This was the only film in which Tony Bennett played a fictional character. In his autobiography, "The Good Life", he states that it was a terrible experience and he never sought future roles.
Listed among the Top 10 Best Bad Movies of All Time in "The Official Razzie Movie Guide."
This film opens with footage of stars' arrivals shot outside an actual mid-1960s Academy Awards ceremony, with the year of the event carefully obscured in all wide angles. One transfer of the film reveals that it is the 37th Academy Awards, held in 1964.
Cited as the perfect Good Bad Movie by John Wilson, who founded the Razzie Awards for the worst in film in 1981. Wilson noted in 2017 that one of the things he loves about the film is that the Academy Awards actually let the production film during a real Oscars ceremony, not having any idea how bad the movie was. He also noted with amusement that Tony Bennett was for some reason cast as a half-Jewish, half-Irish character.
Bob Hope, who plays the Master of Ceremonies in this film's Oscar sequences, hosted more Academy Awards shows than anyone else in Hollywood history.
The Academy Award sequences for this film were shot at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, scene of several actual 1960s Oscar ceremonies.
The Richard Sale novel on which this film is based followed Frank Fane as he systematically ruined the chances of his four fictitious Oscar rivals. In the movie, the other four Best Actor nominees are actual Hollywood stars, "nominated" as Best Actor for fictitious film titles.
Harlan Ellison was so horrified with the results of the final film that he practically wept in the cinema when he saw it.
This was James Dunn's final film before his death on September 1, 1967 at the age of 65.
According to the Harlan Ellison documentary "Dreams With Sharp Teeth", he wrote the screenplay with Steve McQueen and Peter Falk in mind to play the leads.
Harlan Ellison was never shown the rushes for the film, they would not let him see a single frame of it. He had no idea how the film would turn out until he saw it when the film was released.
Peter Lawford's cameo here as a washed-up actor reduced to working as a restaurant host is sadly indicative of Lawford's real life situation at the time. After a falling out with Frank Sinatra got him "banished" from The Rat Pack, Lawford found on-screen work of any kind hard to come by.
This was Hugh Sanders's final film before his death on January 9, 1966 at the age of 54.
The movie centers around Frank Fane's nomination for a Best Actor Academy Award. There are two former winners of that award in the cast (Broderick Crawford & Ernest Borgnine), plus 5 other Oscar winners... Frank Sinatra, James Dunn, Walter Brennan, Ed Begley and Edith Head.
Edith Head: an Oscar nominee for her costume designs for this film, appears in a scene set at a Hollywood party, when Kay calls Frank to congratulate him on his Oscar nomination, and one other scene.