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Actor : River's filmography

Stand By Me


Explorers (1985) USA 1985 110 minutes. Directed by Joe Dante.


  • Ethan Hawke - Ben Crandall
  • River Phoenix - Wolfgang Mueller
  • Jason Presson - Darren Woods
  • Robert Picardo - Starkiller/Wak/Wak and Neek's Father
  • Leslie Rickert - Neek
  • Dick Miller (I) - Charlie Drake
  • Mary Kay Place - Mrs. Crandall
  • Amanda Peterson - Lori Swenson
  • Dana Ivey - Freda Müller (Mrs. Müller)
  • Taliesin Jaffe - Ludwig Müller
  • James Cromwell - Mr. Müller
  • Bobby Fite - Steve Jackson


Ben Crandall, a kid dreaming of other worlds, start making really strange dreams about an electronic device. With the help of Wolfgang Mueller, a little genius, he builds what happens to be a space travel engine.
With Darren, another outsider kid, they build a spaceship and leave to follow their dream of space adventures.
They hope to represent Earth, peace and wisdom to their visitors from outerspace, and that this encounter would be the beginning of a new era for the world.
The truth will reveal itself to be quite deceptive, though quite fun to watch.


Wak : Look, I know I must look weird to you but how do you think you look to me? Listen, I watched four episodes of "Lassie" before I figured out why the little hairy kid never spoke. I mean, he rolled over, sure, he did that fine but, I don't think he deserved a series for that.

[watching the movie "Starkiller"]
Wolfgang Müller: Explosions in space? It's impossible.
Ben Crandall: What do you mean? You can hardly see the strings.


Director Joe Dante experienced many difficulties in the making of this movie : the script wasn't completely ready when they started shooting, so he had to improvize a lot, and the release date was brought forward by Paramount, which didn't really leave him the time to make the movie as he would have liked to.

River initially auditioned for the part of Darren. Jason Presson was better for the part, but Joe Dante and the casting director liked River a lot so they kept him as Wolfgang instead, which part he didn't like much.


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