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The Mosquito Coast (1986) Poster

Trivia

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While building the town set in Belize, the crew unearthed an ancient Mayan temple. It notified the Belize government, which declared the site an important historical find.
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Actors River Phoenix and Harrison Ford had a very close bond. Ford personally recommended Phoenix for the part of the young Indy in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) after working with him on The Mosquito Coast (1986). Ford stated that of all the young actors who were working at the time, River was the one who looked the most like himself when he was that age.
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Of all of his films, star actor Harrison Ford considers this to be his favorite.
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Jack Nicholson was considered for the lead male role of Allie Fox which in the end was cast with Harrison Ford. Nicholson withdrew from the film partially because he could not watch his Los Angeles Lakers basketball team from Belize where much of the movie was to be filmed.
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During casting River Phoenix was passed on several times for the role of Charlie Fox for being too old (he was 15). When no age-appropriate Charlie could be found, Phoenix's audition tape was brought in again to director Peter Weir and, impressed by the actor, he decided to put the age issue aside and give Phoenix the job.
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River Phoenix was raised in the Children of God cult, where he and his family had been stationed in Venezuela. River was motivated to act in the movie because he recognized the many similarities between the film and his childhood.
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River Phoenix had a reputation for being very anti-establishment, particularly against big corporations. For that reason, Peter Weir was very taken aback when he saw the young star quaffing cans of Coca-Cola and eating Mars bars on set.
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Corey Haim was offered the role of Charlie Fox. His father, who was acting as his manager at the time, turned it down in favour of a starring role in Lucas (1986).
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In an 'Entertainment Weekly' magazine article entitled 'Regarding Harrison' from a 1992 interview, star Harrison Ford said of this movie: "It's the only film I have done that hasn't made its money back. I'm still glad I did it. If there was a fault with the film, it was that it didn't fully enough embrace the language of the [source] book [by Paul Theroux]. It may have more properly been a literary rather than a cinematic exercise. But I think it's full of powerful emotions".
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Actors Martha Plimpton and River Phoenix started a personal relationship on this movie which continued for a number of years.
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Due to principal photography on this picture, star Harrison Ford and director Peter Weir both famously missed the 1986 Academy Awards Ceremony, for which they had both had been nominated for Witness (1985), in the Best Actor and Best Director categories respectively. Witness (1985) went on to win two Oscars, for Best Film Editing and Best Original Screenplay, after being nominated for eight, including Best Picture.
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Final theatrical film appearance of actress Butterfly McQueen.
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Show-business trade paper 'Variety' described this movie as "a modern variation of Swiss Family Robinson". Many critics, reviewers and audiences have compared The Mosquito Coast (1986) with Johann David Wyss' classic "Swiss Family Robinson" (1812) novel.
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The film's failure at the box office was mainly attributed to Harrison Ford's performance, which many critics found to be too forced and over-the-top.
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The film was made and released about five years after its source novel of the same name by Paul Theroux had been first published in 1981.
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First of two collaborations of actors River Phoenix and Harrison Ford. The pair would work together again around three years later in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989). Phoenix played the younger version of Indiana Jones, in the film's opening flashback sequence, with Ford portraying the usual regular adult form of the character.
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Thq quotation cited in the film was from T.S. Eliot's "Fragment of an Agon".
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First of two cinema movie collaborations of actors River Phoenix and Martha Plimpton. Their second and final theatrical feature film together was Running on Empty (1988) which was made and released around a couple of years after The Mosquito Coast (1986).
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The movie's source 1981 novel of the same name by Paul Theroux won "The Yorkshire Post Novel of the Year" award and was also awarded "The James Tait Black Memorial Prize".
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Peter Weir had planned to make the film with Jack Nicholson in the lead, and was already moving furniture into the production office when he was informed the funding had fallen through. Calling his agent, he asked for a "go" project into which he could step immediately as director. He was offered three - COCOON, THE MEAN SEASON and WITNESS - and chose WITNESS,
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At around the 93 minute mark, during the severe tropical storm - there is a single shot that is very visibly "undercranked" by virtue of the fact that Harrison Ford is moving around at a ridiculously fast speed. The reason for "undercranking" was clearly to make the storm in this shot move faster and look more dangerous.
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Belize was chosen as the main location not only because it had all the necessary landscape features but also because it was an English language speaking country with a stable economy.
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Boa constrictors were a common sight on the film's sets in Belize.
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Jamaica, Mexico, Hawaii, Costa Rica and Guatemala were all considered for filming before the production settled on Belize.
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Three Jeronimo sets were built - in various stages of completion - to mirror the actions in the film. Harrison Ford's carpentry skills were often called upon by the production design team.
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Second and final [to date, July 2015] collaboration of actor Harrison Ford and director Peter Weir. The first had been Witness (1985) which had been made and released the previous year. Weir also made two films with actor Mel Gibson which were Gallipoli (1981) and The Year of Living Dangerously (1982). Ford and Gibson later both appeared in The Expendables 3 (2014) but shared no screen time together.
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The number of invention patents that Allie Fox (Harrison Ford) had patented was six patents pending with nine patents registered in total.
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The name of Allie Fox (Harrison Ford)'s large ice-making machine invention was "Fat Boy".
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Producer Jerome Hellman bought the rights to Paul Theroux's novel as soon as it was published.
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Bagels - which are not a common feature of the Belize diet - were flown in specially for the cast and crew.
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Peter Weir was already familiar with the Paul Theroux novel when he was offered the chance to direct as Sigourney Weaver had given him a copy of the book on location in the Philippines when they were making The Year of Living Dangerously (1982).
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Helen Mirren's second role in a Hollywood film after 2010: The Year We Make Contact (1984).
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Spoilers 

The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

The book's rather gruesome ending was toned down for the movie. In the book, Allie Fox finally collapses, after which he is eaten by vultures (creatures he despises throughout the book). In the movie, his character played by Harrison Ford slowly dies from his wounds.
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