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As noted in historical sources, during the Korean War (25 June 1950-27 July 1953) North Korean forces captured and/or interned over 7,000 United States soldiers. Although the United Nations had adopted as of August 12, 1949 the "Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War (POW)," delineating just treatment for POWs, North Korea was not a signatory on the document. During the conflict, American POWs were routinely underfed, poorly housed and brutally beaten. Over 2,500 American POWs died while in captivity.
According to a September 12, 1955 Hollywood Reporter news item, Glenn Ford was considered for the lead role. Portions of the film were shot on location in California at Travis Air Force Base, Fairfield and San Francisco and the Bay Area.