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The Grinch (2018) Poster

(2018)

Trivia

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The studio originally wanted Benedict Cumberbatch to voice the Grinch using his natural voice, but Benedict felt that, since the rest of the cast is American, the Grinch himself should have an American accent.
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In Despicable Me 3 (2017), the oldest of Gru's girls, Margo, is seen wearing a T-shirt with this version of the Grinch on the front. Being as both are from Ilumination Entertainment, this was clearly a nod to the upcoming film. In the first Despicable Me (2010) film, Margo had a Lorax shirt, teasing Illumination Entertainment's The Lorax (2012), a fellow Dr. Seuss film.
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Max is still the Grinch's morality pet, but instead of being a frightened, timid dog who reluctantly does the Grinch's bidding, Max is very much loving and loyal to the Grinch. While he is by no means a nicer guy, this version of the Grinch is shown to be marginally kinder to Max than the cartoon or How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), generally by treating him more like a typical dog owner would and at one point playing with Max with a small, affectionate smile on his face. Overall, the Grinch is much less antisocial than his previous incarnations and it's implied his motive for stealing Christmas is partially more of a Freudian Excuse than out of sheer malice.
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When Cindy Lou and her friend go up into the treehouse the baseball bat they ride on as a platform has the name "Theodor" carved on it. This is a reference to author-creator Dr.Seuss aka Theodor Seuss Geisel.
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When asked if the film was always the direction of the storybook, Benedict Cumberbatch stated: "You don't necessarily get the whole script. There's pitches all along the way and you know where it's going. But I did say quite early on I really want to know why he is the way he is. Maybe there is a reason behind that, that he's been hurt before. Why is he outside? Why is he green? Why does he live on his own in a mountain? What is all that about? The sort of motivational questions that a navel-gazing actor always asks. But you do need to make sense of characters. They can't just exist in a vacuum, even if they're animated characters in a family film.".
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There's a scene where Donna Who is late for her bus and chases after it yelling the bus driver's name "Sam!", who then stops and let's her on. This is a reference to the film Speed (1994), where Sandra Bullock's character Annie does the same thing.
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The film was originally scheduled for a 2017 November release but was moved to November 2018 presumably to avoid competition with Sony Animation's The Star (2017), another animated Christmas-related film. Had the film been released in its original scheduled release date, it would've been released approximately 60 years after the Dr. Suess book, in which this film is based on, was first published in 1957.
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The song that Grinch plays on his pipe organ is, "All by Myself" by Eric Carmen.
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Second voice acting of Benedict Cumberbatch, without the use of motion capture performance.
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When asked What is a holiday tradition or Christmas thing that makes him feel most like a Grinch, Benedict Cumberbatch stated: "Excess packaging, It's enough already. We're living [through] environmental disaster after environmental disaster. I don't get why it's not something that's actually fine-able now, to wrap toys and goods in plastic that's not needed. Toys are made of plastic as well. It's plastic on plastic. That is the thing that gets me Grinchy. Everything else is just part of the season. Last minute Christmas shopping? Often you've only got yourself to blame. But I just can't stand all the excess that goes with consumer goods and packaging".
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The Grinch is said to have had to deal with Whoville and Christmas for 53 years. This film is set to be released approximately 53 years after the original animated adaptation from 1966. In addition, the film began its run in some theaters on November 8, 2018, eighteen years after the release of How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000).
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This is Illumination Entertainment's second Dr. Seuss film, after The Lorax (2012).
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Brad Dourif was replaced by Pharrell Williams as The Narrator.
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This film marks the second time a British actor has voiced the character of the Grinch. The first was with Boris Karloff in the 1966 TV special of How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966).
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Angela Lansbury's third theatrically released animated film. Her previous two were Beauty and the Beast (1991) from Disney and Anastasia (1997) from 20th Century Fox, both released in the 1990s.
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The Grinch is less exaggerated-looking than previous versions, with softer facial features that look more like a furry green dog-man than a creepy old goblin, and normal eyes instead of his signature red and yellow pupils. He's also got much less of an exaggerated potbelly. Furthermore, the previous versions establish/imply that the Grinch lives in self-imposed exile away from the Whos. This film shows that the Grinch regularly visits Whoville to buy groceries. Presumably, as a result of him coming down to their town often, the Whos don't despise or fear him as much as the Whos do in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) or Halloween Is Grinch Night (1977), where the Grinch's impending arrival is a big deal.
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This was Benedict Cumberbatch's second animated film. The first being Penguins of Madagascar (2014), four years prior.
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On November 20, 2017, Danny Elfman was revealed to be composing the film's score. Tyler the Creator wrote a new song for the film titled, "I Am the Grinch". Tyler and Elfman collaborated on a new version of the song, "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch", for the film, which was featured in the final trailer.
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This is the second Grinch remake to be released by Universal, following How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000).
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Like almost all of Illumination's other films, the animation was created entirely in France by Illumination Mac Guff.
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The movie's animation was made using Autodesk Maya.
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The first official footage of the film was released by Illumination Entertainment as a TV spot on February 9, 2018, to capitalize on the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
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When asked how prepping and going into record compared to motion capture, Benedict Cumberbatch stated: "it's far less mobile. It's a fixed point, you have to create a lot of energy, but it's around a really fixed access of microphone, whether you're being hauled around in a sleigh round a mountain or flung through a catapult or talking very quietly to your dog - all those levels have to come around a microphone. Your voice has to be supported by the action that makes it sound that way, but you have to stay on the mic whereas with motion capture you can really swing yourself about because you have a headset usually; you can throw your body around the landscape, except you're in isolation at the mic without Angela Lansbury or Kenan Thompson or any of the thousand people I did talk to".
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Released a month before Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle (2018) also starring Benedict Cumberbatch voicing the main antagonist, Shere Khan.
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In Cindy-Lou Who's first scene she is chasing after a mailman to give him a letter to Santa. In How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), Cindy-Lou's first scene was going to the Post Office to join her father at work.
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This was the third Dr. Seuss animated film, after Horton Hears a Who! (2008) and The Lorax (2012).
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The Grinch in the 1966 cartoon and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) wears a Santa Claus costume but makes no further attempt to really look like Santa. In this film the Grinch plays a more convincing looking Santa including a beard and boots.
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The Grinch is attacked by a ginger cat while he is stealing presents, just like how his live-action counterpart was attacked in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) by a Persian cat.
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There is a new reason for why the Grinch has to go down to Whoville during Christmas season. He initially had stockpiles of food to last him till the start of January but due to his excessive "emotional" eating, he was reduced to a mere bean on a plate just five days shy of Christmas itself.
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Benedict Cumberbatch had been cast as the titular character in April 2016. By September 2018, Angela Lansbury had been cast as the Mayor of Whoville. Rashida Jones, Cameron Seely, and Kenan Thompson had also been cast in the film, while Pharrell Williams, who previously worked on Illumination's Despicable Me films, was revealed to be narrating the film.
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This was Illumination Entertainment's ninth feature film.
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Similar to his previous incarnations, this Grinch has a massive intellect when it comes to concocting schemes and creating technological marvels (apparently inspired by Rube Goldberg), all for the purpose of stealing gifts.
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This is Illumination Entertainment's third musical film, after The Lorax (2012) and Sing (2016).
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Benedict Cumberbatch stated his own tips or traditions for getting in the spirit: "It's just about family and friends and going off-grid for me. It's about decorating of course - the tree, the house. I like getting out there and being with friends and family. I'll be like, "Wow, I feel like I've been out three nights in a row - oh yeah, it's Christmas!" I really love that sense of it being a holiday. I just enjoy the effort that people go to everywhere with decorations. I like being in a metropolis for Christmas, and I really like getting away from it all around the actual days and being in nature."
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Cindy-Lou Who has a stuffed animal that resembles Snowball from Illumination's The Secret Life of Pets (2016).
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In Tyler the Creator's rendition of "You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch", there are two lines in which the Grinch's teeth are described as yellow. However, in the film, the Grinch's teeth are clearly white. Whereas in the live-action How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), his teeth are yellow and extremely crooked. In the original book and the animated How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966), his teeth also appeared to be white, though also crooked. In this film, his teeth, aside from being white, are mostly straight.
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Benedict Cumberbatch was already a fan of the book, and the 1966 Chuck Jones animated version.
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This version of the Grinch insists on getting into character as Santa and actually dons a white beard, compared to the previous versions who didn't even bother. Yet he still does little else to hide his distinguishing green fur.
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In 2018, producer Scott Mosier took over from Peter Candeland as director.
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At one point The Grinch is stealing Christmas and a cat attacks him. This was not in the book, but also happened in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000).
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This is Illumination Entertainment's first holiday based film since Hop (2011).
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Pharrell Williams, who is the narrator of this film, and Tyler the Creator, who provided songs for the film's soundtrack, would go on to collaborate on the song, "The Mantra", which is on the Creed II (2018) soundtrack.
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Since the Grinch has a very distinctive shape and look, the animators took inspiration from the book, Benedict Cumberbatch stated: "for certain performative strokes definitely, they film your performance while you're doing it, so it's not in isolation from that, they've managed to embody this voice in a character that's utterly unique, and I don't think looks too much like me, they record every session so they can see the performances as well as hear [it] but it's not like facial capture, I never did anything of that nature."
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Benedict Cumberbatch compared the Grinch to his motion-capture performance of Smaug in the Hobbit movies: "for this character, a little bit like Smaug, he lives in a mountain and he's quite angry and isolated and alone, so apart from talking to Max who doesn't verbalize, it helped for the character in this instance. It does get very weird if you're doing quick-fire dialogue and you're not in the room with the people you're acting with."
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This is Illumination's last original full-length animated feature film of the 2010s, and last original full-length feature for the next two years as the next films releasing in that time (The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019), Minions 2 (2020), and Sing 2 (2020)) are all sequels.
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This is the second Illumination Entertainment film to have a holiday season release, after Sing (2016).
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In the Latin American Spanish dub, the Grinch is voiced by Eugenio Derbez; in the Japanese dub, the titular Grinch is voiced by the movie actor Yo Oizumi, better known to videogame fans as the Japanese voice of the titular Professor Layton and also playing Kureo Mado in the Tokyo Ghoul live-action film; in the Brazilian dub, the Grinch is voiced by Lázaro Ramos.
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Illumination Entertainment's second film to feature no humans after Sing (2016), and the second animated Dr. Seuss film to feature the furry humanoids seen commonly in Dr. Seuss books, after Horton Hears a Who! (2008).
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Feature film non-documentary directorial debut of Scott Mosier, whose previous directing credits are the documentary 'Mae Day' and a short subject.
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The Grinch is originally rated G.
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This is Illumination first PG-rated animated film for thematic elements.
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The second Illumination film to be produced in 2.39:1, after Despicable Me 3 (2017).
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The second theatrical Dr. Seuss animated film to be rated PG by the MPAA, after The Lorax (2012), and the fourth theatrical Dr. Seuss film to be rated PG by the MPAA.
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The second Illumination film with a dog named Max, first was The Secret Life of Pets (2016).
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Rashida Jones' second animated film, after Inside Out (2015), three years prior. Both of these movies had a Hotel Transylvania film in their respective years (2015 and 2018).
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In the Latin American Spanish dub: Ruben Cerda, who voiced the titular character's singing voice in the live-action film, will reprise the character in the dub, through the acting voice will be voiced by Eugenio Derbez instead, rather than Mario Castañeda.
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The eighth Universal animated film to be rated PG by the MPAA, of which all previous animated Universal films released after The Tale of Despereaux (2008) (Universal's only CGI film Rated G by the MPAA) were rated as such.
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This is the first Illumination film to not feature a main antagonist.
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Singer Kaitlyn Maher was originally considered for the role of Cindy Lou Who.
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Fourth 2018 animated film to have a non-verbal lead character (that being the Grinch's dog, Max) after Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero (2018) (which has the titular Sgt. Stubby the Dog), Incredibles 2 (2018) (which has Baby Jack-Jack), and Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (2018) (which has Blobby the Blob Monster).
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Cindy Lou Who's night gown that she wore when the Grinch steals a Christmas tree resembles the dresses worn by the female smurfs in "Smurfs: The Lost Village" (2017).
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The movie was from the creators of Despicable Me (2010), The Secret Life of Pets (2016), and Sing (2016).
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This film marks the second time that The Grinch is shown as a child. The first film to show him as a child is How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000).
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The third Universal's animated film to be produced in 2.39:1, after The Tale of Despereaux (2008) and Despicable Me 3 (2017).
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In Spanish dub (Spain), the Grinch is voiced by Ernesto Alterio.
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The last Illumination film of the 2010s to be released in 2.39:1 aspect ratio.
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The Grinch's backstory differs from the live-action counterpart, How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), in which the Grinch was publicly humiliated in elementary school as a child due to having to shave at his age.
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In the book, Cindy Lou Who is "no more than two" years old. In this cartoon, Cindy seems to be a bit older.
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One of the Whos is named Mr. Cubbins. This appears to be a reference to Bartholomew Cubbins, hero of two non-rhyming adventures by Dr. Seuss.
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Released two weeks before Black Friday.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Near the end of the film, the Grinch wears a red and white tie when he's invited over to Cindy-Lou's house for Christmas dinner, a reference to The Cat in the Hat (another Dr. Seuss character) who has the same color pattern hat.
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The Grinch's epiphany to steal Christmas happens on December 21 rather than Christmas Eve. This gives the Grinch more time to develop his gadgets and formulate his plan to rob all of Whoville in one fell swoop. This extra time also allows him to find reindeer to pull his sled, eventually snagging a reindeer named Fred.
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In all other versions, the Grinch could not find a reindeer to help him with his heist, so he used Max instead. But in this adaptation he does successfully find a reindeer and lets it stay at his house with Max.
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A frozen lake in the film is shown to be in the shape of a heart, foreshadowing the ending when the Grinch's heart grows twice in size.
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See also

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

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