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Top 10 Great Gatsby Trivia

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Published in 1925, "The Great Gatsby" is a fictional novel by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. It takes place during the Roaring Twenties and follows the life of Nick Carraway and his adventures alongside the title character. It is known as one of the Great American Novels and has been adapted for film, television, opera and Broadway. Its pervasiveness in pop culture has also seen its influence in video games, music and more. In this video, we explore ten pieces of trivia about “The Great Gatsby.”

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It’s F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Great American Novel. Welcome to, and today we’ll be exploring ten pieces of trivia about “The Great Gatsby.”

#10 – Gatsby’s Musical Dream

While “The Great Gatsby” has been adapted for Broadway and turned into an opera, it’s also inspired other musically inclined people. After the indie folk outfit Reg & Phil wrote the song “Daisy Buchanan,” the South Korean boy band 2AM took things one step further and dedicated an entire EP to the Jay-Daisy relationship. But perhaps the biggest musical tribute is the Seattle indie rock band that named itself Gatsbys American Dream.

#9 – Great Gatsby Games

“The Great Gatsby”’s influence on pop culture is so pervasive that it’s even made its way to video games. That’s right, gamers and American lit fans alike can get their nerd on with the Hidden Object game “Classic Adventures: The Great Gatsby,” on their PCs or iPads. But if you’re more into the old-school thing, online players can try out the 8-bit “Great Gatsby” game for free!

#8 – The Great Ashby

From Hank Moody’s friendship with the wealthy but unhappy Lew Ashby, to Janie Jones being described as “Daisy Buchanan,” it’s hard not to see the similarities between “Californication”’s second season and Fitzgerald’s “Great American Novel.” A secondary character named Daisy is even introduced later on! And, while the show obviously misses some plot points, Moody’s and Ashby’s ups-and-downs are too close to Carraway’s and Gatsby’s to ignore.

#7 – “Hello, Daisy”

Though Baz Luhrmann considered at least 13 different Hollywood starlets for Daisy for his 2013 film, it was Carey Mulligan’s audition that eventually wowed studio execs. Landing the role meant so much to the Oscar-nominated Brit that she started crying upon hearing the news from the director. That moment was captured forever by a photographer who snapped the actress tearing up into a napkin while holding the phone on the red carpet.

#6 – Mia is Daisy

Seems like Mia Farrow was destined to play Daisy Buchanan. Though the 1974 role was originally set for producer Robert Evans’ wife, Ali MacGraw, her affair with Steve McQueen during the production of “The Getaway” changed that. Farrow ended up beating out at least five other actresses. She was considered such a good fit that director Jack Clayton shot around her pregnancy by using many close-ups and dressing her in loose-fitting attire.

#5 – A Gay Nick Carraway?

He may be credited with writing the 1974 film’s screenplay, but Francis Ford Coppola wasn’t the first choice. Producer Robert Evans intended to give Robert Towne the job, but the screenwriter chose to work on what became the Oscar-winning screenplay for “Chinatown” instead. Truman Capote also took a stab at it, but lost the gig after putting a homosexual spin on the Nick Carraway and Jordan Baker characters.

#4 – “The Great Gatsby” Times 2

American actor Howard Da Silva first made a name for himself by appearing in the original Broadway musicals of “The Cradle Will Rock” and “Oklahoma.” In 1949, he was cast as the dimwitted mechanic and garage owner George B. Wilson in the second film version of Fitzgerald’s novel. Twenty-five years later, he returned to Jay Gatsby’s world as the Jewish gangster/gambler Meyer Wolfshiem in Jack Clayton’s interpretation of the romantic drama.

#3 – 4th Time’s Not the Charm

Sometimes being beautiful can work against you. That’s what happened to classic beauty Gene Tierney, who was turned down for the role of Daisy in the 1949 film. This would have marked her fourth screen outing with Tyrone Power. The matinee idol subsequently withdrew his participation following her dismissal, and actress Betty Field and popular ‘40s celeb Alan Ladd replaced them.

#2 – A Lost Film

The first filmed version of “The Great Gatsby” was a silent, black-and-white movie from 1926 based on Owen Davis’ stage adaptation of the novel. Starring Oscar winner Warner Baxter, the Herbert Brenon-directed motion picture can no longer be viewed in its entirety because no copies have been found. The only proof of its existence is a one-minute trailer preserved by the American Library of Congress.

#1 – The Great Book Cover

When Spanish artist Francis Cugat painted his “Celestial Eyes” for “The Great Gatsby”’s cover, he probably never thought it’d become so renowned in American lit. Featuring a woman’s eyes and lips, with a naked female form reflected in those eyes, the Art Deco piece was sent to Fitzgerald while he was still writing the book. It so captivated him that he claimed it inspired some of its imagery.

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