2. The Charleston scene where Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed's characters dance was filmed in a Beverly Hills high school. The gym floor really did open up to reveal a swimming pool.
3. Usually painted snowflakes were used as snow for movies. However they were too noisy. For "It's a Wonderful Life" the crew used a combination of ice, gypsum plaster and formite-soap-water mixture.
4. Jimmy Stewart's daughter, named Zuzu, brought home a flower from school, its petals falling off. Zuzu's Petals became the name of a rock band, a character in the movie The Adventures of Ford Fairlane and a Far Side comic.
5. In 1943, writer Philip Van Doren penned the story "The Greatest Gift" as a Christmas card to family and friends. Frank Capra renamed the tale "It's a Wonderful Life".
6. RKO bought the movie rights to "It's a Wonderful Life" for $10,000 in 1946.
7. Little Rascal "Alfafa", Carl Dean Switzer, played the ill-fated dance partner of Donna Reed's character.
8. The bridge scenes were actually filmed during a California heat wave. As Jimmy Stewart contemplates jumping off the snow covered bridge, he is actually sweating.
9. "It's a Wonderful Life" was actually a box office bomb, costing 3.7 million to make, but generating only 3.3 million in sales. It wasn't until the movie was replayed on television in the 1970's that it developped a true following.
10. Ginger Rogers, Olivia de Havilland and Jean Arthur all turned down the starring role of Mary Bailey because it was too "bland".
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