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Christopher Columbus: The Discovery (1992) Poster

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Even before its release, Marlon Brando was asking that his name be removed from the credits. According to Variety Magazine, Brando was upset that the film failed to portray Columbus' complicity in the genocide of Native Americans.
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On an episode of The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder (1995), Tom Selleck admitted that the only reason he did this movie was for the opportunity to work with Marlon Brando.
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It was alleged that the cast and crew of this film did not receive any salaries because of funding problems.
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To reach high authenticity, the entire crew for this film crossed the Atlantic Ocean from Spain to America, in three original ships provided by the Spanish government.
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According to Variety Magazine, Marlon Brando was paid $5 million for his cameo as Torquemada. Over ten years earlier, Brando had set an industry record when "Christopher Columbus" producer Ilya Salkind had paid him $3.7 million for twelve days work on Superman (1978) against a percentage of the gross. That deal yielded Brando $14 million, though he had to sue the producer to get it. It was widely suspected that Brando took the role to raise money to pay for the defense of his son Christian Brando, who had been indicted on murder charges after shooting his sister Cheyenne's lover, Dag Drollett.
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Producers Alexander and Ilya Salkind's first choice for director was Ridley Scott. Four months after rejecting their offer, Scott started working on a rival "Christopher Columbus" project which ultimately became 1492: Conquest of Paradise (1992). As a consequence of this, the Salkinds unsuccessfully tried to sue Scott for stealing their idea. They were forced to drop their lawsuit when it was proved that "1492"s producer Alain Goldman and writer Roselyne Bosch's first proposal of a Christopher Columbus project predated theirs.
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Director John Glen cast Michael Gothard with the intention of him replacing Marlon Brando in the role of Tomas de Torquemada should Brando not arrive on-set. When Brando did not appear on the first day of shooting, Gothard shot a scene as Tomas, but Tom Selleck told Glen that he would leave the film if Brando did not show. Word got to Marlon Brando of this and he showed for the following day of filming, with the earlier scene being re-shot with him in the role.
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This project was concurrently developed with Ridley Scott's 1492: Conquest of Paradise (1992) to be released on time for the 500th anniversary of the discovery of America.
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Georges Corraface inherited his leading role from Timothy Dalton three days before filming began.
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The heavy robes and cloaks Marlon Brando wore in this movie were to hide the radio equipment used to feed him his lines and directions throughout the film.
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Dustin Hoffman was also mentioned as being part of the cast.
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Reunites John Glen - who directed many James Bond films of the 1980's with some members of those films cast. Glen directed Michael Gothard in For Your Eyes Only (1981); and both Robert Davi and Benicio Del Toro who appeared in Licence to Kill (1989). The three actors played Bond villains.
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The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Marlon Brando, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Benicio Del Toro.
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Catherine Zeta-Jones and Benicio Del Toro would later appear in Traffic (2000).
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Rachel Ward stepped into the role of Queen Isabella when Isabella Rossellini walked away from the film.
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This was the last cinematic film of Michael Gothard.
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Rutger Hauer was offered a major role in this movie but declined, because of the fee on offer.
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The movie was nominated for Worst Picture at the Hastings Bad Cinema Society's 15th Stinkers Bad Movie Awards in 1992.
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Director John Glen replaced George Pan Cosmatos to helm this film.
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Gabriel Byrne was offered to play the role of Christopher Columbus.
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This film was released on Columbus Day, the 500th Anniversary of the maiden voyage.
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