Sylvester Stallone hated the first 3.5 hour cut of “Rambo: First Blood Part I” so much, that it made him and his agent sick. He wanted to buy the movie and destroy it thinking it was a career killer. Ultimately, a heavily re-edited 93 minute cut was sent for theatrical release.
The FBI suspected Frank Capra’s classic Christmas movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” was Communist propaganda when first released.
George Lucas built his $4 Billion ‘Star Wars’ empire by accepting a salary of $125K instead of $1M in the first Star Wars movie, but keeping the right to direct sequels and licensing (sell toys, posters, T-shirt, etc.)
The Day After, a 1983 made- for- TV movie about nuclear war and it’s horrific effects, was watched by about 100 million people when it aired. President Reagan was left deeply depressed after viewing it, the film is now seen as having pushed him to start advocating nuclear disarmament.
Rubber is a 2010 French film about a tire that comes to life and kills people using its psychic powers. It was a box office failure, earning only $100,370 compared to its $500,000 budget.
Before filming LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring, Jackson made the principal actors train for 6 weeks in sword fighting, riding and boating to allow the cast to bond. Later, most of the actors portraying the Fellowship got a tattoo with the Elvish symbol for the number 9.
When the US Navy refused to cooperate during the filming of the movie Crimson Tide, filmmakers waited outside Pearl Harbor for a submarine to head to sea and chased it with a boat and helicopter to get the shot of it submerging.
Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory was financed by the Quaker Oats company to sell their real-life Wonka Bar. The bar was taken off shelves after a few months due to problems with its formula, but the film went on to become a cult classic.
The inspiration for “Nacho Libre” was Fray Tormenta, a Mexican priest who turned to wrestling to raise money for an orphanage, but he himself got the idea and name from a 1963 film… about a priest who turns to wrestling to raise money for an orphanage.
Disney executives were initially confused by Johnny Depp’s performance as Jack Sparrow in POTC, questioning whether he was drunk or gay. The CEO of Disney proclaimed that Depp was ruining the film. Depp’s response to Disney executives was they could trust him with his choices or let him go.