Trivia / The Three Musketeers (1973)

  • Acting for Two: Frank Finlay (Porthos) also played O'Reilly, the jeweler tasked by Buckingham to reproduce to two missing diamond studs.
  • Actor-Inspired Element: Cardinal Richelieu says to d'Artagnan that he has no personal enemies, only enemies of France. This line is in neither the original novel, nor the script. Charlton Heston came across this quote of the Cardinal's when researching the role, and asked Richard Lester to find a place to include it in the film.
  • Creator Killer: An unintentional example: During the filming of The Return of the Musketeers, Richard Lester's longtime collaborative partner Roy Kinnear fell off a horse and broke his pelvis. He died of a heart attack the next day. Lester grew so distraught that he quit making films, though he would make one last project, a concert film, for Paul McCartney two years following Return's release.
  • Executive Meddling: What was supposed to be a four-hour long epic became split into two films because the producers didn't think that people would want to see a film that long. Since the actors were only paid the rate for one film, most of them sued and won. (This also directly affected Superman and Superman II from the same producers, as they were also originally shot as one long production, though still separate films. Richard Lester replaced Richard Donner for Superman II.)
    • Richard Lester has said in interviews the producers cast Simon Ward and Raquel Welch.
  • Fatal Method Acting: Averted: Oliver Reed was severely injured and almost died when he was stabbed in the throat during the windmill duel scene.
    • Sadly, Roy Kinnear wasn't so lucky.
  • The Other Marty: Kim Cattrall was cast in The Return of the Musketeers at short notice because the original choice dropped out.
  • Playing Against Type: Charlton Heston as Richelieu.
  • The Production Curse: The Return of the Musketeers: British character actor Roy Kinnear died on set when a formerly placid horse he was riding, one thought suitable for the actor, became uncontrollably wild and galloped away, eventually bucking him off into a wall. He died a day later from complications to a broken pelvis. Kinnear's family successfully sued the film makers for negligence. Richard Lester was so shaken by the incident (he had worked many times with Kinnear and considered him a friend) that he retired prematurely from the film business, despite a series of successes.
  • Recycled Set: The Duke of Buckingham's billiard room and the long hall behind it at his English estate is a leftover set from Patton. It is also seen in The Four Musketeers, where Milady and Buckingham speak about American Indians and also serves as a set of rooms in The Return Of The Musketeers for a different character in France some 10 years after the action of the first two films.
  • Sequel Gap: 15 years between The Four Musketeers and Return of the Musketeers.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Richard Lester originally envisioned this as a film for The Beatles.
    • Lester wanted Malcolm McDowell to play d'Artagnan.
    • Alan Bates turned down the role of Athos.
    • Timothy Dalton turned down the role of Aramis.
    • If Raquel Welch had turned down the role of Constance, Julie Christie was the next choice.
    • Charlton Heston was originally offered the role of Athos.
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