The now classic scene between Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr in the rushing water on the beach was not written to take place there.
An urban myth regarding the casting of Frank Sinatra was that the Mafia made Columbia Pictures an offer they couldn’t refuse. This, of course, was fictionalized in Mario Puzo’s novel Der Pate (1972) and its subsequent film adaptation.
The real reason for Sinatra’s casting was mainly his then-wife Ava Gardner, who was shooting a film for Columbia head Harry Cohn and suggested to him that he use Sinatra. Although initially reluctant, Cohn eventually saw this as being a good idea, as Sinatra’s stock was so low at the time that he would sign for a very low salary. Sinatra had been lobbying hard for the role, even suggesting he would do it for nothing, but he was eventually hired for the token amount of $8,000.