Animation Adventures

Unleashing the Quirky Charm of The Barefoot Executive: A Timeless Classic

The Barefoot Executive is a comedy film that centers around Steven Post, a young man who works as a mailroom clerk at a struggling television network. One day, he accidentally gives some bananas to the network’s chimpanzee, which sparks an idea to use the chimp’s TV-watching abilities to determine which shows should be produced.

This leads to unexpected success, but also brings unexpected challenges. In this article, we will delve into the synopsis of this movie, exploring its exciting plot, themes and critical acclaim.


The Barefoot Executive is a lighthearted comedy film that tells the story of Steven Post, a bright and ambitious young man who works in the mailroom of a failing television network. One day, his life takes a dramatic turn when he accidentally discovers that a chimpanzee named Raffles has a unique ability to predict which TV shows will be popular with audiences.

Using this insight, Steven becomes the network’s new executive programming director, and Raffles becomes his indispensable assistant. As the network’s fortunes change, Steven becomes increasingly confident in his abilities, but his success also brings challenges from rival networks vying for Raffles’ attention.

The film culminates in a dramatic showdown as Steven faces off against his rivals, determined to save both his career and Raffles’ life from those who seek to exploit the chimp for their own gain.


The Barefoot Executive contains several important themes that are still relevant today, decades after its original release. One of the most notable themes is ambition, as the film portrays the challenges and opportunities that arise when an underdog fights for success against all odds.

Steven’s drive and determination encourage his colleagues to think outside the box and take risks that ultimately lead to success. Another significant theme is the power of media, as Steven’s use of Raffles’ abilities highlights the influence that television can have on audiences and society.

The film emphasizes the importance of responsible and ethical media production, as Steven must balance his desire for success with the ethical treatment of both Raffles and his audience.

Critical Acclaim

The Barefoot Executive was well-received by audiences and critics alike upon its release in 1971. It was praised for its lighthearted humor, strong performances, and relevant themes.

The film remains a fan favorite, known for its clever storyline, well-crafted characters, and entertaining plot twists.


In conclusion, The Barefoot Executive is a must-watch movie that tells the story of one man’s journey to success and the unusual assistant who helps him get there. The film highlights important themes that are still relevant today and offers an entertaining and light-hearted view of the inner workings of a television network.

Whether you are a fan of comedy, drama or just a good old-fashioned feel-good film, The Barefoot Executive is definitely worth a watch. The structure of a movie plot is integral to any movie, and The Barefoot Executive boasts an interesting, unique plot that keeps viewers entertained throughout the movie.

In this expansion, we will take a deeper dive into the plot of The Barefoot Executive, discussing its key elements, twists, and turns that make it an enjoyable watch. The Barefoot Executive plot is comedic and inspiring, as it follows the journey of Steven Post who works as a mailroom clerk at a failing television network.

Steven is a young man full of ambition, as he aspires to become a successful executive at the network. One day, he discovers that a pet chimpanzee, Raffles, loves watching and predicting which shows will be a hit among the public.

Inspired by Raffles’ abilities, Steven unlocks the potential of Raffles’ skills and convinces his boss to hire the chimp as an executive programming director. Raffles becomes Steven’s indispensable assistant, and the two eventually elevate the network from its failing state to a top contender in the industry.

As the plot progresses, Steven’s success attracts the attention of rival networks who are interested in poaching Raffles as well as acquiring Steven’s programming strategies. A bidding war ensues, with Steven eventually winning the bid for Raffles’ services with a staggering $1 million contract.

The plot thickens towards the end as Steven and Raffles become embroiled in a web of danger. Rivals try to kidnap Raffles, and Steven goes to great lengths to protect the chimp.

In a daring scene, Steven switches Raffles for a fake chimp to distract the kidnappers and escape with the real Raffles. With Raffles safe and sound, the network becomes the talk of the town, and the two lead characters come out as heroes.

Throughout the movie, the plot is filled with several subplots that keep viewers engaged. The love story between Steven and the network’s receptionist Jennifer, for example, adds a romantic element to the movie.

Jennifer is a crucial character that helps push Steven in his ambition and helps him navigate through the network’s bureaucracy. Although their relationship seemed rocky at first, they eventually discover their mutual love while resolving the critical situation of Raffles’ kidnapping together.

The movie boasts several fantastic themes. Steven’s ambition and drive for success are prevalent throughout the plot, as he rises from an obscure mailroom clerk to a revered executive in the network.

The theme underscores the importance of hard work and persistence in achieving one’s dreams. The movie also highlights the subject of animal exploitation.

The chimp Raffles becomes a significant part of the show business, with various networks interested in acquiring his services and making him a TV star. The movie portrays a humane approach towards animals and their safety, explaining how they are integral parts of the ecosystem and should be treated with respect.

In conclusion, The Barefoot Executive’s plot is well-thought-out and well-executed, with several twists and turns that keep viewers engaged until the end. The movie narrates an inspirational tale of ambition, competition, and success while highlighting the importance of responsible use of animal talent.

It’s a classic feel-good movie that still resonates with audiences today. Aside from its unique plot, The Barefoot Executive’s production elements played a crucial role in making it a timeless classic.

In this expansion, we will take a closer look at the movie’s production, including its direction, screenplay, casting, music, and special effects.

Direction and Screenplay

The movie was directed by Robert Butler, a veteran director known for his works on family-friendly movies such as Herbie Rides Again and The Parent Trap. What makes The Barefoot Executive work so well is Butler’s keen attention to detail in bringing out the humor in every scene.

His direction is gentle, and his focus is on engaging the audience by making the movie feel more like a fun ride rather than a dry, serious film. The screenplay for The Barefoot Executive was co-written by Lila Garrett and Bernie Kahn.

The two were experienced in writing for TV and movies, and their expertise shines through in the movie. The screenplay balances the fun and lightheartedness with a layered plot and great character development to create an engaging story.


The casting of The Barefoot Executive was spot on, with various cast members delivering great performances. Kurt Russell, who played the lead character Steven Post, was just transitioning from child actor to an up-and-coming young adult at the time of filming.

He brought an effortless charm to the character of Steven, making the viewers root for him from the very beginning. Supporting actors like Joe Flynn and Harry Morgan were also excellent, portraying characters whose antics added humor to the movie.


The soundtrack of The Barefoot Executive was composed by Robert F. Brunner.

The music complemented the movie perfectly, be it the light and cheerful background music or the dramatic score during intense scenes. The film’s opening song, “Barefootin’ – The Twist”, is a catchy tune that fits perfectly with the movie’s lighthearted nature and sets the tone for the fun that is in store for the viewers.

Special Effects

Given that the movie was made in the early 1970s, the special effects in The Barefoot Executive are understandably simplistic by today’s standards. However, despite its limited budget, the movie does a great job of using practical effects to create scenes like Raffles seeing the television program through a pair of binoculars.

His reactions to the shows were shown through clever editing, suggesting that the chimpanzee had indeed seen the TV show. These simple tricks and practical effects helped elevate what could have been a low-budget, simple movie into a marvel that producers could be proud of.

In conclusion, The Barefoot Executive’s production elements helped make it a timeless classic. The direction was absolutely spot-on, with a balance between humor and plot while the cast delivered great performances.

The soundtrack and special effects complemented the movie while making sure it did not feel outdated. The production team did an excellent job bringing the script to life, resulting in a fun, lighthearted, and feel-good movie that is still enjoyable to watch to this day.

The Barefoot Executive was released on March 17, 1971, in the United States. The release of the movie marked the debut of Kurt Russell as a lead actor, and it was an instant hit with audiences, earning a total of $3.5 million in its initial run.

In this expansion, we will discuss the movie’s release, its box office success, and its legacy in the history of family-friendly movies.

Release Date and Promotion

The movie premiered in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Theater on March 10, 1971, with the official United States release date coming a week later. The movie was heavily promoted before its release, with print and television ads, billboards, and posters featuring the movie’s cast and characters.

The promotions focused on the movie’s comedic elements, and its family-friendly plot, promising a fun and entertaining experience for moviegoers of all ages.

Box Office Success

The Barefoot Executive raked in $3.5 million during its initial run in the United States, landing it in the 36th position in the list of top-grossing movies of the year. The movie’s success was due in part to its clever and fresh premise, which resonated with families who were looking for quality entertainment that they could enjoy together.

The movie’s heartwarming themes, coupled with a fun and lighthearted plot, made it a hit with audiences of all ages.


Over 50 years after its initial release, The Barefoot Executive continues to be a beloved family movie that holds a special place in the history of family-friendly films. It marked the start of Kurt Russell’s journey to becoming a prominent Hollywood actor, eventually starring in iconic movies like The Thing, Escape From New York, and Tombstone.

The movie’s success also solidified the place of Walt Disney Productions in the family movie genre. With the release of The Barefoot Executive, Disney’s family-friendly formula had been established, and it would continue to churn out movies with similar themes and quality entertainment for years to come.

The Barefoot Executive continues to capture the hearts of new generations. Its fun and feel-good nature make it an excellent movie for family viewing and a reminder of simpler times.

The legacy of The Barefoot Executive lives on as Disney continues to produce movies that offer the same wholesome and entertaining values that first made this movie a classic. In conclusion, the release of The Barefoot Executive marked the beginning of the journey of Kurt Russell as a lead actor while solidifying the Walt Disney Productions’ place in the family movie genre.

The movie’s family-friendly theme and cleverly crafted plot captured the hearts of audiences during its initial release, and it continues to entertain moviegoers to this day. Its success paved the way for future family-friendly movies, and its legacy has inspired new generations of filmmakers to produce original and compelling movies that appeal to a broader audience.

The soundtrack of The Barefoot Executive is an integral part of what made the movie a classic. It features a mix of original and licensed tracks that complement the film’s lightheartedness and humor.

In this expansion, we will delve into the movie’s soundtrack, discussing its composition, musical themes, and its impact on the movie’s overall success.


The Barefoot Executive’s soundtrack was composed by Robert F. Brunner.

He was a composer and songwriter known for his works in films like The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit, Charley and the Angel, and The Boatniks. Brunner’s compositions for The Barefoot Executive are notable for their simplicity and effectiveness in matching the film’s tone, adding to the whimsy and lightheartedness of the film.



The movie’s musical themes are an essential part of its charm and atmosphere. The opening theme, “Barefootin’ – The Twist” performed by Robert “Bobby” Arvon, sets the tone for the film, making it immediately evident that humor and fun are necessary to the story.

The soundtrack also features an instrumental version of the track, which plays during several scenes like when Steven and Raffles are running around the studio. The musical themes also include funmontages, where Raffles gets engrossed in fabulous TV shows.

To highlight the fun and playful nature of these montages, Robert Brunner’s composition for the show’s tune relies on lively, upbeat music like the happy “Juicy Delight” and the rock-inspired “Rock-A-Hula Bula.”


The soundtrack for the Barefoot Executive was not only a great addition to the movie, it also played a crucial role in the film’s success. It was memorable and captured the fun and whimsy of the movie’s plot and characters, making it an instant classic.

The music inspired a sense of nostalgia for some viewers while also introducing younger audiences to a different type of music. It had a lasting impression on the minds of those who watched the movie, and it continues to enthrall music fans even to this day.

In 2002, Disney released the movie’s soundtrack in a remastered format, which contained additional tracks and music. The release of the soundtrack is a testament to the impact of the music and its lasting influence on American popular culture.


In conclusion, the Barefoot Executive’s soundtrack is a quintessential part of what made the movie a classic. The soundtrack’s composition by Robert F.

Brunner and musical themes complement the film’s lightheartedness and humor, making it an integral part of the story. The memorable tracks and music endure to this day, continuing to inspire and entertain generations of viewers.

The unique tunes and melodies are an essential element of the movie’s charm and are a clear indication of great musical composition. The Barefoot Executive’s soundtrack is another example of a timeless classic marrying music and film to create a magical experience.

In conclusion, The Barefoot Executive is an inspirational and feel-good classic that continues to entertain audiences to this day. From its unique plot and production elements to its impressive soundtrack, The Barefoot Executive has stood the test of time, inspiring filmmakers and audiences for over five decades.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about the movie:

– Who directed The Barefoot Executive? The movie was directed by Robert Butler, who was also known for his work in family-friendly movies.

– When was The Barefoot Executive released? The movie was released in the United States on March 17, 1971.

– Who composed the soundtrack for The Barefoot Executive? The soundtrack was composed by Robert F.

Brunner, who was a composer and songwriter known for his work in various films. – What is the movie’s storyline?

The movie follows the journey of Steven Post, a mailroom clerk who becomes an executive programming director after discovering that a chimp named Raffles has the ability to predict which TV shows will be popular with audiences. – What are the main themes highlighted in The Barefoot Executive?

The themes of ambition, the power of media, and responsible animal treatment are some of the main themes that the movie highlights. – Why is The Barefoot Executive a classic?

The Barefoot Executive is a classic because of its incredible plot, engaging production elements, and a soundtrack that adds charm to the story.

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