Screenwriter Larry Gelbart envisioned in the title role his old co-writer from the glory days of the Sid Caesar tv show.
After Dustin Hoffman turned down the role of Frank Leibkand, Mel Brooks thought about taking the role himself. However, he felt it would be too much of a chore to produce, direct, and act, so he cast Kenneth Mars.
Did you know that Mel Brooks was not the only choice for this movie? (click to learn more)