After the movie was released, screenwriter Joe Eszterhas's own father, Istvan Eszterhas, was accused of war crimes in Hungary for printing anti-Semitic editorials and even organizing a book burning. When Istvan admitted the charges were accurate, Joe responded by publicly condemning his father and disowning him as a parent, later writing that he never reconciled with Istvan and refused to let him see his grandchildren right up to the point where Istvan died of natural causes.
Joe Eszterhas wrote the screenplay with Jane Fonda in mind to play the female lead. Both Eszterhas and producer Irwin Winkler wanted to cast Fonda but director Costa-Gavras thought that she was too old for the part and cast Jessica Lange instead. Fonda was paid $1.25m in compensation for losing the part.
One of two films released around 1989/1990 which had a storyline where a woman finds out that her father is a Nazi war criminal allegedly guilty of war crimes. The movies are the Australian film Father (1990) and Costa-Gavras' Music Box (1989). The two pictures are very similar in their story-lines.