Director Volker Schlöndorff declined producer Franz Seitz’s requests for him to adapt The Tin Drum many times, as he thought the novel was so narratively complex as to be unfilmable. He changed his mind after his own memories of childhood seaside visits began to give him ideas for ways to visualize the book’s beach scenes.
“Great film. But don't know why Criterion would bother? Would rather they restore rare and forgotten classics like Fantastic Planet or The Point, with it's great Harry Nilsson soundtrack. To do Watership . . .”