An adolescent lion is accidentally shipped from the New York Zoo to Africa. Now running free, his zoo pals must put aside their differences to help bring him back.


Ed Decter (screenplay), John J. Strauss (screenplay) | 10 more credits »
2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Kiefer Sutherland ... Samson (voice)
Jim Belushi ... Benny (voice)
Eddie Izzard ... Nigel (voice)
Janeane Garofalo ... Bridget (voice)
William Shatner ... Kazar (voice)
Richard Kind ... Larry (voice)
Greg Cipes ... Ryan (voice)
Colin Hay ... Fergus Flamingo (voice)
Miles Marsico Miles Marsico ... Duke (voice)
Jack De Sena ... Eze (voice)
Don Cherry ... Penguin MC (voice)
Christian Argueta Christian Argueta ... Hamir (voice)
David Cowgill ... Hamir (voice)
Lenny Venito ... Stan (voice)
Joseph Siravo ... Carmine (voice)


Ryan is a lion who wants to go to the wild, where his dad (Samson) once lived. When he gets himself shipped to Africa, his zoo friends (and Samson) work together to bring him back. When they get to Africa, however, the animals find themselves in a pile of danger. They have to fight an evil wildebeest called Kazar. But Kazar's safe compared to the other danger on the island- a volcano that's on the edge of eruption. Can the animals find Ryan and get out of Africa before the volcano erupts in so little time? Written by movieguy3

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

africa | zoo | volcano | lion | animal | See All (93) »


Hitting the streets 2006 See more »


G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Walt Disney Animation Studios' first computer-animated film to be rated G by the ACB (Australian Classification Board). See more »


It is stated the wildebeest are carnivores when in reality, they're actually herbivores, as noted by Benny since "hooved animals don't hunt, they graze". This is because of their leader Kazar doesn't intend to be stuck at the bottom of the Food Chain. See more »


[first lines]
Samson: So there I was, face to face with the biggest, meanest leopard on this side of the Serengeti. And...
Ryan: You roared so loud, his spots flew clean off. Dad I've heard this like a billion times.
Samson: Do you know the one where I made the laughing hyenas...
Ryan: Cry? Yep.
Samson: The croc attack?
Ryan: Dad.
Samson: OK. Think.
Ryan: Yeah, you do that.
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Crazy Credits

All main (and lots of the minor) characters interact with the end credits See more »


References Strange Brew (1983) See more »


Bolly Boom Boom Boogie
Written, Performed and Produced by Tony Phillips
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User Reviews

A Nutshell Review: The Wild
13 May 2006 | by DICK STEELSee all my reviews

2006 is the year of the animal animation. Earlier in the year, we had the local stinker Zodiac Race, and over the next few months, there are offerings like Over the Hedge, Barnyard, Happy Feet (no doubt inspired by March of the Penguins) and Open Season. It's an animal world out there in the world of animation.

I'm not too sure why this was made. Sure, the graphics were photo-realistic and crisp, and it had the usual elements of modern day animated flicks. But I guess it's time for filmmakers in this genre to realize that the substance of the story is of paramount importance too. Then again, it's meant strictly for kids.

However, even a 3-year old kid who attended the same screening as me, sensed a deja-vu, and didn't take too long to realize that it's so "Madagascar" (2005's offering from Dreamworks). The premise, if you strip it all down, is also about a group of animals from New York Zoo who made their way (so the motivations might differ slightly) to Africa, where they meet nasty native animals, and engage in plenty of mindless song and dance.

The Wild also adapted a few more plot elements from its own library like The Lion King, and incorporated the father-son seeking acceptance relationship from last year's died-in-its- own-hype Chicken Little, and borrowed the "I am God, worship me" plot from Ice Age 2. What gives folks? I'm aware of some rumours that the filmmakers between the Wild and Madagascar split, and those who jumped shipped to Dreamworks managed to get their product out in the market first. Still, having two movies battling each other, doesn't work well for the one released later.

The first half of the movie was bogged down by its melodrama in the fore-mentioned dad- son plot, while the second half dealt out more madcap humour. It's build up to the finale with the bulls wanting to top the food chain, sounded familiar too. There are funny characters abound, but they all lacked somewhat, especially the snake and the giraffe. The joke on the Koala, while fun initially, was repetitive and you'll really want to kick and rip any Koala soft toy out there by the time you're true.

The voice talents did a commendable job with the flimsy story, with the likes of Kiefer Sutherland, James Belushi, Janeane Garofalo, and even William Shatner grunting like animals. But the lineup is quite forgettable, especially with rival Dreamworks' offering in the horizon (also about animals!) Over The Hedge (Hey, got William Shatner too!)

As mentioned, the graphics were great though, but the storyline just stinks. I like the way the Lions were done, could have been a showcase of what The Lion King could have looked like if it was conceived some 10 years later. But you probably want to walk out of the theatre as soon as the animals start dancing to the music in the finale.

Bad rip-off!

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Official Sites:

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Canada | USA



Release Date:

14 April 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Big Break See more »


Box Office


$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,684,809, 16 April 2006

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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