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Racing with the Moon (1984) Poster

Trivia

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The scene in which Sean Penn and Elizabeth McGovern go swimming in the lake was shot in the middle of winter which meant the water would also be freezing cold, but Penn and McGovern were so into the film they elected to do it anyway.
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The shots in which Sean Penn and Nicolas Cage stand in on the railroad tracks with the train coming toward them were done with a large mirror positioned on the track, the camera shooting into it rather than the oncoming locomotive, to give the illusion that the train is actually coming toward them when the train is actually on a set of tracks nearby.
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Actress Elizabeth McGovern worked on this picture pretty much back-to-back after finishing principal photography on Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in America (1984).
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According to the September 1984 edition of Photoplay (UK) magazine, Sean Penn and Elizabeth McGovern had an "...intimate relationship off-screen during the making of the film. At one time they were living together, but they...split up".
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Originally rated "R" by the MPAA due to strong language and the scene of nudity. Upon an appeal, the rating was reduced to "PG."
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The movie's two male leads, Sean Penn and Nicolas Cage, had both about a couple of years earlier, previously appeared in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982).
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The steam train seen in the film was especially restored and renovated in time for use in the picture.
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Richard Benjamin once said of this movie: "The film is about the loss of innocence of three friends. The three leading characters have one foot in adulthood. It is that passionate, intense confused time before becoming adults, a time when everything burns brighter in youth - even in wartime".
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David Graf turned down a role in this movie, in order to work on Police Academy (1984).
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Michael Madsen's missing lower right leg from the war was created by putting a hole in the hospital bed, putting the leg through it, and covering the thigh with bandage to create the illusion of a lost leg from the war.
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Director Richard Benjamin cast Sean Penn after seeing him in a New York stage play called "The Slab Boys" whilst Benjamin cast Nicolas Cage after seeing him in Valley Girl (1983).
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The title of the black-and-white newsreel segment was "Country Calls for 18-19 Boys".
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First produced screenplay of scriptwriter Steve Kloves.
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The picture has been often likened to Summer of '42 (1971). The movie was even set in the same year, it's opening title cards reading "Point Muir, California" and "Christmas, 1942".
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The concept for this picture grew out of discussions between writer Steve Kloves and producer Alain Bernheim, the latter of whom was "interested in making a film about the war and its effects on the young".
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Director Richard Benjamin tried to use Vaughn Monroe's signature tune "Racing With the Moon" (1941), fitting of the era, but the song did not fit well with the context of the end of the movie, and the use of it was scrapped.
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The bowling alley where Sean Penn and Nicolas Cage work in the film was mostly built from scratch by production designers David L. Snyder and Jeannine Oppewall because the town in which the film was shot did not have one that fit that era. The hand-worked pin-strip bowling-ball mechanism, according to Richard Benjamin's audio-commentary, was an authentic piece of apparatus, and was found especially for the film, as they didn't make them anymore, all bowling pin retrievers having been replaced by mechanization.
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The scene in which Sean Penn fights Crispin Glover, Nicolas Cage is then seen trying to clean off the blood on the woman's dress was director Richard Benjamin's idea.
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First film as a full producer for Sherry Lansing.
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The movie was originally in development at another Hollywood studio whereupon, due to budgetary concerns, the project got moved to Paramount Pictures.
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One of five movies released in 1984 scored by composer Dave Grusin.
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Nicolas Cage played a a character, Nicky, with a similar first name to his own. Director Richard Benjamin refers to Cage as Nicky on his audio-commentary.
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When director Richard Benjamin first read the screenplay it was so good that he went back and read the whole script again.
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The name of the book (fictitious) that Henry Nash (Sean Penn) picked-up at the library was "When A Girl Grows Up" by author Susan Carter (fictitious).
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The movie was Richard Benjamin's only second feature film as a director. Benjamin was hired before his first film, My Favorite Year (1982), had even been released.
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The name of the local high school was the "Point Muir High School".
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Dave Grusin's music score was evocative of the music of Tommy Dorsey.
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The film's "Racing with the Moon" title was very similar to the earlier movie "The Raging Moon" [Long Ago, Tomorrow (1971)] whose title was derived from a phrase in a Dylan Thomas poem. The likeness ends there with the title, as the stories of both movies are completely different, except for romantic themes.
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One of two 1984 films starring Sean Penn. The other was Crackers (1984).
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One of a number of period comedies directed by Richard Benjamin. The films include Mermaids (1990), City Heat (1984), Mrs. Winterbourne (1996), My Favorite Year (1982), Racing with the Moon (1984) and Laughter on the 23rd Floor (2001).
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Henry Nash (Sean Penn)'s nickname was Hopper. The nickname he had for Caddie Winger ('Elizabeth McGovern') was "Gatsby Girl".
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Cameo 

Carol Kane: As Annie.
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