Trivia / A Bridge Too Far

  • All-Star Cast
  • Backed by the Dutch Army: The Dutch provided paratroopers and post-war tanks for the film.
  • Cast the Expert:
    • Edward Fox had known General Horrocks before working on the film, and considered him a friend; thus, Fox took great care to portray him accurately. Years later, he would cite his portrayal of Horrocks as his favorite film role.
    • During WWII, Dirk Bogarde, who played Lt. Gen. Browning, served in intelligence with the British army. He and eight other intelligence officers were sent to Arnhem by Bernard L. Montgomery during the battle.
    • Denholm Elliott who has a brief cameo as an RAF Officer actually did serve in the RAF during World War II.
  • Fake Nationality
  • Money, Dear Boy: Richard Attenborough agreed to direct the film so that Gandhi could get made.
  • One Steve Limit: The intelligence officer called Major Fuller in the film was actually called Brian Urquhart. However since Sean Connery's character, the commander of the British airborne division was also historically named Roy Urquhart it was decided to rename the more minor character played by the unknown actor.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic
    • Lt.-Colonel Frost objected to a scene where Anthony Hopkins runs across a street under fire. He always walked. It was decided to leave the scene as it was, for fear the audience would have a What an Idiot reaction. Hopkins was also unable to force himself walk as the fake explosions and gunfire was too realistic for him to remain calm.
    • Author William Goldman mentions three examples that were criticized. First, a British general (Dirk Bogarde) who sends his troops to a supposedly undefended territory, although he actually has information about German troops being there, but doesn't care. Second, James Caan forcing a medical officer to operate on his captain, who seems to be dead (which he isn't, of course). Third, Ryan O'Neal as General James Gavin who was deemed to be too young for the role by the critics — despite being exactly the same age as the real Gavin had been at that time.
  • Real-Life Relative: Gerald Sim (Colonel Sims) was the brother-in-law of the director Richard Attenborough.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • The role of Major Julian Cook was originally offered to Steve McQueen, who wasn't interested in an ensemble piece.
    • The role of Kate Ter Horst was originally meant for Audrey Hepburn, but her asking price was too high.
    • Robert De Niro turned down the major cameo role of Staff Sergeant Eddie Dohun.
    • Charles Bronson was seriously considered for General Stanislaw Sosabowski.
    • Roger Moore was initially cast as Lt. Gen. Brian Horrocks, but was unable to appear when problems surrounding the Bond franchise meant that The Spy Who Loved Me was made a year later than originally planned, therefore coinciding with the production dates. In addition, Horrocks had approval over the character and turned Moore down, and the role instead went to Edward Fox.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Trivia/ABridgeTooFar