I Know My First Name Is Steven (1989) - Rotten Tomatoes

I Know My First Name Is Steven (1989)

I Know My First Name Is Steven





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Movie Info

Based on a true story, the two-part TV movie I Know My First Name Is Steven tells the tragic story of Steven Stayner. At age seven, Steven was kidnapped by two men who held him captive in a tiny shed for seven years. One of the men, a habitual child abuser named Kenneth Parnell, sexually assaulted Steven on an almost daily basis during the boy's ordeal. At age 14, Steven finally was able to escape and return to his family. But we are shown that Steven's safe return was far from the happy ending it appeared to be. He's forced to adjust to a family he'd never really known, to convince himself that his parents had never forgotten him, and to put his seven-year hell behind him. While I Know My First Name Is Steven ends on an upbeat note, the real Stayner died in a motorcycle accident only a few months after this film was first telecast in May 1989.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Television
Directed By:
Written By: J.P. Miller, Cynthia Whitcomb
In Theaters:
Lorimar Television


Corin Nemec
as Steven Stayner
Arliss Howard
as Kenneth Parnell (unc...
Cindy Pickett
as Kay Stayner
John Ashton
as Del Staynor
Luke Edwards
as Steven (Age 7)
Ray Walston
as Bob Augustine
Gregg Henry
as Off. Kean
Barbara Tarbuck
as School Counselor
Scott Curtis
as Cary Stayner (Age 11...
Stephanie Walski
as Cindy Stayner (Age 9...
June C. Ellis
as Miss Rebecca
Bryan Cranston
as Officer Dickenson
Jacob Gelman
as Timmy White
Shane McCabe
as Fat Clerk
Al Berry
as Customer
Robina Suwol
as Checker
Beth Grant
as Mrs. Beta
Raymond Cruz
as Punk #2
Barry Corbin
as Off. Warner
Peter Michael Goetz
as Pat Hallford
Alan Fudge
as Chief Johnson
Todd Eric Andrews
as Cary Stayner (Age 18...
Jonathan Perpich
as Officer Severeid
William Frankfather
as Judge Sabraw
John Vickery
as George McLure
James Ingersoll
as Joe Allen
John de Mita
as Dan Smith
Shannon Holt
as Angela White
Whitney Rydbeck
as Mr. Craft
Andrew Amador
as TV Reporter
Robert Balderson
as P.E. Teacher
Gregory "Mars" Marti...
as Victor (Age 14)
Wendy Gordon
as TV Newscaster
Tiiu Leek
as Reporter #1
Kim Maxwell
as Reporter #3
Jeff Olson
as Reporter #4
Dave Adams
as Cashier
Cassy Friel
as Cory Stayner (Age 4)
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for I Know My First Name Is Steven

There are no critic reviews yet for I Know My First Name Is Steven. Keep checking Rotten Tomatoes for updates!

Audience Reviews for I Know My First Name Is Steven

It was an excellent movie! A good movie to watch with children and a great discussion opener of kidnapping and talking with strangers.

Teshia M

It's the kind of movie that I want to teach my own kids reg: stranger danger and amongst family offenders.

Steven Hoheneder

This film revolves around the true story that begins in 1972 with the abduction of seven-year-old Steven Stayner, who was snatched on his way home from school by a known paedophile Kenneth Parnell. Steven was then kept as the man's son for seven years and forced for endure systematical sexual abuse at the hands of his kidnapper. He finally managed to escape when Parnell abducted a five-year-old boy whom Steven was determined would not suffer as he had. However, upon his return to his real family-- who never gave up that he would be reunited with them one day-- Steven found it hard to adjust as he had no understanding of what it was to be part of a loving family. It was horrifying to see what little was actually done to either help Steven, as not only when he did try to tell a teacher of his abduction, he was accused of lying and being ungrateful but Parnell was able to freely go from town-to-town with a child who was not his own and with no-one challenging this. This film depicts both the trauma Steven faces as he grew up in such horrifying circumstances and the grief of the parents he left behind but it also shows the courage of the Stayners, who all remained strong through everything. Corin Nemec is truly magnificent as Steven. He makes the movie come alive and makes you want to watch the truly brilliant film.

Danielle S

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