- Actor-Inspired Element: In one scene, Gib mentions an incident where he came home to find that his ex-wife had left him and taken everything from their home, including the ice cube trays in the freezer. This is based on an incident that really happened when Tom Arnold split with his ex-wife, Roseanne Barr. Which makes his next line, "What kind of sick bitch takes the ice cube trays out of the freezer?" a Take That!.
- Career Resurrection: This gave Arnold Schwarzenegger a much-needed hit after the high-profile flop Last Action Hero.
- Creator's Favorite: Tia Carrere named this as her favorite role of all time "because I got to be a villain."
- Development Hell:
- The sequel, which now may or may not become a television series instead. In 2010 there was talk of the film being rebooted as a television series, with John Cena playing Harry. But the project never actually entered production.
- This is the case for the Blu-ray. The film was released on VHS and DVD, but the former was full-screen (common for VHS), and the latter was a non-anamorphic release with zero special features. There have been rumors of a Blu-ray re-release for a decade, but so far the only HD release is on D-VHS (a tape-based format that displayed 1080P).
- Dyeing for Your Art: Jamie Lee Curtis exercised every day to prepare for this role.
- Fake Nationality: Art Malik, who plays Aziz, is a Pakistani-born British actor, Faisil is played by American-Jewish actor Grant Heslov, and of course Arnold trying to pass off as an American with the surname "Tasker" takes a little bit of Willing Suspension of Disbelief. However, that last one can be explained away: Tasker is actually German or Austrian, and has taken on the persona as part of his cover. During the truth serum scene, the more the serum influences Harry, the thicker his accent gets.
- Money, Dear Boy: Art Malik took the role of Aziz because he had been out of work for 14 months and owed a considerable amount of money to the Inland Revenue.
- No Stunt Double:
- Orphaned Reference: In an early version of the script, Harry discovers Dana ditching school to sing in her boyfriend's band. While Harry drives Dana back to school, they sing the song she was doing ("Sunshine of Your Love" by Cream) when he walked in on her. Both scenes were cut from the movie. Instead, you can faintly hear the song playing on Dana's Walkman in the scene before her boyfriend picks her up for school.
- Reality Subtext: James Cameron was going through a divorce around the same time as filming this movie. This may explain the premise as well as some of the cringe-inducing dialogue.
- Release Date Change: The film was planned to be released on July 1, 1994, but it was eventually moved to July 15.
- Stillborn Franchise: A sequel was in the works that would have reunited all the main cast members, but the 9/11 attacks put the sequel on hold and it was eventually cancelled. James Cameron would later comment:"In this day and age, terrorism just isn't funny anymore."
- Throw It In!:
- Word of God says that Curtis's slip and fall during the stripper dance wasn't scripted, and you can even see Arnold jumping out of the chair to see if she's alright. She instead got right back up and continued the dance, so Arnold sits back down quickly. Luckily, all of this is perfectly in character (Helen was shown to be clumsy before, and especially so under such circumstances and under stress, Harry would obviously be concerned about his wife, and then hastily attempt to maintain The Masquerade when the show goes on) and it ends up as one of the funniest scenes of the movie.
- During the ending dance scene Helen again slips and falls, Jamie Lee Curtis was so exhausted from rehearsals and filming it over and over she could no longer hold herself up.
- Arnold broke the wrong window in the confrontation scene between himself and Tom Arnold. So yeah, that's Da Governator's fist shattering a real car window as if it were made with Soft Glass.
- Troubled Production: Despite the crew encountering a major earthquake while shooting in Van Nuys in January 1994 and filming being completed two weeks behind schedule in late March, this appeared to be a relatively smooth production for James Cameron at the time. However, the film was suddenly mired in controversy in 2018 when Eliza Dushku accused the film's stunt coordinator Joel Kramer of sexually abusing her after gaining the trust of the 12 year old's family, being so brazen as to publicly nickname her "Jailbait" on the set. She also alleged that a stunt that went wrong and hospitalized her with broken ribs was actually a deliberate piece of sabotage by Kramer after an adult friend of Dushku's confronted him, as a threat to do even worse if she told anyone else. Cameron was quick to give his support to the accusations, saying he would have had "no mercy" for Kramer if he'd had any idea what was happening.
- What Could Have Been:
- Jodie Foster was originally cast as Helen Tasker, but was forced to turn the role down because she was signed to Nell. Rosanna Arquette, Kim Basinger, Annette Bening, Sandra Bullock, Joan Cusack, Geena Davis, Melanie Griffith, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Madonna, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Julianne Moore, Demi Moore, Michelle Pfeiffer, Julia Roberts, Isabella Rossellini, Sharon Stone, Emma Thompson, Lea Thompson and Sigourney Weaver were also considered.
- Dan Aykroyd, John Goodman, Steve Guttenberg, Joe Pesci and Bill Murray were considered for Albert Gibson.
- The horse chase scene would have had Harry chasing Aziz through the reflecting pool at the Washington Monument, but the National Parks Service refused to allow it.
- Helen was originally going to go nude in the striptease scene, but the idea was dropped and Jamie Lee Curtis kept on her underwear during it.
- The film was originally planned with a $40 million budget. However, thanks to Cameron planning to keep creative control of the film, he renegotiated with Fox to increase the budget to $100-120 million, making it the first film to surpass the $100 budget limit for films.
Trivia / True Lies