Janet Gaynor wore a blonde wig throughout the film. It attracted a lot of criticism at the time of release as audiences were used to seeing her with long dark hair instead.
F.W. Murnau hated using title cards in his films. Thus, in Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, the title cards become more and more infrequent as the film progresses and virtually non-existent by the end.
Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans was released a month after The Jazz Singer. Although feted by the critics and containing a then highly progressive use of sound, it failed to connect with audiences who were now clamoring for films where the actors spoke in them.
Although well-received critically, this film did not do well at the box office, which led to the studio "reining in" F.W. Murnau creatively for his next several films.
Director F.W. Murnau wanted Camilla Horn (with whom he had worked in Germany on Faust - Eine deutsche Volkssage) for the part of "The Wife", but she was under contract to the German studio UFA at the time and they refused to loan her out, so the part went to Janet Gaynor.
Fox studio's first ever feature film with a recorded score.
In 2007, the American Film Institute ranked this as the #82 Greatest Movie of All Time. It was the first inclusion of this film on the list.
Included among the '1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die', edited by Steven Jay Schneider.
Many of the superimpositions throughout the film were created "in the camera". The camera would shoot one image at the side of the frame, blacking out the rest of the shot, then expose the film. They would put the exposed film back into the camera and shoot again, blocking out the area that already had an image on it.
Rumor has that George O'Brien was forced to wear lead boots in the early passages of the film when the Man is weighed down with guilt over his decision to kill his wife.
The first feature film released using the Fox Movietone system, it was the first professionally produced feature film with an actual sound track.
The first silent film to be released on Blu-ray (by Eureka Entertainment on September 21st, 2009 in United Kingdom).
The name of the baby was Jerry Craycroft. An article in Decatur Review dated December 26, 1926, reported that "eight month old Jerry Craycroft is making a name for himself in the movies... he will be seen a Fox picture, Sunrise, with Janet Gaynor and George O'Brian (sic)". A Social Security Death Index search for a Jerry Craycroft reveals that he was born on Apr 3, 1926, Death: 27 Feb 2000.
The original negatives of the film were destroyed in a fire in 1937.
The scenes in the city were not filmed on location. They were filmed on a vast and expensive set, built especially for the movie.
Was the first and only film to win the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' (AMPAS) 'Best Picture' award in the category of "Artistic Quality of Production" (or "Unique and Artistic Picture"). This was the only year that this award was ever given out.