A Saintly Switch

A Saintly Switch is a 1999 American made-for-television comedy film directed by Peter Bogdanovich and produced by Walt Disney Entertainment, first exhibited on ABC's The Wonderful World of Disney. The plot revolves around an aging NFL quarterback and his stay-at-home wife switching bodies. The resultant comedy focuses on family values as she has to handle the highly-physical job while he has to handle art classes, bonding with his children, and morning sickness.

A Saintly Switch
A Saintly Switch
Written bySally Hampton
Haris Orkin
Directed byPeter Bogdanovich
StarringDavid Alan Grier
Vivica A. Fox
Music byTerence Blanchard
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Executive producer(s)Sally Hampton
Producer(s)Sally Hampton
Iain Paterson
CinematographyJames Gardner
Editor(s)David Baxter
Running time88 minutes
Production company(s)Walt Disney Television
Buena Vista
Original networkABC
Original releaseJanuary 21, 1999


At the film's opening, Dan and Sara Anderson are experiencing marital fallout. According to their preteen children, Clark and Annette, they both underestimate each other's role in the family. When a new position with the Saints takes them to New Orleans, they purchase a dilapidated mansion. Upon arrival, they start fighting worse than ever. The children go up into the attic and discover a book of spells, finding out from their babysitter, the resident voodoo sorceress, that this house once belonged to the most powerful sorceress in the area. Desperate to save their parents marriage, they cast a spell which inadvertently switches their parents' bodies.

The next morning, Dan wakes up in Sara's body, and she vice versa. They try to act like nothing has changed, which means they must do each other's jobs. After managing for about a day or two, still trying to keep the children (who already know what's going on) from finding out, Dan (in Sara's body) goes to the doctor because he (she) is feeling sick and discovers that he (she) is pregnant. The rest of the movie continues in similar fashion: as they live life in the other's body they grow to understand one another.

Thanks to the secret coaching she is receiving from Dan, Sara starts to get better at football. Her nurturing nature leads to her/him implementing the sort of "reward" list and tactics usually expected in a classroom. Surprisingly, this encourages the team so much that they start winning match after match. On the other hand, Dan is learning how to keep house and, though still rather uncomfortable, is rather enjoying his/her pregnancy and getting closer to the children in the process. As time passes, both parents really begin to understand what the other was complaining about, commenting on this to one another and wondering if they'll ever switch back or if they'll be stuck in each other's bodies for the rest of their lives.

When the pregnancy is about nine months along, the Saints come to the final game against the Redskins. If they win, Dan and the team go to the Super Bowl, and Dan would never have to worry about money or moving around again. Exhilarated, he and Sara embrace each other at the table and shout jubilantly at each other. This is heard by the children, who use this opportunity to finally confess all to their parents. They try to undo the spell, but fail. They call the babysitter, who translates that the spell will reverse once its purpose is complete: when their parents truly understand each other, they will be restored to their rightful bodies. However, there is a warning clause that implies that unless they manage to undo the spell before the birth of the baby, it will be permanent.

After the babysitter leaves and the Andersons go to bed, Dan and Sara apologize to each other, then kiss, which turns out to be the necessary act of understanding. The next day is the big match, and Dan's teammates instantly notice the difference in his behavior. While Sara goes into labor, his attempts to motivate his teammates with insults causes them to start fumbling. Clark reminds him to forget his old methods of motivation and revert to the "touchy-feely stuff" Sara used. In the hospital, Sara is puffing, panting, swearing, and ordering the nurses to bring her a TV. Around the time Dan wins the championship game, she finally gives in to nature and gives birth to a son. Later on, Dan is offered another job, but turns it down for his family.



The film was dedicated to the memory of Dave Waymer by its writer and producer, Sally Hampton, whose experience as an NFL wife (Hampton and Waymer were married in 1981) was the inspiration behind the story. Hampton said she had loosely based the lead characters on their personalities and, ironically, the lead actor, David Alan Grier and Waymer share the same July 1 birthday and Hampton, was born late afternoon of July 29 making her birthday only hours away from the July 30 birthdays of lead actress, Vivica A. Fox and director Peter Bogdanovich. Adding to these coincidences, principal photography of the film began on June 29, 1998, what would have been the 17th wedding anniversary of Hampton's marriage to Waymer.

Filming took place in Toronto. The project was being called In Your Shoes during that time.


Variety gave the film a positive review. Whilst noting plot similarities to Freaky Friday, Trading Places and The Parent Trap, as well as character stereotypes, Ray Richmond stated "there is so much to like about the genuinely canny show that all of the other stuff sounds nitpicky and harsh. Under Bogdanovich's sure hand, this is a stylish fantasy that leaves you with a smile."[1]


  1. ^ A Saintly Switch review Variety

External links

2000 in home video

The following events occurred in the year 2000 in home video.

Al Waxman

Albert Samuel Waxman, (March 2, 1935 – January 18, 2001) was a Canadian actor and director of over 1000 productions on radio, television, film, and stage. He is best known for his starring roles in the television series King of Kensington (CBC) and Cagney & Lacey (CBS).

Body swap appearances in media

Body swaps have been a common storytelling device in fiction media. Novels such as Vice Versa (1882) and Freaky Friday (1972) have inspired numerous film adaptations and retellings, as well as television series and episodes, many with titles derived from "Freaky Friday". In 2013, Disney Channel held a Freaky Freakend with seven shows that featured body-swapping episodes.This list features exchanges between two beings, and thus excludes similar phenomena of body hopping, spirit possession, transmigration, and avatars, unless the target being's mind is conversely placed in the source's body. It also excludes age transformations that are sometimes reviewed or promoted as body swaps, as in the movies Big and 17 Again; identity/role swaps, typically between twins, clones, look-alikes, or doppelgängers; and characters with multiple personalities.

Dave Waymer

David Benjamin Waymer Jr. (July 1, 1958 – April 30, 1993) was an American football safety in the National Football League (NFL).

Waymer graduated from West Charlotte High School in 1976. He played college football at Notre Dame, graduating in 1980, and was drafted in the 1980 NFL Draft in the second round by the New Orleans Saints, where he played until 1989. He was offered a contract by the New Jersey Generals of the United States Football League (USFL), but opted to remain in New Orleans, saying, "I always wanted to play there. I've got a lot of friends there, and that is where, hopefully, I'll finish out my career." He played for the San Francisco 49ers in 1990 and 1991 and the Los Angeles Raiders in 1992.

During the 1993 offseason, Waymer died on April 30, 1993, at the age of 34, from a heart attack induced by cocaine use.ABC/Wonderful World of Disney movie A Saintly Switch was dedicated to Waymer's memory in 1999.

David Alan Grier

David Alan Grier (born June 30, 1956) is an American actor and comedian. He is best known for his work on the sketch comedy television show In Living Color.

Frank Welker filmography

Frank Welker is an American actor who specializes in voice acting and has contributed character voices and other vocal effects to American television and motion pictures.

List of American comedy films

This is a list of American comedy films.

Comedy films are separated into two categories: short films and feature films. Any film over 40 minutes long is considered to be of feature-length (although most feature films produced since 1950 are considerably longer, those made in earlier boom quently ranged from little more than an hour to as little as four reels, which amounted to about 44 minutes).

List of Disney television films

Beginning in the 1950s, The Walt Disney Company began producing made-for-television films in their long-running anthology series Disneyland (later to be popularly known as The Wonderful World of Color and The Wonderful World of Disney). Many of Disney's TV movies were miniseries that aired in installments over several weeks, and a few (such as Davy Crockett and The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh) were later re-edited and released theatrically. During the 1980s, in addition to films made for their weekly TV series, Disney began making original films for their television network, The Disney Channel. After the acquisition of ABC in the 1990s, Disney began co-producing uncharacteristic films (Stephen King's Storm of the Century, Home Alone 4) as well as TV reunion movies (The Facts of Life Reunion, The Growing Pains Movie) and a few in conjunction with Hallmark Entertainment (Dinotopia, Mr. St. Nick, Snow White: The Fairest of Them All).

List of The Daily Show episodes (1999)

This is a list of episodes for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart in 1999, this was the first year to be hosted by Jon Stewart.

List of Walt Disney anthology television series episodes

Below is a list of episodes of the Walt Disney anthology television series.

List of comedy films of the 1990s

A list of comedy films released in the 1990s.

List of television films produced for American Broadcasting Company

This is a list of television films produced for American Broadcasting Company (ABC).

Peter Bogdanovich

Peter Bogdanovich (born July 30, 1939) is an American director, writer, actor, producer, critic and film historian. He is part of the wave of "New Hollywood" directors, and his most critically acclaimed and well-known film is the drama The Last Picture Show (1971).

Bogdanovich also directed the thriller Targets (1968), the screwball comedy What's Up, Doc? (1972), the comedy-drama Paper Moon (1973), They All Laughed (1981), the drama Mask (1985), and The Cat's Meow (2001). His most recent film, She's Funny That Way, was released in 2014.

Rue McClanahan

Eddi-Rue McClanahan (February 21, 1934 – June 3, 2010) was an American actress best known for her roles on television as Vivian Harmon on Maude (1972–78), Aunt Fran Crowley on Mama's Family (1983–84), and Blanche Devereaux on The Golden Girls (1985–92), for which she won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 1987.

Sally Hampton

Sally Hampton (born July 29, 1958 in St. Louis, Missouri) is an American writer and film producer living in the View Park Windsor-Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles.

She is the writer (with Haris Orkin) and producer (with Iain Paterson) of the ABC/Wonderful World of Disney movie "A Saintly Switch" (1999), which she dedicated to the memory of her first husband, Dave Waymer. She also wrote (together with Ben Cardinale) and produced "Living Straight" (2003).

The Caucus for Television Producers, Writers & Directors honored Sally Hampton with the Distinguished Service Award presented at the Beverly Hills Hotel December 7, 2007.Hampton's acting performances included episodes of the television shows:

"A Million to Juan"

"Adam 12"


"The Law and Harry McGraw"

"Simon & Simon"

"Knight Rider"


"The Dukes of Hazzard"

"Bare Essence"

"Trapper John, M.D."

"The Devlin Connection"

Shadia Simmons

Shadia Simmons (born June 28, 1986) is a Canadian actress, teacher, and director. She is best known for her role as Corrine Baxter in the television series Strange Days at Blake Holsey High, her recurring role as Emily on Life with Derek and for her starring role as Piper Dellums in the 2000 movie The Color of Friendship.

Vivica A. Fox

Vivica Anjanetta Fox (born July 30, 1964) is an American actress, producer and television host. Fox began her career with roles on the daytime television soap operas Days of Our Lives (1988) and Generations (1989–91), subsequently shifting to the prime-time slot starring opposite Patti LaBelle, in the NBC sitcom Out All Night (1992–93). Fox's breakthrough came in 1996, with roles in two box-office hit films, Roland Emmerich's Independence Day and F. Gary Gray's Set It Off.

Fox later has starred in films Booty Call (1997), Soul Food (1997), Why Do Fools Fall in Love (1998), Kingdom Come (2001), Two Can Play That Game (2001), and Boat Trip (2002). Fox played Vernita Green in Kill Bill, and played supporting parts in films like Ella Enchanted (2004). Fox had the leading roles in the short-lived Fox sitcom Getting Personal (1998), and CBS medical drama City of Angels (2000). From 2003 to 2006, she co-starred in and produced the Lifetime crime drama series, Missing, for which she received NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series. Fox has also produced a number of straight-to-video films.

Feature films
Wild card berths (5)
Division championships (7)
Conference championships (1)
League championships (1)
Ring of Honor
Current league affiliations
Seasons (53)

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