Clint Eastwood's trademark squint was caused by the combination of the sun and high-wattage arc lamps on the set.
This has been described as the first "spaghetti western", but when this film was made, there had already been about 25 such westerns produced in Italy. This was, however, the first to receive a major international release.
The Man With No Name is actually called Joe in the film's dialog (by the undertaker) and in the closing credits.
When the film made its U.S. network television debut on "The ABC Sunday Night Movie" in February 1975, a new prologue was added in which an unidentified lawman or politician (played by Harry Dean Stanton) orders "Joe" to get rid of the gangs of San Miguel in return for a pardon. Neither Eastwood nor Leone were involved in the shooting of this additional footage. A double with his face hidden and stock footage of Eastwood were used. Monte Hellman directed the new footage. This prologue is now available on the Special Edition released in 2005.
A remake of Yojimbo (1961), which itself was based on the as yet unadapted 1929 novel "Red Harvest" by Dashiell Hammett. In fact, the film's US release was delayed when "Yojimbo" screenwriters Akira Kurosawa and Ryûzô Kikushima sued the filmmakers for breach of copyright. Kurosawa and Kikushima won, and as a result received 15% of the film's worldwide gross and exclusive distribution rights for Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. Kurosawa said later he made more money off of this project than he did on Yojimbo (1961).|