7. Fox executives cried about Keanu Reeves’ haircut. Jan de Bont told Reeves that he needed to get a haircut that would reflect his character before shooting began . The executives at 20th Century Fox were so upset that Reeves had buzzed his hair that they threatened to postpone the start of production until his hair grew back.
8. The movie’s opening elevator scene came from Die Hard. Director Jan de Bont came up with the movie’s opening elevator scene after getting stuck in an elevator 40 stories up and having to climb through the roof while filming Die Hard.
9. Pacific Courier Freight will always get blown up. The plane that is blown up by the exploding bus has a “Pacific Courier Freight” logo on its side. This is a gag that production designer Jackson De Govia had executed twice before, blowing up a truck bearing the logo in Die Hard and Die Hard: With a Vengeance.
10. Speed originally had a very different cast. Bullock’s biggest competitor for the role of Annie was Ellen DeGeneres. Before Bullock was cast, DeGeneres was offered the role of Annie with the promise that it would be a comedic action role. DeGeneres passed on the part in hopes of scoring a gig on the newly developed sitcom Friends, and we all know how that turned out. And the role of Jack was offered to Jeff Bridges before being passed on down to Johnny Depp and then Keanu Reeves.
11. The train crash was filmed with model trains. Filmmakers didn’t actually crash a moving subway car into a construction site. Instead, visual effects supervisor Boyd Shermis and engineer Jack Sessums built a 150 lb model train that derailed into a miniature construction site.
12. Too much bus. The studio was concerned about people getting bored with the bus action and asked Yost to add non-bus action sequences. Yost initially had the film ending after everyone exited the bus, but later presented the modified script with Dennis Hopper in the subway to Fox, who then agreed to make the movie.