Theatrical release: September 22, 1995.
Shot in Los Angeles, California; New York City, New York; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Screenwriter Andrew Kevin Walker wrote SEVEN while working as a manager at New York's Tower Records.
An original opening sequence features Somerset (Morgan Freeman) looking at a house in the country as a future home. While walking through the house, he cuts the print of a flower from the wallpaper and keeps it. Later, at the Mills apartment, he drops the paper flower, and Tracy Mills (Gywneth Paltrow) makes reference to it. Both of these scenes were cut from the final film.
Many works of literature are referred to in the film, including writings by Milton, Chaucer, Dante, and Shakespeare.
Richard Roundtree (SHAFT) appears in the film as a district attorney.
Brad Pitt and Gywneth Paltrow became romantically involved around the time of the movie's filming.
Pitt severed a tendon in his hand when he fell during the rainy chase sequence. In audio commentary on the SEVEN DVD, he explains, "So as I'm pushing myself outta this smashed windscreen, I put one hand down on the edge, then I got up and started chasing John Doe down the street. It wasn't 'til I got 'round the corner that I thought: 'Oops, something went wrong....' I ended up cutting a tendon, a nerve through three fingers....It was the only time I saw Finch go green....It was not pretty." The cast he wore for the injury was worked into subsequent scenes.
Pitt's contract stated that the film's grim ending could not be changed by the studio.
Richmond Arquette, brother of Patricia, Rosanna, David, and Alexis, appears as the deliveryman near the end of the film. He also plays a hospital intern in Fincher's FIGHT CLUB.
Real police officers were used as technical advisers on the film.
The Los Angeles Film Critics Association voted Kevin Spacey the runner-up for best supporting actor for his body of work in 1995. Howard Shore was the runner-up for best music.
SEVEN was one of the surprise hits of the year, taking in more than $95 million at the U.S. box office. Many in the film industry didn't think the film would be so successful because of its grim story line--and (in some people's opinion) a less attractive Brad Pitt.
The film opens with "Closer to God" by Nine Inch Nails (as remixed by Coil) and closes with "The Heart's Filthy Lesson" by David Bowie.
Kevin Spacey was supposed to receive top billing along with Pitt and Freeman at the beginning of the film, but the actor insisted that his name not appear in the opening credits in order to surprise the audience with the killer's identity. To compensate, Spacey is listed first in the closing credits.
An unfilmed alternate ending features Somerset shooting John Doe. When Mills yells "What are you doing?" Somerset says, "I'm retiring."