I have seen Juggernaut (1974) recently. There is a scene in the end of the movie when the bomb disposal expert, Fallon has to choose one of the two wires (red or blue) to cut in order to disarm the bomb. Finally, Fallon makes a choice by intuition.

I have seen the similar scenes in several other movies (one of the parts of Die Hard, for example).

So, my questions are: What was the first movie to introduce "cut the wire" bomb disposal? Is it Juggernaut itself?

A quick search on Google and IMDB didn't reveal any info.

  • 2
    Goldfinger (1964) has a bomb disposal scene. Don't remember how it was done though. Commented Aug 28, 2012 at 15:17
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    @AnindyaMozumdar thanks for yet another link. I think the reference to Television Tropes in Bill the Lizard's answer has an explanation. Commented Aug 28, 2012 at 15:59
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    Another Time, Another Place (1958) has a bomb disposal scene. But it's a black and white film with no mention of the colours, and the sapper just cuts some insulation then four wires separately.
    – Hugo
    Commented Aug 29, 2012 at 5:06
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    Must be pre-Goldfinger. The sequence there is a spoof on the "which wire" idea, with Bond agonising over a choice, before the expert comes in and at 7 secs, "007", simply switches the bomb off! Commented Jun 12, 2013 at 12:48

2 Answers 2


A lot of people seem to think Juggernaut is the earliest film to use the "wire dilemma" trope. I found references to it everywhere from Amazon reviews to rap lyrics. Slightly more reliable references include:

Movies you should own: Juggernaut (Terror on the Britannic)

The first film to develop the 'red wire/blue wire' dilemma, it's a tense piece directed by Richard 'Superman II' Lester, with dialogue by Alan 'Beiderbecke' Plater, that while featuring an all-star cast is in reality a mesmerising monologue by Harris and a musing on the nature of death. It's a movie you should own.

JUGGERNAUT (1974) - a very British disaster movie

There's a scene in the film that's famous, but you probably don’t realise it was shown here first. Where the crucial decision has to be made – to cut the blue wire or the red wire.

It's also the oldest film listed in Televison Tropes - Wire Dilemma article.

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    From Juggernaut's subtitles: "On no account cut the red wire before isolating the relay contacts."
    – Hugo
    Commented Aug 29, 2012 at 5:21

One of the "deleted scenes" in Griffith's 1915 silent The Birth of a Nation had a red wire/blue wire bomb defusing dilemma. The scene was cut because the color issue didn't work in a B&W film.

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    That's interesting. Could you please add some references to your answer? Commented Aug 28, 2012 at 15:57
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    It was monochromatic, but not black and white. Commented Feb 4, 2013 at 5:33
  • This would be insanely good if it was true, but it really needs a reference.
    – Prometheus
    Commented Jan 13, 2021 at 20:15

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