Initially budgeted at $2,500,000, an additional $100,000 was added to film a new ending. $500,000 was allotted for the sets, and $500,000 for the flood and earthquake scenes. 350 grips, carpenters and laborers worked for more than a month on those scenes.
The Ranchipur of novelist Louis Bromfield was built on 18 acres of the 20th Century-Fox back lot. The maharajah's palace, which was wrecked room by room in the earthquake, cost $75,000. The breaking of the dam was shot in two nights using 14 cameras.
The first movie to win an Oscar for Best Visual Effects. The category was called Best Effects, Special Effects and included both sound and photographic winners for Edmund H. Hansen and Fred Sersen respectively.
According to Arthur Miller - the cinematographer who replaced Glennon - the real reason that Glennon left the production was not illness but because Clarence Brown was not happy with his work, believing it was "not brilliant enough". According to Miller, Brown "wanted the whole thing to shine. And Glennon made it shadowy and soft" (Miller quoted in Higham. Hollywood Cameramen. 143). Glennon walked off the production and Miller stepped in. Miller also repeats this version of events in his own autobiography, One Reel a Week.