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Trivia / The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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  • Actor-Inspired Element: Eli Wallach had as many ideas for Tuco that went into the film as Leone did. He decided that the character should have a silver tooth, and wear a belt and suspenders, inspired by Leone wearing the same thing. He also improvised most of the scene in the gun shop, and it was his idea for Tuco to growl at a little old lady as he was being hanged.
  • Beam Me Up, Scotty!: Of sorts; many a cliched review has divided itself into headings titled The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, with each section highlighting something increasingly worse...yet in the actual film, Tuco (the Ugly) is an Anti-Villain in comparison to Angel Eyes (The Bad). Still, "The Good, the Ugly, and the Bad" doesn't flow nearly half as well. This problem doesn't exist in its original Italian title, which is 'Il Buono, Il Brutto E Il Cattivo' with Tuco (Il Brutto/The Ugly) before Sentenza (Il Cattivo/The Bad).
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  • Billing Displacement: Although Clint Eastwood has top billing, Eli Wallach is the star of the film.
  • Completely Different Title: Known in French as Le Bon, la Brute et le Truand ("the good, the brute, and the thug").
  • Creator Backlash: Clint Eastwood wasn't happy with the finished movie. He later said it was bloated rather than expansive, and the only fleshed-out character was Tuco.
  • Creator's Favorite: Tuco. Both Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Cleef realized that the character of Tuco was close to Leone's heart, and the director and Wallach became good friends during the making of the film. Van Cleef observed:
    "Tuco is the only one of the trio the audience gets to know all about. We meet his brother and find out where he came from and why he became a bandit. But Clint's character and Angel's remain mysteries."
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  • Deleted Scene: Entire sequences were cut from the film for time. For example, when Tuco would have been blown off his horse by cannonfire, he'd have tried to fire back at Blondie with a nearby cannon, but of course the clumsy bandit keeps misfiring and the cannon starts falling apart.
  • Dueling Dubs: Germany had three dubs for the movie. The first was a cinematic version, the second a Pro 7 version with the new scenes, and the third was a DVD version with the new scenes.
  • Enforced Method Acting: Sergio Leone let a dog onto the set during one of the final scenes without telling anyone. Eli Wallach's reaction was kept.
  • Fake American: Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach (the eponymous Good, Bad, and Ugly, respectively) are the only actual Americans in the entire cast.
  • Fake Nationality: Eli Wallach, a Polish-American Jew, plays the Mexican Tuco. Wallach also portrayed a Mexican in his second most memorable role, as the bandit Calvera in The Magnificent Seven (1960), and another Mexican, Tuco Expy Max Lozoya, in Don't Turn the Other Cheek!. Also Spanish Antonio Casas and Italians Livio Lorenzon and Antonio Casale as Americans Stevens, Baker and Jackson, and Italians Aldo Giuffre and Mario Brega as Americans Captain Clinton and Corporal Wallace.
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  • Harpo Does Something Funny: More like Tuco Does Something Funny. See "Throw It In".
  • Missing Episode: Lost scenes include Tuco continuing his search for Blondie in a Texican pueblo while Blondie is in a hotel room with a Mexican woman (Silvana Bacci), almost dozing off in the desert while dragging Blondie along with him, and lighting cannons before the Ecstasy of Gold sequence.
  • Fatal Method Acting: Averted several times over. Clint Eastwood apparently warned Wallach not to trust the Italian film crew because of how dangerous it could become during filming.
    • In the scene where the bridge is detonated, you can see a massive chunk of debris flying past Clint Eastwood and just barely missing his head. Also, the bridge went off at the wrong time.
    • Eli Wallach cheated death at least five times making the film. When Wallach had to lie by train tracks as a train went by he wasn't warned that if he raised his head too high the steps jutting from the cars (which weren't accounted for when figuring out safety concerns) would have taken his head off. Fortunately he had insisted that the first take be kept and it was. On another occasion a crew member put a bottle of acid right beside his drink and he was almost poisoned when he drank from it (he had the sense to spit it out right away). And yet another time when he had his hands bound and was sitting on a horse during the scene where Blondie shoots the rope, the horse got too spooked and ran a mile before anyone could stop it, with Wallach stuck on top. Not to mention how incredibly lucky he was to have been alive after that one time the pyrotechnics didn't cut the rope properly.
  • Missing Episode: See here.
  • One-Take Wonder: Eli Wallach refused to do another take of the train scene after almost getting decapitated. Thankfully, it only required one.
  • The Other Darrin: Some scenes from the Italian original were cut from the first English-language version and didn't get put back in until 2003. Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach were still available for the English dub of these scenes, but since Lee Van Cleef was dead, Simon Prescott did his voice.
  • Recycled Set: The mud-strewn town where Blondie brings Tuco for his first hanging is the same town from Django, filming for which had taken place earlier that year. The set, built at the Elios Film Studios in Rome, had not been cleaned between its use in the two films.
  • Stillborn Franchise: Although Sergio Leone never made an official sequel to this film, screenwriter Luciano Vincenzoni wrote a treatment for a sequel, tentatively titled Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo n. 2. According to Eli Wallach, the film would have followed Tuco pursuing Blondie's grandson for the gold 25 years after the events of the film. Clint Eastwood expressed an interest in acting as a narrator for the film, since Blondie would have been unceremoniously killed off after becoming mayor of a town; Joe Dante and Leone were approached to direct and produce the film, respectively. The project was eventually vetoed by Leone, as he did not want the film's title, nor its characters, to be reused. In an interview, Luciano Vincenzoni claimed that it was vetoed because Leone was angry at him; the producer had offered him one million dollars to put his name as "Sergio Leone Presents", and didn't want Vincenzoni to make money.
  • Shout-Out: The one-armed bounty hunter is named Elam, after Western actor Jack Elam (who would later appear in Once Upon a Time in the West).
  • Throw It In!:
    • When Tuco is being hanged as a scam, he growls at a little old lady. This was Eli's idea. Leone liked it and told him to do it again so he could be filmed properly.
    • Tuco's line "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk!" was actually improvised by Wallach, which apparently caused the whole crew to burst out laughing. Eli was a little perplexed because he thought that what he said was actually pretty sensible; that is, he didn't mean it as a joke, but his delivery and the look on his face made it side-splittingly hilarious.
    • Tuco playing with the guns in the gun shop was improvised with permission from Sergio Leone, as Eli Wallach had no idea how guns really worked. The exasperated look in the seemingly feeble shop owner's face is real. Couples with Harpo Does Something Funny
    • Also, Tuco shoving the "Open/Closed" sign in the gun shop owner's mouth was also Eli's idea.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Charles Bronson was supposed to play Angel Eyes, but he was in England filming The Dirty Dozen. Henry Fonda and Lee Marvin were also considered.
    • Sergio Leone originally considered Gian Maria Volonté, villain of the first two Dollars movies, for Tuco, but felt that the role required someone with "natural comic talent". Ironically, Volontè's English dub voice actor in both films, Bernie Grant, did have a role in this one, as the Union Army captain during the bridge scene (portrayed by Aldo Giuffre) who is also more sympathetic than his previous Dollars characters.
  • Working Title: The Magnificent Rogues and The Two Magnificent Tramps.
  • You Look Familiar: Many of Leone's Production Posse make appearances, but most notably Van Cleef returns after appearing in For a Few Dollars More as Colonel Mortimer, who's a saint compared to this guy.
    • One of Angel Eyes' henchmen Blondie kills is played by Lorenzo Robeldo, who played El Indio's "traitor" in For A Few Dollars More and one of the Baxter Trio attacking Joe at the start of A Fistful of Dollars.


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