The story line between Bumper and Fat Amy was not in the script. Adam DeVine and Rebel Wilson would improvise during their scenes together, and Devine would often try to kiss her. This led to Devine and Wilson to create a back story for their two characters and their relationship. The film makers thought the hostile, sexual chemistry between the two was funny and kept some of the scenes in the film - though according to the two actors, there was a lot that was cut out, including a reference to a one night stand.
The song that Beca performs at her audition, "Cups (Miss Me When I'm Gone)," is a combination of a children's rhythmic percussion game played with drinking cups with a song that dates back to the late 1920s or early 1930s: "When I'm Gone," written by A.P. Carter and first recorded by his seminal folk-country group The Carter Family. The song and the game were first combined in 2009 by the British group 'Lulu and the Lampshades'; Anna Kendrick heard this version and decided to include it in her audition scene. In the States, the song debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 93 for the week ending January 12, 2013, even before the song was released as a single. By its 32nd week on that chart, it had climbed to number 6 (for the week ending August 17, 2013).
A special screening of the film was held on 25 September 2012 at the LSU Student Union Theater because parts of the movie were filmed on LSU's campus. The turnout for the screening was so great that only a little more than half of the students in line got in to see the movie. The producer saw that there were more students wanting to see the film and allowed a second showing immediately following the first.
Anna Kendrick said on the Late Show with David Letterman: Episode #20.19 (2012) that she learned her audition song "You're Going to Miss Me When I'm Gone" performed with the plastic cup from a viral video. It was incorporated into the movie after the producers learned she already knew how to do it.
Despite what Anna Kendrick's character claims in the movie, Vader (of Darth Vader) does not mean 'father' in German, but it does in Netherlands Dutch. Both the Dutch 'vader' and the German 'Vater' are pronounced with the 'a' as in 'far', instead of the 'a' as in 'later'. In the German dubbed version of the film this was changed, and Kendrick says that Vader means 'father' in Netherlands Dutch.
At one point, while Beca is attending the activities fair and checking out the booth for the DJs (Deaf Jews), a spirited game of Quidditch (from the Harry Potter books and movies) can be seen going on in the background, including players straddling broomsticks and one player shouting "Throw me the Quaffle!" Simulated Quidditch games have been enacted on a number of university campuses in recent years.
When Beca enters the radio station for the first time, the station's frequency is written on the outside window (85.7) but DJ Luke's voice is heard in the background saying the frequency is 95.7 (.."music for the independent mind".)
Although never working together before, Anna Kendrick (Beca) and Skylar Astin (Jesse) share a connection with the prestigious performing arts camp Stagedoor Manor in upstate New York. Skylar Astin attended the camp for multiple years and appeared in the documentary Stagedoor (2006), and Anna Kendrick starred in Camp (2003) which was based on and filmed at Stagedoor Manor.
In June 1995, when Adam Devine was 11 years old, he was hit by a 42-ton concrete truck while walking his bike across the street, resulting in multiple fractures to both his legs that required multiple surgeries over three years; it took two years for him to learn to walk again.
When Beca (Anna Kendrick) enters the campus radio station for the first time, a voice is heard saying "95.7 WBUJ" and the slogan "music for the independent mind." This is actually the slogan of 88.9 WERS, the Emerson College radio station.
One of the actresses in the Bellas, Kelly Jakle, was an actual ICCA-winner in 2008 and 2010 with the USC SoCal Vocals. Ben Bram, who worked in the music department of the film, also won the ICCAs with the 2008 and 2010 USC SoCal Vocals.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
The riff-off was too short. During the riff-off scene it ends with the treblemakers winning because all other groups were "cut off" but that's not the case The High Notes were "Cut Off" during the "Ladies of The 80s" category the Barden Bella's were eliminated during the "Songs About Sex" category but the BU Harmonics were never "Cut Off" their song got cut off which is allowed.