The Deer Hunter

Trivia: The scene where Nick spits in Michael's face when they play each other at Russian Roulette towards the end of the movie was improvised by Christopher Walken. Director Michael Cimino convinced Walken to do this, and Robert De Niro was completely surprised by this, as evidenced in his reaction. In fact, De Niro was so furious about the unscripted improvisation that he almost quit the production.

Trivia: During the helicopter stunt, the runners caught on the ropes of the suspension bridge and as the helicopter rose, it threatened to seriously injure both Robert De Niro and John Savage. The actors gestured and yelled furiously to the crew in the helicopter to warn them. Footage of this is included in the film.

Trivia: All of the slapping in the Russian Roulette sequences was real.

Trivia: The wedding scene at the church took five days to film and the producers used an actual priest.

Trivia: John Cazale was very ill when filming began and because of this his scenes were filmed first. The director Michael Cimino knew that Cazale was dying of cancer but the studio did not. When they found out, they wanted to replace Cazale. The actor sadly died after filming was completed.

Trivia: The scene where John Savage gets thrown into the pit, he shouts "Michael, there's rats in here, Michael!" Savage has a real-life fear of rats, and he was actually yelling at director Michael Cimino. Because of his genuine reaction, they kept it in the film.

Trivia: Robert De Niro wanted a live cartridge to be in the gun when he plays Russian Roulette with John Cazale. Cazale agreed, but understandably checked the gun carefully before each take to ensure the live round wouldn't be fired when the trigger was pulled.

Jon Sandys

Factual error: The boys go deer hunting somewhere in the Appalachians, but the geology is all wrong. That scene is in North Cascades National Park in Washington State. In addition, the "deer" they are hunting is a Red Stag. Not typically found in the Appalachians.

Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: Part of the scenery is the North Cascades, including the first mountain shot, Mount Baker, south of the Canadian border.

Someone notes that "Red Stags are not typically found in the Appalachians." In reality, there are no wild red stags in the Eastern US, or anywhere in the US, or in North America, or even in the Western Hemisphere. Red stags are native to most of Europe, the Caucasus Mountains region, Anatolia, Iran, and parts of Western Asia. It also inhabits the Atlas Mountains of Northern Africa.

Thank you! Growing up in Pennsylvania and hunting deer since the age of ten - The use of the Red Stag in the last scene always bothered me. No trained White Tails, I guess. Great movie other than that.

More mistakes in The Deer Hunter

Michael: You wanna play games? All right, I'll play your fucking games.

More quotes from The Deer Hunter

Chosen answer: The whole phrase is "di di mao", which basically mean go now, or hurry up.


More questions & answers from The Deer Hunter

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