While Iriwn Allen may have had some success in television producing shows like Lost in Space, it’s the star studded disasters that he presented on the BIG movie screens that I most associate him with. That and the fact that he somehow managed to put a movie together featuring both Steve McQueen and Paul Newman.

Even as far back as the fifties he was putting together top talent under “The Big Top” in …..

bi circus one sheet

Not quite an “A” list cast here but the poster screams of adventure.

voyage to bottom poster

More of the same here though Fabian is subbing in for Frankie.

five weeks poster

After a decade in television, Irwin hit his stride in the seventies and films I fondly recall from network television premiers in two part showings while growing up.

My favorite of the Allen disasters has always been this ocean going adventure. Hackman + Borgnine + Stella + Roddy and a cameo from Frank Drebin = I’m all in!

” Tell’em to break out their Hymnals and start singing Nearer My God To Thee.”

Poseidon Adventure

With the success of The Poseidon Adventure, the dye was cast and Newman vs. McQueen was set.

Best line in the movie goes to McQueen when Newman asks…..

“How’re they gonna get the explosives up here?” McQueen responds……. “Oh, they’ll find some dumb son of a bitch to bring them up.” ………………….  Guess who?


Irwin Allen meets Michael Caine means a couple of less than stellar “spot the star” extravaganzas.

In that Michael Caine tone give this a read through, “We’ve been fighting a losing battle against the insects for fifteen years, but I never thought I’d see the final face off in my lifetime. And I never dreamed that it would turn out to be the bees. They’ve always been our friend.”

While Richard Widmark was more to the point about our chances. “Why worry about shaving when somebody’s going to cut your head off.”


Irwin now places Caine aboard the Poseidon with another cast of “oh so familiar” faces.

“You can take whatever you want from this ship, but these people have come a long way and all they want to do right now is get the hell out of here alive!” Can I please here a “Bloody hell!” Michael Caine style.

Beyondposeidon LP

Far from being a very good movie was this 1980 release that featured some stunning art work and a trio of top ranked talent.


Perhaps more shocking than getting McQueen on movie screens with Newman was the fact that Irwin had nothing to do with that other seventies disaster flick featuring Heston and company.

earthquake half sheet