Edit
Gran Torino (2008) Poster

(2008)

Trivia

Jump to: Spoilers (3)
This film was once falsely rumored to be a final installment in the Dirty Harry (1971) series.
Clint Eastwood encouraged the Hmong actors to ad-lib in Hmong.
Shot in 33 days, scheduled for 35.
Eastwood's son, Scott Eastwood plays Trey. And his oldest son, Kyle Eastwood provided the music score.
When Walt is at the Hmong's party, he pats the head of a young Hmong girl passing through, causing the family members to audibly gasp. In Hmong culture, the human head is believed to house the soul, and any touching of the head is believed to jeopardize this, and is thus considered very disrespectful.
Walt is never depicted driving his beloved Gran Torino. He only drives his old F100; only Thao is seen driving the Gran Torino.
Open casting calls for Hmong actors were held in Hmong communities in Detroit, Michigan; Saint Paul, Minnesota; and Fresno, California. Only Doua Moua had been in a film before.
In box office terms, the most successful Clint Eastwood movie ever, both in the U.S. and the U.K, but not with inflation. Taking inflation into account, his most successful films are Every Which Way But Loose (1978) and Any Which Way You Can (1980).
The "cool medal" the kids find in Walt's basement is the Silver Star, the U.S. military's third highest award for valor in combat. Despite its predominately gold color, it gets its name from the smaller silver star (based on the small silver World War I Citation Star) set inside the large gold star.
Clint Eastwood's character's name, Walt Kowalski, is the real name of legendary wrestler, 'Walter "Killer' Kowalski'.
Kowalski is by far the most popular surname in Poland, practically like "Smith" which as a matter of fact it means, in adjective form usual in Polish names. (Kowalczyk - Marilyn Monroe's name in Some Like It Hot (1959) is closely related to it - meaning "Smithson"). The name "Kowalski" identifies a person as a Pole.
Writers Nick Schenk and Dave Johannson knew some of the Hmongs near the steel mill where they worked. They wrote the script on pieces of paper during lunch breaks.
According to Bee Vang, the Hmong actors were isolated from the rest of the cast and crew. According to Vang, efforts by the Hmong actors to correct the portrayal of Hmong traditions were ignored. Vang has also refuted claims that the Hmong actors were encouraged to improvise. According to Vang, when he tried to improvise Clint Eastwood told him to "stick to the script". Vang also stated that the cast and crew had a baseball game but the Hmong actors were not invited. It was assumed that the Hmong actors were immigrants and did not know about baseball. But Vang states that the majority of the Hmong actors were US natives.
Walt Kowalski's gun collection seems to consists of weapons he used in the military. His rifle is an American M1 Garand, a 9.5lb .30-06 gas-operated rifle. It was first issued during WWII, then re-issued in Korea before being phased out by the M14 selective fire .308 rifle. His pistol is an M1911A1, a .45 ACP semi-automatic handgun also issued during the Korean war.
There is a Hmong gang member with a tattoo on his upper chest. The tattoo is of Chinese characters and means "Family".
Gran Torinos were built in Lorain, OH, about two hours from Detroit. The truck Walt drives, however, could have been built in Wayne, Michigan, twenty miles from Highland Park.
One of the first films to take advantage of a new Michigan law providing tax incentives to film productions.
The jersey Walt's grandson wears at the funeral is that of former Lions wide receiver Roy Williams.
Sue Lor, while on a "date" is assaulted by three youths. The filming location for the assault is the intersection of Charlevoix and Drexel near Grosse Point Park.

Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

The movie opens and closes with a funeral. It opens with Walt's wife Dorothy's and it ends with Walt's himself.
Walt fires a weapon only once in the movie, accidentally.
Body Count: 1 (2 if you count Dorothy Kowalski).

See also

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

Contribute to This Page