You may be a die-hard Warriors Fan, but are you aware of one real-life prop utilized by filmmakers during the movie’s filming and production? What prop may that be, you might ask? Why, it’s the Wonder Wheel, of course! Yup, you better believe it: the wonder wheel seen in the movie is real.
The makers of the film ultimately chose to showcase real-life props present in the backdrop of the city, the most widely known of these being the illustrious Coney Island Wonder Wheel. Since appearing in the very first scene of the film, The Wonder Wheel still stands tall, a major attraction at Coney Island’s “Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park” still to this day.
Irwin Keyes's Ironic Twist of Fate
The character of Ajax was originally written to have a highly muscular, particularly foreboding character presence, and actor Irwin Keyes was among the top considerations for the role. However, because director Walter Hill believed Keyes was far too old to play this character, the role was instead given to actor James Remar, a significantly smaller, skinnier actor when compared to Keyes.
Despite Keyes's ultimate rejection for the role of Ajax, filmmakers still kept Keyes on set, giving him the consolation role. He was the New York City police officer known for hitting Ajax with his baton during the scene in the film involving the sting operation in the park. Then, in an ironic twist of events, Keyes ends up arresting the very character he initially was meant to play!
The Comic Book Effect
While watching "The Warriors," did you happen to notice certain scenes that appeared distinct from the rest? If so, your keen observation skills are impressive! One aspect of the film that often goes unnoticed is the creative utilization of a progressive post-production editing technique that gave it a certain comic-book effect.
This technique involves seamlessly combining animation with live-action photography to produce a final product that incorporates both elements, adding a unique visual dimension to the movie. In the specific scenes of the film where this unique technique is carried out, the film is broken up by drawn images. From here, these pictures are seamlessly joined together to effectively transition into actual photos of the actors in real life.
The Chronicles of the New York Subway System
Throughout the filming of this film, many of the scenes present on the big screen actually took place in the real-life trams of the New York City subway system. This included both elevated as well underground trams in New York City, all transportation vessels used during scenes of the film were run by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
And, as you may have picked up on when watching the movie, these trains ran solely on tokens. However, as witnessed through the illicit acts of the gang members in the film, a number of people — including two characters in the film, as well as individuals in real life — avoided paying for this particular mode of urban transportation.
A Gang of… Mimes?
Of all the odd, oftentimes bewildering moments throughout the film, perhaps the most confusing of these is the presence of a particularly mystifying mime gang. Known as “The Hi-Hats,” this gang is one of twenty others to appear in the film. The appearance of this gang can be described as utterly perplexing, largely disconcerting.
If you're wondering why the filmmakers decided to include such an odd gang in this very serious and oftentimes violent film, just know that you're not alone. We're also wondering what the creators wanted to accomplish in the inclusion of this mysterious gang of mimes and are still left scratching our heads.