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Love Story (1970) Poster

(1970)

Trivia

The first television showing of this film, on ABC in 1972, marked the shortest time span (up to then) between a film's theatrical release and first showing on television.
The movie's line "Love means never having to say you're sorry." was voted as the #13 movie quote by the American Film Institute.
The scenes with Oliver walking alone through a snowy New York were added after principal photography was completed. The production was almost out of money and did not have the necessary funds for permits to shoot in New York City again - so all the shots were grabbed "illegally" using a skeleton film crew and Ryan O'Neal.
To prepare for their roles, Ryan O'Neal learned to ice skate and Ali MacGraw learned to play the harpsichord.
Film debut of Tommy Lee Jones, a Harvard graduate. Erich Segal based Ryan O'Neal's character on Jones, and on his Harvard roommate, future Vice-President Al Gore.
Author Erich Segal wrote the screenplay first, then adapted it into a novel, which was published before the film's release, and became a runaway bestseller.
The most famous line from the film, "Love means never having to say you're sorry", was actually misspoken from the script. Originally the line was supposed to be: "Love means not ever having to say you're sorry."
Eight up-and-coming actors including Michael Douglas, Jon Voight, and Peter Fonda turned down the role of Oliver, despite being offered ten percent of the gross.
This movie marked Ray Milland's first film appearance without the hairpiece that he had worn for decades.
John Wayne refused to believe that Love Story (1970) "sold because the girl went around saying 'shit' all the way through it." Instead he believed that "the American public wanted to see a little romantic story."
Both the Cornell and Dartmouth hockey teams were played by Dartmouth's actual team. Cornell hockey coach Ned Harkness only allowed Cornell jerseys to be used in the film, on the condition that Cornell win the game with Harvard.
Christopher Walken, David Birney, and Ken Howard screen-tested for the role of Oliver. Despite Arthur Hiller's preference for Walken, Robert Evans preferred Ryan O'Neal, describing him as "a reactor rather than an actor".
According to Robert Evans in his memoirs, the eight actors who declined the role of Oliver were Beau Bridges, Jon Voight, Michael Sarrazin, Michael Douglas, Michael York (who turned it down because he didn't believe it would be a hit), Peter Fonda, Jeff Bridges, and Keith Carradine.
The crew dubbed Ali MacGraw "Bucky Beaver" because of her tilted teeth.
In 1972, "Love Story" was the most viewed film on television of all time.
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Oliver's car in the film was an MG TC Midget, a British car produced by the MG Company from 1945 to 1949. Oliver's father drives an E-type Jaguar.
Incoming freshmen at Harvard University, where the movie takes place, are traditionally shown a screening of the film at which they indulge in ritualized mass heckling.
Californian First Lady and future U.S. First Lady Nancy Reagan did not like the film, because of the swearing.
James Caan turned down the role of Oliver Barrett.
Jimmy Webb was the original composer but Robert Evans decided to use Francis Lai instead.
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The film cast includes two Oscar winners: Ray Milland and Tommy Lee Jones; and three Oscar nominees: Ali MacGraw, Ryan O'Neal, and John Marley.
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Old-fashioned gas lights and lamp posts out of Boston's long past, from places like Beacon Hill, were added to scenes in Harvard Yard to make it look more like the producer's image of Harvard. Ryan O'Neal ruined several takes by tripping over the chains holding them in place.
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Barbara Parkins claimed recently that she turned down the lead role.
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Arthur Hiller's first choice for Oliver was Beau Bridges, who turned it down.
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Original director Larry Peerce, who had directed Ali MacGraw in her debut Goodbye, Columbus (1969), left the film during pre-production and Arthur Hiller came on board for 250,000 dollars plus 25 percent of the net. According to Peter Bart, who was then a young Paramount executive, this earned Hiller a further five million dollars.
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It was the production of this film that led to Harvard University to prohibit almost all commercial filming on their campus, reportedly because of disruptions to students and damage to the campus, including fake snow killing several trees. The production was kicked off the campus after only a week of filming. Most subsequent films set at Harvard filmed at other nearby schools.
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Ryan O'Neal (Oliver Barrett IV) and Ray Milland (Oliver Barrett III) are the only actors to reprise their roles in Oliver's Story (1978).
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