Trivia / Thunderball

The film:

  • Acting for Two: Paul Stassino plays both Francois and Angelo since Palazzi's real face and voice are never heard or seen.
  • Actor Allusion: As Bond bids farewell to Nurse Fearing, he says "Another time, another place", the name of another movie Sean Connery had starred early in his career.
  • Deleted Scene: Detailed here
  • Enforced Method Acting: Sean Connery and the sharks in Largo's pool. The clear plastic panels that shielded Sean Connery from the sharks could only extended about three feet in height and sharks could swim over them. Some sharks did and Sean Connery was genuinely terrified. Guess what scenes the director used in the film?
  • Executive Meddling:
    • A justified example, with the decision to change Largo's death from a gruesome harpoon through the neck, to a relatively more tame but more dramatic harpoon through the back.
    • The producers deciding at the last moment to require the theme song to have the word "Thunderball" in it, necessitating some quick rerecording and quick rescoring to fit the new song in.
  • Fake Nationality: George Pravda, who played a Polish scientist, was Czechoslovakian.
  • Missing Trailer Scene: The trailer has Bond say to Fiona, "The things I do for England". He doesn't say it here, but he does in the next one.
  • The Other Darrin: Felix Leiter is recast yet again, this time with Rik Van Nutter, apparently doing his best Jack Lord impression, with Leiter once again being depicted as a young man after the previous film had him grey-haired and middle-aged. Possibly happened with the voice of Blofeld as well, as various sources claim that Joseph Wiseman (the titular Dr. No) took over the role from previous actor Eric Pohlmann in this film, while yet others say that it was still Pohlmann.
  • Recursive Adaptation: The film was based upon Fleming's novel, Thunderball, which was in turn adapted from an unproduced screenplay from the 1950s.
  • Same Language Dub: Both Adolfo Celi and Claudine Auger were dubbed over.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Johnny Cash recorded his own version of the theme song.
    • It was originally thought that the title would be too awkward to work into a song, so instead Barry and lyricist Leslie Bricusse wrote one for Dionne Warwick called "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang." This is why the club Bond runs into to escape Fiona's goons is called The Kiss Kiss Club. The decision to replace it with the Tom Jones song was made relatively late in the production which is why the melody for "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" is still part of the soundtrack.
    • Alfred Hitchcock briefly considered directing the film.
    • Rik Van Nutter had a contract to appear as Felix Leiter in the next several Bond films, but they couldn't figure a way to work the character into either of the next two (Leiter did not appear in either original novel).
    • Julie Christie was the original choice for Domino, but Cubby Broccoli decided she wasn't right. Raquel Welch was attached, before being let go to star in Fantastic Voyage. Faye Dunaway also auditioned.
  • You Look Familiar: Martine Beswick previously played a Gypsy girl in From Russia with Love.

The novel: