginian-Pilot|date=1999-07-22|author=Kelley III, Bill] In 2004, a "Saving Private Ryan" special edition DVD was released to commemorate the 60th anniversary of D-Day. This two-disc edition was also included in a box set titled "World War II Collection", along with two documentaries produced by Spielberg, "Price For Peace" (about the Pacific War) and "Shooting War" (about war photographers, narrated by Tom Hanks). [cite web|url=http://dvd.ign.com/articles/519/519108p1.html|title=Saving Private Ryan: D-Day 60th Anniversary Commemorative Edition review|publisher=IGN|date=2004-05-26|accessdate=2008-09-06]

On Veterans Day from 2001 through 2004, the American Broadcasting Company aired the film uncut and with limited commercial interruption. The network airings were given a TV-MA rating, as the violent battle scenes and the profanity were left intact. The 2004 airing was marred by preemptions in many markets because of the language, in the backlash of the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy; [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.usatoday.com/life/television/news/2004-11-11-private-ryan_x.htm|title=Some stations shelved 'Private Ryan' amid FCC fears |work=USA Today|date=2004-11-11|author=Oldenburg, Ann ] however, critics and veterans groups such as the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars assailed those stations and their owners including Hearst-Argyle Television (owner of 14 ABC affiliates), Scripps Howard Broadcasting (owner of eight), and Belo (the owner of four) for putting profits ahead of programming and honoring those who gave their lives at wartime saying the stations made more money running their own programming instead of being paid by the network to carry the film, especially during a sweeps period. A total of 65 ABC affiliates—28% of the network—did not clear the available timeslot for the movie, even with the offer of The Walt Disney Company, ABC's parent, to pay all fines for language to the Federal Communications Commission. [cite web|accessdate=2008-09-05|url=http://www.mediavillage.com/jmentr/2004/11/17/jmer-11-17-04/|title=Return of Janet Jackson's Breast; "Saving Private Ryan" Controversy |publisher=mediaVillage|date=2004-11-17|author=Martin, Ed ]

References

Further reading

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*
*

External links

*
* [http://www.americandday.org/ American D-day]
* [http://www.29infantrydivision.org/ 29th Infantry Division Historical Society]
* [http://www.sproe.com/ "Saving Private Ryan" Online Encyclopedia]
* [http://www.britannica.com/dday/article-236190 Omaha Beach] at Encyclopædia Britannica


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