The Movie

TV Series

Tidbits

3D computer models | Cardboard promo | Card model | Commercials | Die-cast toy | Flight helmet prop replica | Helicopter museum
Model kits | Planet Hollywood (Florida) | Plastic toys | Radio-controlled scale models | Related links | Sleeping bag | Spoof video clip
Stock video footage | Theme sheet music and renditions | Three-view drawing | "Thunder Blade" SEGA video game

3D computer models

Seecora Miroslav is one of several people who have created unofficial 3D models of Blue Thunder. He demonstrates an early version of this via a video clip in the game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Note that in both Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas there are side missions called "Vigilante" where you fly an Apache attack helicopter by the name of "Brown Thunder" (a not-so-subtle reference to Blue Thunder).


Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 1
creator: Miroslav Sıkora

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2
creator: MayroGeneration

FS2004
creator: Turbine Sound Studios

Grand Theft Auto V Blue Thunder mod
creator: SkylineGTRR34Freak

Model examples from others: FS 2004 & Blue Thunder | Blue Thunder Mod S64 Beta1 | FSX Blue Thunder

Cardboard promo

Photos and text contributed by Patrick Casey:

"I came across a Blue Thunder promo item—a model of the helicopter made of cardboard. It appears as though it's meant to be hung from the ceiling of a theater as it comes with a string and hook. It has a small sign under it with the Blue Thunder logo and graphics from the one sheet for the film."

Card model

Contributed by Mike Harper, June 11, 2013:

Following is a link to a detailed, and professionally done Japanese card/paper model rendition of Blue Thunder.


Commercials

Contributed by Ed Duca, February 14, 2017:

Blue Thunder makes a rare commercial appearance in a short-lived 1985 Superbowl commercial as part of Wang's "We're Gunning for IBM" ad campaign. It was shown only once, then pulled by Dr. Wang. It features Blue Thunder defending WANG by slowly flying up to the IBM office. Note the non-standard missiles/rockets attached to each wing stub for the sake of the ad. [archived copy of commercial]

"For years, computer companies have attacked IBM's hold on data processing—only to be slapped down; again and again.

Some were too small. Some too slow; and some just didn't have the weapons to fight back.

Until WANG. WANG mini-computers have the firepower to blow IBM data processing...right out of the office. Just give us a shot.

WANG. We're gunnin' for IBM."


Wikipedia notes that (emphasis added):

Wang was one of the first computer companies to advertise on television, and the first to run an ad during the Super Bowl in 1978. Their first ad literally cast Wang Laboratories as David and IBM as Goliath, several years before the famous 1984 Apple Computer ad. A later ad depicted Wang Laboratories as a helicopter gunship [Blue Thunder] taking aim at IBM.

Die-cast toy

Contributed by Paul Noel:

A die cast model of Blue Thunder was once made by Toyway in the "Sky Birds" collector series. They also did a U.S. Coast Guard version of Blue Thunder which was red. However, Stan Alton, of Toyway in Letchworth, U.K., notes that: "We still sell the Skybirds helicopters, but we do not stock any Blue Thunder product."

Flight helmet prop replica

Contributed by Thomas Dozier, October 6, 2016:

"Gentlemen, this is your Harrison Fire Control Helmet. This baby is the heart of your system."

"I have always wanted to build one of these since I was a kid. This is built from the same model HGU Series Dual Visor Flight Helmet that was used in the original Blue Thunder film. I added the rear control box that, in fiction, is supposed to be part of the Heads-Up Display (HUD) system. There is a VCR type jack in the back along with a removable cable so you can display it with or without it.

The boom mic was quite the adventure. After months of searching I realized there are no three section boom mics and the filmmakers custom made them for the film. Both the Blue Thunder helmet as well as the regular flight helmets in the film have these custom made boom mics. The first two sections are original vintage parts that match the film's helmet exactly, and then like the prop makers, I has to scratch built the front section. I was able to locate the exact vintage microphone as was used in the film. See the pics where the mics match and both have that cross looking front part.

The helmet has a new old stock original chin strap, not the new lesser quality ones, as well as a new old stock vintage leather roll also. It also features new old stock earphones. Both the earphones and boom mic work so this is an actual working flight helmet.

Depending on your head size you may or may not want to use the interior padding. It seems to be a medium helmet. I have a ginormus 25" head and I can get the helmet on with the ear cups and leather roll but not the interior padding. I would not recommend it if you have a huge head like me unless you just want it for display. I am going to leave the pads out and then the new owner can easily put them in if you want or if they have a bigger head use thinner inner padding.

I ordered a brand new, not a single scratch clear visor for the helmet but the tinted visor is used with light scratches. These are notorious for rubbing the top of the shell so I decided to leave the used one as a new one would likely get scratched after a few uses and let's be honest. You're going to put it on and raise and lower the visors and play running through the house...just like I did when I finished it today.

The color is a dead-on match which I was worried about as it's not a common blue.

All in all I am very happy with the helmet.

As of now, it's a one-of-a-kind. I belong to just about every prop board and I have never seen a replica of this helmet. I will probably build one for myself and if there is interest maybe build a few more to sell but they are surprisingly labor intensive.

Needless to say it does not have any targeting features. :)"

Helicopter museum

Found at the Helicopter Foundation International (HFI)

(Virtual Museum in progress)

Model kits


Monogram/Revell

Box description:

"It prowls the skies at 250mph, fighting crime with its sophisticated arsenal of aerial technology, weaponry and surveillance systems. APEX assigns the Blue Thunder team to law enforcement agencies from the FBI to the LAPD. In 1/32nd scale, this model is 13-9/16" long (34.3 cm) and is molded in metallic blue. Features include a detailed cockpit, Vulcan cannon, 3500 candlepower lights, miniature helmet and Blue Thunder decals."

Model details:

Some company may still have some of these model kits left, but as far as I know, this model is no longer in production; although I'd bet Revell still have the dies for it somewhere.

Aoshima Bunka Kyozai Co., Ltd

Luis Pacheco from Portugal shares photos of the detailed work he has been doing on an Aoshima Bunka Kyozai Co., Ltd Blue Thunder model: Blue Thunder - Aoshima 1:48


Kitech

Box description:

""Blue Thunder" Helicopter is from the 80s famous US movie which called Blue Thunder. It was the most lethal flying weapon invented. The whole fuselage is heavily protected with 1" thick armoured plates. It equipped with a forward-mounted 20mm electric cannon which can fire 4000 round of ammunition per minute. It has jet turbine engine with boost capability, enabling 360 degree loops; heat sensing infra-red filter for night vision; "Whisper Mode" for silent flights; three TV monitors: twin long range, high-sensitivity shotgun microphones; a Harrison helmet-mounted fire control/targeting system etc. Blue Thunder is the true "star" in the movie."

Model details:

Planet Hollywood (Florida)

Photos of the RC helicopter model from Planet Hollywood in Florida:


Plastic toys

Photos and text contributed by Alex Bickmore and Will Parsons:

"Below is a Blue Thunder helicopter from the movie and TV series. This toy is perfectly detailed and was made by Hong Kong's MultiToys Corp. in 1983. The figure is supposed to be Roy Scheider, and even has Roy's nose! This is a tough toy to find—it has spinning blades, opening cockpit, turning blades and movable rotary gun.

Both the main and tail rotors rotated, with the main rotor blades being pinned at the hub so that they swiveled for storage, much like naval helicopter designs. The canopy was hinged at the top and lifted up and rotated to the rear, and had two bench seats in the cockpit. Two 3-3/4 (1:18 scale) figures could fit in the front seat (no figures could fit in back seat). The gun was positioned on the left, which when you watch the movie or tv show, notice that the gun is on the right which is where most—if not all—chopper pilots sit. The toy has taller skids in relation to the actual helicopter, and the search lights and sensor turret on top of the nose are molded into the fuselage and are non-functional. The ferry mikes were molded to the canopy, and there are no ammunition chutes on the belly like the design used in the movie. In addition, on the toy, the ferry mikes are positioned toward the front of the canopy while on the real helicopter, they're positioned towards the rear (possibly so the canopy can swing back). The fuselage halves were joined together with screws, and the two side cameras, pylons, and exhausts on either side of the engine were also attached with screws (nine in total)."

Kevin Lentz has a website dedicated to the 3-3/4 inch action figures, with a section for the Blue Thunder toys that were made in South America. (Contributed by Will Parsons)

Photos and text contributed by Curtis Gropp on July 28, 2010 (seventh photo on February 27, 2011):

"My 3-year-old son likes to "borrow" toys from the neighbor kids. The other day he came home with a toy helicopter and I thought, "Gee, that looks familiar." Amazing how almost 30 years later the "Special" is still spawning imitators."

Radio-controlled scale models

Related links

Website name Description
Andrew Gilchrist's Blue Thunder page A very well-designed and informative Blue Thunder unofficial website
Internet Movie Database: Blue ThunderPlenty of movie detail, especially trivia.
Wikipedia's Blue Thunder articleAdditional info and links
RC Helicopters: The Portal A 1:5 scale Blue Thunder helicopter model
Chicago Reader A Blue Thunder movie review
Street Hawk Online Street Hawk fan page
Airwolf: The Website Airwolf fan page

Sleeping bag

Photos and text contributed by Curtis Gropp on March 2, 2016:

"A few weeks ago I was at a surplus warehouse for a Wasteland Weekend sales event and as I wandered the endless piles of olive drab uniforms, something caught my eye: A Blue Thunder sleeping bag."

Spoof video clip

There is a spoof "Blue Thunder vs. Airwolf" video clip in Video for Windows format (*.avi). It's a mock fight using edited video footage originally from the Airwolf Homepage and clips from the Blue Thunder movie.

Stock video footage

Contributed by Tom Higginson, September 19, 2012:

"This is Tom Higginson. I contributed the Pinkville location stuff a long time ago. ... Just type in "Blue Thunder" or "Black Helicopter" and see what comes up. Some of the aerial stock goes as long as three minutes. If you've never seen all this footage before, have fun! Running the 1980s filter and also key wording military, explosions, jets, etc. helps to find other stuff squirreled away on both websites."

"I'm certain almost all of the stuff you are looking at now was shot for the series. I've studied all the episodic aerials in order to identify the spots where they filmed them. I did that as part of my Airwolf location guidebook work. It's also helped that I got all my private helicopter license training in the same spots where most the Blue Thunder stuff was shot (former Indian Dunes area, Newhall Ranch, Lake Piru)."

Theme sheet music

Contributed by Curtis Gropp, May 26, 2010:

"A while back I went through my parents' piano bench looking for some of my old sheet music. I found my original (circa 1983) copy of "Theme from Blue Thunder (Murphy's Law)" by Arthur B. Rubinstein and brought it home. I finally bought a scanning printer and this was the first thing I scanned. Please help spread this to the world. :)"

Blue Thunder Theme Sheet Music (.pdf)

"I downloaded a program called SmartScore that "performs" scanned sheet music. It was no match for the actual score (which I finally bought on CD), but it was pretty neat to hear."

Blue Thunder SmartScore (.p7s)

Contributed by Mayro, December 16, 2010:

Mayro's keyboard rendition of the Blue Thunder sheet music (.mp3)

Contributed by Carl Kinsman, March 18, 2014:

Carl Kinsman's modern rendition of the Blue Thunder theme music (YouTube)

Three-View Drawing

The following color, three-view drawing was contributed by fan Mike Brown.

"Thunder Blade" SEGA video game

SEGA made a video game for the SEGA Master System console somewhat borrowing from Blue Thunder called "Thunder Blade" (the packaging for the game incorrectly shows a modified AH-1 Cobra attack helicopter).