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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) Poster

Trivia

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According to Eli Wallach, when it came time to blow up the bridge, Sergio Leone asked the Spanish Army Captain in charge to trigger the fuse, as a sign of gratitude for the Army's collaboration. They agreed to blow up the bridge when Leone gave the signal "Vai!" (Go!) over the walkie-talkie. Unfortunately, another crew member spoke on the same channel, saying the words "vai, vai!", meaning "it's okay, proceed" to a second crew member. The Captain heard this signal, thought it was for him, and blew up the bridge. Unfortunately, no cameras were running at the time. Leone was so upset that he fired the crewman, who promptly fled from the set in his car. The Captain was so sorry for what happened that he proposed to Leone that the Army would rebuild the bridge to blow it up again, with one condition: that the fired crewman be re-hired. Leone agreed, the crewman was forgiven, the bridge was rebuilt, and the scene was successfully shot.
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Because writer and director Sergio Leone spoke barely any English and Eli Wallach (Tuco) spoke barely any Italian, the two communicated in French.
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In the gun store, everything Tuco (Eli Wallach) does with the guns was unscripted. Wallach knew little about guns, so he was instructed to do whatever he wanted. Most of the Storekeeper's (Enzo Petito's) bemused reactions throughout the scene are genuine. The scene where Tuco shoves the open or closed sign in his mouth was also Wallach's idea.
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Clint Eastwood wore the same poncho through all three "Man with No Name" movies without replacement or cleaning.
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Ennio Morricone's iconic theme music was designed in places to mimic the sound of a howling coyote. Originally, Morricone did not want to use the trumpet but Leone insisted. Along with the electric and acoustic guitars, and the "tarzan yell", the trumpet became the most distinctive part of the soundtrack.
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Tuco's line "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk!" was improvised by Eli Wallach, which apparently caused the whole crew to burst out laughing. Eli was a little perplexed because he thought that what he said was actually pretty sensible. That is, he didn't mean it as a joke, but his delivery and the look on his face made it side-splittingly hilarious.
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In addition to the train scene, Tuco (Eli Wallach) cheated death in the first scene where Blondie (Clint Eastwood) shoots him down from a hanging. The gunshot scared the horse, which took off running at full speed for nearly a mile. Wallach's hands were tied behind his back, and he had to hang on for dear life with his knees.
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Although Clint Eastwood was top-billed in this movie, Eli Wallach has the most screentime.
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Eli Wallach was almost poisoned on the set after drinking acid used to burn the bags filled with gold coin, to make them rip open easier when struck with the spade. He didn't know the acid had been poured into a lemon soda bottle. He drank a lot of milk, and filmed the scene with a mouth full of sores.
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There is no dialogue for the first ten and a half minutes of this movie.
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During the scene right before the final duel where Tuco (Eli Wallach) is running frantically through the cemetery, a dog can be seen running on-screen at the beginning of the scene. In reality, that was improvised on the spot. Sergio Leone, who was afraid that the scene was going to slip into melodrama, released the dog without informing Eli Wallach first--thus, his look of surprise is quite genuine.
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When Tuco is having his handcuffs cut off on the train rail, writer and director Sergio Leone insisted that Eli Wallach perform the stunt, assuring him that while it would be loud and scary, it would be totally safe. Wallach was unaware of the low-hanging step rails, which missed his head by a few inches. In the wide shot, the step that would have hit his head is visible.
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In their introductory scenes (where they are identified on-screen as the "good", "bad", or "ugly"), Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach each shoot three people.
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For the scene where Angel Eyes interrogates Maria the prostitute for information about Bill Carson, Lee Van Cleef was appalled by the fact that he was required to actually hit Maria (Rada Rassimov), complaining "I can't hit a woman." Rassimov replied with, "Don't worry. I'm an actress. Even if you slap me for real, it's no problem", but Van Cleef further stated, "I know, but I can't!" As a result, a stunt double was used for shots where Rassimov was slapped, which were intercut with shots of Van Cleef. As he later put it: "There are very few principles I have in life. One of them is I don't kick dogs, and the other one is I don't slap women in movies."
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Orson Welles warned Sergio Leone not to make this movie on the grounds that Civil War movies were box-office poison.
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This movie was budgeted at an expensive (for the time) $1.6 million.
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When Eli Wallach arrived in Madrid, Spain, all of the hotels were full. Clint Eastwood invited him to sleep over at a friend's house, and they shared the same bed. Wallach's wife Anne Jackson told him he could boast that he was the only man to sleep with Clint Eastwood.
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The movie remains the highest rated movie on IMDb to not receive a single Oscar nomination.
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Due to the striking height difference between Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach (over nine inches), it was sometimes difficult to include them in the same frame.
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Sad Hill Cemetery was a very convincing set piece constructed by the pyrotechnic crew, and not a real cemetery. Today the site is marked as a local point of interest. In 2015, a group of fans created the "Asociación Cultural Sad Hill" and they restored the whole place, the central stone "proscenium", parapet, and the circles of graves. In order to attract additional participants, they were invited to prepare their own "graves" and put their own names on the crosses. When complete, an event was held, with one of the film's producers present, and with video greetings from composer Ennio Morricone, Metallica frontman James Hetfield (Metallica uses the Wallach grave sears as video before its shows), and from Clint Eastwood. A feature-length documentary was made about this project, titled Sad Hill Unearthed (2017).
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Sergio Leone originally titled his story "The Magnificent Rogues" and "The Two Magnificent Tramps", but impulsively changed it during a meeting in which he was pitching the story to United Artists executives Arnold Picker and Arthur Krim. The improvised new title amused them both, and they agreed to put between 1.2 and 1.6 million dollars to make it and retain North American distribution rights.
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By the time filming had completed, Clint Eastwood had grown tired of Sergio Leone's perfectionism and demands. The two never worked together again, though Leone tried to get Eastwood to appear in Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).
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The three principal actors are the only ones who speak actual English in this movie: Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Eli Wallach, with the exceptions of Al Mulock (the one-armed man), and John Bartha (the Sheriff). Everyone else in this movie is really speaking his or her native language, mostly Italian and Spanish, and was later dubbed into English.
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When the bridge is blown up, and Tuco and Blondie are hunkered down behind sandbags waiting for the explosion, Clint Eastwood's career came within two feet of ending prematurely. A fist-sized piece of rock shrapnel from the explosion slams into the sandbag right next to Eastwood's head (watch it in slow motion to see the rock flying in).
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Shot in the Spanish desert, with 1,500 Spanish soldiers as extras.
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Filming had a short delay when Clint Eastwood refused to turn up for work until writer and director Sergio Leone agreed to his $250,000 fee, in addition to a new Ferrari.
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As a non-smoker, Clint Eastwood hated smoking cigars and Sergio Leone often did multiple takes. According to Eli Wallach, Eastwood would sometimes tell Leone: "You'd better get it this time, because I'm going to throw up."
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Four scenes were cut from the original English-language release and never dubbed into English from Italian. When American Movie Classics showed the "Extended English Version", the scenes were restored. Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach dubbed their voices for the movie, but another actor had to be found to dub Angel Eyes' lines, as Lee Van Cleef had died in 1989. The actor who dubbed Angel Eyes' lines into English was Simon Prescott.
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As an Italian-made movie, the sound would not have been recorded live. This means that the actors and actresses would have spoken whatever they wanted, and the dialogue would have been dubbed in post-production. This was the traditional way of making movies in Italy and was because of the poor soundproofing in Italian studios. All of the actors and actresses in this movie spoke in their native languages, and were dubbed into other languages in post-production (Italian, German, Spanish, English, et cetera).
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Eli Wallach claims that Sergio Leone decided that Tuco would carry his pistol on a lanyard and stuck in his belt rather than a holster because Wallach told him he always had trouble putting a pistol in a holster without looking at it.
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The price of gold in 1862 was $20.67 an ounce. On August 23, 2011, an ounce of the metal reached an all-time high of $1,917.90. The $200,000 of gold that Tuco (Eli Wallach), Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef), and Blondie (Clint Eastwood) were after would be worth over $18.5 million in 149 years, a bit over a 3% average annual return.
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Clint Eastwood wasn't happy with the finished movie. He later said it was bloated rather than expansive, and the only fleshed-out character was Tuco.
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Shortly after Blondie brings in Tuco to the Sheriff for the first time, the Sheriff comes out with one of Tuco's wanted posters and unrolls it to show Tuco his picture on it. If you look carefully, you will see that the name on the poster is "Guy Calloway" (presumably one of Tuco's aliases). Guy Calloway also happens to be the name of one of the wanted men that Colonel Douglas Mortimer (Lee Van Cleef) shot and killed in For a Few Dollars More (1965).
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When Lee Van Cleef was cast again for another "Dollars" movie. He joked, "the only reason they brought me back was because they forgot to kill me off in For a Few Dollars More (1965)."
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In the 1960s, Hollywood still followed The Motion Picture Production Code of 1930 (a.k.a. The Hays Moral Code), especially with westerns. This movie broke many, if not most, of those standards. After it was released, Hollywood had to change its moral standards to compete with such foreign-made movies.
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Charles Bronson was offered the roles of Tuco and Angel Eyes (the latter because Sergio Leone feared that audiences would not take kindly to Lee Van Cleef going from the fatherly, likable Colonel Douglas Mortimer to a sneering villain). He declined both, as he was in England filming The Dirty Dozen (1967).
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Clint Eastwood, Mario Brega, Benito Stefanelli, Aldo Sambrell, Lorenzo Robledo, Frank Braña, and Antonio Molino Rojo are the only actors to appear in all three of the "Dollars Trilogy" movies.
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Although Blondie (Clint Eastwood) is labelled "the good" in this movie, he kills eleven people during the course of the movie, which is more than Tuco (Eli Wallach) and Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef) combined. Tuco, "the ugly", kills six people while Angel Eyes, "the bad", has the lowest body count with three.
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According to Sergio Leone, it took a lot of discussion before Clint Eastwood agreed to do the movie because he felt his character would be upstaged by Tuco, even before the part was cast. He said, "In the first movie I was just about alone. In the second, there were two of us, and now three. If it goes on like this I'm going to end up with a whole cavalry."
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According to Eli Wallach's autobiography "The Good, the Bad and Me", Sergio Leone picked him for the role of Tuco not because of his role as Calvera in The Magnificent Seven (1960) as most people assumed, but rather because of his brief role as a Tuco-like bandit in How the West Was Won (1962), in particular the railroad scene.
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The mud-strewn town where Blondie brings Tuco for his first hanging is the same town from Sergio Corbucci's Django (1966), filming for which had taken place earlier that year. The set, built at the Elios Film Studios in Rome, had not been cleaned between its use in the two movies.
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This is a "prequel" to A Fistful of Dollars (1964) and For a Few Dollars More (1965), as it is set during the American Civil War while the other two movies are set afterward. Towards the end of this movie, Blondie (Clint Eastwood) acquires his trademark poncho.
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The three-man gunfight scene is called either a "Mexican standoff", or a truel. There are several mathematical papers covering the many complex outcomes of a truel. Other movies that use a truel are Inglourious Basterds (2009), Reservoir Dogs (1992), Pulp Fiction (1994), and Escape From L.A. (1996).
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The real location of the Sad Hill Cemetery is Carazo near Salas de los Infantes, province of Burgos, Spain. The coordinates are: 41.990517, -3.408511.
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The film was shot with a process called Techniscope. This means that you can shoot without an anamorphic lens and only use half as much film as you would normally use. The Techniscope process places two wide-screen frames on a single 35mm frame. This technique is called "two-perf". A 35mm frame has four perforations.
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In the theatrical trailer, Angel Eyes is "The Ugly" and Tuco "The Bad", which is the reverse of their designations in the actual movie. This is because the Italian title translated into English is actually "The Good, the Ugly, the Bad", not "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly", and the Italian trailer had "The Ugly" and "The Bad" in that order. When the trailer was transferred to English, "The Ugly" and "The Bad" were not reversed to coincide with the altered title, causing the incorrect designations.
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The grips on Clint Eastwood's pistol have an inlaid silver rattlesnake. His pistol in For a Few Dollars More (1965) had the same grips. In Rawhide (1959), Rowdy Yates (Eastwood) kills a gunfighter carrying a pistol with the same grips and takes it for his own. Rowdy carried the pistol with the rattlesnake grips for the remainder of the series' run.
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Although Sergio Leone never made an official sequel to this movie, screenwriter Luciano Vincenzoni wrote a treatment for a sequel, tentatively titled "Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo n. 2". According to Eli Wallach, the movie would have followed Tuco pursuing Blondie's grandson for the gold. Clint Eastwood expressed an interest in acting as a narrator for the movie. Joe Dante and Leone were approached to direct and produce the movie, respectively. The project was eventually vetoed by Leone, as he did not want this movie's title, nor its characters, to be reused.
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Mario Brega appears in all three of the "Dollars" movies as a henchman for the main villain(s), and in all three movies, his character meets an unfortunate demise (oddly enough, none of these deaths is caused by gunfire). In this movie, his character, Wallace, is killed when Tuco (chained to him) jumps off of the train with him, and bangs his head against some rocks. This is the only movie from the trilogy in which Brega played an American. In the other two, he played a Mexican.
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Eli Wallach found the scene where Tuco confronts his friar brother, Pablo, difficult to perform because Luigi Pistilli, the actor who played Pablo, could not speak English.
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The town where Tuco's second hanging takes place, the town where Maria is interrogated by Angel Eyes, the town where Tuco visits the gun shop, and the town where Tuco and his gang attempt to ambush Blondie during a cavalry march are, in fact, the same town. Set designer Carlo Simi previously created the set for For a Few Dollars More (1965) (in which the town was referred to as "El Paso"), and was portrayed as four different settlements in this movie by shooting in different areas of the set for each scene. The "El Paso" set still exists, as a western theme park known as "Mini Hollywood".
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After Eli Wallach agreed with Sergio Leone that Tuco would carry his pistol on a lanyard, Leone asked him to grasp the gun by shaking his neck, thus making the gun land in his hand. Wallach claimed that he wasn't able to do the intended action, and asked Leone to demonstrate it. When Leone tried, the pistol missed his hand and hit his crotch. Leone then told Wallach to hold the gun in the belt.
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The trim on Confederate soldiers' uniforms identified the type of unit to which they were assigned. Blue indicated infantry, gold for cavalry, and red for artillery. Most of the soldiers in the prison camp wore historically accurate uniforms.
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Because this movie was set during the Civil War, writer and director Sergio Leone wanted to preserve a certain sense of accuracy, and went to America to research this movie. Amongst his inspirations were Library of Congress documents and the photographs of legendary photographer Mathew Brady. This movie is not completely historically accurate, though. It features the use of dynamite before that particular explosive was invented.
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In the cemetery ring, the three men begin to position themselves for the shoot-out. Angel Eyes moves to the left, crossing in front of Tuco. This is an awkward and dangerous move considering how easy it would be just to head to him right away from his adversary. That is until you notice that Angel Eyes is maneuvering himself to have the sun at his back, a hard and fast rule of gunslingers.
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Though no specific year or date is stated in this movie, at least part of it takes place during the New Mexico Campaign of 1862. This is confirmed when the hotelkeeper and Tuco mention the retreating Confederate General Sibley (real-life Henry H. Sibley) and the advancing Union Colonel Canby (another historical person: Colonel Edward Canby). This is consistent with the campaign that took place between February and April 1862 in the Union territory of New Mexico and the Confederate state of Texas.
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According to an introduction by Stephen King in one of his books, this movie, along with the novel "The Lord of the Rings", is the primary influence for his book series "The Dark Tower".
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The train features an armored car with a mortar-type cannon. These were actually mounted on trains during the Civil War, especially where railroads had to operate near places where there was heavy fighting.
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In the Italian version of this movie (and some U.S. LaserDisc prints), instead of "The Good", "The Bad", and "The Ugly" written in English, their Italian counterparts are written, "Il Buono", "Il Cattivo", and "Il Brutto." There, they are written in each actor's own handwriting. In the English version, just one post-production person did the cursive writing for all three.
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After the scene where Blondie (Clint Eastwood) splashes water in Tuco's (Eli Wallach's) face in the infirmary, there is a fade-out to the next scene. This was where the intermission was located, but this fade-out was excised in the three hour extended version.
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In 1966, the Spanish Army built Sad Hill Cemetery with over 5,000 graves at Mirandilla Valley in Burgos for the final sequence in this movie. When filming ended, the set was abandoned just like they built it, and for half a century, nature had been trying to reclaim it. Then in October of 2015, a group of movie fans decided to start digging, and under three inches of ground they found the original paved circle. For several months, people from all around Europe travelled to Sad Hill to unearth and restore the iconic movie set.
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In the original working script, Angel Eyes was named "Banjo", but is referred to as "Sentenza" (meaning "Sentence" or "Judgement") in the Italian version. Clint Eastwood came up with the name Angel Eyes on the set, for Lee Van Cleef's gaunt appearance and expert marksmanship.
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In the English-language version, the names of the characters played by Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Cleef are never revealed. They are always referred to by the nicknames given to them by Tuco: "Blondie" and "Angel Eyes". This fitted in with United Artists' U.S. "Man With No Name" campaign.
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The Union prison camp "Battleville" was inspired by the actual Confederate prison camp of Andersonville, where thousands of Union prisoners died, and based on steel engravings of Andersonville from August 1864. In this movie, when Angel Eyes (disguised as a Union Sergeant) is berated by the camp commandant about his treatment of Confederate prisoners, he sarcastically asks the commandant if Union soldiers are treated any better in Andersonville.
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When Blondie (Clint Eastwood) and Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef) are travelling to the cemetery, Blondie shoots a skulker, then counts the number of people that will be travelling together. He says, "Six. A perfect number." In mathematics, a number is perfect if the sum of its factors (excluding itself) equals itself. Six is a perfect number because 1, 2, and 3 are factors and 1 + 2 + 3 = 6. (The next perfect number is 28.)
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Lost scenes include Tuco continuing his search for Blondie in a Texican pueblo while Blondie is in a hotel room with a Mexican woman (Silvana Bacci) and Tuco lighting cannons before the Ecstasy of Gold sequence.
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Ennio Morricone's soundtrack album stayed on the charts for over a year, his most commercially successful movie score.
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In two of the deleted scenes featuring Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef), Simon Prescott was used for the dubbing. Van Cleef had died in 1989, and the scenes had never been dubbed into English.
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The screenplay is co-credited to Age-Scarpelli, the screenwriting team of Agenore Incrocci and Furio Scarpelli, who were known for writing comedies. To Sergio Leone's displeasure, they wrote a comedy western. Very little of what they wrote made it to the screen.
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In the scene where Blondie brings a tied-up Tuco into town to claim the bounty on him, Tuco spits out a cigar and yells out something in Spanish. Translated to English, he is yelling out "Son of a bitch that gave birth to you!"
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Although Tuco is implied to be the younger Ramirez brother, Eli Wallach was fourteen years older than Luigi Pistilli.
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Tuco (Eli Wallach) tells his brother Father Pablo Ramirez (Luigi Pistilli) "Where we came from, if one did not want to die of poverty, one became a priest or a bandit!" Ironically, in For a Few Dollars More (1965), Pistilli played a bandit, so in a sense, he's been both a priest and a bandit at the same time.
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"Pitchfork" put at thirty-second place the main theme of this movie, composed by Ennio Morricone, on its list of The 200 Greatest Songs of the 1960s. Quote from Pitchfork: "Film was the most important medium of the twentieth century, and Ennio Morricone was amongst its chief architects. 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)' didn't simply reinvent soundtracks, it reinvented movies. For even the most uncouth audiences, the title theme, hell, just the opening 'wah-wah-wah', is synonymous with stoicism, murder, and pop-art delirium. Despite the Wagnerian crescendos and theatrical irony, every effect is critical and unforgettable: pacing boots, tribal flutes, flaring surf guitar, Indian war whoops, field-recording flotsam, meth-mangled trumpet solos. In just under three minutes, Morricone condenses all of the greatest elements of music, from opera, garage, musique concrète, peyote songs, whatever, and layers it over stampeding horses and shotgun blasts. It's kaleidoscopic, exhilarating, and incontrovertibly badass. --Alex Linhardt."
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(At around two hours and thirty-five minutes) Blondie (Clint Eastwood) covers up a dead soldier, then finds the iconic poncho that will be part of his classic outfit.
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Watch close in the "truel" scene where Lee Van Cleef is slowly moving his hand towards his pistol. The tip of his third finger is missing.
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The following guns were used in this movie. 1. Blondie (Clint Eastwood) used a Colt 1851 cartridge conversion revolver (with silver snake grips) and a Winchester 1866 "yellow boy" with ladder elevated sights. 2. Tuco (Eli Wallach) used a Colt 1851 Navy cartridge conversion revolver with a lanyard. 3. Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef) used a Remington 1858 Army percussion revolver. 4. Soldiers used Gatling guns with drum magazines and Howitzer cannons.
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In the original Italian script for this movie, Blondie is named "Joe" (his nickname in A Fistful of Dollars (1964)), but is referred to as Blondie in the Italian and English dialogue.
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Throughout production, Clint Eastwood regularly socialized with "Spaghetti Western" veteran Franco Nero, who was working on Texas, Adios (1966) at the time. The two movies share three cast members: Luigi Pistilli (Father Pablo in this movie and Hernandez in Texas, Adios (1966)), Livio Lorenzon (Baker in the former movie, Alcalde Miguel in the latter) and Silvana Bacci, who played a barmaid in Texas, Adios (1966) and a Mexican prostitute in a scene that was ultimately cut from this movie.
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Henry Fonda, Lee Marvin, and Enrico Maria Salerno were considered for Angel Eyes. As with the previous "Dollars" movies, Salerno wound up dubbing Clint Eastwood's voice in the Italian version.
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Blondie and Tuco used Model 1851 Colt Navy pistols that have been converted from percussion to use cartridges. While uncommon, such conversions did exist during the Civil War, the first ones appearing in 1859. During the trello at the end of this movie, Angel Eyes uses a Model 1858 Remington Army pistol which shows the small percussion caps on it. This makes this movie historically accurate in this sense, something that was unusual for "Spaghetti Westerns".
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$200,000 in gold at the 1860's rate would weigh over 660 pounds (300 kilograms). Gold was valued at twenty an ounce. Thus there was about 1,000 ounces. 1,000 troy ounces would weigh over 660 pounds. Way too heavy for the horses to carry out the gold and riders.
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Leone loved the look of intense blue eyes on his actors, especially those with dark complexions. It added to the drama and incongruity of his stories, which deconstructed the conventional approach to good vs evil in the western.
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The three main characters all contain autobiographical elements of Sergio Leone. In an interview he said, "(Sentenza/Angel Eyes) has no spirit, he's a professional in the most banal sense of the term. Like a robot. This isn't the case with the other two. On the methodical and careful side of my character, I'd be nearer il Biondo (Blondie): but my most profound sympathy always goes towards the Tuco side. He can be touching with all that tenderness and all that wounded humanity."
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Jack Elam turned down the role of Elam, the one-armed gunslinger who attempts to kill Tuco in the bathtub.
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In a 2019 reader Q&A with Empire Magazine, Quentin Tarantino said that the wide shot during the three-way bullring showdown, when the theme reaches its crescendo is his favorite cut in the history of movies.
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During the scene in which Tuco (Eli Wallach) is lying near a railroad track, handcuffed to the now-deceased Corporal Wallace (Mario Brega). Wallace's corpse is laid on the tracks, and a train is approaching. Tuco places the handcuff bounds on the rail and waits for the train to roll over and sever the bounds. While shooting the scene, Wallace was nearly decapitated by the running board steps jutting out of the train.
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Sergio Leone first had Gian Maria Volontè in mind as Tuco, but the actor turned the role down in favor of El Chuncho in Damiano Damiani's A Bullet for the General (1967), as the latter was a role that would allow him to make a political statement in line with his own leftist views.
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Once again, as was the case with For a Few Dollars More (1965), Lee Van Cleef was a replacement for Charles Bronson. This time, Bronson was tied up filming The Dirty Dozen (1967) in England.
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Cameo: Chelo Alonso. She had a brief appearance as the wife of Stevens, the man visited by Angel Eyes in his opening scene. The Cuban born actress and dancer had been a major star in the previous Italian movie craze, the sword and sandal and mythological muscle man movies.
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If you listen and compare, you will notice that the individual coyote yowls at the beginning of the film are stock sound effects; the exact same recordings that can be heard in westerns as far back as the 1940s.
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The movie specifically takes place during the New Mexico Campaign in 1862.
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Eli Wallach and Clint Eastwood flew to Madrid, Spain together, and between shooting scenes, Eastwood would relax and practice his golf swing.
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Last film of Enzi Petito(1897-1967).
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The skeleton found inside the wrong coffin by Tuco at Sad Hill cemetery was a real human skeleton. A deceased Spanish actress wrote in her will she wanted to act even after her death.
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As this movie is a prequel to Eastwood's other two "Spaghetti Westerns", two hours and two minutes in marks the first time that his character is seen in his classic sheepskin vest.
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The trumpet theme for the "mexican standoff" at the graveyard was inspired by El Degüello - a traditional Mexican piece adapted from a Spanish composition that was also used as a military bugle call. The name refers to the cutting of the throat, and is used to indicate that no quarter will be given. El Degüello was played over and over by the Mexican army during the late stages of the battle of the Alamo, indicating the intention to slaughter the defenders.
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Though Angel Eyes carries a period correct revolver (model 1858 Remington), he has cartridges in his belt that would not fit his pistol. That pistol did not take cartridges, unless it was converted to do so.
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"The Good, the Bad and the Very Ugly" is the title of an autobiography by Sondra Locke, who lived with Clint Eastwood for fourteen years. The book deals with controversial matters such as abortion, homosexuality, infidelity, and palimony.
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The white curtains on the Confederate coach that Tuco appropriates are more the twice as long as they need to be for their windows. Their constant flapping in the wind added a ghostly effect to what was dubbed The Carriage of the Spirits.
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Based on the layout of the location set, when Tuco first enters the cemetery and runs down a column of graves towards the ring, he will pass within just a few feet of Arch Stanton as he reaches the center. He will come that close again without noticing it, as he makes an early pass around the rim of the ring.
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Tuco's "You know what you are" at the end was sampled into Ministry's song of the same name off of their 1988 album "The Land Of Rape and Honey".
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The third of six times that Sergio Leone worked with Ennio Morricone. Aside from the Dollars trilogy, they also worked together on Once Upon a Time in the West (1968), Duck You Sucker (1971), and Once Upon a Time in America (1984).
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The large crevice in the rock ridge where Tuco finds Blondie's first campfire when tracking him down is the exact same crevice where Eastwood and Van Cleef meet after the bank robbery in For a Few Dollars More.
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When first released in the United Sates, it was met with mixed to negative reviews from film critics. As was typical for the initial repetition to many spaghetti westerns, critics complained about the violence and criticized the films for being over the top and campy. Renata Adler, the critic for the The New York Times, said of the film, "it must be the most expensive, pious and repellent movie in the history of its peculiar genre" with a similarly negative review from Charles Champlin who wrote that the "temptation is hereby proved irresistible to call The Good, The Bad and the Ugly, now playing citywide, The Bad, The Dull, and the Interminable, only because it is." Roger Ebert retrospectively noted that in his original review he had viewed it as just a 'Spaghetti Western' and therefore could not be considered art. The film was soon reevaluated to be considered one of the most influential and greatest films of all time.
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For Sight and Sound's Top 250 Films of All-Time listing in 2012, Quentin Tarantino cited this as his favorite movie.
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The shoot-the-hangman's-rope gag appears to have been inspired by a similar action in the Hop-Along Cassidy movie, Border Vigilates (1941).
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Despite playing a Mexican outlaw, Eli Wallach was of Polish-Jewish descent.
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Although this was the third movie in the series, there are clues that it is the prequel to the other two. Here, Clint Eastwood's familiar wardrobe of light blue shirt, lambskin vest, and brown hat were given to him by Angel Eyes as they are leaving the prisoner of war camp. And the iconic green poncho does not show up until the last act of the story.
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The guns in this movie were supplied by Aldo Uberti Inc., a company in Italy.
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The monologue of the officer pronouncing sentence on Tuco during the hanging scene, including a list of his many crimes, and a reading of his full name, was sampled by Big Audio Dynamite in their song "Medicine Show", from the album "This Is Big Audio Dynamite" (1985).
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The snake-handled gun-grip Blondie (Clint Eastwood) used here is on a Navy Colt, but the same grip appeared on a Colt Peacekeeper in For a Few Dollars More (1965).
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This movie is included on Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" list.
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Bernie Grant was the actor who dubbed Gian Maria Volontè in A Fistful of Dollars (1964), Aldo Giuffrè in this movie, and Gabriele Ferzetti in Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).
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Included amongst the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider.
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Movie director Alex Cox suggests that the cemetery-buried gold hunted by the protagonists may have been inspired by rumors surrounding the anti-Communist Gladio terrorists, who hid many of their 138 weapons caches in cemeteries.
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Sergio Donati made some uncredited contributions to the screenplay.
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The prisoner musicians forced to play and sing while Wallace beats Tuco in the POW camp is reminiscent of prisoner orchestras being forced to play during public punishment in Nazi concentration camps.
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The mini 5x7 posters that are included in the MGM two-disc DVD Collector's Set of this movie, released in 2004, are from Posteritati.
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Clint Eastwood's "Blondie" character's gun is an 1851 Colt Navy cartridge conversion revolver with raised silver coiled rattlesnakes on the grips, in .38 caliber.
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The pipe that Lee van Cleef smoked as Angel Eyes is a Peterson Pipe made in Ireland. It has a "PLip" bit which wasn't patented by Peterson until 1870.
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Leone would have considered the shot unnecessarily gruesome to be included in the final cut, but in reality Tuco would have had to drag out all the dead soldiers from the ghost carriage and left them on the desert road before driving away with Blondie.
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Cameo: Chelo Alonso (Stevens' wife)
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The decision to cast a white actor as Tuco caused controversy.
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DIRECTOR TRADEMARK (Sergio Leone): (theme): Blondie (Clint Eastwood), Sentenza/Angel Eyes (Lee Van Cleef), and Tuco (Eli Wallach).
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Italian censorship visa # 48356 delivered on 23-12-1966.
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Sergio Leone revealed in a biographical piece that Eastwood's soon to be iconic poncho was a last minute decision he made based on Clint's physique. One of the actors he was considering for the part was the famous American strong-man Steve Reeves, who was well known at the time for his Italian-made Hercules films produced a couple of years earlier. Leone felt that Eastwood's upper body needed more bulk, and so to compensate, he purchased the poncho in Spain during the production of "A Fistful of Dollars".
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Director Trademark 

Sergio Leone: [Large circles covered in pave stones]
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Sergio Leone: [close-up]
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

The skeleton found by Tuco inside the wrong coffin at Sad Hill cemetery was a real human skeleton. A deceased Spanish actress wrote in her will she wanted to act even after her death.
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The gun store scene (Eli Wallach as Tuco) was copied from Zane Grey Theater (1956) season one, episode eighteen, "Backtrail", in which Dick Powell played a retired gunfighter outlaw who is forced to take up the gun again. He visits a store and takes pieces and hones down a perfect gun. Sergio Leone was a big fan of the show. Sergio Leone was able to extend the scene much more, since he had a movie feature length at his disposal. In the Zane Grey Theater (1956) version, Dick Powell paid the gun store owner, in 'The Good, the Bad and the Ugly', Eli Wallach as Tuco robbed him blind. Sergio Leone wanted to take away the politeness found in American westerns.
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Despite being frequently referred to as a sequel to For a Few Dollars More (1965), this movie was set during the American Civil War, whereas the former takes place afterwards, and while Lee Van Cleef played a villain here, who gets killed, he turns up in the other one as a very much alive good guy.
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When Tuco and Blondie rig the bridge for destruction, a fuse is lit on only one packet of dynamite. The other packets are not linked to each other. Rope and twine were used to tie the packets to the bridge but serve no purpose in their ignition. As a result, the entire bridge would not have been destroyed because the other packets of dynamite were not ignited.
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At the end of the movie in the original version of two hours and eleven minutes, there is a final shot of Tuco (Eli Wallach) hanging, and Blondie (Clint Eastwood) mounting his horse, tipping his hat (as in goodbye) and saying, "Sorry, Tuco". In the restored and longer version it is included (three hours).
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See also

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

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