Hello to everyone who has been following this blog for many years - I'm still blogging, I'm just moving over to https://www.claireheffer.com/blog - please continue to follow and let me take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been kind enough to visit over the years. May the lists continue...

Thursday 26 January 2017


TRIVIA: According to composer Justin Hurwitz, all the piano performance featured in the film was first recorded by pianist Randy Kerber during pre-production. Ryan Gosling then spent two hours a day, six days a week in piano lessons learning the music by heart. By the time filming had begun, Gosling was able to play all the piano sequences seen in the film without the use of a hand double or CGI.

Emma Watson turned down the role of Mia due to scheduling conflicts with Beauty and the Beast (2017), while Ryan Gosling turned down the role of the Beast in that film to appear in this one. Coincidentally, both are musicals.

The audition scene, where the casting director interrupts Mia's emotional performance to take a phone call, was actually inspired by one of Ryan Gosling's auditions in real life.

Won seven Golden Globes, more than any other movie ever.

John Legend, singer and pianist, had to learn how to play the guitar for his role.

The express lane freeway ramp used for the opening number, Another Day Of Sun, is the same stretch of freeway as used for the iconic "bus jump" sequence from Speed (1994), where a 50-foot section of the ramp was digitally removed using CGI to create the gap the bus must jump over.

The line in the film said by Sebastian (Ryan Gosling): "That's LA. They worship everything and they value nothing.", was actually added in by Ryan himself, when he heard his real life girlfriend, Eva Mendes, mention it as a "joke".

Films that were inspirations/influences and screened for the cast/crew include: Singin' in the Rain (1952), Top Hat (1935), An American in Paris (1951), The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964), Swing Time (1936), The Band Wagon (1953), The Young Girls of Rochefort (1967), and even 8 1/2 (1963) for the film's opening traffic number.

Damien Chazelle and Justin Hurwitz came out with the idea of the film during their senior year at Harvard University in 2010 with Hurwitz writing the musical tracks and Chazelle on dialogue. Initially they found two financial backers and a producer for a budget of $1 million. However the demand for a lot of script changes made them to drop the project off. After Whiplash found critical success, the project was resurrected with the studio increasing the budget to $30 million; this allowed the filmmakers to rent the Griffith Observatory for filming (a full day rental there costs $10 thousand).

The crew had a limited time window of 30 minutes within two days to film the dusky purple twilight Hollywood Hills dance sequence. According to Damien Chazelle, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling managed five takes per day, where after each take, they would go back to the starting point with the assistants wiping their sweat before starting the dance routine again.

The phrase "pisi-kaka" that Ryan Gosling says twice is Hungarian for pee and feces. Meaning that it is not important. Ryan Gosling spent 5 months living in Budapest, Hungary whilst filming the sequel to the 1982 Sci-fi film Blade Runner.

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