A novelist and a young horror fan attempt to save a small New England town which has been invaded by vampires.
1,639 ( 199)




Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete series cast summary:
David Soul ...  Ben Mears 2 episodes, 1979
James Mason ...  Richard K. Straker 2 episodes, 1979
Lance Kerwin ...  Mark Petrie 2 episodes, 1979
Bonnie Bedelia ...  Susan Norton 2 episodes, 1979
Lew Ayres ...  Jason Burke 2 episodes, 1979
Julie Cobb ...  Bonnie Sawyer 2 episodes, 1979
Elisha Cook Jr. ...  Gordon 'Weasel' Phillips 2 episodes, 1979
George Dzundza ...  Cully Sawyer 2 episodes, 1979
Ed Flanders ...  Dr. Bill Norton 2 episodes, 1979
Clarissa Kaye-Mason ...  Majorie Glick 2 episodes, 1979
Geoffrey Lewis ...  Mike Ryerson 2 episodes, 1979
Barney McFadden Barney McFadden ...  Ned Tebbets 2 episodes, 1979
Kenneth McMillan ...  Constable Parkins Gillespie 2 episodes, 1979
Fred Willard ...  Larry Crockett 2 episodes, 1979
Marie Windsor ...  Eva Miller 2 episodes, 1979
Barbara Babcock ...  June Petrie 2 episodes, 1979
Bonnie Bartlett ...  Ann Norton 2 episodes, 1979
Joshua Bryant ...  Ted Petrie 2 episodes, 1979
James Gallery James Gallery ...  Father Donald Callahan 2 episodes, 1979
Robert Lussier Robert Lussier ...  Deputy Constable Nolly Gardner 2 episodes, 1979
Brad Savage ...  Danny Glick 2 episodes, 1979
Ronnie Scribner ...  Ralphie Glick 2 episodes, 1979
Ned Wilson Ned Wilson ...  Henry Glick 2 episodes, 1979


The successful writer Benjamin "Ben" Mears returns to his hometown Salem's Lot, Maine, expecting to write a new novel about the Marsten House. Ben believes that the manor is an evil house that attracts evil men since the place has many tragic stories and Ben saw a ghostly creature inside the house when he was ten. Ben finds that the Marsten House has just been rented to the antique dealers Richard K. Straker and his partner Kurt Barlow that is permanently traveling. Ben meets the divorced teacher Susan Norton that is living with her parents and they have a love affair. Ben also gets close to her father Dr. Bill Norton and his former school teacher Jason Burke. When people start to die anemic, Ben believes that Straker's partner is a vampire. But how to convince his friends that he is not crazy and that is the truth? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Iconic terror from the No 1 bestselling writer. See more »




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


The Jeep that Ben drives in the film is a Jeep Wrangler CJ-5 model. See more »


During the dinner at the Norton house, a boom microphone is visible at top of screen over the dinner table. See more »


Mike Ryerson: [Mike is describing his nightmarish dreams after falling asleep at Harmony Hill Cemetery] I dreamed...
Ben Mears: You slept there all night?
Mike Ryerson: Yeah... All night.
Jason Berk: What about last night?
Mike Ryerson: I remember... a dream.
[gestures with his hand]
Mike Ryerson: Somebody... out there. And I... let him in.
Ben Mears: [engrossed] Who?
Mike Ryerson: [weakly] I don't know.
Jason Berk: Listen to me, Mike. Mike?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The text of the opening credits appear and dissolve piece by piece into each other in a jigsaw puzzle fashion. See more »

Alternate Versions

Salem's Lot originally aired as a 2-night mini-series with the first episode airing on November 17, 1979 and the second episode airing the following week on November 24, 1979. See more »

User Reviews

This is one of a handful of truly scary films
1 September 2003 | by VibianaSee all my reviews

I was fourteen years old when this film was released, and it was really a shocker for its time. Although I can see the points raised by detractors of this film, nevertheless, it is, in my opinion, one of the most truly terrifying movies I have ever seen. The scenes in which first Ralphie and then Danny Glick appear in windows at night, scratching to be let in, were utterly horrifying, as were the scenes with Mike Ryerson in Jason Burke's guest bedroom ("Looooook at me ... I will see you sleep like the dead, teacher") and Marjorie Glick in the mortuary. Along with the original "Halloween," this is a film that really, really scared me, and I feel that a key element was the lack of gore (which is probably a disappointment to younger viewers used to explicit splatter). The nonverbal dialogue of expressions and actions, the music, and the significantly occurring silences resulted in the suspense which makes a film truly frightening in my opinion.

Having said this, I do feel that the book was much, much better than the movie, and I would recommend it as one of the best vampire stories ever written (sorry, Anne Rice, but it's true). But let's be fair and realistic. It's a rare film that excels the book on which it was based. Not one of Stephen King's wonderfully (and horribly) imaginative works has EVER been committed to film in a way that has equaled the written work. Never, ever, EVER. That is something that will just never happen. If it were possible, then nobody would bother to read his books, he would become a screenwriter, and that would be a real loss for the horror genre.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

17 November 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Salem's Lot: The Movie See more »


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(uncut) | (DVD) | (TV) | (movie)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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