1. The screenwriter's first choice for Vinny Gambini was Robert DeNiro.
At the time, DeNiro was known for his serious roles, and, according to screenwriter Dale Launer, the studio president didn't think he'd be able to carry a comedy. (Funny now, considering the success of the Meet the Parents franchise.)
2. Joe Pesci drew on memories of different men from his old New Jersey neighborhood for his performance as Vinny.
3. The famous "yutes" scene was included after Joe Pesci and director Jonathan Lynn had an almost identical exchange — Lynn being unable to understand what Pesci was trying to say.
4. Director Jonathan Lynn got an M.A. in law from Cambridge University, and therefore insisted on the movie's legal accuracy.
5. He also sat in on a murder trial in Monticello, Georgia, as part of his research.
6. The American Bar Association ranked My Cousin Vinny #3 in its list of 25 Greatest Legal Movies.
And clips from it are regularly shown in law school classrooms.
7. Vinny was originally supposed to be a bag man for the mob.
Launer told Abnormal Use, "He was supposed to be a big tough guy who seemed a little dopey, but he’s not dopey."
8. He's also supposed to be dyslexic.
9. Marisa's iconic "biological clock" scene wasn't in the first draft of the script.
10. Danny DeVito and Jim Belushi were both considered for the role of Vinny before the studio went to Joe Pesci.
11. And Will Smith was originally up for the role of Stan Rothenstein, the anxious sidekick played by Mitchell Whitfield.
12. The studio wanted to cut Mona Lisa from the movie entirely.
13. The prison scenes were shot in a real prison, and in the scene where Stan and Bill are walking to their cells, those are real prisoners shouting at them.
14. In 1998, Joe Pesci released an album in character, called Vincent LaGuardia Gambini Sings Just For You.
15. Director Jonathan Lynn has said that the movie, despite being a comedy, is primarily about "how wrong capital punishment is."
16. A screenplay for a sequel exists, but chances of it going into production are slim.
17. Super fans can take a My Cousin Vinny road trip around Georgia and see some of the filming locations — including the recently renovated Sac-O-Suds convenience store.
The blog "Road Trip Memories" tells you exactly where to go to see Sac-O-Suds, Monticello town square, the courthouse, and more.