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15 Things You (Probably) Didn't Know About American Gangster

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It took a long, drawn out seven years for American Gangster to get made and one thing we all know is that it was well worth the wait.

But what don't we all know about this effortlessly cool epic? Hopefully these 15 things that we have produced in the form of a handy list, for your ocular consumption.

You can also take our American Gangster quiz here

(Images: Rex & YouTube)

1. The film went through a number of titles, directors and acting duos throughout the development process. It could have been called Tru Blu, could have been directed by Brian De Palma or Antoine Fuqua (Training Day) and could have starred Benicio Del Toro and Will Smith in the lead roles.

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2. When Terry George (Hotel Rwanda) was set to direct, Don Cheadle was on board as Frank Lucas and Joaquin Phoenix was a consideration for the role of Richie.

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3. The crowd at the Muhammad Ali's fight sequence, was made up of 650 real, breathing extras and 1500 inflatable dummies.

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4. Ridley Scott felt the price to film in Madison Square Gardens was obscene, so the Ali v Frazier fight, which originally happened at MSG, was actually shot in an ice hockey stadium.

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5. The late, great James Gandolfini was offered the role of Detective Trupo (played by Josh Brolin), but turned it down.

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6. Throughout the film, Denzel Washington goes through a whopping 64 costume changes.

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7. Despite working very closely with the real life Richie Roberts and Frank Lucas in order to play them effectively, Russell Crowe and Denzel Washington went out of their way to keep a distance between themselves and the respective person that they weren't playing. In this interview, Crowe explains: "I didn't want to be charmed by Frank. I didn't want to look in his eye and feel sympathy or empathy, because I'm on chase with this guy. So I'd see him in the distance and I'd just wave. I did not engage in conversations."

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8. 50 Cent auditioned for the role of Huey Lucas. Here's his audition tape.

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9. Post-production Ridley Scott admitted that he would not have made the film without Denzel Washington.

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10. On outdoor scenes Scott would often have as many as 8 cameras all filming at once.

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11. All 360 scenes were filmed in four months in over 180 different locations - at the time the highest number of filming locations of any movie, ever. Ridley Scott has called it one of the most massive undertakings of his career. Harlem alone was the home to up to 60 locations.

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12. Original production plans were to commence in Toronto for budget purposes; however, production eventually relocated permanently to New York City. "This film could never have been shot in Toronto," Scott later said. "It's too clean."

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13. Cuba Gooding Jr didn't have a theatrically released film (in most countries) for five years after American Gangster. He returned to the silverscreen with 2012's Red Tails.

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14. Even though he plays his father, Common (right) is only eight years older than T.I. (left) in real life.

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15. This mobile game based on the film was released by Gameloft on November 1, 2007.

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