This film is pretty much about a terrorist that does what he wants and a cop that has to finally make the decision to pull the trigger and be rid of him for good. As the terrorist goes out of his way to simply hurt people and ‘speak’ for them because they can’t speak for themselves, strange I know, he also seems to find pleasure in taunting the lead cops that are eventually put on his trail. Rutger Hauer has been an eerily good actor so long that it’s kind of sad how underrated he is. Of course when you’re in an American film for the first time opposite Sylvester Stallone and Billy Dee Williams, who have already made their names known and are quite famous, it has to be a little difficult.
But give the man credit, he hung in there with two of the biggest stars of the era and made sure that he became a known man.
10. Stallone wasn’t a big fan of the cable car stunt.
To start with the stunt wasn’t tested, the harness weighed about 300 pounds, and if he’d fallen all he had was a Gerber pocketknife to cut himself out. Most people wouldn’t feel too confident in that situation.
9. Rugter Hauer suffered a couple of big personal losses during filming.
His mother and his best friend passed away during filming, and yet both times he was gone for a few days before coming back to the set. That’s intense dedication.
8. There were a lot of cuts to the movie for violence.
You might see this kind of thing still in the movies of the current era but back then a lot of material was still considered to be too much for an audience.
7. Hauer was injured twice while filming his death scene.
The squib that was meant to simulate a gunshot burned him when it exploded on the wrong side and the cable used to pull him back when he was ‘shot’ strained his back. Unfortunately this was done on Stallone’s order.
6. Stallone had to direct a scene in the movie.
When the original director left and the new director couldn’t make it on time the studio had to procure special permission for Stallone to direct for a short time.
5. Stallone was jealous of Hauer’s role in the movie.
The two had an intense rivalry on the set and Stallone even went so far as to cut out some of Hauer’s scenes and increase his own influence.
4. The movie was originally supposed to be the French Connection III.
After seeing the original script Gene Hackman backed out of the production and it was then reworked into what became Nighthawks.
3. The title of the movie refers to the men and women officers that work the night shift.
It was meant to honor the men and women officers that patrol the streets at night.
2. Sylvester Stallone did all his own stunts for the movie.
This isn’t the first time that he’s had to do his own stunts, but throughout the years his body has been paying the price.
1. This was Rutger Hauer’s first American feature film.
For being his first American film he definitely made an impression.
It’s kind of surprising to realize that Stallone was this petty back in the day. I wonder if he’s matured since.