The 1974 film Gone in 60 Seconds became a big hit for a couple of reasons.
Reason 1: The (car) body count for the movie.
Do you know how many cars “bit the dust” during the making of this film?
One hundred twenty-seven!
And how many of those were damaged during the 40-minute chase scene alone?
Yes, 93 cars were wrecked during the filming of the 40-minute car chase scene.
Sounds pretty action-packed!
Reason 2: The unforgettable star of the movie.
The 1973 Ford Mustang Mach 1, otherwise known as Eleanor. In a movie with about 50 other cars highlighted, this beautiful beast of a car stole the show.
Amazingly, the 1973 Ford Mustang Mach 1 used in the movie has been the only Mustang (or car, for that matter) to get star title credit in a movie.
That’s an awesome fact to go down in history for.
Two Will Do
In a movie with a high wreckage count, you’d think the star car of the movie would require a number of replicas in order to finish the movie, but not the case here. Only two Mustangs were needed throughout the entire filming of the movie. One was for stunts and the other for any “beauty” shots.
Built Ford Tough?
Another surprising fact is that both cars — yes, even the stunt car — made it to the end of the movie in one piece. The stunt car was involved in a few accidents during filming, some intentional and some that weren’t, and happened to be some serious “near misses” for the stunt man driving it.
Fool Me Once…
Piggybacking off this fact, the movie portrayed the role of Eleanor as four different cars. Yet, only two cars were used to film the entire movie. Just a switcheroo of the license plate and voila…a new car!
…Fool Me Twice…
And here’s another trick they pulled on us: the 1973 Ford Mustang from the movie wasn’t actually a 1973. It was a 1971 modified to look like a 1973. The filmmaker H.B. Halicki bought the cars in 1971, but didn’t have enough money to finish the film until 1973. So the cars were decked out to look current.
Let’s fast-forward to the year 2000 for the last fact.
A remake of Gone in 60 Seconds was released that year starring Nicholas Cage. The part of Eleanor is played by a Shelby Mustang GT500. Eleven replicas were made of Eleanor for filming the movie; compare that to the two replicas made for the original movie. By the end of filming, three replicas survived and have since been sold at auctions, with one of them going for $1 million dollars.
Fusion Motor Company out of California recently bought the rights to make the Shelby Mustang GT500, nicknamed the Eleanor Mustang, and for around $200,000 you can have one of your own.