After the character of Richard Alpert was first introduced on the show, a furious internet debate arose about whether or not Nestor Carbonell was wearing eyeliner onscreen. Carbonell revealed on the fifth season DVD extras that not only does he not wear eyeliner, mascara, or makeup of any kind to make his lashes and eyeline appear as dark as they do, but also the makeup artists for "Lost" actually use concealer on his lashes and under his eyes to try to tone down the natural darkness of his eyeline. He also said that the unusual appearance of his eyes caused him to get teased and bullied when he was a child. The writers, amused by the intensity of the debate, placed a reference to it in the series when Sawyer, who frequently applies nicknames to various characters, calls Alpert "eyeliner."
The character of Sawyer was originally meant to be an older, slick, suit-wearing city con artist from Buffalo, NY. However, when Josh Holloway forgot a line at his audition and subsequently kicked a chair in frustration and loudly swore, the writers liked the edge he brought to the Sawyer character and decided to write Sawyer as more of a Southern, darker drifter instead.
Originally, Michael Keaton was cast as Jack. In the first draft of the script Jack was to be killed by the monster after they arrived at the cockpit. ABC told the producers that they shouldn't kill off the hero so soon in the series and the script was changed. After the change, Michael Keaton backed out of the role since he did not want to commit to a regular series.
When Charlie held heroin in his hand after quitting, Dominic Monaghan patterned his performance after that of Andy Serkis in the Lord of the Rings films - as Gollum holding the One Ring. Serkis based his performance as Gollum/Smeagol on a heroin addict.
Originally, Michael Emerson was only cast for a few episodes in season two. The producers were so impressed with his performance that they cast him as a regular and rewrote his part to feature him more prominently.
On Lost, Yunjin Kim's character secretly (at first) speaks fluent English, while Daniel Dae Kim's character is (again, at first) a Korean monolingual. Yunjin's character helps Daniel's learn English over the course of the series. In real life, the situation was almost perfectly mirrored. Yunjin had no previous screen credits where she primarily spoke English rather than Korean, and Daniel had not spoken Korean regularly since his teenage years, with older relatives. Daniel has credited Yunjin with helping him re-acclimate himself to the (Korean) language.
Josh Holloway was trying to cover up his Southern accent while shooting several of his first scenes in the first season. It wasn't until producer J.J. Abrams told him that the reason they cast him was BECAUSE of his accent that Holloway changed it. There are still some scenes left in the pilot where he doesn't use his Southern accent.
Danielle Rousseau's name is a reference to Jean Jacques Rousseau, 18th century Enlightenment philosopher creator of the "good savage" theory, a view that defends that Man is born free and pure and is subsequently corrupted by society and "civilization"
Evangeline Lilly was one of the last actors to be cast for the show, but the fact that she is a Canadian citizen gave the producers concern that she might not be able to obtain the appropriate U.S. employment visa that would grant her permission to stay in the country long enough to shoot the entire series. They pushed back all of Kate's scenes when they were shooting the pilot, just to be sure that they could get the proper employment visa, a category "O-1" for "artists of extraordinary ability in arts, science, education, business or athletics" for Lilly. As her body of work as an actor was not extensive at the time she was cast, they had a difficult time proving to the USCIS (formerly known as the INS) that Lilly was deserving of this classification as an "artist of extraordinary ability". It wasn't until they had shot almost every scene without the Kate character that she was finally granted the O-1 visa and signed on. That same day she was put on a plane in Canada and flown directly to Hawaii for the shooting.
Dominic Monaghan originally auditioned for the role of Sawyer, who was originally supposed to be a suit-wearing city con man. The producers were so enthused by Monaghan that the part of Charlie was altered to accommodate him - Charlie was originally going to be a 45-year-old washed-up rock star.
Jorge Garcia (Hurley) appeared on How I Met Your Mother as a character named "The Blitz" who had terrible luck just like his character on Lost. Then, later in the episode, someone asked him for a random phone number and he used his lottery ticket number from LOST that brought him his bad luck. 4 8 15 16 23 42
In one early version of the script, Boone was going to be Boone Carlyle V and would be referred to as "Five". When they decided against this idea they did a "find and replace" function to change all the referenced to "Five" into ones for "Boone". This accidentally changed the dialogue when Jack and Kate first meet to him counting "One, two, three, four, Boone."
The series began development in the summer of 2003 when Lloyd Braun, then the Chairman of ABC, during a meeting of the network's executives pitched the show as a cross between the film Cast Away (2000) and the popular reality TV show Survivor (2000). "Lost" was one of dozens of ideas to emerge from the meeting that got circulated to Hollywood agencies and producers to see if any attracted any interest. A few weeks later, veteran producer Aaron Spelling said he wanted to do "Lost" and ABC ordered a pilot script from a Spelling writer. When the script arrived in December, Braun hated it. A rewrite in January was even worse. Braun then contacted J.J. Abrams, whose series Alias (2001) was a hit for the network. Although initially hesitant, Abrams gave it a go in collaboration with Damon Lindelof. Their script was greenlit, but because it had been commissioned so late in the 2004 development cycle it was under very tight deadlines. Ironically, before the pilot aired Lloyd Braun was sacked by ABC's parent company, Disney - for greenlighting such an expensive and risky project.
Season 1 has some similarities to William Golding's novel 'Lord of the Flies'. The novel's basic premise is that a plane crashes on a remote island and the only survivors is a group of schoolboys. The group eventually splits into two factions, one staying on the beach waiting for rescue, the other moving to a rocky area with designs on being on the island long-term. Just like the survivors in the early season, the boys in the novel try to maintain a signal fire in hopes of being rescued. One of the characters in the novel is named Jack, who is a leader of sorts but a much less sympathetic one (the character Jack in the TV series is more like the novel's Ralph). Also, there is a character similar to Hurley called Piggy, who is overweight and whose real name is never revealed (Hurley's real name Hugo is mentioned for the first time later on). The TV character John Locke resembles the novel's Simon. Also, in both stories there are rumors about a monster on the island.
In the original description for Kate, she was a slightly older woman separated from her husband, who went to the bathroom in the tail-section of the plane. However, that idea ended up being used for the character Rose.
The very first scene filmed on the show was the one in Lost: Pilot: Part 1 (2004) when Charlie was confronted by Cindy, the flight attendant, seconds before the plane crashed. Kimberley Joseph who played Cindy, spoke the very first lines of the show's production.
The basic premise of the series is very similar to one of the Tintin graphic novels, "Flight 714". In the novel, a substitute for flight 714 is hijacked and taken to a volcanic tropical island, where the characters discover underground architecture and tunnels, and face various threatening and surreal situations whilst carrying guns and taking / becoming hostages. In this series, the cast discover the hatches, arm themselves with guns, and get into similar hostage situations with the Others. Also, flight 714 was flying to Sydney, Australia - the departure of Oceanic Flight 815.
The shirt that Sawyer wears that has a fish on it is from an actual restaurant. One of the show's creators went to Humpy's in Alaska and liked the logo so much he wanted to use it on the show. They didn't get permission to use it until much later so they took the logo from the site and made their own. No one at Humpy's knew how it got onto the show until much later.
In France, it is known as "Lost: Les Disparus". The additional French tag is due to a governmental ruling that imposes the use of French in all titles. "Les disparus" literally translates to "the missing" but 'disparus' means; gone, missing, vanished, lost, extinct, dead or departed. Depending on context.
After Aaron is born, John Locke calms his crying by wrapping him snugly on a cloth, a practice known as "swaddling," which was done throughout the world for centuries. Locke tells Claire that young babies actually like to feel restricted. The real John Locke was actually a harsh critic of the practice of swaddling, and his criticisms actually led to its decline throughout Europe.
Showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse told Entertainment Weekly magazine that the names of the characters Daniel Faraday and George Minkowski are references to the scientists Michael Faraday and Hermann Minkowski, respectively. Michael Faraday was a physicist and chemist who contributed to our understanding of electromagnetism, while his fictional namesake is a physicist whose experimental work had involved magnetism. Hermann Minkowski was a mathematician and experimental physicist whose work helped explain Einstein's special theory of relativity in the context of four dimensional space-time (which often figures in postulations and theories about how time travel might work), while his fictional namesake actually is a time traveler.
In original drafts for the show, Rousseau's team of scientists were studying time. The network decided not to include it in the show, in case the viewers would think it too science fiction and stop watching.
Daniel Dae Kim, who is of Korean descent, played a character of Korean descent for the first time in his career. He had previously played Asian characters of other nationalities or characters of unspecified origin but not of his own heritage. Speaking Korean was a challenge as he had not done it much since his childhood, and some viewers noted after the first episodes that it wasn't correct Korean. Carlton Cuse later joked it was 'country Korean'.
On the show, there are places and/or objects that align closely to the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The original wonders (and their counterparts on "Lost" are: 1) The Great Pyramid of Giza (the inner building inside The Others' Temple is a pyramid); 2) Hanging Gardens of Babylon (the Orchid Station houses a hanging garden); 3) Colossus of Rhodes (like the Rhodes Colossus, the large Statue of Taweret that once stood on the island was also a giant, oceanside monument); 4) Temple of Artemis (The Others' Temple); 5) Mausoleum of Halicarnassus (The resting place of "Adam and Eve"); 6) Statue of Zeus at Olympia (Statue of Taweret); 7) Lighthouse of Alexandria (Jacob's lighthouse).
Evangeline Lilly (Kate) and Dominic Monaghan (Charlie) dated from 2004-2009. Monaghan starred as the hobbit Meriadoc Brandybuck in three Lord of the Rings movies and Lilly went on to star as the elf Tauriel in two of The Hobbit movies.
While season 3 was on the air and the ratings were dropping, ABC approached the writers and asked them to set an end date for the show, and how many more episodes they needed to conclude the series on their own terms. After thinking about it, Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse said they needed two additional seasons of 24 episodes, so 48 episodes remaining. The studio preferred 3 more seasons, so as a compromise, they decided to split the remaining 48 episodes over three more shorter seasons.
ABC opted not to fly the intact N783DL to Hawaii first before dismantling it. Instead, ABC dispatched 40 production workers to Mojave to disassemble and ship the aircraft pieces. Dismantling took about 5 days in February 2004.
John Locke was a 17th-century English philosopher who described the human being as "tabula rasa" - translated as "unwritten sheet" or "empty canvas" - at birth. It's obvious that the creators of the show were inspired by this when creating the character Locke.
The part of Charlie was originally written for someone much older, but when Dominic Monaghan auditioned, the writers and producers loved him so much that they set about re-writing the part to Dominic's strengths.
Emilie de Ravin (Claire Littleton), Rebecca Mader (Charlotte Lewis), Jorge Garcia (Hugo "Hurley" Reyes), Elizabeth Mitchell (Juliet Burke), and Naveen Andrews (Sayid Jarrah) all starred in Once Upon A Time: Emilie as Belle, Rebecca as Zelena, Jorge as Anton, Elizabeth as Ingrid, and Naveen as Jafar( once upon a time Wonderland ). Lana Parilla (The Evil Queen) also guest starred on the Lost season 3 finale.
The Chinese tattoo on Jack's shoulder means "Eagles cleave the air", which originally comes from a poem by Chairman Zedong Mao. The tattoo is written into the series, but stated to mean something else.
The number 42 is the last number in the series of mysterious numbers that is central to the plot. In The X-Files (1993) Agent Mulder saw Edward D. Wood Jr.'s Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959) 42 times. He also lives in apartment #42. The number 42 is also the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything from Douglas Adams' novel "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"; the writers have admitted that this was the reason why they chose 42 as one of the numbers.
The fictional show Exposé (where Nicky worked) is actually an inside-joke from the writer crew. Writers and producers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz started to vaguely develop Exposé to switch off from the dense Lost universe.
Jack Shephard is the character with the most "centric" episodes of any of the show's characters, a total of 19. Also, Matthew Fox is the actor who appeared in the most episodes, 109 out of 120 (including episodes with two/three parts).
The airplane pieces on the beach, depicting the doomed flight from Sydney, are the remnants of a Lockheed Tristar L-1011. She began service for Eastern Airlines (N308EA) in 1972 and was retired by Delta Airlines (N783DL) in 1998 having racked up a total of 28,822 landings and 58,841 flight-hours.
The song played by Desmond in the final minutes before the islanders open the hatch is "Make Your Own Kind of Music" by Cass Elliot, and the song listened to by Juliet in season 3 is "Downtown" by Petula Clark. However, the CD case Juliet pulls the disc from is from Talking Heads "Speaking in Tongues" album.
In season 3 Juliet chose a Stephen King book, Carrie, for the book club to read. After Lost, Jack Bender, the show's main director, who directed the largest amount of episodes on the show, directed a large amount (the largest on the show, too) on Stephen King's show Under the Dome (2013).
When the numbers were introduced they consciously chose ones which could have significance within the mythology of the show. For example, John Locke had been paralyzed for four years while the numbers 8 and 15 were part of the flight number of the crash plane.
Several characters were reconceived during the casting process. Charlie was originally inspired by Bill Nighy's performance in Love Actually and was supposed to be an over the hill rock star. When Dominic Monaghan auditioned they reworked the role as a younger man. Sawyer was originally conceived of as a slick big city con man, but the producers liked Josh Holloway's audition so much that they reworked the character as a sexy Southerner. Kate was originally supposed to be a 30-something business woman who had lost her husband in the crash. They eventually cast a younger Evangeline Lilly as Kate and decide to portray her as a criminal.
A couple of the characters were invented to accommodate actors who the producers liked. Yunjin Kim had originally auditioned for the role of Kate. They did not like her for that role but wanted to work with her so much that they created the role of Sunn for her. Jorge Garcia originally auditioned for the role of Sawyer but the producers created the role of Hurley for him.
Hugo is teased several times for not losing large amounts of weight on the island, although actor Jorge Reyes was noticeably thinner after the pilot episode. He had already lost 30 lbs. prior to the show's filming and continued losing weight because of the demand of the filming. However, LOST producers asked him to maintain a consistent weight for the sake of production, not only because of the show's relatively slow timeline (the first three seasons cover about 100 days) but also allowed them, over the seasons, to seamlessly film multiple flashbacks to Hurley's life shortly before the crash and show him looking the same.
The series used rotating directors to allow multiple episodes to be in production at the same time. An extra on the series 3 DVD called "Lost in a Day" showed how seven episodes were in production on the same day.
Writers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse were very sparing with details of the characters' backstories, only divulging them when absolutely necessary. For instance, Terry O'Quinn initially had no idea why his character was in a wheelchair.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42 all added together equal 108, the total of minutes left to enter those very numbers into the computer each time, and the number of days that the castaways spent on the island before The Oceanic Six were rescued.
Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Mr. Eko) asked to be written out of the show, so he could return to London following the death of his parents, and to pursue some personal projects. The writers had envisioned a long conflict between Mr. Eko and John Locke (Terry O'Quinn), but were forced to re-write it, which probably became the antagonism between Locke and Jack (Matthew Fox) in the middle seasons. Mr. Eko was originally supposed to appear in the series' finale, but a deal could not be worked out.
A fan-edited version of the show known as 'Chronologically Lost' was released online. As the title suggests, it retells the events of Lost in chronological order, starting with the events of Lost: Across the Sea (2010) and ending with the Purgatory plots in Season 6.
Of the six mysterious numbers, 23 is used the most. Kate gets turned in for $23,000; 23 people were on a deck Hurley stepped out on and it collapsed (2 died); flight 815's gate number is 23; Jack's seat number is 23; the room number where the Dharma group do experiments is #23; the table many of the survivors sit at when attending Driveshaft's concert in the series finale is table 23; and 23 passengers survived the tail end crash of the plane.
In a 2004 interview, show co-creator Damon Lindelof said that the character of Charlie (Dominic Monaghan) was heavily inspired by the character of Larry Underwood in Stephen King's novel 'The Stand' (made into the miniseries The Stand (1994)). Both characters are "one hit wonder" rock stars; both are significant survivors of a catastrophic event that kills the majority of the others involved; both are drug addicts who kick their habits during the story; and finally, both die in the course of sacrificing themselves for their friends and the greater good.
The final scene of the entire series is an almost exact mirror image of the very first scene. The first episode opens with a close-up of an eye opening, followed by a shot of the sky from the eye's point of view. Next, the camera pulls back to reveal Jack (Matthew Fox), wounded and lying on the ground, seeing Vincent the dog passing by him. Jack subsequently gets up and leaves, running through a bamboo field, passing by his father's pristine white shoe hanging from a branch. In the final scene, Jack returns through the bamboo field, passing by the exact same white shoe still hanging there (but weathered by the years by now). He collapses on the exact same location, wounded, until Vincent the dog comes by and lies down next to him. The camera pulls back as there is a shot of the sky from Jacks point of view (seeing the Ajira flight leaving the islands with his friends aboard). The scene ends with a close-up of Jack's eye closing.
One of the key questions with the character Walt's casting were problems that arose concerning the proposed time line on the show. While the series moves slowly through time and only weeks have passed on the show, the actual filming has stretched over two years. When originally cast, Walt was portrayed as a 10-year-old boy but actor Malcolm David Kelley had actually turned 12 a few months before the pilot was filmed. After two seasons, he could no longer pass for 10. The show's writers dealt with this at the end of season two, by sending Michael and Walt away from the island toward supposed rescue. Walt reappeared in season 4, but in scenes that play three years further into the show's timeline, so that he had aged appropriately by then, even if it's obvious he looks much older than 13 years old.
The full name of the character Charlotte Lewis (played by Rebecca Mader) is Charlotte Staples Lewis. She has the same initials, middle name, and last name as writer C.S. Lewis (writer of the "Chronicles of Narnia" novels). This is an allusion to the unpredictable nature of time on the island (such as the moving of the island and Ben's time jump). In the Narnia novels, a lamp post serves as a gateway to the magical land of Narnia, but people who go through always end up in a different time period in Narnia. There is a DHARMA station called The Lamp Post which serves a similar function with regard to the Island.
The character of Jeremy Bentham who was referred to during the flash forwards in season four turned out to be an alias for John Locke. Like John Locke, Jeremy Bentham is also the name of an English philosopher.
The Man in Black is never named throughout the entire series. In early versions of the scripts for season 6, his name was seen as "Samuel". Some fans refer to him as "Esau", to maintain the parallel of brothers Jacob and Esau from the Bible. However, Jacob and Esau eventually made peace, and there was no fratricide, even by proxy in that particular Bible story.
Cynthia Watros moved to Hawaii with her children to shoot her scenes for the second season of Lost. Unfortunately, the writers ran out of ideas for her character, and much to Watros' sadness, they decided to kill her off in the very same season. There were plans to have her character Libby's background explored in several flashbacks, but most of this did not happen due to Watros having other obligations.
In the episode Lost: The Man Behind the Curtain (2007), it is hinted that there is a dormant volcano on the Island. Originally, while scouting for filming locations, series writer/producer Carlton Cuse noticed a big volcano on Hawaii, and planned to use it in the climax of the series. It was supposed to be revealed in Lost: Across the Sea (2010) that the Island's volcano was the "cork" that kept the world's evil contained, and it would also be the place where Jacob (Mark Pellegrino) throws in his brother (Titus Welliver), causing the latter's transformation into the Smoke Monster. The series finale would have seen the volcano becoming unstable as soon as the endgame begins, leading to an apocalyptic scene where Jack and the Smoke Monster are battling each other on the slopes of the mountain amidst heavy earthquakes and violent lava eruptions. However, the studio balked at the prospected costs of these scenes, especially since the set for the Others' temple had turned out to be quite expensive. So the idea was re-written with an underground cave instead of a volcano, and Jack and Smoke Monster fighting on a cliff. Writer/creator Damon Lindelof later stated that omitting the volcano might have been for the best, in order to preserve some mystery, and also because the epic battle might have paled in comparison to a similar fight on an erupting volcano in Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005).
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, an 18th century philosopher, shares his surname with that of both Danielle and Alex Rousseau. Also, John Locke shares his name with 17th century philosopher John Locke, and later has the code name Jeremy Bentham, also the name of an 18th century philosopher.
In Saw (2004), Michael Emerson's Zepp claims that the patient known to be Jigsaw (John) is a "special" person. In the show "Lost", Emerson's Ben Linus also claims another person by the name of John (i.e. John Locke) to be a "special" person. Ken Leung, who played Detective Sing in Saw, also plays a detective in the final season of "Lost". Finally. both "Lost" and the Saw series are known for their elaborate flashback-flashforward structure.
The original idea for the Others was that they would be a group of feral jungle dwellers. This was later changed when they were re-imagined as technically advanced and sophisticated people, who only use a disguise of feral jungle dwellers to mislead new arrivals on the Island.