Trivia / Paths of Glory

  • Banned in China
    • While not actually banned, the extremely unflattering portrait of the World War One French Army led to pressure on the film's distributor not to release it in France. As a result, it was never screened for French censors and not released there until 1975.
    • In order to maintain good relations with its neighbor, Germany also kept the film from being released for two years after its premiere.
    • Banned in Spain by the censorship during Generalísimo Franco's dictatorship for its anti-military message. It wasn't released until 1986, 11 years after Franco's death.
  • Doing It for the Art: Kirk Douglas told Stanley Kubrick, "Stanley, I don't think this picture will ever make a nickel, but we have to make it." Douglas' words proved to be prophetic-the film was not a success at the box office.
  • Fake Nationality: The important French characters are played by American actors. For added irony points, the extras who play other French soldiers are mostly Germans, as the film was shot in Bavaria.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Or, in this case, Cowardly Character, Heroic Actor. Wayne Morris, who played the pusillanimous Lt. Roget, was a true war hero in Real Life. He was a naval aviator - an Ace Pilot with nine aerial victories - in WWII, garnering four Distinguished Flying Crosses and two Air Medals while flying a fighter off the USS Essex.
  • Real-Life Relative: Retroactively. The woman who sings at the end, Christiane Harlan, would become Mrs. Kubrick — Stanley's third wife — a year later. They met during this filming and remained married until his death in 1999.
  • Throw It In: Private Ferol's undignified breakdown as he's led before the firing squad was improvised. According to Timothy Carey, the actor portraying him, he was warned to make it good because Kirk Douglas wasn't liking it at all.
  • Wag the Director: Stanley Kubrick originally wanted the film to end with Col. Dax saving his men from the firing squad by blackmailing his superiors. Kirk Douglas overruled him.
  • What Could Have Been: Gregory Peck was initially offered the role of Col. Dax, but he had to turn it down due to a theatrical commitment. Charlton Heston was offered the role, but he chose to star in Touch of Evil. Richard Burton and James Mason were also considered.


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