The Day of the Jackal

Factual error: Many shots, especially the early ones, include the iconic Renault 16 in the background. This car was first produced in c1965, three years after the events happened. Probably unavoidable, as the car was a huge success.

Jackal2

Factual error: When the Jackal is driving into France in his 1963-correct Alfa Romeo Giulietta, he passes a red Alfa Duetto. Those were not made until 1966. Likewise the Renault 12 or the electric locomotives.

Factual error: When The Jackal arrives in the Paris train station, a modern luggage cart is seen, similar to those commonly seen in airports today. They were not in use in 1963.

Factual error: Charles de Gaulle's Citroen DS19, a vehicle that appears repeatedly, is an anachronism: it's a 1965 model used in a movie set in 1963. Although the design differences are few, they are noticeable from the outside. It's difficult to imagine why the production team used an incorrect car that got so much screen time (as opposed to the aforementioned 1966 Alfa and several other background vehicles).

Other mistake: Interior Minister Roger Frey advises Commissioner Lebel that all members of the police, military and other security forces attending the ceremonies on the day the Jackal is expected to strike will be issued with lapel badges at the last moment, in case he is going to try to masquerade as one of them. We see hundreds of such people in the next part of the film, including Lebel himself and the CRS private who allows the heavily disguised Jackal through the barricades around the site of the ceremony DeGaulle is due to attend. Only the CRS private wears a lapel badge. Not one of the other police or military officers in attendance is wearing a lapel badge of any kind. (01:58:15)

More mistakes in The Day of the Jackal

The Interrogator: You're being very foolish, Victor. You know yourself, they always talk in the end. You've seen it with your own two eyes in... where was it, Indochina? And Algeria, of course. Why don't you tell us what they're waiting for in that hotel, eh? Rodin, Montclair, Casson: what are they planning, who have they been meeting? Nobody? Not a soul, hmm? Then where were they before they went to Rome, eh? Tell us, Victor.

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Trivia: The Jackal demands $500,000 (US) to assassinate De Gaulle, which seems like a modest amount for such a dangerous job. However, when you take inflation into account that was the equivalent in 2019 money of over $4m. No wonder his putative employers are surprised.

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Question: I have seen this movie many times, but one question continues to bother me: How did the Jackal plan to escape if he was successful in shooting the president? (He had already removed his disguise).

Answer: He would have just slipped away into the crowd, probably with some minor alteration to his appearance. He was a master of disguise and no one knew his real identity or what he looked like.

raywest

Answer: When the Jackal entered the parade area, he was disguised as an old army veteran, with one leg and false I.D. When the job was done he would walk out as a younger man with two legs and another set of of false I.D.

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