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Vanishing Point (1971) Poster

Trivia

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The car featured in the film is a 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T, with a 440 cubic-inch V-8, and not a 426 Hemi V-8 (as is often believed). Eight white Challengers loaned from the Chrysler Corporation were used during the filming.
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Sarafian states on the commentary, that eight '70 Dodge Challenger R/T's were actually utilized during production and when filming had wrapped, only one Challenger R/T remained.
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The color white was chosen for the car simply so the car would stand out against the background scenery in the movie. White was not symbolic in any way. The director says this in the DVD commentary.
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The squad car rollover was anticipated by stuntman Carey Loftin. He'd warned Sarafian and John Alonzo. Sarafian joked "Now I'll know where to put the camera."
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Director Richard C. Sarafian's original choice for the role of Kowalski was Gene Hackman, but the studio, 20th Century Fox, insisted on using Barry Newman if the movie was going to be made.
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In 1997, the British rock band Primal Scream released their 'Vanishing Point' album, which features several dialogues sampled directly from the movie and was reportedly conceived as "an alternate soundtrack to the movie".
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In one desert shot it shows the Challenger as right-hand drive.
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The 2004 music video for Audioslave's "Show Me How to Live" is an homage to, and follows the plot of, this film. It features clips from the film intercut with scenes of the band in a 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T replicating scenes of Kowalski.
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According to Sarafian on the commentary, he made the film on a budget of 1.3 million. Sarafian also admitted that he had surpassed the allotted budget by $80k due to executive producer Richard Zanuck taking a liking to the film. Zanuck then hired eight different teams of Dolby artists to bring a visceral aesthetic to the Challenger. In the end, Sarafian lost 2.5 points which he joked were "Vanishing Points!"
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When Sandy (Kowalski's supervisor) is being interviewed by the media, various bikers are seen. Sarafian states that they moved from location to location in tandem with the crew. Even partying together with the crew. Sarafian is visible in the scene as the dark haired man in a beige ten gallon hat.
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Charlotte Rampling had a role as a hitchhiker whom Kowalski met while en route, but her scenes were deleted before the US release. The scenes were re-inserted for the UK release. The DVD release includes both the US and UK versions.
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Kris Kristofferson was considered for a part. His then wife, Rita Coolidge, has a small role in the film.
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Guillermo Cabrera Infante modeled the Super Soul character after The Big Bopper.
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Entertainment Weekly ranked this Number Two on their "Guilty Pleasures: Testosterone Edition" list in their March 30, 2007 issue.
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The on-the-spot TV news "interview" early in the movie for KLZ-TV in Denver was actually done by the real KLZ-TV news anchor at the time in Denver, Bob Palmer - playing himself. He died in 2008.
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The Guns N' Roses song "Breakdown," from their 1991 album "Use Your Illusions II," includes Axl Rose quoting the "There goes the challenger" and "But it is written" monologues.
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Dean Jagger (the snake charmer/prospector) and Barry Newman (Kowalski) shared the same birthday: November 7th.
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The Challenger had Colorado plates: OA-5599
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Sammy Clayton from Little Feet was one of the J'Hovah band members. Little Feat is the name of the band that Mr. Clayton will play with. Not Liittle Feet! Look it up,duh.
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Interestingly, the speedometer and tachometer are never shown - only the fuel gauge.
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Kowalski's first name is used in this movie. In Denver, Kowalski's drug dealer, Jake says to him: "What's happening, Jim?" However, "Jim" is not in the subtitles for that scene.
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Cameo 

David Gates: The singer/songwriter (of Bread fame) played the piano during the rousing revival in the desert with the J. Hovah singers.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

A 1967 Camaro shell (ie with no engine) loaded with explosives was used for the final crash. You can see the "Camaro" fender nameplate upside-down in the lower left corner of the screen after the crash.
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The hitchhiker in the uncut version is Charlotte Rampling was "Death" as she tells Kowalski that he's slipped her grasp a few times over the years and that he is expected soon to meet her for the final time. On the DVD there are two versions of the film
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The city names on the California Highway Patrol tracking board (where Kowalski never made it) were Stockton, Oakland, Berkeley and San Francisco.
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See also

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

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