Mount Up!: The Magnificent Seven

By: Nathan Chandler
Image: TMDB

About This Quiz

By 1960, Hollywood had already made countless western-themed movies. Many of the stories were stale, featuring old stereotypes and predictable plots. "The Magnificent Seven" hit theaters with a better plot, an all-star cast and a proven director at the helm. How much do you know about this famous western?

Most of the story in "The Magnificent Seven" takes places in which location?

The story revolves around a Mexican town besieged by villains. The locals hire gunfighters to fight off the evil criminals.

Who did NOT star in the movie?

Clint Eastwood wasn't in this particular movie. It starred Bronson and McQueen, along with Yul Brynner, James Coburn and other big names.

Yul Brynner was one of the stars of the movie. He was best known for what?

Brynner was famous for his amazing stage performances of "The King and I." He played the same character in the movie adaptation and scored an Oscar.

"The Magnificent Seven" was actually a remake of another movie.

This western was a remake of Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai," which was created in 1954. "The Magnificent Seven" hit theaters in 1960.

Who directed the film?

John Sturges directed this 1960 classic. Sturges also directed "Bad Day at Black Rock" and "The Great Escape," as well as other big Hollywood productions.

What did director John Sturges do during World War II?

Sturges cut his teeth in part by creating a series of training movies for the Army during the world war. A few years later, he began directed large-scale feature films.

Which of the gunfighters is the leader of the group?

Yul Brynner is Chris Adams, the man who rounds up the gunfighters and leads them into battle against the bandits harassing the poor Mexican townspeople.

Which actor plays the character named Britt?

James Coburn plays the part of Britt. Britt is not only a gunfighter, he's an expert with knives, too.

What's the primary motivation for the gunfighters to help the villagers against the bandits?

Most of the men just want money for beating back the bandits. But all of them have personal reasons for taking up the fight.

What role did Elmer Bernstein have in the making of the film?

Bernstein created the movie's legendary music score. Just a few years later, Marlboro used the main theme to sell its cigarettes.

During shooting, there was a personal conflict between Brynner and which other actor?

Steve McQueen, who loved the spotlight, was peeved that he had so few lines in the script while Brynner was leading the way. The two squabbled incessantly (and hilariously) during filming.

How did Akira Kurosawa feel about "The Magnificent Seven," which was a remake of his "Seven Samurai"?

Kurosawa was thoroughly impressed with the remake. He roundly congratulated director John Sturges for his work and gave him a sword as a gift.

Where was the movie filmed?

The story takes place in Mexico, and that's actually where shooting took place, too. The crew encountered some strange challenges while shooting south of the border.

The villagers travel to a U.S. border town to hire the gunfighters. How many men initially set off to help the beleaguered town?

The magnificent seven are actually only six to start. They pick up Chico on their way to save the day. Chico is an amateur fighter, but he's brave and stubborn.

Actors Coburn, Bronson and McQueen had great chemistry on "The Magnificent Seven" and immediately starred again together in which future film?

The three actors worked well together in this western, so they followed director John Sturges to his next project, "The Great Escape," which was a resounding success.

Harry is one of the gunfighters, and he's obsessed with what?

Harry believes that there is treasure squirreled away somewhere near the village, and he continually asks the villagers what they know about it. His biggest hope is that the fight will make him rich.

Who is the leader of the bandits that are determined to take control of the town?

Calvera, played by Eli Wallach, is the leader of the Mexican villains. He's determined to drive off the gunslingers so that his men can take over the town.

Which of the gunfighters boldly infiltrates the gang's camp to gather information?

Chico's Mexican appearance (and his recklessness) allows him to wander into the gang's camp, where he learns of their plans to again attack the village.

Because the film was made in Mexico, Mexican censors stood by to observe. Which aspect of the shooting did they demand to be changed?

Even though the villagers were clearly impoverished, Mexican censors insisted that their clothes appear spotlessly clean -- so the film's producers had to wash a bunch of clothes that had been purposely dirtied.

The bandits seize the village and shoo off the gunfighters, who then decide to try to save the village again. Which gunfighter decides to give up the fight?

Harry believes that the gunfighters will be walking into a deathtrap, and he wants no part of it. He decides to leave the area before the battle begins.

How does Harry die?

Harry changes his mind and returns to the battle just in the nick of time. He rescues Chris from certain death but takes a bullet himself.

The first version of the script portrayed the gunfighters as what?

The men were originally supposed to be quite aged veterans of the American Civil War. In the end just one of the men is a war veteran.

How many lines did James Coburn have in the film?

Coburn, playing Britt, was a minor actor in this film. He had just 11 lines of dialogue.

Steve McQueen was originally unable to appear in the movie because he was contracted to a TV show. How did he manage to squeeze in the time for the film?

McQueen was as reckless in real life as he was on screen. He staged a car wreck and feigned an injury so that he could dodge his TV obligations and spend his "recovery" time on the film set.

The movie failed at U.S. box offices.

"The Magnificent Seven" couldn’t find an American audience. But overseas (particularly in Europe) it did very well -- well enough to spark sequels.

How many sequels were made?

The movie's financial success in Eurpoe inspired the studio to make not one, not two, but three sequels. None of them performed as well as the original.

The film inspired a parody movie that was called what?

In 1986, a parody titled "Three Amigos!" appeared in theaters. The movie starred Chevy Chase, Steve Martin and Martin Short.

In the end, how many of the gunfighters survive the fight?

The gunfighters rescue the village, but at a steep price. Only three of them survive the battle.

How many of the actors of "Seven" are still alive?

All of the "Seven" gunfighters are dead. Lee, played by Robert Vaughn, was the last to go, in 2016.

After winning the battle, which hero decides to stay in the town for good?

Chico falls for one of the local women and decides that maybe the village is a good place to live. His girlfriend Petra is thrilled with his decision to stay.

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