Although the trailer’s pushed the rotating corridor and the flipping street, the most iconic image of Inception was it’s finally, is-it-isn’t-it shot. And there’s the problem with marketing in Hollywood today; the suits try exceedingly hard to have as jawdropping a money shot as possible in the trailers, but what makes a moment truly iconic is time and appreciation, not third act spoilers.

But rather than looking at the spoilerific nature of trailers, today I’m going to shed some light on what makes iconic moments so unforgettable. Iconography doesn’t come from nowhere. All those instantly memorable movie moments you love have been endlessy dissected, perfected by the director and his crew over the entire production

Sometimes inspiration will strike and you’ll end up with brilliantly improvised lines or an on the fly iconic moment. Spielberg is particularly good at this, coming up with both Indy shooting the swordman and the rippling water on the T-Rex’s approach on set. But for the most part, it’s an unpredictable process that takes pure luck to get right and a lot of forethought to get right.

Here are ten incredibly iconic movie moments that came from the most unbelievable of sources, be it an incredibly complicated method or just plain ridiculous idea. The backstories to these moments are often perception changing, taking these already great scenes and giving them another layer.

Write about Film and GET PAID. To find out more about the perks of being a Film contributor at WhatCulture.com, click here.

This article was first posted on August 10, 2013