Easy Rider is a 1969 American independent road drama film written by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, and Terry Southern, produced by Fonda, and directed by Hopper. Fonda and Hopper play two bikers who travel through the American Southwest and South, carrying the proceeds from a cocaine deal. The success of Easy Rider helped spark the New Hollywood era of filmmaking during the early 1970s. A landmark counterculture film, and a "touchstone for a generation" that "captured the national imagination," Easy Rider explores the societal landscape, issues, and tensions towards adolescents in the United States during the 1960s, such as the rise of the hippie movement, drug use, and communal lifestyle. Real drugs were used in scenes showing the use of marijuana and other substances.Released by Columbia Pictures on July 14, 1969, Easy Rider earned $60 million worldwide from a filming budget of no more than $400,000. Critics have praised the performances, directing, writing, soundtrack, and visuals. It received two Academy Awards nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor (Jack Nicholson). In 1998, the film was selected for preservation by the Library of Congress for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".