During an interview, Ernest Borgnine related that when he was initially approached by his agent with an offer to star in the pilot for the show, he turned it down. (That show was actually a drama, called "Seven Against the Sea", which was retooled into a comedy when the series was picked up by ABC.) Not long thereafter a boy showed up on Borgnine's doorstep selling candy. The boy told Borgnine that he looked familiar, but that he couldn't place him. Borgnine, who had already won an Oscar for his role in Marty (1955), asked the boy if he knew who played the lead character Paladin in the television series Have Gun - Will Travel (1957). The boy said, "Richard Boone." He likewise was immediately able to remember the names of several other television series stars, even though he couldn't remember who Borgnine was. After the boy left, Borgnine called his agent to ask if that Navy pilot was still available. When told that it was, Borgnine told him to accept - and so became a part of what eventually would be his signature television series.
Why me? Why is it always me?
The map behind Captain Binhgamton's desk, which is supposed to be the Taratupa Naval Base is actually a map of Guadalcanal and the surrounding islands.
Also available in a computer colorized version.