In Dirty Harry the movie producers couldn't get a Smith & Wesson Model 29, so they used a Smith & Wesson Model 57 in .41 Magnum calibre. Listed in a Guns or Guns & Ammo article.
It was a Model 29(maybe)
It has also been written that two Model 29's were used in the filming of Dirty Harry. The Smith & Wesson company historian, Roy Jinks, has stated that the company was approached by Warner Brothers before filming had begun with a request for specimens. Evidently no Model 29's could be found to purchase. The Model 29 was something of a "niche" gun in the fifties and sixties and S&W did not produce large numbers of the 44 magnum revolver.
There had not been a production run for awhile and they had become rather scarce on the market. The factory did have parts on hand and were able to put together two models for the production. However all they had were 6.5 inch barrels so that's what the film went with.
John Milius has stated in the past that when he was doing fine tuning on the script he gave Inspector Callahan a Model 29 with a 4 inch barrel. Which makes sense since since it would be more practical for a cop to carry the 4" version. Of course practical in this case in more a matter of schemantics.
As others have said though it's hard to know what really occurred. The makers of Dirty Harry had no way of knowing that they were involved with pop culture history and nobody thought to keep accurate records about the props. So we continue to have fun debating all the possible models used by Inspector Callahan. --Jcordell 14:59, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
Discussion removal/Blank page
I request that the above discussion be removed. The first part was started by an anon user with no attribution/source, and the rest of it JCordell has also posted on the Dirty Harry Discussion page. Furthermore, there has since been visual evidence on the Dirty Harry page (HD screencaps showing '44 MAGNUM' on the barrel) that refutes the original claim and makes the argument/discussion moot. I didn't want to just up and remove it myself, so, well here ya go. StanTheMan (talk) 22:03, 1 July 2014 (EDT)