In a recent open letter, Lewis has said that he is keeping the movie from people on purpose because he thinks the movie is terrible. Well, no one thinks it’s good, but we still want to see it.
Facts about the movie straight from IMDB:
Shooting began in Stockholm, but producer Nat Wachsberger not only ran out of money to complete the film, but failed to pay Joan O’Brien for the rights to the story. Jerry Lewis was forced to finish the picture with his own money. The film has been tied up in litigation ever since, and all of the parties involved have never been able to reach an agreeable settlement. Lewis refuses to discuss the making of this film in any form.
Jerry Lewis lost close to 40 pounds to play the role.
One of the most talked about, yet little seen, films in history, only a select few have ever seen the film. Among them, actor Harry Shearer who told Spy Magazine that the film was “perfect” in its awfulness.
Jerry Lewis has the only copy locked in a private vault where he vows to keep it from ever being viewed again.
In 2008 Jerry Lewis took questions at a press conference and was asked by one person: “When are you going to release ‘The Day the Clown Cried’?” to which Lewis snapped, “None of your goddamn business!”
The concentration camp scenes were filmed at a Swedish military compound.
In order to lose weight for
the concentration camp scenes, Jerry Lewis ate nothing but grapefruit for six weeks.
Paul Mart and Loel Minardi were originally set to produce and direct, respectively.
The circus scenes were shot at the Cirque D’Hiver in Paris where Jerry Lewis was performing at the time.
Famous Austrian/German reporter Margret Dünser visit the principal photography of the movie in Sweden and do an interview with Jerry Lewis. She gave him a camera, and you can see Lewis in the circus arena and clowning around with the camera. She also directed some of the Nazi concentration camp scenes.