The Big Snit

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The Big Snit
Big snit.jpg
Directed by Richard Condie
Written by Richard Condie
Michael Scott
Starring Jay Brazeau
Ida Osler
Randy Woods
Bill Guest
Music by Patrick Godfrey
Distributed by National Film Board of Canada
Release dates
Running time
10 minutes
Country Canada

The Big Snit is a 1985 short-subject animated cartoon written and directed by Richard Condie and produced by the National Film Board of Canada.


A married couple gets into an argument while playing Scrabble. Their cat has just chewed through the power cable for their television, so they don't notice that a nuclear war has begun. The husband complains about his wife's habit of shaking her eyes, while she points out he has the bad habit of sawing the furniture from watching the TV show "Sawing for Teens" (the show is interrupted so that the warning can be given). They barely notice that there is panic in the streets. In the end, they reconcile after the husband plays a love song on a concertina. Afterwards, just as they start to open the door, they are vaporized by a nuclear bomb and instantly arrive in Heaven. Still unaware of what has happened, they comment on what a beautiful day it is and return to finish their Scrabble game.[1]


The film received 17 awards including the Grand Prize at the Montreal World Film Festival, the Special Jury Award for Humour at the Zagreb World Festival of Animated Films, the Golden Space Needle for Best Short at the Seattle International Film Festival, Best Animated Film at the Tampere Film Festival, the Silver Plaque for Animation at the Chicago International Film Festival, the Hiroshima Prize at the Hiroshima International Animation Festival, the FIPRESCI International Film Critics' Prize at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival and a Genie Award for Best Animated Short.[2][3] It was also nominated for an Academy Award for Animated Short Film at the 58th Academy Awards.[1] In 1994, it was voted #25 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons of all time by members of the animation field, and was the highest ranked cartoon in the list that was from the NFB. It was also included in the Animation Show of Shows.

Cultural references[edit]

The Big Snit inspired a Scrabble scene in the second episode of The Simpsons' first season, "Bart the Genius".[4]


  1. ^ a b Beard, William. North of everything: English-Canadian cinema since 1980. University of Alberta Press. p. 77. ISBN 0-88864-390-X. 
  2. ^ "The Big Snit". Canadian Film Encyclopedia. Toronto International Film Festival. Retrieved 2011-02-16. 
  3. ^ "The Big Snit". Collections page. National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 2011-02-16. 
  4. ^ Groening, Matt (2001). The Simpsons The Complete First Season DVD commentary for the episode "Bart the Genius" (DVD). 20th Century Fox. 

External links[edit]