The controversial true story of Billy Hayes, an American college student thrown into Turkish prison after being caught smuggling drugs.
In 1970, Billy Hayes is caught in possession of drugs while boarding an international flight out of Istanbul. Wanting to make an example of him, the Turkish authorities sentence him to over 30 years in prison. Within the hostile prison environment, with its internal hierarchies and untrustworthy denizens, sadistic prison warden Hamidou relishes the mental and physical torture he inflicts on the prisoners.
Billy must decide between limited options: let the prison kill him, figuratively or literally; wait for his loved ones’ legal and diplomatic appeals to succeed; or attempt to escape by catching the ‘Midnight Express’—prison slang for an escape attempt. A hit upon its release, Midnight Express is often cited as the film that severely damaged Turkey’s tourism industry.
Cast & Credits
Alan Parker began his career in advertising before directing his debut film, Bugsy Malone, which won five British Academy Awards. His second film, the controversial Midnight Express, won two Oscars, six Golden Globe Awards and four awards from the British Film Academy. In all, his films have won 19 BAFTAs, 10 Golden Globes and 10 Oscars.
Alan Marshall, Lord David Puttnam
Brad Davis, Irene Miracle, Bo Hopkins