Original Australian Daybill movie poster. The Warriors is a 1979 American action thriller film directed by Walter Hill and based on Sol Yurick's 1965 novel of the same name. This novel was, in turn, based on Xenophon's Anabasis. The story centres on a New York City gang who must return to their home turf after they are framed for the murder of a respected gang leader. It was released in the United States on February 9, 1979. After reports of vandalism and violence, Paramount temporarily halted their advertising campaign and released theatre owners from their obligation to show the film. Despite its initially negative reception, The Warriors has since become a cult film, and it has spawned multiple spin-offs.