The Towering Inferno
The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Revealing mistake: When the security guard attempts to open the storage room door where the fire has started, he is set ablaze. Look closely, and he is wearing large protective gloves over his hands, plus a special mask. (00:38:15)

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Revealing mistake: On the roof during the helicopter rescue scene, there is a panic and some women run to the helicopter trying to land in strong winds. As it explodes, a woman in a slinky dress falls down. Paul Newman helps her up and her dress is whisked up to reveal "stuntwoman" kneepads on her legs. (01:51:15)

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Revealing mistake: When Lorrie jumps out of the window, she is replaced by an obvious stuntman: Fireproof gloves appear on her hands, she is wearing a fireproof mask, and her hair is an obvious wig.

Sacha

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

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

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

The Towering Inferno mistake picture

Revealing mistake: During the party, doors open and a burning man appears. He is wearing fireproof gloves, his face is covered in some dark mask and some sort of awful wig to hide all the safety procedures. He resembles a werewolf. (00:57:20)

Sacha

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

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.

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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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