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Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

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Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs
Ice Age Dawn of the Dinosaurs theatrical poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Carlos Saldanha
Mike Thurmeier (co-director)
Produced by Lori Forte
John C. Donkin
Screenplay by Michael Berg
Peter Ackerman
Mike Reiss
Yoni Brenner
Story by Jason Carter Eaton
Music by John Powell
Edited by Harry Hitner
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release dates
  • July 1, 2009 (2009-07-01)
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $90 million
Box office $886.7 million[1]

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (also known as Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs or simply as Ice Age 3) is a 2009 American 3-D computer animated comedy adventure film, and the third installment in the Ice Age series. It was produced by Blue Sky Studios and distributed by 20th Century Fox. The film features the voices of Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Queen Latifah, Seann William Scott, Josh Peck, Simon Pegg, and Chris Wedge.

The story has Sid being taken by a female Tyrannosaurus after stealing her eggs, leading the rest of the protagonists to rescue him in a tropical lost world inhabited by dinosaurs beneath the ice. The film is the third instalment of the Ice Age series and a sequel to the 2006 film Ice Age: The Meltdown.

Despite receiving mixed reviews from critics, Dawn of the Dinosaurs ranked at the time as the seventh highest grossing animated film of all time,[2][3] earning $886.7 million worldwide. A sequel was released in 2012.


Ellie (Queen Latifah) and Manny (Ray Romano) are expecting their first child, and Manny is nervously obsessed with making life perfect and safe for Ellie, until the baby's born, since his first experiences as a husband and father went bad when his family was killed by hunters. At the same time, Diego (Denis Leary) finds himself unable to catch a cocky gazelle (Bill Hader) he has been stalking and decides to leave the herd, believing that he is losing his predatory nature as a tiger. Sid (John Leguizamo) grows jealous of Manny and Ellie and "adopts" three apparently abandoned eggs that he finds in an icy underground cavern and call them Eggbert, Shelly, and Yoko. Manny tells him to put them back (saying Sid would never make a good parent, saying, "First sign: Stealing someone else's eggs. Second sign: One of them almost became an omelette."), but Sid instead looks after the eggs, which hatch into baby Tyrannosaurus triplets the next morning.

Although Sid tries his best to raise the three dinosaurs, their rambunctious behavior scares away all the other animals' young and ruins a playground Manny built for Ellie's baby, and well as the ice mobile Manny made. A female Tyrannosaurus, Momma, whose eggs Sid stole, soon returns and carries both Sid and her young underground, with Diego in pursuit. Manny, Ellie, Crash, and Eddie (Seann William Scott, Josh Peck) follow as well and discover that the icy cavern leads to a vast jungle populated by dinosaurs thought to be extinct. Here, an Ankylosaurus threatens the herd despite Diego's efforts to fend it off; they are saved from a further crowd of angry dinosaurs by an insane, one-eyed weasel named Buck (Simon Pegg).

Buck has been living in this jungle for some time and is chasing Rudy, an abnormally large albino Baryonyx,[4] with the intention of avenging the loss of his right eye at Rudy's hands. He agrees to lead the herd through the jungle's perils to Lava Falls, where Momma has taken Sid and her babies. At one point, they have to cross the "Chasm of Death" which is filled with gas fumes (a mixture of helium and laughing gas, causing anyone who breathes in it to laugh uncontrollably while speaking in a high-pitched voice). Although the gas is not the actual cause of death, victims usually cannot stop laughing and thus die while trying to cross the chasm. Eventually the group manages to cross the chasm. In the meantime, Sid and Momma try to outdo each other in feeding the offspring; he loses this contest, but is soon welcomed into the family regardless. The next day, however, Sid is separated from the family and attacked by Rudy. Sid is knocked onto a loose rock slab that is floating on a river of lava and about to plummet over the falls.

As the herd moves toward Lava Falls, Ellie goes into labor and a Guanlong pack strikes, causing a rock slide that separates her from Manny and Diego. Diego doubles back to protect her and Manny fends off further attacks, while Buck takes Crash and Eddie ahead to rescue Sid. Just as he goes over the falls, the trio swoops in on a commandeered Harpactognathus only to be chased by a flock of Pterodactylus on the way. They manage to fend them off and save Sid. Manny reaches Ellie and hears the cry of a newborn baby, and he sees that it is a girl. He wants to name her Ellie, or Little Ellie, but Ellie instead names her Peaches after the fruit (and the codeword they had chosen for Ellie to use if she went into labor during the trip). Sid is saddened at the fact that he never had a chance to say goodbye to "his" children as he returns to the herd and learns of Peaches' birth.

As they venture back to the tunnel, they are shocked to discover Rudy lurking inside of the entrance. Rudy exits the tunnel and attacks at full force; Buck lures Rudy away from the group and is nearly eaten himself, before Diego saves him at the last second. Manny, Sid, Diego, and Buck manage to ensnare Rudy and knock him unconscious, but as they begin to leave, Sid trips over one of the ropes and breaks it. Rudy quickly recovers and escapes, and is about to attack Sid when Momma arrives on the scene, charging at Rudy and knocking him off a cliff before roaring her victory. As she and her children wish Sid well, Buck – now without a purpose in life since Rudy is gone – decides to join the herd and live on the surface. However, a distant roar tells him that Rudy is still alive; he changes his mind and sends the herd home, blocking off the path to the underground jungle at the same time, so nobody else can go down there anymore. Manny and Ellie welcome Peaches into their frozen world and admit that Sid did a good job looking after Momma's children (though Manny tells Diego that he will never let Sid babysit Peaches). Diego decides to remain with the herd, while Buck stays where he wants to be: underground, battling it out with Rudy.

Scrat and Scratte[edit]

Like the previous Ice Age films, the film opens with the saber-toothed squirrel Scrat (Chris Wedge), who does everything he can to retrieve his precious acorn. This time, he falls in love with his female counterpart Scratte (Karen Disher), with the song "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine" by Lou Rawls playing in the background, but an acorn appears instead after the music stops. The two fight over the acorn with Scratte is flung off the ground. As Scrat tries to save her, the two hold onto the acorn and the music starts back. Suddenly, she demonstrates her ability to glide like a flying squirrel, leaving Scrat falling to the ground. The two eventually fall in love after Scrat saves her from falling to her death in the lava river while she is unconscious. He even chooses to focus his attention on her instead of the acorn until the end of the film, when he tires of her finicky nature and reverts to his old ways. The ensuing fight between the couple leads to a volcanic explosion (caused by Scratte, due to slamming the acorn into the ground like Scrat had done before, though he tried to warn her of what would happen if she did) that hurls Scrat and the acorn back to the surface, leaving Scratte trapped underground. However, as Scrat is about to enjoy his acorn, a stray piece of ice falls on him and knocks the acorn back into Scratte's hands. He screams in frustration, having lost both his acorn and Scratte.

Voice Cast[edit]


Blue Sky decided to do "more of a what-if adventure" in the third Ice Age installment, titled Ice Age: A New Beginning, "like finding the giant ape in King Kong or a Shangri-la in the middle of snow," and added the dinosaurs to the story. Character designer Peter de Sève welcomed the new plot addition, since he could not think of any other giant mammal to put into the story. The "lost world" approach led to colorful dinosaurs, because "the dinosaurs didn't have to be just brown, and you can take liberties because no one knows what color they were", according to de Sève. Rudy's design was inspired by the Baryonyx because of his crocodile-like look, which de Sève considered even more menacing than the T. rex.[4]

The film was released in RealD Cinema where available. The release sparked some controversy when Fox announced that it would no longer pay to supply 3D glasses to theaters,[5] which led to a number of exhibitors threatening to only show the film in standard 2D projection.[6]

The film's original trailer debuted with the film Horton Hears a Who! on March 14, 2008, then online on April 7, 2008. There are three others that have been released, with the third and fourth (which shows Buck) being the most closely resembling each other. Queen Latifah recorded a cover of the song "Walk the Dinosaur".


Box office[edit]

The film earned $196,573,705 in North America and $690,113,112 in other territories, which gives it a worldwide gross of $886,686,817 against a budget of $90 million. Worldwide, it is the third highest-grossing film of 2009, the highest grossing animated film of 2009, the 33rd highest grossing film of all time, the highest grossing Ice Age film, and the seventh highest-grossing animated film of all time.[7] It is also the highest-grossing animated film of 2009 worldwide.[8] It set a worldwide opening weekend record for an animated feature ($218.4 million), previously held by The Simpsons Movie ($170.9 million). It marks the highest grossing film of the Ice Age series,[9] the second highest-grossing film of 20th Century Fox for 2009 (after Avatar) and stands as the studio's third largest film of all time behind the latter and Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.[10]

North America

The film made $13,791,157 on its opening day in 4,099 theaters.[1] It reached $41,690,382 on its first weekend, marking the least-grossing first weekend for the franchise, although it had a Wednesday release and therefore burned off attendance until the weekend.[9][11] The film became 20th Century Fox's third largest 2009 release in North America behind Avatar and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel. It is the third-highest-grossing animated feature of 2009. It heavily out-grossed its predecessor, Ice Age: The Meltdown which earned $195,330,621 three years before,[9] to become the highest-grossing movie in the franchise, but it was way behind the two first Ice Age movies in estimated attendance.[12]

Other territories

On its opening weekend it earned $151.7 million, which is the biggest opening for an animated feature[13] and the 13th largest of all time.[14] Outside North America, it is the fifteenth highest-grossing film of all time[8] and the second highest-grossing animated movie of all time (out-grossing Finding Nemo, later out-grossed by Frozen).[15] Its highest-grossing market after North America was Germany ($82.2 million), followed by France and the Maghreb region ($69.2 million), and the UK, Ireland and Malta ($56.9 million).[16] It was the highest-grossing animated film of the year in all major countries, except Spain[17] and Australia.[12][18]

As of March 2012 it is the highest-grossing animated film of all time in Hungary,[19] Slovakia,[20] the Czech Republic,[21] Romania,[22] Bulgaria, where the film holds the opening-weekend record,[23] Finland,[24] Norway,[25] Denmark,[26] Estonia,[27] Latvia,[28] Lithuania,[29] Italy,[30] Greece,[31] Serbia and Montenegro,[32] Slovenia,[33] Croatia,[34] France and the Maghreb region,[35] the Netherlands,[36] Germany,[37] Austria,[38] Brazil,[39] Peru,[40] Uruguay[41] and Venezuela.[42]

Critical response[edit]

The film received mixed reviews from critics. As of June 27, 2011, Rotten Tomatoes reported that 45% of critics gave positive reviews based on 157 reviews with an average score of 5.4/10.[43] Another review aggregator, Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 top reviews from mainstream critics, gives the film an average score of 50 based on 25 reviews.[44]

However, Roger Ebert gave the film three and a half stars out of four claiming that "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is the best of the three films about our friends in the inter-species herd of plucky prehistoric heroes. And it involves some of the best use of 3-D I've seen in an animated feature."[45] Lou Lumenik of the New York Post awarded the film 3 stars stating that the film is "much more of an emphasis on action in this nicely crafted, fast-paced sequel."[46] Keith Phipps of the A.V. Club graded the film a C+ claiming the sequel "throws its commitment to the era away with movie number three, a ploy sure to anger Ice Age purists everywhere."[47] Carrie Rickey of the Philadelphia Inquirer enjoyed the "film's animation art is Seuss-imaginative", but panned "the flatness of the story and indifferent voicework all the more obvious."[48]

CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend, cinema audiences gave Dawn of the Dinosaurs an average grade of "A-" on an A+ to F scale.[49]

Home media[edit]

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs was released on high-definition Blu-ray Disc and standard DVD in North America on October 27, 2009 and in the United Kingdom on November 23, 2009. Two versions of the DVD exist: a single-disc DVD, and a "Scrat Pack" Double DVD Pack with three Scrat games.

The 3-disc Blu-ray combo pack includes a Blu-ray, the single-disc DVD, and a Digital Copy, as well as an Ice Age digital story book maker, commentary by director Carlos Saldanha, deleted scenes, making-of featurettes, the two Scrat shorts: Gone Nutty and No Time for Nuts (that each originally came on home video for both the first and second films), and a how-to-draw Scrat tutorial with the filmmakers.

On September 21, 2010, a 3D DVD was released as a two-disc set, with the first disc being the TrioScopics 3D version and the second disc being the 2D version.

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs - The 4-D Experience[edit]

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs - The 4-D Experience is a 14-minute 4D film shown at various 4-D theatres over the world. It retells the condensed story of Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs with the help of 3D projection and sensory effects, including moving seats, wind, mist, snow and scents. Produced by SimEx-Iwerks, The 4-D Experience premiered in May 2012, at the San Diego Zoo 4-D Theater.[50][51] Since June 2012, it is being shown at the Roxy Theatre, at the Warner Bros. Movie World in Australia,[52] and since July 2012, at the Shedd Aquarium's Phelps Auditorium in Chicago.[53]

Video game[edit]

A video game tie-in was published by Activision on June 30, 2009.[54]


The fourth film, Ice Age: Continental Drift, was released in 3-D on July 13, 2012. It was directed by Steve Martino and Mike Thurmeier — the first time without Carlos Saldanha. The film takes place a few years after the events of the third film, with Peaches in her teenage years. Scrat's never-ending pursuit of acorns has world-changing consequences, separating Manny, Sid and Diego from the rest, forcing them to stand up to a pirate gang, led by Captain Gutt.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved September 8, 2009. 
  2. ^ Yukhananov, Anna (August 4, 2010). "'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs' to show for Hoboken's Movies Under the Stars". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Top five popular 3D films". March 30, 2010. Retrieved January 4, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Wloszczyna, Susan (June 30, 2009). "'Ice Age' warms up to dinosaurs in third installment". USA Today. Retrieved August 20, 2009. 
  5. ^ Sperling, Nicole (April 1, 2009). "'Ice Age 3' at the center of a struggle over 3-D exhibition". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved June 15, 2009. 
  6. ^ Taylor, Dawn (April 3, 2009). "Regal to Fox: No 3D Glasses? Then No 'Ice Age 3D' at Regal". Cinematical. Retrieved June 15, 2009. 
  7. ^ "All Time Worldwide Box Office". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 27, 2009. 
  9. ^ a b c 'Ice Age' Smackdown
  10. ^ "WORLDWIDE GROSSES". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 16, 2010. 
  11. ^ "Weekend Report: 'Transformers' Fends Off 'Ice Age' in Close Independence Weekend". Box Office Mojo. July 6, 2009. Retrieved August 20, 2009. 
  12. ^ a b Gray, Brandon (September 15, 2009). "‘Ice Age 3’ Climbs to Lofty Foreign Milestone". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved September 12, 2010. 
  13. ^ Weekend Report: 'Transformers' Fends Off 'Ice Age' in Close Independence Weekend
  15. ^ Weekend Report: ‘Funny People’ More Pauper Than King of Comedy
  17. ^ Spain Yearly Box Office
  18. ^ Australia Yearly Box Office
  19. ^ Hungary Yearly Box Office
  20. ^ Slovakia Yearly Box Office
  21. ^ Czech Republic Yearly Box Office
  22. ^ Romania Yearly Box Office
  24. ^ Finland Yearly Box Office
  25. ^ Norway Yearly Box Office
  26. ^ Denmark Yearly Box Office
  27. ^ Estonia Yearly Box Office
  28. ^ Latvia Yearly Box Office
  29. ^ Lithuania Yearly Box Office
  30. ^ Italy Box Office Index
  31. ^ Greece Yearly Box Office
  32. ^ Serbia and Montenegro Yearly Box Office
  33. ^ Slovenia Yearly Box Office
  34. ^ Croatia Yearly Box Office
  35. ^ France and Algeria, Monaco, Morocco and Tunisia Yearly Box Office
  37. ^ Germany Yearly Box Office
  38. ^ Austria Yearly Box Office
  39. ^ Brazil Yearly Box Office
  40. ^ Peru Yearly Box Office
  41. ^ Uruguay Yearly Box Office
  42. ^ Venezuela Yearly Box Office
  43. ^ "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. IGN Entertainment. Retrieved February 20, 2012. 
  44. ^ "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved February 20, 2012. 
  45. ^ Roger Ebert (June 29, 2009). "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Review". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved July 4, 2009. 
  46. ^ Lumenick, Lou (July 1, 2009). "'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs' Will Melt Your Heart - New York Post". New York Post. Retrieved July 4, 2009. 
  47. ^ "Ice Age: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs - A.V. Club". A.V. Club. July 1, 2009. Retrieved July 5, 2009. 
  48. ^ "'Ice Age': The search for a plot". Philadelphia Inquirer. June 30, 2009. Retrieved July 4, 2009. 
  49. ^ "CinemaScore". Retrieved February 14, 2015. 
  50. ^ Morrow, Morrow (May 24, 2012). "Ice Age Dawn of the Dinosaurs - The 4D Experience". CNN. Retrieved September 27, 2012. 
  51. ^ "Ice Age™ Dawn of the Dinosaurs 4-D Experience!". San Diego Zoo. Retrieved September 27, 2012. 
  52. ^ "Ice Age Dawn of the Dinosaurs - The 4D Experience". Movie World. Retrieved September 27, 2012. 
  54. ^ "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Review". Retrieved 2009-07-14. 

External links[edit]