Director Clint Eastwood enlisted the actual Americans who took down the terrorist to play themselves in this movie: Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos and Spencer Stone.
The first person to tackle the terrorist on the train was a Frenchman. He later turned down the Légion d'honneur and asked to remain anonymous because he feared reprisals from other Islamists living in France.
Clint Eastwood was attached to direct The Ballad of Richard Jewell (????) since 2014 but dropped out in 2016 to do Impossible Odds (????) as his next directorial project after finishing Sully (2016) but the project wasn't ready yet & needed more time in development. So, Eastwood needed another project to take on & decided to sign on to helm this project as his next directorial film.
The plot tagline says "3 U.S. Airmen," but only Spencer Stone is in the Air Force. Alek Skarlatos is Army National Guard & Anthony Sadler is a civilian.
At 94 minutes, this has the shortest running time out of all of Clint Eastwood's directorial projects. The previous record holder was "Sully" (2016) at 96 minutes.
This film marks the first time that Clint Eastwood and DP Tom Stern used Zeiss Master Anamorphic lenses, which have the least anamorphic distortion. Their previous anamorphic shot movies were Filmed in Panavision.
Many of the professional actors in this film are better known as sitcom stars: Tony Hale and Judy Greer were both in Arrested Development, Jenna Fischer in The Office, Thomas Lennon in Reno 911!, and Jaleel White in Famity Matters.
A poster of Letters From Iwo Jima (2006), also directed by Clint Eastwood, appears in Spencer Stone's room during the childhood scenes.