Edit
Zabriskie Point (1970) Poster

Trivia

Michelangelo Antonioni's original ending was a shot of an airplane sky-writing the phrase "Fuck You, America," which was cut by MGM president Louis F. Polk along with numerous other scenes. Louis F. Polk was eventually replaced by James T. Aubrey, who had most of the cut footage restored, but without this final shot.
On March 8, 1967, Hail Thomas Hansen, 20, took a private plane from Sky Harbor Airport, Phoenix, for a joy ride, flying to Tucson. When he returned to Sky Harbor early in the morning of March 9, the Phoenix police were waiting for him. Hansen was shot and killed. Antonioni used elements of this story in his screen play. For additional details of Hansen's death, see "Tucson Daily Citizen," March 10, 1967 (page 2) and March 22, 1967 (page 18).
In real life, Mark Frechette led a counterculture life much like his character's in the film. Three years after the release of Zabriskie Point (1970) he was imprisoned for his part in a bank hold-up in Boston. He died in prison in 1975 during a weightlifting exercise when a barbell fell on his neck.
Harrison Ford fans know his scenes were cut from this film. However, in the jail scene, if you look closely you can see him standing against the back wall near the door.
"Fingals Cave", a piano piece composed by Richard Wright of Pink Floyd for the 'violent scene' went unused, but was later reworked by the band as "Us and Them" on their album "Dark Side of the Moon". In its original form it has featured on various bootleg albums.
Antonioni met with Jim Morrison during early production to ask for a musical contribution to the soundtrack. Morrison and the Doors provided "L'America" which Antonioni then rejected.
Remembering the scoring sessions for this film, members of Pink Floyd later commented that Michelangelo Antonioni was very difficult to please, offering vague comments like (quoting the bandmembers, mimicking Michelangelo Antonioni's accent) "Eets nice, but too slow" or "Eets a leetle bit too soft."
One hundred people participated in the orgy scene, half of them from Joseph Chaikin 's Open Theatre company, and the other half "made up of assorted hippies."
Michelangelo Antonioni's leftist politics made the film controversial from the start. The production was harassed by groups opposed to the movie's alleged "anti-Americanism." FBI agents tailed cast and crew members. Filming locations were besieged by right-wingers protesting an alleged scene of flag desecration, which never happened. Militant anti-establishment students worried they were being "sold out". The sheriff of Oakland, California, accused Michelangelo Antonioni of provoking the riots he had come to film. Death Valley park rangers initially refused to allow Michelangelo Antonioni to shoot at Zabriskie Point because they thought he planned to stage an orgy at the site; it was conceptualized, but never seriously considered. The U.S. Attorney's office in Sacramento opened grand jury investigations into both the film's alleged "anti-Americanism" and possible violations of the Mann Act, a 1910 law prohibiting the transportation of women across state lines "for immoral conduct, prostitution or debauchery," during the Death Valley filming. The investigation was dropped, reluctantly, when they learned that Zabriskie Point was at least 13 miles west of the California-Nevada border.
Michelangelo Antonioni's assistant and casting director, Sally Dennison, first spotted Mark Frechette having an argument with a woman at a bus stop in Los Angeles. Frechette was not an actor but a carpenter at the time so when Dennison brought him to Antonioni's attention, she told him "He's twenty and he hates". Antonioni cast him on the spot.
Mark Frechette earned $60,000 for making the film. He donated his earnings to a commune.
The old car that Daria is driving is a 1952 Buick Special De Luxe.
8 of 8 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The film initially grossed $900,000 on a budget of $7 million, making it one of the year's biggest box office disasters.
7 of 7 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Michelangelo Antonioni was quite appalled by what he perceived as American excess in the making of the film. He was more used to the Italian film industry's more thrifty approach to film-making.
6 of 6 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Mark Frechette and Daria Halprin became romantically involved during the film's protracted shooting schedule with Mark's wife consent.Later they got divorced yet Daria didn't want to live in a commune like Mark so they eventually split.
6 of 6 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The house in the boulders was an actual house in Carefree, Arizona. The explosion of the house was done by recreating a mock-up of the house on the back lot of Southwestern Studios, also located in Carefree Arizona. The mock-up was exploded.
5 of 5 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The second of three English language films that Michelangelo Antonioni made for MGM and producer Carlo Ponti. The first was Blow-Up (1966) with Professione: reporter (1975) following. Unfortunately both Zabriskie Point (1970) and Professione: reporter (1975) were major box office failures so the deal with MGM was not pursued any further.
4 of 4 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
17 camera set-ups were employed for the climactic explosion.
4 of 4 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Zabriskie Point (1970) screenwriter Clare Peploe's brother, Mark Peploe, would write the screenplay to Michelangelo Antonioni's next film, Professione: reporter (1975).
3 of 3 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Some scenes were actually shot at the real Zabriskie Point in Death Valley.
5 of 6 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
One of the films included in "The Fifty Worst Films of All Time (and how they got that way)" by Harry Medved and Randy Lowell.
5 of 10 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider.
3 of 6 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Actor James Caan considers this to be the worst film he has ever seen
6 of 16 found this interesting Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Rod Taylor's dialogue was written specifically for him by Sam Shepard.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
The lead actor Mark Frechette had a different idea about this film,unlike the director Antonini. Mark wanted to be a film about the 1968 student revolt against the system whilst the director Antonini insisted on making an art film so they constantly disagreed.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink
Both lead characters were named after the actual actors who played them: Mark & Darla. When a cop asked Mark what's his name Mark's witty answer was 'Karl Marx' but the cop misspelled the first name as 'C-A-R-L'.
Is this interesting? Interesting? | Share this
Share this: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Permalink

See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

Contribute to This Page