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Born: November 11, 1974
Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA
Born: circa 1780
Death: 1833, Yellowstone River, Missouri
Born: January 28, 1993
Born: March 17, 1804
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, USA
Death: July 17, 1881, Missouri, USA
Yes. The Revenant true story confirms that this is one of the few facts about Hugh Glass that we do know for sure. He was a frontiersman and fur trapper. In 1823, he signed up for an expedition backed by General William Henry Ashley and Major Andrew Henry, who together founded the Rocky Mountain Fur Company in 1822 (Henry is portrayed by Domhnall Gleeson in The Revenant). Ashley had placed an ad in the Missouri Gazette & Public Advertiser in search of "enterprising young men." It was during this fur-trapping expedition that Hugh Glass was attacked by a grizzly bear, an event that turned Glass's story into Frontier legend. How much of the legend is true is uncertain, as the story was often embellished with each retelling. -Telegraph.co.uk
Little is known about the life of the real Hugh Glass prior to the 1823 bear attack. Most is conjecture, including his marriage to a Native American woman, with whom he supposedly fell in love after being captured by and living with Pawnee Indians for several years. As his legend grew, so did his elaborate backstory, which also included him being kidnapped by French-American pirate Jean Lafitte, a fate he allegedly escaped after a couple years by jumping ship and swimming ashore near what is now Galveston, Texas. We do know that Glass was an experienced frontiersman and a skilled hunter, but where and how he acquired those talents is anyone's guess. -HistoryBuff.com
No, at least none have been found. We do know that Hugh Glass was literate from a surviving letter he wrote to the parents of fellow fur trapper John Gardner, who was killed during an 1823 encounter with the hostile Arikara tribe (History Net). The papers of some of his bosses document him as being a difficult employee to rein in. However, he left little else behind to accurately document his life, and no direct eyewitness account of the bear attack exists.
The story of the attack first appeared publicly in an 1825 Philadelphia literary journal, written by a local lawyer in search of literary success. It spread across the United States in newspapers and other journals, quickly becoming Frontier legend. Glass's story became the subject of the 1915 poem "The Song of Hugh Glass" by John Neihardt and at least a half dozen books. Irish actor Richard Harris portrayed Glass in the trippy 1970 film Man in the Wilderness, which also starred John Huston. -HistoryBuff.com
Yes. Believing that Hugh Glass had received mortal wounds during his encounter with the bear, the expedition's leaders paid two men to stay behind until Glass died. This was done in order to give him a Christian burial. These men were John Fitzgerald and the younger Jim Bridger, portrayed in the movie by Tom Hardy and Will Poulter. They stayed with Glass for several days (the exact number varies). After seeing that his body was refusing to die, The Revenant true story confirms that they placed him in a shallow grave, collected his weapons, and headed off to rejoin the expedition. -Telegraph.co.uk
Director Alejandro G. Iñárritu made it clear from the beginning that computer-generated imagery would not be used as a stand in for remote locations. He also insisted on shooting in natural light. "If we ended up in greenscreen with coffee and everybody having a good time, everybody will be happy, but most likely the film would be a piece of sh*t," he told The Hollywood Reporter. As a result, some members of the crew left the filming, unable to handle the harsh environments, which included temperatures of -13F (-25C) (Telegraph.co.uk). Filming took place in British Columbia, Alberta, Montana and southern Argentina.
No. In The Revenant movie, the murder of Glass's mixed-race son by John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy) prompts him to embark on a journey for revenge. This part of the movie is pure fiction, as there is no evidence that Glass had any children at all, much less a son who was slain before his eyes. -HistoryBuff.com
As the legend surrounding Hugh Glass grew, so did the distance of his six-week-long crawl, jumping from 80 miles to 100 miles to 200 miles. Most tellings of his story embrace the latter, no doubt because it makes for a better tale. -Telegraph.co.uk
No. In researching The Revenant true story, we learned that Hugh Glass did catch up to John Fitzgerald and Jim Bridger, the men who abandoned him, but he forgave them instead of exacting violent revenge. It should be noted again that in real life these men never killed Glass's son, so forgiveness would have come more easily.
Little is known about Hugh Glass's later years, but we do know that he worked as a hunter at the mouth of the Yellowstone River, employed by Fort Union. -Daily Mail Online
Yes. According to a report in The Milwaukee Journal, a visitor at Fort Union shared such an account of Hugh Glass's death. "Old Glass with two companions had gone to Fort Cass to hunt bear on the Yellowstone, and as they were crossing the river on the ice, all three were shot and scalped by a war party of 30 Aricaras." -Daily Mail Online
The Revenant interview below features Leonardo DiCaprio discussing the film's grueling shoot.