Tarantula is a 1955 science fiction film directed by Jack Arnold, and starring John Agar, Mara Corday and Leo G. Carroll. The screenplay by Robert M. Fresco and Martin Berkeley was based on a story by Arnold inspired by Fresco's teleplay for Science Fiction Theatre, "No Food for Thought", which was aired on May 14, 1955. Wearing pajamas, a man with Neanderthal features stumbles through the Arizona desert. He falls and dies. Dr. Matt Hastings (John Agar), a bright, handsome and sympathetic doctor from the small town of Desert Rock, is called to view the body. Asked to give an opinion as to cause of death, he finds himself perplexed. Surprised to learn the deceased was someone he knew – biological research scientist Eric Jacobs – Dr. Hastings suggests he be given permission to perform an autopsy to learn why the man's face is distorted beyond recognition. The sheriff refuses, judging an autopsy unnecessary as Jacobs' associate, Dr. Gerald Deemer (Leo G. Carroll), signed the death certificate and there is no indication of foul play.