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The Bridge on the River Kwai

The Bridge on the River Kwai(1957)

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  • Cary Grant was originally slated to star but he withdrew due to other commitments and was replaced by 'Holden, William' .
  • Howard Hawks was asked to direct, but declined. After the box-office failure of Land of the Pharaohs (1955), he didn't want a second one in a row, and he thought the critics would love this movie but the public would stay away. One particular concern was the all-male lead roles.
  • Michael Wilson (I) and Carl Foreman were on the blacklist of people with suspected Communist ties at the time the movie, and went uncredited. The sole writing credit, and so the Oscar for best adapted screenplay, went to Pierre Boulle, who wrote the original French novel but did not even speak English.
  • In 1984 the Academy retrospectively awarded the Oscar to Wilson and Foreman. Wilson did not live to see this; Foreman died the day after it was announced. When the film was restored, their names were added to the credits.
  • While the bridge in the story was constructed by prisoners in two months, the actual one built in Ceylon by a British company for the filming (425 feet long and 50 feet above the water) took eight months, with the use of 500 workers and 35 elephants. It was demolished in a matter of seconds, and the total cost was 85,000 pounds.

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