Like the iconic Swiss Tag Heuer watch Steve McQueen immortalized in Le Mans (1971), the "Persol" sunglasses he sported in this movie generated such a trendsetting image, the Italian manufacturers re-issued the foldaway, retro-cool tortoiseshell "714" model as a part of the "Steve McQueen Collection" (October 2010).
A 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4*S N.A.R.T. Spider identical to the one in the film was sold at auction for $27.5 million on August 17, 2013, in Monterey, California. When new, the N.A.R.T. Spiders were unappreciated by customers and were all sold at a discount, some for less than the standard 275 GTB/4.
After watching a five hour rough cut of the film, composer Michel Legrand took a six week vacation during which he wrote 90 minutes of music. The film was then reedited to the music, instead of the other way around. If this experiment had failed, Legrand would have written a second score in the traditional way free of charge.
In the movie, the Ferrari driven by Faye Dunaway and being referred to as "one of those red Italian things" is actually the first of only ten Ferrari 275 GTS Spyder NART, serial number 09437. This particular car came second in its class in the 1968 12 hour of Sebring before being repainted and used for the movie. Steve McQueen liked the car so much, he wanted one for himself. He eventually ended up with serial number 10453. That car is today with collector Anthony Wang in NY, USA.
One of the more noteworthy aspects of the film is its split screen opening sequence. While some claim that this is an example of style over content, the real reason the split screen was adopted was because editor Hal Ashby was tasked with reducing the running time of the opening.
Steve McQueen wears number 2 in the Polo Match. The number two player is one of the primary players on offense, either running through and scoring themselves, or passing to the Number 1 and getting in behind them for scoring or assist attempts. When playing on defense, number two player is designated to cover the opposing team's Number 3 player. Usually the better players on any team are the number 2 and number 3 designated players.
The sailplane (N9860E) that Steve McQueen flies early in the movie is a Schweizer SGS 1-23H-15. It was used in New York for many years, but eventually crashed and was destroyed in Georgia (US) in June 2013.
Early 1980 was a bad omen for both stars; Faye Dunaway starred in the ill-fated Mommie Dearest (1981), putting a downward spiral on her movie career, and Steve McQueen passed away that year from cancer.