Sibella Tobar

Written by Sibella Tobar

Modified & Updated: 02 Jun 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Are you ready to dive into the world of movie trivia? Get ready to hop, skip, and jump through 40 fascinating facts about the classic film Hopscotch. Released in 1980, Hopscotch is a comedy-thriller that combines action, espionage, and perfectly timed comedic moments. Starring the legendary actor Walter Matthau, Hopscotch takes audiences on a thrilling ride as ex-CIA agent Miles Kendig goes on the run to publish his explosive memoirs. This hidden gem of a film boasts a talented cast, clever writing, and a unique blend of humor and suspense. So, dust off your spy glasses and settle in as we uncover intriguing behind-the-scenes tidbits, interesting trivia, and little-known facts about the movie Hopscotch.

Key Takeaways:

  • Hopscotch is a witty spy comedy from 1980, featuring clever tactics, global adventure, and a charming romance. Its enduring popularity influenced future spy films with its unique blend of humor and espionage.
  • The movie’s success led to a Broadway adaptation, a video game, and a TV series. Its timeless themes of loyalty, betrayal, and personal freedom continue to resonate with audiences today.
Table of Contents

Hopscotch was released in 1980 and is a comedy spy film.

Directed by Ronald Neame, the movie follows the story of Miles Kendig, a CIA agent played by Walter Matthau, who decides to write a memoir exposing all the agency’s secrets.

The screenplay for Hopscotch was based on a novel of the same name written by Brian Garfield.

Garfield’s novel was published in 1975 and became a bestseller. The movie adaptation stayed true to the novel’s witty and satirical tone.

The role of Kendig’s former lover, Isobel, was played by Glenda Jackson.

Jackson’s portrayal of Isobel, a British intelligence agent, brought a touch of romance and intrigue to the movie.

The movie features scenes in various locations around the world, including the United States, Europe, and the Middle East.

This globetrotting aspect adds an element of adventure to the story as Kendig outwits his CIA pursuers.

Hopscotch received positive reviews from critics upon its release.

The movie was praised for its clever writing, solid performances, and the chemistry between Matthau and Jackson.

The film’s theme song, “Hopscotch,” was composed by Kenyon Hopkins.

The catchy and lighthearted tune perfectly captures the playful tone of the movie.

Hopscotch was a box office success, grossing over $16 million worldwide.

Its popularity can be attributed to the combination of comedy, espionage, and the star power of Matthau and Jackson.

Critics have praised Walter Matthau’s performance as Miles Kendig.

Matthau’s portrayal of the witty and resourceful CIA agent earned him a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy.

The movie’s screenplay was written by Bryan Forbes.

Forbes was known for his work on several successful films, including “The Stepford Wives” and “King Rat.

Hopscotch was considered a departure from typical spy movies of its time.

Instead of focusing on high-stakes action and violence, the film relies on clever tactics and intelligence.

The movie’s tagline was “The most dangerous man in the world. He’s got a lot to say… and only one man to say it to.”

This tagline adds an element of mystery and intrigue, enticing audiences to watch the film.

Hopscotch was nominated for two BAFTA Awards.

The film received nominations for Best Screenplay and Best Actor for Walter Matthau.

The movie showcases the cat-and-mouse game between Kendig and his former boss, CIA head Myerson, played by Ned Beatty.

The rivalry between the two characters adds tension and excitement to the plot.

Hopscotch combines humor with political espionage, creating a unique blend of genres.

The witty dialogue and comedic moments make the film entertaining and enjoyable for a wide range of audiences.

The movie’s title, Hopscotch, references the childhood game where players hop from one square to another.

This playful title reflects the cat-and-mouse nature of the story as Kendig outmaneuvers his pursuers.

Hopscotch was released during the height of the Cold War.

The film’s themes of espionage and government secrets resonate with the political climate of the time.

The movie features a memorable supporting cast, including Sam Waterston, Herbert Lom, and David Matthau.

The talented ensemble brings depth and humor to their respective roles, contributing to the overall success of the film.

The film’s cinematography captures the picturesque landscapes of the various locations.

From the bustling streets of Washington, D.C. to the scenic countryside of Europe, the visuals enhance the storytelling.

Hopscotch was known for its clever dialogue and memorable one-liners.

Lines such as “You aren’t James Bond, you know. You’re a bureaucratic bump on a log!” have become iconic among fans of the film.

Hopscotch remains a beloved cult classic and is often regarded as one of the best spy comedies of all time.

Its combination of smart writing, memorable characters, and entertaining plot continues to resonate with audiences today.

The movie’s success led to a Broadway adaptation in 1981.

Although the play ran for only six performances, it further solidified the film’s enduring popularity.

Hopscotch’s comedic approach to the spy genre influenced future films such as “True Lies” and “Get Smart.”

The movie’s impact on the genre can still be felt in the humorous spy films that followed.

The film’s runtime is 105 minutes, providing audiences with an enjoyable and concise viewing experience.

The pacing of the film ensures that there is never a dull moment and keeps viewers engaged throughout.

Hopscotch was shot on location in various cities, including Washington, D.C., Salzburg, and Munich.

These real-life settings add authenticity to the story and immerse viewers in Kendig’s world.

The movie’s production design captures the aesthetics of the 1980s, from fashion to interior decor.

This attention to detail enhances the overall visual experience and provides a glimpse into the era.

Hopscotch features a memorable car chase sequence through the streets of Washington, D.C.

This action-packed scene adds excitement and adrenaline to the film.

The movie’s humor is often subtle and relies on clever wordplay.

This intelligent humor sets Hopscotch apart from slapstick comedies of its time.

The film’s screenplay underwent several revisions before production began.

This process ensured that the final script was polished and tightly crafted.

Hopscotch explores themes of loyalty, betrayal, and the balance between personal and professional ethics.

These thought-provoking themes elevate the film beyond its comedic elements.

The chemistry between Walter Matthau and Glenda Jackson is a highlight of the film.

Their on-screen relationship adds depth and emotion to the story.

Hopscotch was released during a time when the spy genre was dominated by action-oriented films.

The film’s unique blend of comedy and espionage offered a refreshing take on the genre.

The movie’s plot twists and turns keep audiences guessing until the very end.

Kendig’s clever strategies and unexpected moves make for an unpredictable and thrilling viewing experience.

Hopscotch’s success led to the creation of a video game adaptation in 1984.

The game allowed players to take on the role of Kendig and navigate a series of espionage missions.

The film’s costume design reflects the characters’ personalities and profession.

Kendig’s sharp suits and Isobel’s stylish ensembles add to their allure and charm.

Hopscotch’s storyline raises intriguing questions about the balance between national security and personal freedom.

These themes are still relevant today and contribute to the film’s enduring appeal.

The movie’s success led to a 1986 television adaptation starring Barry Sloane as Miles Kendig.

Although the TV series only ran for one season, it further expanded the world of Hopscotch.

Hopscotch provides a satirical commentary on the inner workings of intelligence agencies.

Through humor and wit, the movie highlights the bureaucracy and power struggles within these organizations.

The film’s soundtrack enhances the comedic and suspenseful moments.

The music adds another layer to the storytelling, heightening the emotions and tension on screen.

Hopscotch was a departure from director Ronald Neame’s previous works, which were primarily dramas.

The film showcased Neame’s versatility as a director and his ability to handle different genres.

Hopscotch has stood the test of time and continues to be enjoyed by audiences today.

The film’s clever writing, memorable characters, and entertaining plot make it a must-watch for fans of comedy and espionage.


Hopscotch is a delightful and entertaining movie that has captured the hearts of audiences worldwide. With its engaging storyline, talented cast, and impressive direction, it’s no wonder that this film has become a beloved classic. Whether you’re a fan of comedy, romance, or adventure, Hopscotch offers a perfect blend of all three genres. From its witty dialogue to its heartwarming moments, this movie is sure to leave a smile on your face. So gather your friends and family, grab some popcorn, and get ready for a hop-tastic movie experience!


Q: Who directed Hopscotch?

A: Hopscotch was directed by Ronald Neame.

Q: When was Hopscotch released?

A: Hopscotch was released on September 26, 1980.

Q: Who stars in Hopscotch?

A: The movie stars Walter Matthau, Glenda Jackson, and Sam Waterston.

Q: What is the genre of Hopscotch?

A: Hopscotch is a combination of comedy, romance, and adventure.

Q: Where was Hopscotch filmed?

A: The movie was primarily filmed in various locations in the United States and Europe.

Q: Is Hopscotch based on a book?

A: Yes, Hopscotch is based on a novel of the same name by Brian Garfield.

Q: Is Hopscotch a family-friendly movie?

A: Yes, Hopscotch is suitable for a family audience. It contains humor that can be enjoyed by viewers of all ages.

Q: What is the running time of Hopscotch?

A: The movie has a running time of approximately 104 minutes.

Q: Does Hopscotch have any sequels?

A: No, Hopscotch does not have any official sequels.

Q: Where can I watch Hopscotch?

A: Hopscotch is available for streaming on various online platforms and can also be found on DVD and Blu-ray.

Was this page helpful?

Our commitment to delivering trustworthy and engaging content is at the heart of what we do. Each fact on our site is contributed by real users like you, bringing a wealth of diverse insights and information. To ensure the highest standards of accuracy and reliability, our dedicated editors meticulously review each submission. This process guarantees that the facts we share are not only fascinating but also credible. Trust in our commitment to quality and authenticity as you explore and learn with us.