Saving Private Ryan


  • Released in 1998 by DreamWorks and Paramount, Technicolor 1.88:1 screen ratio, sound mix DTS and Dolby Digital and SDDS, 170 mins

  • Directed by Steven Spielberg
  • Written by Robert Rodat and Frank Darabont
  • Original music by John Williams
  • Cinematography by Janusz Kaminski
  • Film Editing by Michael Kahn
  • Casting by Denise Chamian
  • Production Design by Thomas E. Sanders


  • Tom Hanks .... Captain John Miller
  • Tom Sizemore .... Sergeant Horvath
  • Edward Burns .... Private Reiben
  • Barry Pepper .... Private Jackson
  • Adam Goldberg .... Private Mellish
  • Vin Diesel .... Private Caparzo
  • Giovanni Ribisi .... Medic Wade
  • Jeremy Davies .... Corporal Upham
  • Matt Damon .... Private James Ryan
  • Ted Danson .... Captain Hamill
  • Paul Giamatti .... Sergeant Hill
  • Dennis Farina .... Lieutenant Colonel Anderson
  • Harve Presnell .... Gen. George C. Marshall
  • Amanda Boxer .... Mrs. Margaret Ryan
  • Harrison Young .... Ryan (as old man)
  • Kathleen Byron .... Old Mrs. Ryan
  • Rob Freeman .... Ryan's Son
  • Thomas Gizbert .... Ryan's Grandson


  • Saving Private Ryan film title from IMDb
  • Saving Private Ryan Official web site from Mike Cooper
  • Imagining D-Day: The History Behind Saving Private Ryan from Encyclopedia Britannica: "The plot is inspired in part by the true story of Fritz Niland, one of four brothers from New York state who saw action during the war. Two Niland brothers were killed on D-Day, while another went missing in action in Burma and was presumed dead, although he actually survived. Fritz was located in Normandy by an Army chaplain, Reverend Francis Sampson, and taken out of the combat zone."
  • The Truth 'Behind Saving Private Ryan' from "Ryan is based on a 506th P.I.R. trooper ... who spent about 18 days behind German lines evading patrols with the help of local French civilians. He finally walked into US territory on his own. When he reported in he was told, "oh, we've been looking for you." and a Chaplain drove him down to the beach in a jeep. No rescue, no risking a group of men to save one, no bridge, and no bloody TIGER tanks either!"
  • "Saving Private Ryan", the true story from the Canadian site The Valour and the Horror
  • Stephen Ambrose compared Longest Day with Saving Private Ryan in Dallas Morning News story:
  • Cornelius Ryan and the films based on his books: The Longest Day and A Bridge Too Far

    History Department | Filmnotes | revised 4/19/99