A second look at Steven Spielberg's '1941' - LA Times
The comedy, which revolved around a panic that ensued in Los Angeles after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, was written by up-and-coming young screenwriters Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis. John Milius, who originally brought the project to Spielberg, was an executive producer. The film even included a clever parody of the opening of "Jaws" featuring the same actress, Susan Backlinie.
But as the Universal and Columbia Pictures co-production grew and grew, so did the costs. "It was sort of a work in progress, an expensive work in progress," recalled producer Buzz Feitshans.