Began production in 1995 and, because of financial problems, it was put on hiatus during 1998. Production companies Production I.G. and Sunrise got involved and brought the movie back in production. A total of eight years was spent on making the movie.
When Ray is walking through the city of Manchester at the beginning, for a few seconds, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels can be seen talking together on the street (Marx is the smaller one with white hair and beard, Engels is the taller one with the mustache). Both men were living in Britain at the time this movie takes place.
Early in the first Manchester sequence, a pub is seen. It's name is clearly seen as the "Rovers Return", which is the name of the pub in the popular Salford and Manchester-based soap opera Coronation Street (1960).
Robert Stephenson was the son of George Stephenson, known as the Father of the Railway. In 1829, they built a locomotive "Rocket" in the Rainhill Trials and won. Robert built lots of steam locomotives in England, and some of them were shipped to Japan, India, Egypt, and some other countries.
The "Rovers Return", which is seen early on, is a real pub in Manchester/Salford, and is located at 89-91 Chapel Street. The real pub resembles the one in the movie, and not the one many believe to be the fictional one from the long running television soap Coronation Street (1960). The real pub would have definately been around during when this movie is set.