The Towering Inferno

Continuity mistake: When Fred Astaire leaves the cab he doesn't have anything in his hand with the box, but as he walks to the hotel he has a small bunch of flowers which he takes into the hotel with him. But they are never seen again. He does not give them to his date, nor does have a flower in his buttonhole.

Revealing mistake: Watch carefully as the statue falls on the bartender. It barely touches his chest and rests on his left thigh. As the bartender slumps dead you can see a wide open gap between his whole upper body and the statue. Even if it crushed his thigh it would not have killed him so quickly. When the bartender slumps down the statue rocks freely as he brushes against it; obviously a styrofoam replica.

BocaDavie

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

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Trivia: Stars Paul Newman and Steve McQueen apparently argued intensely over who should get top billing. In the end the producers settled for a compromise: reading the film poster (which is reproduced as the DVD cover) top to bottom, Paul Newman is first, i.e. higher, or "top" billing. But reading left to right, Steve McQueen is first. The same applies to their photographs either side of the main artwork, McQueen on the left but Newman (marginally) higher up. Ironically, this billing format was an issue when McQueen was considered for a role in "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid."

Eliza

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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

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

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