Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
When fishermen separate a young orca whale (Willy) from his parents, he ends up in a fish bowl at a marina. Meanwhile, a street kid runs afoul of the law and gets caught vandalizing the marina, but his social worker gets him off the hook (so to speak) provided he cleans up his mess at the marina. While there, he befriends the whale and teaches him tricks, something the trainer hasn't been able to do. But when Willy is a dud in front of the audience, the marina owner plans some bad things, and the boy and his friends must try to free Willy.
The aquatic star of this film was in reality an orca named Keiko. The huge national and international success of this movie inspired a letter writing campaign to get Keiko released from his captivity as an amusement park attraction in Mexico City.
It also spawned an animated television series, and two film sequels.
Cast (partial listing in credits order)
- Keiko .... Willy
- Jason James Richter .... Jesse
- Lori Petty .... Rae Lindley
- Jayne Atkinson .... Annie Greenwood
- August Schellenberg .... Randolph Johnson
- Michael Madsen .... Glen Greenwood
- Michael Ironside .... Dial
- Richard Riehle .... Wade
- Mykelti Williamson .... Dwight Mercer
- Michael Bacall .... Perry
- Danielle Harris .... Gwenie
- Isaiah Malone .... Vector
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