August 7, 2006

The Maltese Falcon

"He looked rather pleasantly like a blond satan." -- Dashiell Hammett describing his private detective protagonist, Sam Spade.

Just watched John Huston's The Maltese Falcon for the first time over the weekend. For those of you that have already seen it (which is probably most of you) here's some trivia about the movie courtesy of

• The movie mirrors Hammett's novel almost word-for-word and scene-for-scene.

• Bogey's final line, "It's the stuff that dreams are made of," was a Shakespeare reference suggested by the actor himself. It was voted the #14 best movie quote of all time by the American Film Institute.

• Two falcon statues were used for the film because Bogey (whoops!) dropped the first one. The mildly bashed bird is now on display at the movie museum at Warner Bros. studio.

• The "Maltese Falcon" itself is said to have been inspired by the "Kniphausen Hawk," a ceremonial pouring vessel made in 1697 for George William von Kniphausen, Count of the Holy Roman Empire. It is modeled after a hawk perched on a rock and is encrusted with red garnets, amethysts, emeralds and blue sapphires. The vessel is currently owned by the Duke of Devonshire and is part of the Chatsworth collection.

Seen this movie a million times? Test your trivia knowledge by taking this quiz. -- Amy

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