A Christmas Story/Trivia

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
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  • Dawson Casting: Peter Billingsley (Ralphie) was 12-years-old playing a 9-year-old.
  • Defictionalization:
    • The Leg Lamp became a real product in 2003 when a fan of the film started manufacturing real lamps for sale. This then led to....
      • ...the fan using the money he made from his business to buy the house in Cleveland that was used for exterior shots of Ralphie's house. He later dropped another quarter-million dollars to gut the house and remodel it to look like the sets that were used for interior scenes. The house across the street has been turned into a museum and Leg Lamp giftshop.
  • Deleted Scene: MGM mandated a 90 minute time limit. (The film still ran 94 minutes.) The Christmas Story House website has a page dedicated to these scenes including screenplay fragments of some of the scenes. The deleted scenes included:
    • Alternate Openings
    • Ralphie's Mister Imagination fantasies of:
      • Miss Shields visiting Ralphie's parents at home to tell them how wonderful he is;
      • Ralphie saving Flash Gordon from Ming the Merciless on the planet Mongo;
      • Ralphie saving Santa Claus from Black Bart
  • Enforced Method Acting: Apparently no one told Melinda Dillon that the waiters in the Chinese restaurant were going to bring in a cooked duck with the head still attached. Or chop its head off moments later. Her reactions to both of those occurrences are genuine.
  • Hey, It's That Guy!:
  • Marathon Running: Every year, TBS runs the movie for twenty-four hours solid, beginning at 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve.
  • The Red Stapler: You can now buy a leg lamp. The Red Ryder BB gun is an aversion, however; while now available, they were produced throughout the 30-odd-year gap between the end of the Red Ryder Franchise and this film's appearance.
    • Not the particular model described in the film, however.
  • Vindicated by Cable: Only moderately successful at the box office when originally released, the film achieved Cult Classic status in the late '80s thanks to TV and home video.
  • What Could Have Been: Jack Nicholson was apparently a fan of the short-stories, and really wanted to play Ralphie's Old Man (he was even willing to take a paycut if necessary![1]). However, Jean Shepherd feared that the presence of such a high-profile actor in a supporting role would distract people from the main story.
    • In hindsight, it's hard to see anyone other than Darren McGavin in that role.
    • It would also be hard to see Nicholson swearing at the furnace being dubbed over by gibberish.

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  1. This is the same guy whose salary consumed the bulk of the budget for Batman.