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69 Somewhere in Time Trivia Questions & Answers

Somewhere in Time
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There are 69 questions on this topic. Last updated Dec 10 2022.
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1 Richard Matheson, who wrote the novel "Bid Time Return" (upon which "Somewhere in Time" is based), got the idea for its plot after seeing a photograph of a long-deceased actress. Who was the actress?
Answer: Maude Adams

Adams was a famous American stage actress from 1892 to 1943. She entered the spotlight thanks to her Shakespearian work, as well as her 1500 performances of J.M. Barrie's "Peter Pan" in 1905-1907, 1913, and 1918. Here's a clip from her bio: "She had always kept her private life from public view, and she lived quietly in retirement until her death in Tannersville, New York, on July 17, 1953." Sound familiar?
trivia question Quick Question
What is the acronym of the official "Somewhere in Time" fan club (or, as its founder prefers to call it, "appreciation society")?

2 In the past, Elise McKenna is starring in a play at the Grand Hotel. Who wrote it?
Answer: Bartlett Wells

Seen clearly on the placard outside the theater. As far as I can tell, both the play ('Wisdom Of the Heart') and its author are entirely fictional constructs.
3 Which of the following movies did the director of 'Somewhere In Time' NOT also direct?
Answer: He directed all of these films

Frenchman Jeannot Swarc has enjoyed a rather eclectic career. He has also directed episodes of several popular TV series, including 'Ally McBeal,' 'Providence,' and 'The Practice.'
4 What college did Richard Collier attend?
Answer: Millfield

Every setting required by 'Somewhere in Time's' script was found on Mackinac Island.
5 Matheson realized that he had found the setting for his novel after staying at a particular hotel. It was not, however, the Grand Hotel in Mackinac Island, Michigan (where most of the movie takes place). In what state did Matheson set his novel?
Answer: California

Matheson stayed at the luxurious Coronado Hotel in San Diego, California. That location was briefly considered as the setting of the movie, but director Jeannot Swarc was uncomfortable with revisiting the site of the 1959 Billy Wilder classic "Some Like It Hot".
6 Richard Collier finally finds Elise walking by the lake. She speaks first. What does she say to him?
Answer: is it you

Richard is surprised to hear these words, but manages to answer with a 'Yes.'
7 Who composed the score for 'Somewhere In Time'?
Answer: John Barry

Barry has scored over a hundred motion pictures, including quite a few installments of the 'James Bond' series.
8 What convinces Richard that he traveled back in time?
Answer: hotel register

Richard discovers an old hotel register in the attic of the hotel that shows the time and date that he registered back in 1912.
9 Director Jeannot Swarc notes that one of the reasons that he decided to cast Jane Seymour was the fact that she answered "no" to a certain question. What was the question?
Answer: "Have you ever been in love?"

Apparently, of the dozens of actresses who auditioned for the part of Elise McKenna, Seymour was the only one who said "no" when asked that question. Swarc states that that answer probably played a part in her being cast in the role.
10 Richard and Elise's first meeting is interrupted by Elise's manager, William Robinson. What is Robinson's middle name?
Answer: Fawcett

Stated several times throughout the film. Christopher Plummer did an excellent job with the role, I felt.
11 The first scene of the film takes place just after the performance of a play written by Richard Collier (Christopher Reeve). What is the name of that play?
Answer: 'Too Much Spring'

We later see a framed program from this play stating that it premiered on May 19, 1972 at Millfield College.
12 Richard is attempting to convince himself that it is what day?
Answer: June 27, 1912

Richard knows that this is the date that he went back in time.
13 Christopher Reeve had a rather unusual item hidden away on Mackinac Island during the shoot. What was it?
Answer: an airplane

Reeve, who was an avid pilot at the time, had a small plane stashed at the local airport. He and Jane Seymour would, on occasion, sneak away from the location in the middle of the night and take impromptu flights -- he even taught Seymour how to fly on one of their jaunts. Furthermore, when Reeve learned that Teresa Wright (who played Laura Roberts) was nervous about possibly missing a rehearsal for a Broadway play in which she was imminently set to appear, he assured her that if her "Somewhere in Time" scenes ran longer than the schedule suggested, he would personally fly her to New York to make sure that she would be on time.
14 Elise has a young French woman as her personal assistant. What is her name?
Answer: Marie

When Richard first knocks on the door of Elise's hotel room, it is Marie who answers. We see her again later, after Elise's performance. (And for all those etymologists out there, 'Paige' is a French name meaning 'young attendant.' That was kind of a red herring, I guess.
15 Blink and you miss it, but a supporting member of the 'ER' cast appears briefly in the scene described in the last question. Who is it?
Answer: William H. Macy

Macy, who played Dr. David Morgenstern on 'ER,' appears as a critic in the opening scene. He has no discernible lines, but is clearly identifiable as the guy with the red sweater tied around his neck, standing closest to Christopher Reeve. The closing credits of the film also state that 'Cheers' alum George Wendt is in the same scene somewhere, but I'm damned if I can spot him, and I've seen the movie at least 25 times!
16 What time does Richard check into the Grand Hotel?
Answer: 9:18 a.m.

The hotel clerk almost gives him the wrong room.
17 The night before Elise's performance, Robinson gives Elise some last-minute pointers. She apparently knows the last comment he offers by heart, as she says it along with him. What is it?
Answer: 'Excess within control.'

They share a smile at her playfulness, and it's clear that despite Robinson's dark side, he truly does care very much for Elise.
18 In the same scene, Richard introduces his girlfriend to someone in the crowd. What is his girlfriend's name?
Answer: Shelly

We're never told what became of Shelly, but when we next see Richard eight years later, he has just broken up with a different woman entirely.
19 What is the name of the play Elise's theater company is rehearsing?
Answer: 'Wisdom of the Heart'

'Bid Time Return' is the name of the original story that 'Somewhere in Time' is adapted from.
20 One of the most moving scenes in the film takes place when Elise McKenna abandons the script of the play she is starring in for the purpose of delivering a monologue declaring her love for Richard Collier, at whom she stares directly throughout this sequence. When this scene was shot, at whom was Seymour looking?
Answer: Richard Matheson

The first time the scene was shot, Seymour had the privilege of looking directly at Reeve. Unfortunately, there was a technical problem with the take, and Seymour was forced to perform the scene again, well after Reeve had left the production. During the take that was used in the final film, Seymour was staring directly at author Richard Matheson -- and he was the only person sitting in the theater.
21 Richard and Elise spend the day together on scenic Mackinac Island. Which of the following things do they NOT do during their visit?
Answer: Have their portrait painted

They pause briefly to watch a man painting portraits, but never sit for one themselves. Time is short, after all!
22 We see a number of different time periods throughout the movie. Which is NOT one of them?
Answer: 1976

When we first see Richard and the 'old' Elise at Millfield College, it is 1972. When next we see Richard, a title card tells us that it is 'eight years later' -- the year that the film was released, 1980. He then travels to 1912.
23 What is the name of Elise McKenna manager who is determined to keep her away from Richard?
Answer: William Fawcett Robinson

Played by the wonderful Christopher Plummer. 'Excess within Control'.
24 Christopher Reeve was rather distracted during the shooting of a critical sequence because he had just learned, via telephone, that his spouse was pregnant. In what sequence was Reeve, by his own admission, noticeably distracted?
Answer: the "picnic" scene in Elise's hotel room

Reeve states that he felt that he was extremely distracted that day, and that Jane Seymour really "made" the scene, as his mind was elsewhere. Personally, I thought that his performance was excellent in every scene.
25 Richard asks Elise why she seemed to recognize him on first sight. What is her explanation?
Answer: Robinson somehow knew that he was coming, and warned her

Elise suggests, without actually stating it outright, that Robinson possesses some precognitive ability. Does he, or is he just an extremely good (or paranoid) guesser? We never really find out.