Welcome to the WWII Forums! Log in or Sign up to interact with the community.

The Longest Day

Discussion in 'WWII Films & TV' started by el-tel, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. el-tel

    el-tel New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    Really suprised that no-one has mentioned this totally vintage all time, all star classic ok its slightly on th elong side so set aside an entire afteroon but its one of the best war films of all time (withstanding John Waynes dubious acting!)
     
  2. anirban3598

    anirban3598 New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    The operational plan in the movie is pretty close to that of the actual operation. Many of the small details, like the rubber dummies used to fake airborne landings and the crickets used to identify friend from foe by American paratroopers, were used in this film.
    The film accurately portrays the confusion of the Germans about the whether the invasion was for real or a diversion, and it also shows the relative ease of the attack at Utah (the wrong beach, a fortunate error) compared to Omaha. Certainly one of the good war movies
     
  3. Spitfire XIV-E

    Spitfire XIV-E New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2007
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Swindon,Wilts
    via War44
    There is a good documentary made by Daryl F Zanuck (The Producer) about 10 years after the film was made. He went back to the invasion beaches and showed some of the locations where filming took place. I have it on a boxed VHS version of the film. Very informative.
     
  4. Dave War44

    Dave War44 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    Messages:
    483
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    This trivia from the IMDb is always a good read:

    Richard Todd (playing Major John Howard, Officer Commanding D Company of The 2nd Battalion The Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, Air Landing Brigade, 6th Airborne Division) was himself in Normandy on D-Day, and participated as Capt. Todd of the 7th Parachute Battalion, 5th Parachute Brigade, British 6th Airborne Division. His battalion actually went into action as reinforcements, via a parachute jump (after the gliders had landed and completed the initial coup de main assault). Capt. Richard 'Sweeney' Todd was moved from the plane he was originally scheduled to jump from, to another. The original plane was shot down, killing everyone on board.
    As a 22-year-old private, Joseph Lowe landed on Omaha Beach on D-Day with the Second Ranger Battalion and scaled the cliffs at Point-Du-Hoc. He scaled those hundred-foot cliffs all over again, for the cameras, some 17 years later.
    Darryl F. Zanuck was quoted in an interview as saying that he didn't think much of actors forming their own production companies, citing The Alamo (1960), produced by John Wayne, as a failure of such ventures. Wayne found out about this interview before being approached by Zanuck, and refused to appear in the film unless he was paid $250,000 for his role (when the other famous actors were being paid $25,000). Wayne got his requested salary.
    Henry Grace was not an actor when being cast as Dwight D. Eisenhower, but his remarkable resemblance to Eisenhower got him the role.
    Sean Connery, who made his debut as James Bond also in 1962, acted in the movie along with Gert Fröbe and Curd Jürgens - two future Bond villains.
    Former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower was considered for the role of himself in the film, and he indicated his willingness. However, it was decided that makeup artists couldn't make him appear young enough to play his WWII self.
    Red Buttons was cast in the film after he ran into Darryl F. Zanuck in a Paris cafe.
    Due to the massive cost overruns on the film Cleopatra (1963) (which was filming contemporaneously), Darryl F. Zanuck had to agree to a fixed filming budget. After he had spent the budgeted amount he started using his own money to pay for the production.
    When cost overruns on Cleopatra (1963) threatened to force 20th Century Fox to shut down production of this film, Darryl F. Zanuck flew to New York to save his project. After an impassioned speech to Fox's board, Zanuck regained control of the company he founded, ultimately finishing this picture and getting the production of "Cleopatra" under control.
    According to fellow veterans major Werner Pluskat was not at his command bunker in Omaha Beach when the first wave of the invasion forces landed, instead he was in a bordello in Caen.
    The theme song to the movie, by Paul Anka, was used as the Regimental march of the Canadian Airborne Regiment (1968-1995)
    The piper who played the bagpipes as Lord Lovat's commandos stormed ashore is played by the late Pipe Major Leslie de Laspee who was at the time Pipe Major of the London Scottish Pipe Band, and personal piper to HM the Queen Mother. The actual man who did this stirring deed on D-Day is Bill Millin. He recently donated that very set of pipes to the national war memorial in Edinburgh Castle.
    While clearing a section of the Normandy beach near Ponte du Hoc, the film's crew unearthed a tank that had been buried in the sand since the original invasion. Mechanics cleaned it off, fixed it up and it was used in the film as part of the British tank regiment.
    One of producer Darryl F. Zanuck's big worries was that, as filming of the actual invasion drew near, he couldn't find any working German Messerschmitts, which strafed the beach, or British Spitfires, which chased them away. He finally found two Messerschmitts that were being used by the Spanish Air Force, and two Spitfires that were still on active duty with the Belgian Air Force, and rented all four of them for the invasion scenes.
    An estimated 23,000 troops were supplied by the U.S., Britain and France for the filming. (Germans only appeared as officers in speaking roles.) The French contributed 1,000 commandos despite their involvement in the Algerian War at the time.
    The Spitfire planes needed to be fitted with new Rolls-Royce engines before being usable.
    No gliders of the sort used in the invasion were available, so Darryl F. Zanuck commissioned new duplicates from the same company that built the originals.
    The fleet scenes were filmed using 22 ships of the U.S. Sixth Fleet during maneuvers off Corsica between June 21-30, 1961. The cameras had to avoid shooting the area where the fleet's aircraft carrier was positioned, as there were no carriers in the invasion.
    Just before shooting began in Corsica, Darryl F. Zanuck was approached by a man stating he represented the beach owners. He insisted on a $15,000 payment or else they would drive modern cars along the beach. Zanuck paid the money, but it was later discovered to be a scam as there were no private beaches in Corsica. Zanuck eventually won damages after an eight-year lawsuit.
    As there was a nudist colony two miles inland from the Corsican beach, it was necessary to post signs warning the colonists not to approach the water during filming.
    During shooting in Ste. Mère-Eglise, traffic was stopped, stores were closed and the power was shut down in order not to endanger the paratroopers who were unused to night drops in populated areas. Still, the lights and staged fire proved too difficult to work around, and only one or two jumpers managed to land in the square - with several suffering minor injuries. One of the initial jumpers broke both legs in landing. Ultimately, plans to use authentic jumps were abandoned, opting instead for rigged jumps from high cranes.
    The cameo part of the British Padre was first offered to Dirk Bogarde.
    Eddie Albert, who played Colonel Thompson, was a World War II veteran. However, Albert actually served in the Pacific, not in Europe.
    As would be done again later in the WWII epic, Patton (1970), the Twentieth-Century Fox logo is never shown onscreen in this film.
    With a $10,000,000 budget, this was the most expensive black & white film ever made until Schindler's List (1993).
    During the filming of the landings at Omaha Beach, the American soldiers appearing as extras didn't want to jump off the landing craft into the water because they thought it would be too cold. Robert Mitchum, who played General Norm Cota, finally got disgusted with them and jumped in first, at which point the soldiers had no choice but to follow his example.
    In Italy for the filming of Cleopatra (1963), Roddy McDowall became so frustrated with the numerous delays during its production, he begged Darryl F. Zanuck for a part in this picture just so he could do some work. He ended up with a small role as an American soldier.
    A number of sources credit Christopher Lee and Geoffrey Bayldon as being in this project but Lee denies working on the film and Bayldon is nowhere to be seen in the final print.
    One of the very first World War II films made by an American studio in which the members of each country spoke nearly all their dialog in the language of that country: the Germans spoke German, the French spoke French, and the Americans and the British spoke English. There were subtitles on the bottom of the screen to translate the various languages.
    Richard Todd, veteran of the action at the bridge at Benouville (later renamed Pegasus Bridge) (see Item 1 above), was offered the chance to play himself but joked, "I don't think at this stage of my acting career I could accept a part 'that' small." He played the commander of the actual bridge assault itself, Major John Howard, instead.
    Leslie Phillips only has one line in this movie.
    Alec Guinness was sought for a cameo.
    The role of Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Vandervoort was actively sought by Charlton Heston, but the last-minute decision of John Wayne to take a role in the film prevented Heston from participating.
    Four Spitfires were used in the strafing sequence. They were all ex-Belgian target tugs and all were MK9's. The serial no.s were MH415, MK297, MK923 and MH434 and all are still extant. The Spitfires were assembled and co-ordinated by former free French Spitfire pilot Pierre Laureys who flew with 340 Squadron, a free French unit in the RAF. The 4 Spitfires were of course re-painted in 340 Squadron markings. Spitfire MK923 was between 1963 and 1998 owned by film actor and Oscar winner Cliff Robertson.
    In his memoirs Christopher Lee recalls being rejected for a role in the movie because he didn't look like a military man (he served in the RAF during WW2).
    Average Shot Length = ~8 seconds. Median Shot Length = 6.5 seconds
    The Messerschmitts used to portray Luftwaffe fighters were not Bf-109s, but were actually Bf-108 Taifuns, a four-seat cabin monoplane design with a wider fuselage.
    Kenneth More, playing Capt. Colin Maud, carried the shillelagh Maud had used in the actual invasion. Maud loaned it to More so the actor could use it in the film.
    Sean Connery asked that his scenes be filmed quickly so he could get to Jamaica in time to star in Dr. No (1962).
    Richard Dawson's film debut.
    In researching his contribution to the script, Romain Gary uncovered one of Cornelius Ryan's mistakes: the casino at Ouistreham had not existed on June 6, 1944. Since the casino set had already been built, however, the scene taking place there was filmed anyway.
    Despite the Cornelius Ryan connection, the only stars to appear in both this film and A Bridge Too Far (1977) are Sean Connery and Wolfgang Preiss.
    The character who calls the homing pigeons on Juno beach "Traitors" when they appear to fly east towards Germany is Canadian journalist Charles Lynch, who landed with the Canadians and covered the landings for Reuters.
    There was some controversy over the casting. At 54, John Wayne was 27 years older than Colonel Vandervoort had been at the time of D-Day. At 52, Robert Ryan was fifteen years older than General Gavin had been.
    Field Marshal Erwin Rommel's (Werner Hinz) son, Manfred Rommel is played by Michael Hinz, the real life son of Werner Hinz.
     
  5. AzraelValley

    AzraelValley New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2007
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Philippines
    via War44
    It is among the famous war movie in our country. I would never forget the song. I think it goes like this.
    The Longest day! The longest day!
    This will be the longest day!
    Many men will be soldier!
    Many men will fall fighting!
    As they call the longest day!
    It is something like that. I can’t remember the whole song.
     
  6. Indiescribe

    Indiescribe New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    Yes, such a great movie. And most of the legends of our cinematic times acted in it. Richard Burton, Sean Connery, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, Rod Steiger, and John Wayne amongst others.
    And it was a "Long" movie at 3 hrs.
     
  7. AzraelValley

    AzraelValley New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2007
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Philippines
    via War44
    I agree!
    It is one of the longest movies that I have watched. I think that it is also one of the famous war movies around the world. I have watched this movie when I was still a young boy, although I don’t know the actors/actresses back then I think that they have given life to the story.
     
  8. writerip

    writerip New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    I have yet to watch this one, but my son (who has practically ever war movie he could find) says it is by far his favorite.
     
  9. Froix

    Froix New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2008
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Asia
    via War44
    Definitely a classic. This has to be my father's favorite movie. He's watched it hundreds of times meaning I've watched it a couple of times. :wink:
     
  10. Jim

    Jim New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    Messages:
    3,324
    Likes Received:
    8
    via War44
    We have a lot in common your Father and I .. :lol:
     
  11. History-buff1944

    History-buff1944 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Messages:
    525
    Likes Received:
    1
    via War44
    As an addition to Duke and his requested salary on TLD. Duke gave the entire salary away to charities.
     
  12. History-buff1944

    History-buff1944 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Messages:
    525
    Likes Received:
    1
    via War44
    Ditto plus, I have around 15 or so stills from this movie including a great shot of Jeffrey Hunter as that Engineer Sergeant on the beach and calling for his men. I also have another great still showing Sir Sean Connery in his landing craft before they hit the beach.
     
  13. worldwar

    worldwar New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2012
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    Nice movie....

    Movie is worth watching several times.
     
  14. History-buff1944

    History-buff1944 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Messages:
    525
    Likes Received:
    1
    via War44
    You all might be in for a treat on some of these movies. Reason being is that I have a volunteer of sorts who is supposed to teach me how to post images I have of some of these movies--which I have on a photo CD. So if that happens? Ill start posting my images by the weekend.
     
  15. Cabel1960

    Cabel1960 recruit

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2006
    Messages:
    449
    Likes Received:
    0
    via War44
    Look forward to seeing these pictures mate, but once you know how to add pictures you will kick yourself knowing how easy it is. :red: I know as i was in the same boat. :happy:
     
  16. History-buff1944

    History-buff1944 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Messages:
    525
    Likes Received:
    1
    via War44
    Thank you Joe Steel and I look forward to learning how. Thanks to Hawkswill (Keith) I just got some 86 or so images to a photobucket account and was able to post a test photo on the Duke Wayne site and tried one here with Gary Cooper in: Unconquered--but the one here didnt work. Keith said she will figure it out and let me know.

    I have many images from movies like:

    The Great Escape.
    The Longest Day.
    Sink the Bismarck.
    Zulu.
    The Alamo.
    Cross of Iron.
    Von Ryan's Express.
    The Guns of Navarone.
    Odds and ends from many more like:
    Decision Before Dawn.
    The Bridge At Remagen.
    Battle of Britain.
    Battle of the Bulge.
    36 Hours.
    The Fighting 69th.

    Just to name a few. ;-)) Will try more soon as I get taught by an excellent teacher ;-))
     

Share This Page