On this date in History ... 1969:
The movie “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” was released. The $6 million movie grossed over $96 million in sales. It was
rated #7 on the American Film Institute’s 10 Greatest Western Films in 2008.
The theme song "Raindrop Keep Falling on my Head", sung by BJ Thomas, was 1st offered to Ray Stevens,
then Bob Dylan. Both turned it down. The song won an Academy Award for Best
Original Song. Thomas had laryngitis when recording the song, which is why his
voice sounds raspy in the movie soundtrack.
(photo courtesy of imbd.com)
During the filming of the scenes in Bolivia (which were
filmed in Mexico), the entire cast and crew came down with what is referred to
as “Montezuma’s Revenge” except for Redford, Newman and Katherine Ross as they
refused to drink the water provided by the local caterer. They only drank soda and alcohol during the
entire location shoot.
(One of my favorite lines is in this clip, before they jump into the
river, when Sundance admits he can’t swim and Cassidy replies, “…. the fall
will probably kill ya!”) See Video Clip Here
The sister of the real Butch Cassidy visiting the set often
and was amazed and impressed at how accurately the film and Newman portrayed
her brother. She refused to endorse the
film when asked by the studio, but relented when Redford suggested she do it
“for a small fee.”
Steve McQueen also read for the part of Butch Cassidy, at
about the same time as Paul Newman. The original name of the film was “Sundance
Kid and Butch Cassidy” but when Newman got the role, the names were reversed
since Newman was a bigger star. Warren Beatty was also considered for the role,
but he turned it down because he felt it was too similar to his role in “Bonnie
The film holds the record for the BAFTA’s (British Academy
Awards) with nine wins.