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Permanent Vacation is a 1980 film directed, written and produced by Jim Jarmusch. It was the director's first release, and was shot on 16 mm film shortly after he dropped out of film school. This film is often credited as the birth of the director's original style and character schemes. The film won the Josef von Sternberg Award at the 1980 Mannheim-Heidelberg International Filmfestival.

Permanent Vacation
Permanent Vacation.jpg
Directed byJim Jarmusch
Produced byJim Jarmusch
Written byJim Jarmusch
StarringChris Parker
Music byJim Jarmusch
John Lurie
CinematographyTom DiCillo
James A. Lebovitz
Edited byJim Jarmusch
Distributed byCinesthesia
Release date
  • May 6, 1981 (1981-05-06) (U.S.)
Running time
75 min
CountryUnited States



The main character, played by Chris Parker, wanders around a dingy New York atmosphere and is confronted by a number of intriguing characters as he ponders the questions of life, and searches for a better place.



This film was also the first that musician John Lurie, a friend of Jarmusch, acted in and composed music for.

Jarmusch is also credited as helping with the music.


The film was released by the Criterion Collection as a special feature on the DVD for Jarmusch's Stranger than Paradise on September 4, 2007.[1]

The film was released on DVD and Blu-ray formats in the United Kingdom via Soda Pictures on March 23, 2015.[2][3]


  1. ^ "Stranger Than Paradise (1984) - The Criterion Collection". Retrieved 2012-04-02.
  2. ^ "Permanent Vacation [DVD] [1980]". Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  3. ^ "Permanent Vacation [Blu-ray] [1980]". Retrieved 10 July 2018.

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