G | | Adventure, Drama, History
When a Jewish prince is betrayed and sent into slavery by a Roman friend, he regains his freedom and comes back for revenge.
Director William Wyler had served as an assistant director wrangling extras in crowds under action specialist B. Reeves Eason (aka "Breezy"), who directed the chariot race in MGM's mammoth silent version of the story, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1925).
When the Romans were marching me to the galleys, thirst had almost killed me. A man gave me water to drink, and I went on living. I should have done better if I'd poured it into the sand!
Judah Ben-Hur: I'm thirsty still.
During the chariot race just before Ben-Hur's chariot jumps the wrecked chariot, stunt driver Joe Canutt can be seen dropping the reins and grabbing hold of the side of the his chariot (his father, stunt coordinator-2nd unit director Yakima Canutt, had instructed him to grip the underside of the chariot's railing. Joe ignored him, or forgot, and grasped the railing from the top, and was vaulted over the top of the chariot, which could have been fatal had his quick reflexes and strength not allowed him to haul himself back over the vehicle's yoke before he fell between the horses and chariot).
The Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer lion is shown in a still-frame to appear looking peaceful at the beginning rather than roaring.
Dive deep into IMDb Picks, Amazon Originals, Streaming, and more.