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Over the Hedge (2006) Poster

Trivia

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The Art Department went to a bowling alley to sketch the design of the 'perfect' vending machine. They went to various supermarkets to sketch chip bags and bottles. They eventually got kicked out of a Safeway because the manager felt uncomfortable with them being there for such an extended amount of time.
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Took a crew of 237 more than three years to finish the film.
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(at around twelve minutes) Hammy suggests calling the hedge "Steve", saying that "Steve is a nice name". This is a likely nod to Hammy's voice actor Steve Carell.
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(At around 39 minutes) When Hammy gives R.J. the energy drink, saying, "I'm not supposed to have this", he sits down and starts to sip on a juice box. If you look closely, you can see enough letters to make out the name on the juice box as "Nearly Juice", possibly a joke on the FDA's "restriction" that you can only call something a "fruit juice" drink if it has at least ten percent real juice.
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According to the film makers on the DVD commentary, the movie originally opened with R.J. sneaking into Vincent the bear's cave to steal his food. But, then they quickly realized that they were beginning with something more suspenseful and that R.J. would need a reason to go after the food in Vincent's cave, so they invented the "vending machine" sequence at almost the last minute.
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The makers originally wanted Bill Murray and Harold Ramis to voice RJ and Verne, respectively.
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Ben Folds said on his blog about the title credits song "Family of Me": "The original lyric was 'Ooh, I'm an asshole', but obviously that didn't last for long. The directors and producers got a good laugh, and then they stopped laughing when I tried to explain why it's okay to say 'asshole' in front of kids. I think it's the 'hole' part. Ass might be all right. I don't know."
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The "forest side" of the hedge is based on the hedge in front of DreamWorks. The exterior of the hedge is based on the vines growing in their parking garage. The hedge is approximately seven feet tall.
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David Morehead, an animator of Over the Hedge (2006), created reference footage by putting a camera on the back of his friend's dog and letting it run around his house. This gave the layout artists some great ideas about scale, animals' perspective, and how animals moved. In addition, the layout team compared a house to an apartment building and a kitchen to a cathedral.
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This is the only DreamWorks Animation film based on a comic strip, and the only fully CGI animated film based on a comic strip until Big Hero 6 (2014) and The Peanuts Movie (2015).
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To prepare for his role as Vincent the Bear, Nick Nolte researched information about bears in order to give the right vocal tone and performance to his character.
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Ben Folds re-wrote the lyrics to the closing song "Rockin' the Suburbs", replacing the teenage angst and nu metal parodies with a more child-friendly attack on Suburbia. This version also features a spoken part by William Shatner, who plays Ozzie in the film.
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(At around one hour one minute) Tiger yells out to "STELLA", mimicking a famous scene from the play "A Streetcar Named Desire" by Tennessee Williams.
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Based on "Over the Hedge", a syndicated comic strip written and drawn by Michael Fry and T. Lewis. It tells the story of a raccoon named R.J., and a turtle named Verne, who come to terms with their woodlands being taken over by suburbia, trying to survive the increasing flow of humanity and technology, while becoming enticed by it at the same time. Four collections have been published: Over The Hedge, Over The Hedge 2, Over The Hedge 3: Knights of the Picnic Table, and Over The Hedge: Stuffed Animals.
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Whenever R.J. is searching through his bag, he occasionally tosses out (among other things) an audio CD. Looking close in multiple shots, you can see it's a John Tesh CD, which apparently sold for ten cents.
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A Walmart cross-promotion ad was once aired in advance of the film's release, but was quickly pulled after authors Michael Fry and T. Lewis objected to it, citing Walmart's supposed "anti-environmental" activities.
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The stackable potato chips branded Spuddies in the film is a spoof of Pringles chips. In an early trailer, the chip brand was known as Jingles and featured the Pringles logo with a court jester's cap on.
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The child who plays one of the porcupine triplets, Bucky, is Sami Kirkpatrick, the son of Karey Kirkpatrick, one of the directors of the film.
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Gladys, played by Allison Janney, was originally a real estate agent, but was changed to the President of the Homeowners Association, to add to the story.
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Both Steve Carrel and Wanda Sykes later appeared in films from Blue Sky Studios Steve Carrel was in Horton Hears a Who (2008), as Mayor Ned McDodd and Wanda Sykes was in Rio (2011) as one of the geese and Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012) and Ice Age: Collision Course (2016) as Sid's grandmother Gladys.
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During the rolling end credits, original comics can be seen. For example, Penny and Lou are reading a comic to the porcupine triplets.
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Gene Wilder was offered a prominent role, but declined.
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(At around one hour eighteen minutes) Ozzie is voiced by William Shatner. Hammy later talks about Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), where Shatner played James Tiberius Kirk, who is similar to the namesake of the cat "Prince Tigeriess Mahmood Shabaz."
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The first DreamWorks Animation film to be distributed by Paramount Pictures, who purchased the Animation Part of DreamWorks in December 2005.
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(At around 38 minutes) Pay close attention to the porcupine kids, after Ozzie's melodramatic performance in the streets. As they declare "Props for the OzzMan!!", they're holding their hands in the "Horned Devil" gesture which is done by fans of heavy metal rocker Ozzy Osbourne.
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Jon Cryer were considered for the role of Verne.
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Adam Sandler were considered for the role of RJ.
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Patton Oswalt were considered for the role of Hammy.
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Wayne Knight were considered for the role of Tiger.
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Jeremy Irons were considered for the role of Ozzie.
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Donna Murphy were considered for the role of Stella.
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Reba McEntire were considered for the role of Penny.
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Josh Brolin were considered for the role of Lou.
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Owen Wilson were considered the role of RJ.
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Bridget Moynahan were considered for the role of Penny.
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Ricky Schroder were considered for the role of Tiger.
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Lainie Kazan were considered for the role of Stella.
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Joey Fatone were considered for the role of Tiger.
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Hunter Tylo were considered for the role of Stella.
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Henry Winkler was considered for the role of Ozzie.
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George Stephanopoulos were considered for the role of Verne.
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Elisa Donovan were considered for the role of Stella.
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Live-action reference of fountains, willow trees, hedges, bottles shattering, and umbrellas were used in designing the looks for the movie.
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Sean Yazbeck (BBQ Barry) and Lee Bienstock (Lunch Table Larry) appeared in the film as a reward for winning their assigned task on the NBC television series The Apprentice (2004).
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Tiger is a (supposedly) Persian cat, and his voice was performed by Omid Djalili, who is of Iranian (Persian) descendant .
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Only fully animated film to star Garry Shandling (Verne). He only had two other voice acting roles prior to his death in 2016, both of them being animals in live-action films.
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This is the first DreamWorks film not to be released on VHS.
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The logo of Dwayne LaFontaine, the Verminator's pest and vermin control company, featuring a man resembling himself hitting a rabbit with a hammer, is a spoof of a pest control company in California, Nevada, and Arizona, Western Extermination Company, whose logo features a man named Kernel Kleenup with a top hat and suit about to squash a rat with his hammer.
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As the Depelter Turbo is winding down, the sound it makes is the same as that of the Millenium Falcon (Star Wars) when it's Hyperdrive fails. This occurs at approximately 1:09:50.
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Avril Lavigne's acting debut. She was in her early twenties when she voiced Heather in this film.
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Originally announced for a November 2005 release, but was pushed back to May 2006 to avoid clashing with Aardman Studio's Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005), which released on October 2005, and is also distributed by DreamWorks. Both of these films have the full moon as a major part of the plot.
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Last DreamWorks Animation film, with the 2004-2009 logo, where the balloons that the fisher boy uses to get up onto the moon forms the words "DreamWorks"as well as the only one distributed to Paramount to do so. Starting with Aardman Studios' Flushed Away (2006) released later the same year, the logo would fade in under the moon, focusing more on the fisher boy, than the balloons he uses.
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(At around thirteen minutes) At the start of the film, when Verne trips into the hedge, Ozzie says "Steve, it. Ate. Verne". This is based on one of the common improvises by his voice actor, William Shatner, where he'd pause while speaking.
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Like with the other DreamWorks Animation film of 2006 Flushed Away (2006), the DreamWorks Animation Logo at the start of the film is missing the portion that states Animation.
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Jim Carrey was originally cast as R.J., but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts, and was replaced by Bruce Willis. Jim Carrey though, would later star alongside Steve Carell (the voice of Hammy) in 20th Century Fox's animated film Horton Hears a Who! (2008) as the main characters.
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The tenth computer-animated film to be rated PG by the MPAA after Antz (1998), Dinosaur (2000), Shrek (2001), Ice Age (2002), Shark Tale (2004), The Incredibles (2004), Robots (2005), Madagascar (2005), and Hoodwinked (2005).
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Wanda Sykes' first time voice acting in a theatrical film. Later she'd go onto voice Bessy the Cow in Barnyard (2006), Chloe the Canadian Goose from Rio (2011), Gladys the Ground Sloth in the last two Ice Age films, and Wage in Uglydolls (2019).
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An atmospheric optical phenomenon that appears as a purple and green light ribbon in the sky, formally discovered in late 2016 by the Alberta Aurora Chasers, Canada, owes its name to Over the Hedge. It was dubbed "Steve" by Chris Ratzlaff, the group's administrator, who said he was inspired by Over the Hedge. In order to make the name, permanent, NASA has given the phenomenon the "bacronym" (retroactive acronym) Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement. Sources: New York Times, "Steve, a Famous Northern Light, Stays Mysterious (and Keeps His Name)", By Jacey Fortin, March 15, 2018. The Guardian, "'Steve': the mystery purple aurora that rivals the northern lights," by Emine Saner, 19 Mar 2018.
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Hammy the squirrel says that Steve is a pretty name. The voice actor for Hammy is Steve Carrel
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One of the three fully CGI films of 2006 to have a squirrel as one of the main characters. The other two films being The Wild (2006), and Open Season (2006).
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This is the second voice-over role for Bruce Willis. The first voice-over role he ever did was the voice of Spike, the Rugrats' dog in the Rugrats/Wild Thornberrys crossover movie "Rugrats Go Wild!"
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WILHELM SCREAM: When the dragonfly flies into the bug zapper.
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In one scene RJ is holding a stuffed Troll doll based off the Hasbro toy line, of which DreamWorks Animation would do a film on 10 years after Over the Hedge (2006).
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(At around 58 minutes) Both the THX logo and Deep Note appear in the film on television, when the animals are in the house.
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This is the second animated film of 2006 to star William Shatner (Ozzie the Opossum) and Eugene Levy (Lou the Porcupine), and the first animated film of the same year to star Wanda Sykes (Stella the Skunk) and Catherine O'Hara (Penny the Porcupine). Shatner's first one, being The Wild (2006), that released a month prior, and Levy's first one being Curious George (2006), that also released a month prior. Sykes later would be in Brother Bear 2 (2006), and Barnyard (2006), (the former of which is not theatrical, and is traditionally animated), which both released three months after Over the Hedge (2006), and O'Hara would later be in Monster House (2006), Brother Bear 2 (2006) (with Sykes), and Barbie in the 12 Dancing Princesses (2006) (only the former of which was theatrical), which all released between July and November later that year.
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This is the first of two fully CGI films released in 2006, that takes place in the American wilderness. The other one being Open Season (2006), which also has a bear, a squirrel, a skunk, and a porcupine.
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T. Lewis is one of the creators of the comic strip. Dwayne is voiced by Thomas Haden Church. Both Lewis and Church attended the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. Additionally, Dr. Dennis is a parody of Dr. Phil, who also attended UNT and at the same time as Lewis.
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Is the 2nd Fully CGI Film to be Distributed by Paramount Pictures. The first one having been Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius (2001) released 5 years prior.
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The DVD Menu includes a promo for Shrek the Third (2007).
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

The video game tie-in of the same name serves as a direct sequel to the film rather than an adaption of the film, taking place one year later. The game's story focuses on Dwayne the Verminator's plot for revenge as he mind controls woodland creatures to attack the main characters. In order to fight back, RJ and Verne make peace with Vincent, who then becomes part of the family and helps defeat Dwayne.
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Never throughout the entire film is Verne referred to by his species, a tortoise, he is always being referred to as a reptile (or mistakenly an amphibian).
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The humans Gladys Sharp and Dwayne Fontaine are only mentioned by name once in the entire film, Gladys in her first scene talking on the phone, and Dwayne while introducing himself when he arrives for the first time in the film.
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Some critics say that this film is a satire of the Bush Government.
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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