Fact: The movie is considered one of the most accurate boot camp movies even 27 years later.
To this day, most marines believe that this is the most accurate boot camp movie of all time. R. Lee Ermey, who plays Hartman in the full movie, actually was a real life drill instructor in the Vietnam War. Ermey was brought on as a consultant, but wanted to play the role. To prove he had the balls for the job, for 15 minutes he rattled off insults to which oranges and tennis balls were repeatedly thrown at him. Ultimately, he got the job and history was made.
In addition, “Full Metal Jacket” took so long to release due to Ermey getting into a car crash which broke half of his body. He was out for 4 and a half months. Since the movie, Ermey has lived off his drill instructor roles.
The Joker, was actually envisioned by the director for Anthony Michael Hall. He is known for is very well known role in the “Breakfast Club.” Conversations went on for close to a year before it dropped through. Furthermore, the movie was inspired on a book written by Gustav Hasford called, “The Short-Timers.” Originally, the movie was supposed to be about the Holocaust but soon came to a decision on a novel by Gustav.
Furthermore, the name “Full Metal Jacket” came from the types of bullets used by the marines during the Vietnam War, which at the time was a full metal jacket that encased the bullet.
Vincent D’Onofrio, who plays Robert Goren on Law and Order, would land his very first major role as the infamous Private Gomer Pyle. To play this part, Vince has to pack an extra 70 pounds onto his muscular build. This would surpass the most weight gained for a role. This was held by Robert De Niro in the movie Raging Bull for 60 pounds. This gain of weight would cause Mr. D’Onofrio torn ligaments which he would have to surgically replaced. It would take him to drop the weight he gained for the role.
Originally, Bruce Willis was going to play a part in the full movie but turned it down due to his contractual obligations for the TV Series he was in.
The movie was actually filmed in England. To transform the terrain to look like Vietnam, they important 200 palm trees and 100,000 fake plants to the set.
Full Metal Jacket soundtrack is yet to come.