Apocalypse Now
Apocalypse Now trivia picture

Trivia: The man shooting the movie during the attack on the beach who says "Don't look at the camera" is actually director Francis Ford Coppola. (00:25:38)

Trivia: Harvey Keitel was originally cast as Captain Willard. Two weeks into filming, director Francis Ford Coppola felt Keitel wasn't taking the role seriously enough, so he fired him and reshot scenes with Martin Sheen as his replacement.

Trivia: This film took so long to make critics jokingly dubbed it "Apocalypse Later", or "Apocalypse Never."

Trivia: Martin Sheen suffered a heart attack while filming in 1976. Sheen's brother, Joe Estevez, doubled in, as well as providing Willard's voice-over narrations.

Trivia: Principal photography took 274 days. This is the same amount of time it took Peter Jackson to complete filming for all three "Lord of the Rings" films.

Trivia: Marlon Brando (Colonel Walter E. Kurtz) showed up to the set 50 pounds overweight and admitted that he had not even read the script yet. Brando demanded that he be shot only in shadow and that his scenes be almost entirely improvised. He said he did this because he didn't want to work as hard. Francis Ford Coppola has not worked with Brando (who has a notorious reputation for being a difficult actor to work with) since then.

Trivia: The scene where Colonel Kilgore offers his canteen to the wounded Vietcong is based on a real incident. The army officer really did say, "Any man brave enough to fight with his guts strapped to him can drink from my canteen any day". (From Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse).


Trivia: Martin Sheen actually was intoxicated when he filmed the scene where Willard is drunk in his hotel room. He punched the mirror, which was real glass, and actually did cut his hand, as shown in the film. (00:07:10)


Trivia: Robert Duvall received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his role as Colonel "Bill" Kilgore, even though he only had 11 minutes of screen time.

Trivia: Although Marlon Brando received top billing, he doesn't appear until two and a half hours into the film and has only 15 minutes of screen time.

Trivia: Francis Ford Coppola threatened suicide several times during the making of the film.


Trivia: Francis Ford Coppola shot nearly 200 hours of footage.


Trivia: Francis Ford Coppola lost 100 pounds while filming.


Trivia: Marlon Brando was giving director Francis Ford Coppola so much trouble towards the end of filming, that he actually left the filming of the final scene, where Sheen and Brando improvised the final moments without direction.


Audio problem: As Playmate of the Year Carrie Foster is brought out to the audience carried by two Green Berets watch the band behind her closely. The bass player stops playing as he scratches his head but the bass on the soundtrack keeps going. (01:07:55)


More mistakes in Apocalypse Now

Chef: Why do all you guys sit on your helmets?
Soldier: So we don't get our balls blown off.

More quotes from Apocalypse Now

Question: Why was only one officer (Captain Willard) sent to assassinate Colonel Kurtz? Isn't it very unlikely for a captain like Willard to be able to kill a powerful and influential and "insane" colonel like Kurtz?


Chosen answer: Kurtz was protected by political connections and his military record from being relieved of command, and the Montagnard people whose village he was in were considered American allies, so they couldn't just send a force in to kill him or relieve him of command, but an individual assassin. (The US Government's "official" policy is that they do not engage in assassination, which is why "this mission does not exist, nor will it ever exist").

Captain Defenestrator

More questions & answers from Apocalypse Now

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