This was the last film in which James Stewart wore his familiar cowboy hat. Up to this point, he had worn it in all his westerns since Winchester '73 (1950), except Broken Arrow (1950). This was Stewart's first film with John Ford, and Ford didn't want him to wear it as he thought it was the worst looking cowboy hat he had ever seen. As Stewart said in the documentary, "A Wonderful Life", Ford relented, but got back at him in their next western, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), when he didn't let Stewart wear a hat at all.
Richard Widmark and James Stewart both wore hairpieces, and they both had hearing problems. At one point during filming John Ford shouted, "Great, so this is what my career has come to - directing two deaf hairpieces!".