The Towering Inferno

Continuity mistake: During the scenic elevator rescue scenes, the building has moved across the downtown core and is now located next to the Transamerica Pyramid, which is many city blocks to the west.

Continuity mistake: When O.J. Simpson (Security Guard) attempts to rescue the mother and 2 children from their apartment, he kicks the door in. If you look closely, the door is actually open and he's holding it shut so he "can" kick it in! (01:06:45)

Continuity mistake: In the establishing shot of the San Francisco skyline, the building appears to be located off Market Street and facing the viewer (elevator tracks facing the front of the building). In a night-time shot from the Bay Bridge, the building has "turned around" and faces the other way.

Continuity mistake: When Steve McQueen is removing his fire suit in the elevator, his tie is loose. But when he runs into the promenade room right afterwards, his tie is secured by a tie clip.

Continuity mistake: In the early part of the TV version. They are holding a meeting in Mr.Bigelows' office regarding Romane Conti. He asked a gentleman from Phoenix on the phone if he could get the wine. Then told his assistant "go get it". A flight plan would have to be filed,and the flying time from SFO to PHX is about 2 hours. Then to find the place where he has to get the Romane Conti. I lived in the Phoenix area for almost 13 years and it is spread out. Then get back to the airport,another 2 hour flight. I would say the fire department would have gotten there first.

johnp

Continuity mistake: Roberts rings Duncan and tells him Will Giddings has suffered burns and there is a fire in the building. We hear the whole conversation and Duncan ends it by saying, "A fire in a storage room on 81 can't hurt us up here," but Roberts never mentioned where the fire is. (00:39:45)

mightymick

Continuity mistake: When Doug first arrives at the Tower, he goes down an elevator from the roof to the 65th floor, then has to cross over to different elevators. In one of these, he goes up - to 79 according to the display; but the floor buttons on the control, consist of just 16 buttons; the 7th or 8th button is lit as he gets off, so he has only gone up halfway to 79. (00:06:45)

DavidRTurner

Continuity mistake: When the first woman goes across on the breeches buoy, the overhead shot of her going across does not show the outside elevator which at this stage is hanging by a cable and stuck on the outside. However, it is visible in the shots from the peerless building which the breeches buoy is attached to. (02:05:10)

mightymick

Continuity mistake: In the shot where the 12 people are going down the scenic elevator, you can see the fire coming through the windows but then, when it widens out the shot to show the helicopter flying nearby, there are no flames whatsoever on any floor of the building. (01:57:35)

Continuity mistake: When the elevator is lowering Susan and the rest of the women, the amount of lit floors and the brightness of the lights on the building changes noticeably depending on the shot.

Sacha Premium member

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When water is cascading outside the building a man jumps out of a window, producing a hole in the glass. When another man jumps out of the window next to that one, the hole in the glass has a different shape and the hole is several centimeters below where it was before.

Sacha Premium member

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Continuity mistake: The light outside the building as seen from the dining hall is dusk, but from the outside it's pitch dark. This swaps back and forth all the time.

Sacha Premium member

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Dan dies there's a wide shot of the building with several floors engulfed in flames. When Lorrie is free-falling just two seconds later, for the scenes play in real time - the flames have disappeared. (01:04:53 - 01:06:10)

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: At Patty's place, she places her right arm next to her face holding a cracker. Shot changes to a side angle and her arm is lowered. Then a shot afterwards it's raised again.

Sacha Premium member

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When the elevator is lowering the people, a wide shot shows the building on fire. Couple shots later the flames are nowhere to be seen.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: A technician talks to Mr. Callahan and leaves. Callahan places both hands on the computer, but a shot later his left arm is lowered. (00:11:42)

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: When the floor explodes and the elevator breaks, a woman in pink crouches. Shot changes and she is standing tall again.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: When Roberts hands Duncan the scorched wire, the way Duncan holds it differs between the wide and the close-up shots.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: During the scenic elevator rescue scenes, the building has moved across the downtown core and is now located next to the Transamerica Pyramid, which is many city blocks to the west.

More mistakes in The Towering Inferno

Dan Bigelow: What happened, somebody hang the wallpaper upside down?

More quotes from The Towering Inferno
More trivia for The Towering Inferno

Answer: Mainly it was about egos (mostly McQueen's) and a professional rivalry, not only as top movie stars, but also as auto racers. McQueen considered himself a superior driver to Newman, even though they never competed against each other. When McQueen was considered to co-star with Newman in "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," McQueen wanted top billing, then dropped out when he wouldn't receive it, even though Newman was considered the bigger star. In "The Towering Inferno," McQueen supposedly obsessed over how many lines he had compared to Newman.

raywest Premium member

Expanding on this: McQueen's demand for top billing continued on this film (as did William Holden's, but he was never a serious candidate), which is why the end result was "staggered": McQueen's name was to the left but lower, while Newman's was higher but to the right, so both had top billing depending how one read it (left-to-right, or top-to-bottom). Studies have shown that the name audiences tend to see first is the one on the left, regardless of staggering, so McQueen may have "won" here.

Newman does get a small victory of sorts at the end of this film when the cast credits begin scrolling upward on the screen. Newman's and McQueen's names are again staggered like in the beginning intro, but Newman's name appears first as it scrolls up from the screen's bottom.

raywest Premium member

More questions & answers from The Towering Inferno

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.