The NeverEnding Story (1984) Poster


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Noah Hathaway was hurt twice during the making of the movie. During his horse riding training he was thrown off a horse which then stepped on him. Then during the shooting of the drowning sequence in the "swamp of sadness" his leg got caught on the elevator and he was pulled under water. He was unconscious by the time he was brought to the surface.
Noah Hathaway almost lost an eye during the fight-scene versus Gmork. One of the claws on his giant paws poked him in the face. The robot was also so heavy that he lost his breath as well when he was hit to the ground by it. They only made one shot due to the risk that he would get seriously wounded.
According to the book, the name that Bastian screams almost indecipherably into the night is "Moonchild", but it has often been debated what Barret Oliver actually says.
Was the most expensive film ever produced in Germany at the time it was made.
You can "ride" on Falcor's back on location at the Bavaria Filmplatz Munich, Germany.
Author Michael Ende decided that he was unhappy with the film's version of his story, and refused to have his name placed in the opening credits. A small credit appears at the end with his name. He also asked if the movie title would be changed or cancelled. After the studio declined both options, he filed a lawsuit and ultimately lost.
The makeup team on the movie tried to paint Noah Hathaway green, just as Atreyu is in the book. "It wasn't believable. I looked like fungi!" Hathaway said.
The original Auryn for this film now hangs in an enclosed glass display in Steven Spielberg's office.
Noah Hathaway (Atreyu) now owns and operates a tattoo parlor in Los Angeles, California with his wife.
The Night Hob says a profanity in the opening scene where the Rockbiter appears running down all in its path. This profanity is often dubbed over by the grumble of the Rockbiter's scooter, so that it can be shown as a children's film.
Tami Stronach lost both front teeth shortly before filming and they made her fake teeth which caused her to lisp until she learned to compensate for them.
Tami Stronach was attending theatre classes in San Francisco when she got the audition to be The Childlike Empress. Her acting teacher was friends with the production executive and talent scout Anna Gross. Tami initially believed she was auditioning for a little play and had no idea it was to be for a major motion picture.
The book itself actually "ends" about halfway through the film.
Falkor is actually a 43-foot long motorized creature with 6,000 plastic scales and pink feather-fur. His head his three feet tall and long, and has a long tongue in the mouth.
According to the filmmakers, the rolling storm clouds were not meant to actually be The Nothing, but rather an indication of its presence, as The Nothing is an invisible force.
Most of the film was shot in Germany in the summer of 1983. It was Germany's hottest summer in 25 years.
At the time of its release it was the most expensive film produced outside the United States and the Soviet Union.
Contrary to Internet rumor, the horse did not really die during the filming of the Swamp of Sadness scene. As confirmed by German magazine interview with Noah Hathaway shortly after the movie, and in the years since at conventions, the horse was given to Noah at the end of filming but due to the cost of transportation, need for quarantine, and sterilization, the horse was left behind in Germany.
Two scenes from the book were written in the script but ultimately scrapped due to special effects limitations. The first was the initial appearance of Falcor, where Atreyu rescues him from Ygramul the Many, a swarm of poisonous wasps taking the form of a giant spider. This is where Bastian's scream being heard by the characters in the book was to have taken place, and also explained why Atreyu and Falcor are later seen being given medicine by the Gnomes. The second cut scene involved Atreyu and Falcor encountering the Wind Giants, giant creatures made of clouds, and being caught in a fight between them. This was re-edited into their close encounter with the Nothing before Atreyu falls into the sea.
Deep Roy's voice was dubbed in this movie.
Noah Hathaway was due to appear in the Broadway show "Chaplin" alongside Gene Kelly and Ann Margaret, but opted to do "The Neverending Story" instead. He had been cast in the film, then the original director was fired, and when Wolfgang Petersen was hired, Noah was immediately re-hired.
"The Childlike Empress" was just child-"like". She has existed for as long as there have been stories to tell. She was portrayed by Iranian born Israeli-American dancer Tami Stronach who was only 11 years old when the production started.
Almost five million Germans watched the film during its initial release, a rare feat for a German production.
The scenes set in the real world (Bastian's home, the city, the school, etc.) were shot not at Bavaria Studios in Munich, Germany, but in Vancouver, Canada.
The theme song was sang by Limahl, who was the lead singer of the pop band Kajagoogoo. When a show plays the music video, depending on their fame in that country, the performance credit goes to either Limahl or Kajagoogoo
During filming in Germany, because it was an unusually hot summer one of the statues of the Ivory Tower actually melted. On other days, the crew were forced to shut down production because the blue backgrounds for the matte work refused to operate properly.
According to an article released by Der Spiegel in 1984, writer Michael Ende had hoped for this film to be directed either by Andrzej Wajda or Akira Kurosawa.
The German version does not feature the theme song, nor the techno-pop elements composed by Giorgio Moroder. It only features the orchestral score composed by Klaus Doldinger.
The name of the mystical land in (the English translation of) the original novel was Fantastica, not Fantasia, but the original German name Phantásien translates more accurately into English as Fantasia.
Atreyu is an unique ancient word which means "Bold Guardian".
When Warner Bros. passed on releasing Supergirl (1984), which was originally designed to be their tent pole release that year, they hurried the release of "Die unendliche Geschichte" (The Neverending Story) for summer audiences.
The metalcore band "Atreyu" took their namesake from the film's character in question.
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Gerald McRaney who played a role of Bastian's father is best known for his title role on a popular sitcom TV series "Major Dad".
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Two more sequels of this film were later made, one of them with late Jonathan Brandis (best known as Lucas Wolenczak,a wizz-kid on SeaQuest) as Bastian in The NeverEnding Story II(1991).
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In the Anthony Horowitz novel Oblivion, one of the characters reads his life story in a library, much like Bastian in the film.
One of Poet/Writer J.R. Gabriel's favorite childhood movies. After leaving Upstate New York to live in Arizona, the movie provided inspiration towards Gabriel becoming a professional writer.
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The title song by Limahl initially did poorly in the US. The song only became a hit in the US following the movie's Home Video release and Cable TV airings a year after the film's theatrical release.
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The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

The roles of Bastian, Atreyu and the Child-like Empress were recast for The Neverending Story II: The Next Chapter (1990) due to the ages of Barret Oliver, Noah Hathaway and Tami Stronach whom were all in their late teens in 1989. Jonathan Brandis, Kenny Morrison and Alexandra Johnes assumed the roles. Jesse James Richter and Julie Cox took over the roles of Bastian and the Empress in The Neverending Story III (1994). But, Atreyu did not return for the 3rd film.
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