- Actor-Shared Background: Sam Waterston is a graduate of Yale University, the same alma mater of his character, Nick Carraway.
- Hide Your Pregnancy: Mia Farrow was pregnant during filming. The director did a lot of close-up shots, and put her in a lot of flowing costumes.
- Real-Life Relative: Sam Waterston's mother appears as an extra in the party scene.
- What Could Have Been:
- William Goldman revealed in 2000 that he campaigned for the job of adapting the script.
- Truman Capote was the original screenwriter. In his draft, Nick was a homosexual and Jordan Baker a vindictive lesbian. You can find the screenplay here.
- Robert Towne refused a chance to write the screenplay, despite a $175,000 salary, saying "I didn't want to be the unknown Hollywood screenwriter who fucked up a literary classic." Instead, he wrote Chinatown.
- Marlon Brando turned down the role of Jay Gatsby because producers would not submit to his salary demands. Warren Beatty wanted to direct the film and suggested that Robert Evans play the role himself. Jack Nicholson didn't believe Ali MacGraw (the original Daisy) was appropriate for the role. Steve McQueen also turned it down.
- Natalie Wood was offered the role of Daisy, but she allegedly balked when the producers insisted on a screen test because the actress hadn't been in a movie for nearly 5 years. Also considered were Candice Bergen, Julie Christie, Liza Minnelli and Faye Dunaway, who even named a chapter in her autobiography "Searching for Gatsby".
Trivia / The Great Gatsby (1974)