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The working title for this film was The Unholy Spring. Voice-over narration preceding the opening credits introduces Fort Lauderdale, FL and explains that over 20,000 college students flock to the tropical vacation destination during the two weeks of spring break, turning the area into a "sizeable chunk of bedlam." The closing cast credits differ in order from the opening credits which read: "Dolores Hart, George Hamilton, Yvette Mimieux, Jim Hutton, Barbara Nichols, Paula Prentiss and Chill Wills."
According to a December 30, 1959 Hollywood Reporter news item, Chuck Walters was signed to direct the film, but was later replaced by Henry Levin. A May 26, 1960 Hollywood Reporter news item stated that actor Burt Reynolds was originally considered for a role in the film. A October 21, 1960 Daily Variety article noted that producer Joe Pasternak cast mostly unknown younger actors in the film, in an attempt to change the control large stars had over the movie industry. According to a August 28, 1960 Los Angeles Examiner news item, Sean Flynn, son of Errol Flynn, was to make his debut in Where the Boys Are; however, his appearance in the film has not been confirmed. Paula Prentiss and popular singer Connie Francis made their feature film debuts in Where the Boys Are. A September 2, 1959 Hollywood Reporter news item adds Patricia Blair to the cast, but her appearance in the final film has not been confirmed. Portions of the film were shot on location in Fort Lauderdale, FL, where the film had a premiere on February 21, 1961, after it had opened in other cities.