This film was the first to have media ads taken out campaigning for an Academy Award. The ads depicted MGMs Leo the Lion holding an Oscar, reading "You've given so much, Leo - now get ready to receive!" Despite the ads (or perhaps because of them) the film received no Academy Award nominations.
Will Rogers planned to play Nat Miller in this film, but eventually backed out of the project, enabling him to make the ill-fated airplane trip with Wiley Post to Alaska. The plane crashed, killing them both.
The gazebo in this film, a symbol of the typical American town, was built specially for the movie. That gazebo was gifted to the city by MGM and is still in use in Grafton Commons.
The original production opened at the Guild Theater (New York) on October 2, 1933 and played for 289 performances. The original cast included actor/song writer/playwright George M. Cohan. The play has been revived on Broadway four times since the original production.
Junior Durkin was originally cast in the role of Richard, but shortly before shooting was to begin, he was tragically killed in a car crash. Elisha Cook Jr. was approached to reprise his role from the original Broadway production before Eric Linden was eventually cast.
The box office success of this film led MGM to use many of the cast in A Family Affair (1937), the first in the "Andy Hardy" series (1937-1946).
The poem Richard wrote to Murial that Sid reads with Nat at the table is from "Anactoria" by Algernon Charles Swinburne (1837-1909).
Ah Wilderness! (1935) was remade in 1948 as a musical, Summer Holiday (1948). Mickey Rooney appears in both versions, as the youngest brother, Tommy Miller, in the original film, and as the oldest brother, RIchard Miller, in the remake.
The family's car is a 1910 Stanley Model 70, also known as a "Stanley Steamer", powered by a steam engine. Only 259 Model 70s were produced and in excellent condition at auction in 2019 could be worth well over $100,000 - even approaching $200,000.
The school in the film was modeled after Knoxville High School in Tennesee, which director Clarence Brown graduated from. The school's motto in Latin is also seen at the beginning of the film.
This film's first telecast took place in Cincinnati Saturday 19 January 1957 on WXIX (Channel 19) (Newport KY); it first aired in Chicago 2 April 1957 on WBBM, in Seattle 10 April 1957 on KING (Channel 5), in Norfolk VA 15 April 1957 on WTAR (Channel 3), in Amarillo 28 April 1957 on KFDA (Channel 19), in Memphis 29 April 1957 on WHBQ (Channel 13), in Portland OR 17 May 1957 on KGW (Channel 8), in Omaha 22 May 1957 on WOW (Channel 6), in Syracuse 7 June 1957 on WHEN (Channel 8), in Salt Lake City 26 June 1957 on KTVT (Channel 4), in Hartford CT 30 July 1957 on WHCT (Channel 18), in Los Angeles 11 August 1957 on KTTV (Channel 11), in Philadelphia 26 August 1957 on WFIL (Channel 6) in New Haven CT 9 September 1957 on WNHC (Channel 8), in Altoona PA 23 September 1957 on WFBG (Channel 10), in Minneapolis 21 November 1957 on KMGM (Channel 9), in San Francisco 7 March 1958 on KGO (Channel 7) and, finally, in New York City 31 August 1958 on WCBS (Channel 2).