A Fistful Of Dollars (1964)

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    aka Per un pugno di dollari


    Information From IMDb

    Plot Summary
    An anonymous, but deadly man rides into a town torn by war between two factions, the Baxters and the Rojo's. Instead of fleeing or dying, as most other would do, the man schemes to play the two sides off each other, getting rich in the bargain.
    Written by Andrew Hyatt

    Full Cast
    Clint Eastwood ... Joe
    Marianne Koch ... Marisol
    Gian Maria Volontè ... Ramón Rojo (as John Wells)
    Wolfgang Lukschy ... John Baxter (as W. Lukschy)
    Sieghardt Rupp ... Esteban Rojo (as S. Rupp)
    Joseph Egger ... Piripero (as Joe Edger)
    Antonio Prieto ... Don Benito Rojo
    José Calvo ... Silvanito (as Jose Calvo)
    Margarita Lozano ... Consuelo Baxter (as Margherita Lozano)
    Daniel Martín ... Julián
    Benito Stefanelli ... Rubio (as Benny Reeves)
    Mario Brega ... Chico (as Richard Stuyvesant)
    Bruno Carotenuto ... Antonio Baxter (as Carol Brown)
    Aldo Sambrell ... Rojo gang member (as Aldo Sambreli)

    and many more.

    Sergio Leone
    Monte Hellman (1970 ABC TV prologue only) (uncredited)

    Writing Credits
    Ryuzo Kikushima
    Akira Kurosawa
    A. Bonzzoni
    Víctor Andrés Catena
    Sergio Leone
    Víctor Andrés Catena
    Jaime Comas Gil
    Sergio Leone
    Fernando Di Leo
    Clint Eastwood
    Duccio Tessari

    Arrigo Colombo .... producer (as Harry Colombo)
    Giorgio Papi .... producer (as George Papi)
    Piero Santini .... assistant producer (as Peter Saint)

    Original Music
    Ennio Morricone (as Dan Savio)

    Massimo Dallamano (photography by) (as Jack Dalmas)
    Federico G. Larraya

    * Clint Eastwood's role was first offered to Henry Fonda and Charles Bronson.

    * A remake of Yojimbo (1961)

    * The trailers and promo material in the United States list the title of this film as "A Fistful of Dollars". The on-screen title on the film itself gives the title as simply "Fistful of Dollars".

    * Sergio Leone was not keen on using Ennio Morricone, the composer's, choice of musician for this film. Lacerenza's initial trumpet performance of the score made Leone quickly set aside any reservations. Leone and Morricone, who had known each other since 3rd grade, would develop a close working relationship that would last through all of Leone's future films.

    * This has been described as the first "spaghetti western", but when this film was made, there had already been about 25 such westerns produced in Italy. This was, however, the first to receive a major international release.

    * This was the first time that Sergio Leone and Ennio Morricone worked together. As children, they were classmates in school.

    * Originally called "The Magnificent Stranger", the title wasn't changed to "A Fistful of Dollars" until almost three days before the movie premiered in theaters. In fact, nobody had bothered to inform its main star, Clint Eastwood, of the change, and as a result Eastwood remained virtually unaware of the positive buzz surrounding the movie until an agent pointed it out to him in a Variety Magazine article three weeks later.

    * James Coburn also passed on the opportunity to make this film.

    * The Man With No Name is actually called Joe in the film's dialog (by the undertaker) and in the closing credits.

    * According to "Once Upon a Time in the Italian West" by Howard Hughes, Leone spotted a tree, while on location, that he thought would be perfect for the hanging tree at the beginning of the film, so the tree was dug up and relocated.

    * Clint Eastwood helped in creating his character's distinctive visual style. He bought the black jeans from a sport shop on Hollywood Boulevard, the hat came from a Santa Monica wardrobe firm and the trademark black cigars came from a Beverly Hills store.

    * Because this was an Italian/German/Spanish co-production, there was a significant language barrier on the set. Clint Eastwood communicated with Sergio Leone and the Italian crew mostly through stuntman Benito Stefanelli, who also acted as an unofficial interpreter for the production.

    * When the film made its U.S. network television debut on The ABC Sunday Night Movie in February 1975, additional footage was shot to give the "Man with no Name" character a motive for going to the town (San Miguel) featured in the film. Neither Eastwood nor Leone were involved in the shooting of this additional footage. Harry Dean Stanton (uncredited) played an unidentified lawman or politician who orders Eastwood to get rid of the gangs of San Miguel in return for a pardon. Stock footage of Eastwood was used. This prologue is now available on the Special Edition released in 2005

    * Clint Eastwood's trademark squint was caused by the combination of the sun and high-wattage arc lamps on the set.

    * The theme song was originally composed by Ennio Morricone as a lullaby. Sergio Leone insisted that he wanted the "deguello" trumpet dirge--played by Mexican troops before a battle to signify that there will be no quarter given to the enemy--that was used in Rio Bravo (1959), believing it was a "public domain" piece. Finally, he settled for a "Mexican trumpet" arrangement of the original Morricone piece.

    * Filmed in 1964, but not released in the US until 1967.

    * The cigars smoked by The Man With No Name were the idea of Clint Eastwood. Eastwood himself bought the cigars and then cut them into three pieces to create the short cigars his character smoked. Eastwood himself is a non-smoker.

    * The film's US release was delayed when Yojimbo (1961) screenwriters Akira Kurosawa and Ryuzo Kikushima sued the filmmakers for breach of copyright. Kurosawa and Kikushima won, and as a result received 15% of the film's worldwide gross and exclusive distribution rights for Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. Kurosawa said later he made more money off of this project than he did on "Yojimbo".

    * After considering Henry Fonda, director Sergio Leone offered the role of the Man With No Name to James Coburn, who proved too expensive. Charles Bronson then turned it down after describing it as the "worst script I have ever seen". Third choice Richard Harrison also declined the role but pointed Leone in the direction of "Rawhide" (1959). Leone then offered the part to "Rawhide" star Eric Fleming, who turned it down but suggested his co-star Clint Eastwood for the part. The rest, as they say, is history.

    * Steve Reeves turned down the lead role because he was making more money on other projects.

    * During its 1969 American re-release it was double-billed with "For a Few
    Dollars More."

    * Continuity: In his first real gunfight of the film, The Man With No Name manages to kill four opponents with four bullets, while his weapon is aimed at a spot about ten feet to the right of three of them.

    * Audio/visual unsynchronized: While our hero is preparing his custom bullet proof vest, the sound of the rasp doesn't match his movements.

    * Audio/visual unsynchronized: Joe walks into a room with five bad guys, and starts shooting. Only four gunshots are heard, but when the smoke clears all five baddies are down.

    * Continuity: When Chico is left alone to guard the Rojos' compound while the Rojos are fighting the Baxters, Chico is shown riding on horseback among the Rojos gang when they are riding back to the compound.

    * Anachronisms: When Ramon and his men ambush the soldiers by the river, a concrete angular tunnel opening can be seen in the side of the ridge in the middle background.

    * Continuity: While Chico carries The Man With No Name back to his room after the party, the camera shows The Man With No Name has no facial hair. Also, when the Man With No Name enters his room after the massacre, Rubio is a different actor; Ramone's mustache is parted.

    * Continuity: The Man With No Name takes off on a brown horse after shooting the three baddies before El Paso. Then he rides into town and ties up a chestnut horse. Then the rest of the movie he is riding a bright bay with a blaze.

    * Miscellaneous: In the hostages exchange episode, when Marisol is still at the other end of the main street, Ramón tells her quietly, "Go to him, Marisol". This must be an error in editing as her child only runs into the street later.

    * Errors made by characters (possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): When the Baxters and Rojos are in the street for the prisoner exchange, there's a close-up of Ramon cocking his rifle, but clearly the hammer is already cocked.

    * Continuity: After entering the town, Joe goes into a place for something to eat and drink. The position of his bottle and plate change between shots.

    * Continuity: In the first gunfight, the man to the extreme left, who is on the fence, slumps over. The position of the body on the fence changes between shots.

    * Revealing mistakes: When "Joe" is target practicing at the party, and Ramon starts shooting a Winchester rifle, you can clearly see holes pre-punched out into the armor.

    Memorable Quotes

    Filming Locations
    Almería, Andalucía, Spain
    Cabo de Gata, Almería, Andalucía, Spain
    Casa de Campo, Madrid, Madrid, Spain
    (Rojo house)Cinecittà Studios, Cinecittà, Rome, Lazio, Italy
    Cortijo El Sotillo, Almería, Andalucía, Spain
    (San Miguel)
    Hoyo de Manzanares, Madrid, Spain
    (San Miguel - main street)
    Los Albaricoques, Cabo de Gata, Almería, Andalucía, Spain
    Tabernas, Almería, Andalucía, Spain

    Best Wishes
    London- England

    Edited 7 times, last by ethanedwards ().

  • A Fistful of Dollars (Italian: Per un pugno di dollari, lit. "For a Fistful of Dollars")
    titled on-screen as Fistful of Dollars, is a 1964 spaghetti western film directed by Sergio Leone
    and starring Clint Eastwood in his first leading role, alongside Gian Maria Volontè, Marianne Koch, Wolfgang Lukschy, Sieghardt Rupp, José Calvo, Antonio Prieto, and Joseph Egger.

    A Fistful of Dollars was filmed on a low budget (reported to be $200,000),
    and Eastwood was paid $15,000 for his role.
    Released in Italy in 1964 and then in the United States in 1967,
    it initiated the popularity of the spaghetti western film genre.
    It was followed by For a Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, also starring Eastwood.

    Collectively, the films are known as the "Dollars Trilogy", or "The Man With No Name Trilogy". The film has been identified as an unofficial remake of the Akira Kurosawa film Yojimbo (1961), which resulted in a successful lawsuit by Toho, the producers of Yojimbo. In the United States, the United Artists publicity campaign referred to Eastwood's character in all three films as the "Man with No Name".

    As few spaghetti westerns had yet been released in the United States, many of the European cast and crew took on American-sounding stage names. These included Leone himself ("Bob Robertson"), Gian Maria Volontè ("Johnny Wels"), and composer Ennio Morricone ("Dan Savio"). A Fistful of Dollars was shot in Spain, mostly near Hoyo de Manzanares close to Madrid, but also (like its two sequels) in the Tabernas Desert and in the Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park, both in Almería province.

    A remake of the 1961 movie ,Yojimbo ,
    A Fistfull Of Dollars, was to become the first of
    the popular, but sometimes criticised, 'Spaghetti Westerns'.
    However , it was Leone, who had the last laugh,
    as they became immensely popular at a time of hum-drum movie releases.
    Clint Eastwood, the made the part of 'The Man With No Name'
    is very own, even to the point of buying his own wardrobe!
    Originally, offered to Henry Fonda, James Coburn and Charles Bronson,
    there is no doubt Clint Eastwood, was the one,
    and his portrayal catapulted him into stardom.


    * After considering Henry Fonda, director Sergio Leone offered the role of the Man With No Name to James Coburn, who proved too expensive. Charles Bronson then turned it down after describing it as the "worst script I have ever seen". Third choice Richard Harrison also declined the role but pointed Leone in the direction of "Rawhide" (1959). Leone then offered the part to "Rawhide" star Eric Fleming, who turned it down but suggested his co-star Clint Eastwood for the part. The rest, as they say, is history.

    The storyline was very simple, and at the time,
    it was mentioned the movie should have had,
    some well known support actors.
    This was to be rectified, in the sequels,
    when actors like Lee Van Cleef, were added.

    The soundtrack by
    Ennio Morricone (as Dan Savio) has become,
    one of the most memorable forms of music,
    in movie history!

    Best Wishes
    London- England

    Edited once, last by ethanedwards ().

  • In 1997, it was remade again as Last Man Standing, starring Bruce Willis, and was updated to time of Prohibition. Not as good as Dollars but, plenty of action just the same.

  • I never really warmed up to this one, but thought that Leone got progressively better with "For a Few Dollars More" and "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly". Of course, the budgets had improved too.
    Speaking of Biff in "Back to the Future III", did anyone else note his dead on homage to Liberty Valance, complete with quirt?

    We deal in lead, friend.