Over the Hedge (film)
|Over the Hedge|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Tim Johnson|
|Produced by||Bonnie Arnold|
|Based on||Over the Hedge|
by Michael Fry and
|Music by||Rupert Gregson-Williams|
|Edited by||John K. Carr|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures1|
|Box office||$340 million|
Over the Hedge is a 2006 American computer-animated comedy film based on the United Media comic strip of the same name. Produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by Paramount Pictures, which acquired the live-action DreamWorks studio the same year, the film was directed by Tim Johnson and Karey Kirkpatrick (the latter in his directorial debut), from a screenplay by Len Blum, Lorne Cameron, David Hoselton and Kirkpatrick. Featuring the voices of Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, William Shatner, Wanda Sykes and Nick Nolte, the film was released on May 19, 2006 in the United States and grossed $336 million on an $80 million budget.
After RJ (Bruce Willis), a hungry raccoon, fails to get snacks from a vending machine, he becomes so desperate that he tries to raid a large food cache belonging to Vincent (Nick Nolte), a hibernating bear. However, while trying to finish by stealing a can of "Spuddies" potato chips, he wakes Vincent and loses both the food and the wagon that it is on when a truck runs it over. Hastily, he promises to replace everything by the time Vincent reawakens in a week.
Meanwhile, a group of forest animals, led by Verne (Garry Shandling) the turtle, emerge from hibernation to find their food cache nearly empty. The animals consist of, Hammy the hyperactive squirrel (Steve Carell), Stella the skunk (Wanda Sykes), oppossums Ozzie (William Shatner) and his daughter, Heather (Avril Lavigne), and porcupines Lou (Eugene Levy), his wife, Penny (Catherine O'Hara), and three children, Spike (Shane Baumel), Bucky (Sami Kirkpatrick) and Quillo (Madison Davenport). They begin foraging but find a large hedge blocking their way. Verne investigates, discovering a human residential community that confuses and frightens him. RJ, who sees the entire commotion, convinces the other animals that it is easier to raid the humans' garbage for food rather than forage for it, and they manage to get enough food to keep them from starving. Verne, however, remains wary, especially after homeowners association president, Gladys Sharp, (Allison Janney) discovers the animals in her yard, chases them out through the hedge, and hires VermTech exterminator (or "Verminator") Dwayne LaFontant (Thomas Haden Church) to keep them out.
Worried for his family's safety, Verne decides to return the food to the humans. RJ tries to stop him, resulting in an argument between the two. This attracts the attention of a playful Rottweiler named Nugent (Brian Stepanek), who chases them across several lawns before all of the food the animals gathered is destroyed along with Gladys's car. Verne gets into a fight with RJ and insults the others, causing them to turn against him.
After RJ and Verne reconcile, they discover that Gladys has just restocked her pantry with a large food supply for an upcoming party and concoct a plan to get past the exterminator-planted boobytraps in her yard. Working together under cover of darkness, the animals get the food. RJ and Verne get into another argument, again over a can of "Spuddies", during which Verne and the others learn of RJ's true motives. Gladys wakes up, discovers the animals in her house, and calls VermTech, but not before Stella sprays the house. Dwayne arrives and captures the animals except for RJ, who escapes with the food.
RJ takes the food to a now-awake Vincent, but when the latter points out and praises RJ's treachery, the raccoon decides to sacrifice the food to save his friends. This angers Vincent, who chases RJ as he pursues Dwayne's truck. RJ pleads to be let in the truck as Vincent tries to catch him, but the others, angry at him for abandoning them, refuse before Verne finally convinces them otherwise. Vincent gets taken by giant balloons, the animals then subdue Dwayne, hijack his truck, and turn it toward home, but the truck goes out of control and demolishes Gladys' house.
The animals hide in the hedge, trapped by Vincent (who comes down with a balloon) on one side and Dwayne and Gladys on the other. RJ and Verne get an idea to give Hammy his first caffeinated drink, which puts him into overdrive. Exceeding the speed of light, Hammy activates an illegal trap that Dwayne had installed (at Gladys' insistence, while warning her that it was illegal in every state except for Texas), capturing Vincent, Dwayne, and Gladys and destroying a satellite in the process. Gladys and Vincent are taken into custody by the police and animal control, respectively, while Dwayne tries to escape after taking advantage of Gladys' attempt at fighting a police officer and resisting arrest, only to encounter Nugent.
Back in the forest, Verne tells RJ that if he had explained what he was trying to do in the first place, the others would have helped because "that's what families do," and welcomes him back to the family. The animals also find that while Hammy was in his caffeine-charged state, he had refilled their food cache with nuts to satisfy them for the year.
- Bruce Willis as RJ, a raccoon who is duplicitous, selfish, a con artist, and extremely intelligent. Despite his hard outer shell, he is revealed to have a sensitive personality, developing feelings of guilt over using his new-found companions to his own ends. Jim Carrey was originally set to voice the character, but in October 2004, he left the project and was replaced with Willis.
- Garry Shandling as Verne, a naturally cynical ornate box turtle, the leader of the foragers. He has his own ways of doing the daily tasks, but his world is turned upside-down when RJ introduces his free-spirited lifestyle into the mix. Though Verne genuinely cares for his family, he can be patronizing. His shell falls off regularly and is laughed at. He is commonly mistaken for an amphibian despite the fact that he is a reptile.
- Steve Carell as Hammy, a hyperactive American red squirrel, whose mouth moves as fast as his feet. He is naïve and childish in nature, with an extremely short attention span.
- Wanda Sykes as Stella, a short-tempered, sassy striped skunk with an unhappy love-life. She later becomes Tiger's love interest.
- Eugene Levy as Lou, a North American porcupine father, Penny's husband, and family patriarch with an overly friendly and optimistic attitude.
- Catherine O'Hara as Penny, the porcupine family mother, Lou's wife, and matriarch; she serves as a ground between their family and the other animals.
- Shane Baumel, Sami Kirkpatrick, and Madison Davenport as Spike, Bucky and Quillo, Lou and Penny's three identical children. They enjoy playing video games, and are the most enthusiastic about exploring the world beyond the hedge.
- William Shatner and Avril Lavigne as Ozzie and Heather, a Virginia opossum father and daughter who see the world from different points of view; Ozzie often embarrasses Heather when he constantly feigns death to get away from danger.
- Omid Djalili as Tiger, a Persian cat; his full Persian name is "Prince Tigerius Mahmoud Shabazz." He falls in love with Stella when she is disguised as a cat.
- Nick Nolte as Vincent, an American black bear; RJ's former friend to whom RJ owes food, motivating the story. He makes a cameo in Bee Movie.
- Allison Janney as Gladys Sharp, president of the Camelot Estates Home Owners Association. She is disgusted by animals and is strict on H.O.A. rules.
- Thomas Haden Church as Dwayne LaFontant, an over-zealous human pest exterminator styled as a "Verminator" hired by Gladys. He can detect the species of any animal that has recently been in the area by smell. He spoofs the Terminator.
- Brian Stepanek as Nugent, a playful Rottweiler whose only intelligible word is "Play!", other than barking.
The film was originally set up at 20th Century Fox through its Fox Family Films division; however, in February 2001, it was later picked up by DreamWorks Animation under the leadership of its CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg when Fox put the film in turnaround.
The film was originally going to be released in October 2005; however, in December 2004, the date was changed to May 2006. The film was screened as a "work-in-progress" on April 29, 2006, at the Indianapolis International Film Festival, and it premiered on April 30, 2006, in Los Angeles. Nick Nolte, Bruce Willis, Avril Lavigne, Garry Shandling, Wanda Sykes, Catherine O'Hara and Steve Carell attended the premiere. The film was theatrically released in the United States on May 19, 2006. In select New York and Los Angeles theatres, it was accompanied by a DreamWorks Animation's animated short film First Flight. The film was also screened out of competition on May 21, 2006, at the Cannes Film Festival.
Over the Hedge was released on DVD by DreamWorks Animation's newly formed home entertainment division and Paramount Home Entertainment on October 17, 2006. A short film based on Over the Hedge, titled Hammy's Boomerang Adventure, was released with the DVD. The film was released on Blu-ray on February 5, 2019 by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment as a Walmart exclusive, and was subsequently given a wider release on June 4.
On opening weekend, the film was in second place to The Da Vinci Code, but its gross of $38,457,003 did not quite live up to DreamWorks Animation's other titles released over the past few years. The film had a per-theater average of $9,474 from 4,059 theaters. In its second weekend, the film dropped 30% to $27,063,774 for a $6,612 average from an expanded 4,093 theaters and finishing third, behind X-Men: The Last Stand and The Da Vinci Code. Since it was Memorial Day Weekend, the film grossed a total of $35,322,115 over the four-day weekend, resulting in only an 8% slide. In its third weekend, the film held well with a 24% drop to $20,647,284 and once again placing in third behind The Break-Up and X-Men: The Last Stand, for a $5,170 average from 3,993 theaters. The film closed on September 4, 2006 after 112 days of release, grossing $155,019,340 in the United States and Canada, along with $180,983,656 internationally for a worldwide total of $336,002,996, against a production budget of $80 million budget.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 75% based on 172 reviews, with an average of 6.81/10. The site's consensus states: "Even if it's not an animation classic, Over the Hedge is clever and fun, and the jokes cater to family members of all ages." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 67 out of 100 based on 31 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A" on an A+ to F scale.
Critic Frank Lovece of Film Journal International found that, "DreamWorks' slapstick animated adaptation of the philosophically satiric comic strip ... is a lot of laughs and boasts a much tighter story than most animated features." Ken Fox of TVGuide.com called it "a sly satire of American 'enough is never enough' consumerism and blind progress at the expense of the environment. It's also very funny, and the little woodland critters that make up the cast are a kiddie-pleasing bunch". Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times called it "Not at the level of "Finding Nemo" or "Shrek," but is a lot of fun, awfully nice to look at, and filled with energy and smiles."
|Annie Awards||Best Animated Feature||Nominated|
|Character Animation in a Feature Production||Kristof Serrand||Nominated|
|Character Design in a Feature Production||Nico Marlet||Won|
|Directing in a Feature Production||Tim Johnson & Karey Kirkpatrick||Won|
|Production Design in a Feature Production||Paul Shardlow||Nominated|
|Storyboarding in a Feature Production||Thom Enriquez||Nominated|
|Voice Acting in a Feature Production||Wanda Sykes||Nominated|
|Critics' Choice Awards||Best Animated Feature||Nominated|
|Kids' Choice Awards||Animated Movie||Nominated|
|Voice From an Animated Movie||Bruce Willis||Nominated|
|Online Film Critics Society Awards||Best Animated FIlm||Nominated|
|People's Choice Awards||Favorite Family Movie||Nominated|
|Saturn Awards||Best Animated Film||Nominated|
|Toronto Film Critics Association Awards||Best Animated Film||Nominated|
|Over the Hedge: Music from the Motion Picture|
|Soundtrack album by |
|Released||May 16, 2006|
The soundtrack for the film was released on May 16, 2006 by Epic Records. Rupert Gregson-Williams composed the original score, while Ben Folds contributed three original songs, along with a rewrite of his song "Rockin' the Suburbs" and a cover of The Clash's "Lost in the Supermarket."
|1.||"Family of Me"||Ben Folds||1:28|
|2.||"RJ Enters the Cave"||Rupert Gregson-Williams||4:37|
|3.||"The Family Awakes"||Rupert Gregson-Williams||2:33|
|5.||"Lost in the Supermarket"||Ben Folds (Originally by The Clash)||3:30|
|6.||"Let's Call It Steve"||Rupert Gregson-Williams||3:40|
|7.||"Hammy Time"||Michael Whitlock||2:28|
|10.||"Rockin' the Suburbs"||Ben Folds (Featuring a speaking part by William Shatner)||4:57|
|11.||"The Inside Heist"||Rupert Gregson-Williams||7:38|
|12.||"RJ Rescues His Family"||Rupert Gregson-Williams||4:18|
|13.||"Still (Reprise)"||Ben Folds||6:07|
A video game based on the film was released on May 9, 2006. Developed by Edge of Reality, Beenox and Vicarious Visions it was published by Activision for PlayStation 2, Microsoft Windows, Xbox, GameCube, Nintendo DS and Game Boy Advance. Three different versions of Over the Hedge: Hammy Goes Nuts! were released by Activision in the fall of 2006: a miniature golf game for Game Boy Advance, an action adventure game for Nintendo DS, and a platform game for PlayStation Portable.
In May 2007, DreamWorks Animation CEO, Jeffrey Katzenberg, said that despite the company exceeding Wall Street's expectations during the second consecutive quarter of 2007, the film would not get a sequel due to the box office performance of the film, saying "It was close. An almost."
In October 2010, an article was posted on the official Over the Hedge blog, explaining what would happen if a sequel was made, saying that if the sequel did not perform as well as the first one, then DreamWorks could lose money, and that a sequel probably would not happen until DreamWorks Animation was bought by a large studio, which eventually happened in 2016 when NBCUniversal bought DreamWorks Animation.
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- Ziebarth, Christian (September 14, 2007). "Bee Movie Fun Facts". Animated Views. Retrieved September 11, 2014.
Vincent the bear from Over the Hedge appears in both a trailer for Bee Movie and in the courtroom scene in the film.
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