AFI Movie Club: IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE

DID YOU KNOW? Writer Philippe Van Doren Stern sent their short story “The Greatest Gift” as a 21-page Christmas card, which provided the original concept for IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE. David Hempstead, producer at RKO Pictures, ended up grabbing it and bought the film rights for $10,000.

DID YOU KNOW? The screenplay went through many drafts and was worked on by acclaimed writers Dorothy Parker and Dalton Trumbo.

DID YOU KNOW? IT’S A MAGNIFICENT LIFEhas beenJames Stuartthe first film of after four years of military service during the Second World War.

DID YOU KNOW? Olivia de Havilland, Martha Scott and Ann Dvorak were all considered for the role of Mary, which was eventually played by Donna Reed in her first major lead role.

DID YOU KNOW? Jhe biggest snowstorm in movie history (at the time) was created for IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFErequiring 300 tons of limestone and fifty tons of white plaster. Special effects expert Russell Shearman has developed new, more realistic snow specifically for the image.

DID YOU KNOW? Ffrom 1974 through 1993, the film’s copyright expired, allowing networks to air the film throughout the holiday season, contributing to IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE’s popularity worldwide.

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