Theatrical release poster
|Produced by||Dennis Edwards |
|Written by||Marc Hyman|
David Hyde Pierce
|Music by||Randy Edelman|
|Edited by||Lois Freeman-Fox|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros. Pictures|
|Box office||$14 million|
Osmosis Jones is a 2001 American live-action/animated gross out action comedy film with animated scenes directed by Tom Sito and Piet Kroon and live action scenes directed by the Farrelly brothers. The film centers on Frank Detorre, a slovenly zookeeper; the live-action scenes are set outside Frank's body, while the animated scenes are set inside his body, which is portrayed as a city inhabited by anthropomorphic blood cells and microorganisms. White blood cell cop Osmosis "Ozzy" Jones and cold pill Drix must prevent deadly virus Thrax from killing Frank within forty-eight hours.
The film was met with mixed reviews, with critics praising the animated scenes and its plot but criticizing the live-action portions and their overuse of gross-out humor. The film was also a box office bomb, earning $14 million against a budget of $70 million, though it later sold well in home media. It also served as the pilot to the Kids' WB spin-off television series Ozzy & Drix, where the two main characters suddenly get removed and exiled by a mosquito that transfers them to the body of a teenage boy named Hector and continue their battle against germs and viruses from in it. Unlike the film, however, the series is entirely animated and does not contain any live-action sequences and the two leads are recast with Phil LaMarr replacing Chris Rock as Ozzy and Jeff Bennett replacing David Hyde Pierce as Drix.
Frank DeTorre (Bill Murray) is an unkempt, slovenly zookeeper at the Sucat Memorial Zoo in Rhode Island. Depressed by the loss of his wife years earlier, he copes by overeating and ignoring basic hygiene, to the annoyance of his young daughter Shane (Elena Franklin).
Osmosis "Ozzy" Jones (Chris Rock) is a rebellious officer of the Frank PD, who was demoted to patrol duty in the mouth after an incident where he induced Frank to vomit against orders, resulting in Frank being fired from his previous job at a pea soup factory and banned from visiting Shane's school due to a restraining order filed by her science teacher, Ms. Boyd (Molly Shannon).
Two years later, facing a serious challenge to his re-election prospects, Mayor Phlegmming (William Shatner) doubles down on his junk-food policies, ignoring their effect on Frank's health. This causes Frank to eat a boiled egg covered in filth, allowing Thrax (Laurence Fishburne), a deadly virus, to enter the throat. Unwilling to admit responsibility, Phlegmming instructs Frank to take a cold suppressant though brain signals. The suppressant, Drixenol "Drix" Koldreliff (David Hyde Pierce), proceeds to disinfect the throat, covering up any evidence of Thrax's arrival. To his displeasure, Ozzy is subsequently assigned to assist Drix in his investigation. Meanwhile, Thrax assumes leadership of a gang of sweat germs and launches an attack on the mucus dam in Frank's nose, nearly killing Drix before Ozzy rescues him. The two pay a visit to one of Ozzy's informants, who reveals Thrax's plan to pose as a mere cold virus as a cover for killing Frank with a high fever in order to become the next big virus in the medical records. Based on his information, Ozzy goes undercover at a nightclub intending to infiltrate Thrax's gang, only to be discovered and forced to call in Drix, who manages to destroy the club with a grenade. The explosion pops a zit on Frank's forehead during a meeting with Ms. Boyd, ruining any chance for him to apologize. In response, Phlegmming closes the investigation, has Ozzy fired, and orders Drix to leave the city.
Having survived the assault, Thrax eliminates his remaining henchmen and breaks into the hypothalamus gland (the portion of the brain that controls body temperature), where he steals a DNA bead. He then abducts the Mayor's secretary, Leah Estrogen (Brandy Norwood), and flees to the mouth to escape. His actions disable the body's ability to regulate temperature, causing the city to break out in flames and panic. As Frank is taken to the hospital in a fever coma, Ozzy and Drix reconcile and proceed to rescue Leah. They succeed, but Thrax is able to exit the mouth using pollen as a distraction. Ozzy pursues him to the surface of Shane's eye, and as they fight they both land on one of Shane's false eyelashes. As Thrax has Jones pinned down, he threatens to break his record by killing Shane but gets stuck in the false eyelash; Jones escapes at the last minute before the eyelash slides off and lands in a vessel of rubbing alcohol, dissolving Thrax to death.
As Frank's temperature goes over 108 degrees, his heart begins to shut down. Riding one of Shane's tears, Ozzy reenters his body and replaces the missing chromosome. Having narrowly cheated death, Frank commits himself to living a healthier lifestyle and Ozzy and Drix are declared heroes, with Ozzy having been reinstated to the force with Drix as his new partner, at which point also Ozzy begins a relationship with Leah. Phlegmming, meanwhile, is impeached from his position as mayor, with his opponent, Tom Colonic (Ron Howard), winning in a landslide, and is reduced to a custodian in the bowels, and later ejects himself accidentally by triggering Frank's flatulence.
Animation voice cast
- Chris Rock as Osmosis "Ozzy" Jones, an overzealous blue and white blood cell with little respect for authority
- Laurence Fishburne as Thrax, a tall, extremely virulent, pathogenic agent
- David Hyde Pierce as Drixenol "Drix" Koldreliff, a stoic cold pill who becomes Ozzy's best friend.
- Brandy Norwood as Leah Estrogen, Mayor Phlegmming's secretary and Ozzy's love interest
- William Shatner as Mayor Phlegmming, the self-centered mayor of the "City of Frank"
- Ron Howard as Tom Colonic, Phlegmming's rival for the mayoralty of the City of Frank
- Joel Silver (uncredited) as the police chief, Ozzy's boss
- Steve Susskind as Mob Germ Boss
- Carlos Alazraqui as Spanish germ
- Antonio Fargas as Chill
- Rodger Bumpass as Announcer for Nerve News Network and Joe Cramp
- Paul Christie as Dan Matter and Germ
- Richard Steven Horvitz as Male Red Blood Cell
- Kid Rock as Kidney Rock
- Joe C. as Kidney Rock
- James Arnold Taylor as Coffee Holding White Blood Cell
- Herschel Sparber as Bruiser
- Eddie Barth as Conductor
- Robert Wisdom as Big germ
- Danny Mann as Musician Cell
- Paul Pape as Male Red Blood Cell #2
- Al Rodrigo as the Frank Police Department walkie talkie
- Doug Stone as Police Officer with big germ, Jamie, A police officer of Frank Police Department who broke his neck, arm, and leg due to Ozzy, and Germ #2
- Anne Lockhart as Female Red Blood Cell
- Jansen Panettiere (uncredited) as Billy, a kid who is friends with Tom Colonic
- Jonathan Adams as Tom, A Police Officer of Frank Police Department who broke his arm just like Jamie due to Ozzy
- Billy West (uncredited) as Collin, Ozzy's helicopter pilot
- "Stuttering" John Melendez as Arty, a janitor of the City Of Frank who was kidnapped by Thrax
- Sherry Lynn as Trudy, a news reporter for Nerve News Network who works with Dan Matter
- Liz Callaway as Female Cell
- Chris Phillips as Doug, A Firefighter who is a close friend of Ozzy
- Donald Fullilove as Doughnut
- Rif Hutton as one of Thrax's minions
- Mickie McGowan as a Librarian
- Eddie Frierson as a Police Officer of Frank Police Department
- Bill Murray as Frank Detorre; The animated part of the film takes place inside his body, which is referred to by the cells as "the City of Frank"
- Elena Franklin as Shane Detorre, Frank's 10-year-old daughter
- Molly Shannon as Mrs. Boyd, Shane's science and P.E. teacher
- Chris Elliott as Bob Detorre, Frank's brother and Shane's uncle
Osmosis Jones went through development hell during production. The animated sequences, directed by Tom Sito and Piet Kroon, went into production as planned, but acquiring both a director and a star actor for the live-action sequences took a considerable amount of time, until Bill Murray was cast as the main character of Frank, and Peter and Bobby Farrelly stepped in to direct the live-action sequences. As part of their contract, the Farrelly brothers are credited as the primary directors of the film, although they did no supervision of the animated portions of the film. Will Smith was interested in the part of Ozzy, but in the end his schedule didn't permit it.
Osmosis Jones was originally rated PG-13 for "crude language" and "bodily humor" in 2000. However, Warner Bros. edited the film to make it family-friendly, and in 2001 when it was released the film was re-rated PG for "bodily humor".
Animal action was supervised by the American Humane Association.
The film had its world premiere on August 7, 2001 and then on August 10, 2001.
The first trailer for Osmosis Jones was released right in front of Pokemon 3: The Movie on April 6, 2001 and contains a classical masterpiece from Stanley Kubrick's film 2001: A Space Odyssey whose version sounds different than the version used in the film as done by Zdenek of Slovak by Naxos and hasn't been heard on any of the ads that come right after the trailer which never had the chance to appear on U.S. television or a video or DVD released by Warner Home Video and is not PAL-Tweaked.
Osmosis Jones had its world premiere screening on August 7, 2001 at the Grauman's Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, California. Shortly after that, the film widely opened on August 10, 2001 in 2,305 theaters worldwide. Upon its original release, the film was a financial stump, and was the second-to-last production for Warner Bros.' feature traditional animation department (following The Iron Giant, and followed by Looney Tunes: Back in Action, which both also lost money upon their original releases). The movie opened at #7 in its first opening weekend at the U.S. box office, accumulating $5,271,248 on its opening week. The film soon grossed $13,596,911. The film was a box office bomb, unable to recover its $70 million production budget.
Osmosis Jones was released on VHS and DVD on November 13, 2001.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 55% based on 108 reviews, with an average rating of 5.5/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "The animated portion of Osmosis is zippy and fun, but the live-action portion is lethargic." At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average rating to reviews, the film has received an average score of 57 out of 100, based on 28 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B-" on an A+ to F scale.
The animated parts of Osmosis Jones were praised for their plot and fast pace, in contrast with the criticized live action segments. Robert Koehler of Variety praised the film for its animated and live-action segments intervening, claiming it to be "the most extensive interplay of live action and animation since Who Framed Roger Rabbit". The New York Times wrote "the film, with its effluvia-festival brand of humor, is often fun, and the rounded, blobby rendering of the characters is likable. But the picture tries too hard to be offensive to all ages. I suspect that even the littlest viewers will be too old for that spit." Roger Ebert gave the film 3 stars out of 4.
The use of crude humor in the film, as seen in most films directed by the Farrelly brothers, was widely criticized. As such, Lisa Alspector of the Chicago Reader described the film as a "cathartically disgusting adventure movie". Maitland McDonagh of TV Guide praised the film's animation and its glimpse of intelligence although did criticize the humor as being "so distasteful". Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly felt that the film had a diverse premise as it "oscillates between streaky black comedy and sanitary instruction", however the scatological themes were again pointed out. Jonathan Foreman of New York Post claimed Osmosis Jones to have generic plotting, saying that "It's no funnier than your average grade-school biology lesson and less pedagogically useful than your typical Farrelly brothers comedy." Michael Sragow of Baltimore Sun praised David Hyde Pierce's performance as Drix, claiming him to be "hilarious" and "a take-charge dose of medicine". Despite the mixed reviews, the film received numerous Annie award nominations including Best Animated Feature (losing to Shrek).
A soundtrack containing hip hop and R&B music as well as "Torian and Andrew's Babblin'" was released on August 7, 2001 by Atlantic Records. The soundtrack failed to chart on the Billboard 200, but Trick Daddy's single "Take It to da House" managed to make it to 88 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.
- Once Upon a Time... Life, an animated series with similar anthropomorphic representations of cells and germs.
- Ozzy & Drix, an animated series that serves as a continuation of the film.
- Inside Out, a Pixar computer-animated film that is also set inside the human body
- Cells at Work!, a Japanese manga/anime series with a similar premise
- Inner Workings, a Disney short that is set in the human body
- "Osmosis Jones". The Numbers. Retrieved 2010-12-24.
- "Osmosis Jones (2001) - Box Office Mojo".
- "Osmosis Jones". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
- "Osmosis Jones". IGN. Retrieved 2012-03-05.
- "Osmosis Jones review". Metacritic. Retrieved 2010-12-24.
- "CinemaScore". cinemascore.com.
- Koehler, Robert (2001-08-02). "Osmosis Jones". Variety. Retrieved 2010-12-24.
- "Movie Review - FILM REVIEW; Bill Murray as a Battlefield and Showing It - NYTimes.com". www.nytimes.com.
- Osmosis Jones review Ebert, Roger
- Alspector, Lisa. "Osmosis Jones". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 2010-12-24.
- McDonagh, Maitland. "Osmosis Jones". TV Guide. Retrieved 2010-12-24.
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