Banned In South Africa: The album and movie were banned in South Africa due to anti-apartheid protesters' use of lyrics from "Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)" to criticize racially biased propaganda and curricula employed by the nation's education system.
Black Sheep Hit: "Another Brick in The Wall, Part 2" is perhaps the best known song on the album, despite sounding completely different from the rest of the album.
Creator Backlash: At the time the film was released, Waters didn't like it. Chiefly, because Bob Geldof was cast in the lead role instead of himself. Gerald Scarfe was off playing pool instead of attending the New York premiere since he "couldn't bear to see the film again."
The critics have tended to give it mixed reviews over the years.
It seems like the only people who really liked it are the fans.
Creator Breakdown: Allegedly how this album came into being. Waters' father's death, drug use, and complex relations are referenced in many songs, not to mention Pink's In-Universe breakdown.
Doing It for the Art: Pink Floyd's tour promoting The Wall ended up costing more money than it took in partially as a result of Waters's refusal to play in the stadium venues he had grown to loathe in their previous tour. Roger Waters' 2010 tour, which reproduced the original, was the most expensive concert tour in music history, costing approximately $1 million U.S. per performance.
Subverted in the second instance; Waters has stated he was only persuaded to do the tour when it looked like he could make money off of it.
Enforced Method Acting: The phone call heard at the end of "Young Lust"? Roger was actually calling Nick Mason, the drummer, who assumed he was getting crank called (the operator was asking for "Pink Floyd", after all) and promptly hung up; between that and the operator's confused reaction, it was just what Roger needed.
Also, the groupie in the 'One Of My Turns' scene in the film ducked spontaneously at Bob Geldof throwing a wine bottle at her as part of the scene.
Executive Meddling: A positive example is responsible for "Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2". Bob Ezrin was the one who pushed the band towards using a Disco beat for the song, despite David Gilmour's initial reluctance towards the idea. Also, in its original version, the song was only 1:20 long, containing one verse and chorus. Ezrin, recognizing the hit potential, insisted that the song needed two verses and two choruses, to which the band shot back, "Well you're not bloody getting them. We don't do singles, so fuck you." Once they left the studio, Ezrin used the studio's tape recorder to copy the first verse and chorus, placing them after a quick drumfill, and struck on the idea of using the children's choir to disguise the repetition.
Reality Subtext: The album was inspired by Roger realizing that he was becoming a cold destructive person after he spat on a fan (and reportedly made said fan's night) during the final show of the Animals tour. Roger himself said that, if it wasn't for his wife Carolyne, he would have become something like Pink.
While much of the Dark Lord persona comes from that tour, Pink's racism likely comes from Eric Clapton, who once infamously delivered a drunken rant against England's gradually-increasing black population. His contemporaries gave him a collective What the Hell, Hero?, and he realized that he had hit rock-bottom. Today, he regards his words then as an Old Shame among old shames.
Stunt Casting: Those are real Neo-Nazi skinheads in the film that Parker hired for the roles.
Throw It In: This was the reaction of director Alan Parker to Bob Geldof's accidental cutting of his hand while filming the destruction of the hotel room for the song "One of My Turns."
Troubled Production: Both the album (homesickness due to recording outside the UK, going behind schedule, Waters becoming even more of a Control Freak that fought with producer Bob Ezrin and eventually fired Richard Wright) and the movie (Waters, Alan Parker and Gerald Scarfe were constantly into each other's nerves; Waters snarked on Hollywood in The Final Cut, and Parker described the movie as "the most expensive student film ever made".)
What Could Have Been: The Beach Boys were scheduled to add backing vocals to "The Show Must Go On", but on the day of the session, Waters inexplicably cancelled and settled for just Bruce Johnston and Toni Tennille. In an interview with Jim Ladd, Waters explained their absence from the album by saying that they were on tour at the time, and that he doesn't know how they would have reacted if they saw the lyrics of "In the Flesh", "Run Like Hell" or "Waiting for the Worms".
In the rough-draft stages, Waters' idea was to end the story with the final brick being set. When the album eventually went on tour, this would have had the effect of trolling the audience. The wall goes up; the show is over. Fortunately, common sense prevailed, and he realized that it might be a better idea to see the wall come down.
The follow-up album The Final Cut was originally intended to be a collection of songs that had been left off of The Wall, with one rumored title being Spare Bricks. Then The Falklands War broke out, and it became a case of Real Life Writes the Plot, as Roger turned the album into a protest against the War.
Roger originally presented the band with two concepts, one for The Wall and the other for The Pros And Cons of Hitch-Hiking. They chose The Wall.
Waters would go on to record The Pros and Cons of Hitch-Hiking himself as his first official solo album. It would only reach #31 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart and generally flop with the critics. Rolling Stone's Kurt Loder, who had given a glowing review to the otherwise maligned The Final Cut, trashed Pros And Cons as a "static, faintly hideous record" and that "you could count the actual melodies here on Mickey Mouse's fingers." He added that David Gilmour's About Face album, which he had given a modest, unenthusiastic three stars, assumed "new luster in comparison to this turkey." The album received an abysmal one star, thus proving the rest of the band right when they had rejected it in favor of The Wall.
Word of Dante: It's widely believed by fans that Pink's name is actually "Floyd Pinkerton", and that "Pink Floyd" is a stage name. His page on Wikipedia even states this. This is never explicitly stated, but the plaque in the church gives his father's name as "J.A. Pinkerton", and his childhood friends call him "Pinky" (a reasonable nickname for someone with the surname "Pinkerton").
Word of God: Roger Waters commented on the beginning of "Waiting for the Worms" that he was the one who shouted, "Eins, zwei, drei, Anger!"