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According to an November 18, 1970 Variety article, Marlon Brando was originally considered for a lead role. Although set in New Mexico, Chato's Land was shot on location in Almeria, Spain by British filmmaker Michael Winner.
According to the Box Office review, Winner, who insisted on authenticity, made the cast grow their own beards and mustaches, instead of using false ones. When, in a June 4, 1972 The Sunday Times article, a critic raised the issue of whether the numerous horses portrayed as injured and killed in the film were actually harmed during the film's shooting in Spain, Winner assured the readers of The Sunday Times in a follow-up letter that the "falling" horses were unharmed and any dead horses were animals already dying, which he purchased from the local slaughterhouse. The Box Office review mistakenly listed the running time as 110 minutes.
Chato's Land was the first Charles Bronson film directed by Winner. Shortly after completing the picture, Winner directed Bronson in The Mechanic (1972, see below), which was shot primarily in Los Angeles. They collaborated on four additional films, including The Stone Killer (1973) and the enormously popular Death Wish (1974), Death Wish II (1982) and Death Wish III (1985).