The Nude Bomb

The Nude Bomb
Directed by Clive Donner
Produced by Jennings Lang
Written by Bill Dana
Arne Sultan
Leonard Stern
Starring Don Adams
Sylvia Kristel
Dana Elcar
Andrea Howard
Vittorio Gassman
Earl Maynard
Music by Lalo Schifrin
Edited by Phil Tucker
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release dates
  • May 9, 1980 (1980-05-09)
Running time
94 minutes
Language English
Budget $15 million
Box office $14.7 million

The Nude Bomb (also known as The Return of Maxwell Smart or Maxwell Smart and the Nude Bomb) is a 1980 comedy film based on the television series Get Smart.[1] It stars Don Adams as Maxwell Smart, Agent 86, and was directed by Clive Donner.[1] It was retitled The Return of Maxwell Smart for television.[1]


Agent Maxwell Smart is called back into service in order to stop a nefarious KAOS terrorist plan from exploding a bomb that destroys only clothing, so as to leave KAOS as the only supplier of clothes to the entire world. Saint-Sauvage, the KAOS fashion designer, finds everyone else's clothing designs gauche, so he builds a clone machine capable of cloning his favorite seamstress and implements the Nude Bombs. He wears a costume including thimbles over each finger, and his mountain lair is entered via a large zipper.

Adams' cousin Robert Karvelas (Larrabee) is the only other cast member from the television series to return for this film. Dana Elcar plays the Chief in this film (as Edward Platt had died in 1974); no reference is made to Barbara Feldon's character from the TV series, Agent 99, nor even her marriage to Smart. Feldon said that she was not offered a part in the film nor even told that it was being made.[2] Sylvia Kristel, at the time well known for her appearances in the Emmanuelle film series, makes a brief appearance as Agent 34, with Andrea Howard as Agent 22 (Agent 99-type role) and Vittorio Gassman playing the Blofeld-like villain. Agent 13 was recast as Joey Forman, who played Harry Hoo in the TV series. Pamela Hensley, who was by now well known to science fiction fans for playing Princess Ardala in Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, appeared as Agent 36.

Smart's agency, called CONTROL in the TV series, was called PITS in this film, an acronym standing for Provisional Intelligence Tactical Service.

In spite of the title, the film was given a PG rating because there was no frontal nudity in the film; in the opening theme sequence, a title card reads: "Would you believe... a film called The Nude Bomb would get a PG rating". (The PG-13 rating was not created until 1984.) There are five times in the film where the bomb is detonated, but in each case the actors cover up their private areas with strategically placed briefcases or guns (Buckingham palace guards) or are shown only from the waist up. In one case members of a football team are in a huddle when a bomb detonates, revealing bare behinds of some of the players. In the final scene, the three stars of the film are rendered nude by fallout from the destruction of all the bombs at the enemy headquarters, but are seen from the backsides from a distance, and then with a "the end" caption covering each of their backsides.


The film was a box office disappointment. Nearly a decade later another revival film was produced, this time for TV, on ABC. Get Smart, Again! would feature most of the surviving original cast members and ignored the events that took place in The Nude Bomb for continuity purposes. This was followed by a short-lived revival TV series for Fox. A feature film remake of the series was a box office success in 2008; it grossed $230,685,453 worldwide.

The Nude Bomb was nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Picture, but it lost to Can't Stop the Music. It is now regarded as something of a cult classic.

TV broadcast premiere

In 1982, the film aired on broadcast television for the first time with its originally intended title, The Return of Maxwell Smart.


PITS (Provisional Intelligence Tactical Service)


United Nations



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