Crazy and Cool Trivia About the Movie Groundhog Day
Who cares if it’s going to be an early spring or not (Ok I kind of do)? Today is international Let’s Watch Groundhog Day Again… Day! In the spirit of mine and what should be everyone’s favourite movie, we put together some interesting facts about this Bill Murray classic. Read on and enjoy.
It’s been debated about how long Bill Murray actually spent reliving Groundhog Day. The director, Harold Ramis, said his originally idea was for Phil to live Feb. 2nd for about 10,000 years, but later changed that to only 10. According to the website Obsessed With Film, Phil must have been trapped 12, 403 days (just under 34 years) in order to have mastered piano, ice sculpting, and other skills.
Bill Murray had to have anti rabies injections after being bitten by the groundhog during shooting – twice.
The movie wasn’t actually shot in Punxsutawney, but in Woodstock, Ontario. Just kidding, it was actually shot in Woodstock, Illinois. There’s a plaque there that reads, “Bill Murray stepped here” on the curb where Phil steps into the puddle over and over. There’s also a plaque on the corner of the building called, “Ned’s Corner”, where he continually runs into Ned (The Head) Ryerson.
The children in the snowball fight scene were directed to hit Bill Murray as hard as they could. Bill Murray retaliated by throwing as hard as he could too. That’s our Bill.
There are exactly 38 days depicted in this film either partially or in full.
The idea comes from 'The Gay Science', a book by Friedrich Nietzsche. In his book, Nietzsche describes a man who is living the same day over and over again.
In the original script by Danny Rubin, Phil Connors was already trapped in the day, and the audience is introduced to him wondering how he knows exactly what’s going to happen that day.
It was discussed between Ramis and Rubin that they should explain why Phil Connors is trapped in the day, besides needing to learn that he’s a bad guy. One such explanation was that Phil had been cursed by an evil ex lover. I for one am glad they went for the more subtle, mysterious version.
The Groundhog Day official seen above is actually one of Bill Murray’s brothers.
Other actors that were considered as the main character instead of Bill include Michael Keaton and Tom Hanks, but Ramis felt they were “too nice”.
Danny Rubin’s first draft of the screenplay ended with Phil waking on Feb. 3rd discovering that Rita was trapped in a time loop of her own! WHAT?!
Ok that’s all for now. Have fun rewatching this timeless (get it?) classic, and happy Groundhog Day!