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Ice Age
File:Ice Age (2002 film) poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byChris Wedge
Carlos Saldanha (co-director)
Screenplay byMichael J. Wilson
Michael Berg
Peter Ackerman
Story byMichael J. Wilson
Produced byLori Forte
StarringRay Romano
John Leguizamo
Denis Leary
Edited byJohn Carnochan
Music byDavid Newman
Production
company
Blue Sky Studios
20th Century Fox Animation
Distributed by20th Century Fox
Release date
  • March 15, 2002 (2002-03-15)
Running time
81 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$59 million
Box office$383.3 million


Ice Age is a 2002 American computer-animated buddy comedy road film directed by Chris Wedge from a story by Michael J. Wilson. Produced by Blue Sky Studios, it was released by 20th Century Fox on March 15, 2002. The film features the voices of Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary and Chris Wedge. The film is set during the days of the ice age; animals begin migrating south to escape the winters. Once Manny, a no-nonsense mammoth meets Sid, a loudmouthed ground sloth and the two find a human baby, they set out to return the baby. Joining them is a saber-tooth tiger named Diego, who is commanded by his pack leader to bring the baby to him to enact revenge against the humans.

This film was met with mostly positive reviews and was nominated at the 75th Academy Awards for Best Animated Feature. It was a box office success by grossing over $383 million, starting the Ice Age franchise. It was followed by four sequels, Ice Age: The Meltdown in 2006, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs in 2009, Ice Age: Continental Drift in 2012, and Ice Age: Collision Course in 2016.

Plot[]

A saber-toothed squirrel (known as Scrat) is trying to find a place to store his prized acorn. Eventually, as he tries to stomp it into the ground, he causes a large crack in the ground that extends for miles and miles and sets off a large avalanche. He barely escapes, but finds himself stepped on by a herd of prehistoric animals. The animals are trying to avoid the ice age by migrating south. Sid, a clumsy ground sloth left behind by his family, decides to move on by himself but is attacked by two Brontops whom he angered by ruining their meal. Sid is soon saved by Manfred ("Manny"), an agitated mammoth who fights them off and is heading north. Not wanting to be alone and unprotected, Sid follows Manny. Meanwhile, Soto, the leader of a Smilodon pride, wants revenge on a group of humans by eating the chief's baby son, Roshan, alive. Soto leads a raid on the human camp, during which Roshan's mother is separated from the rest and jumps down a waterfall when cornered by Soto's lieutenant, Diego. For his failure, Diego is sent to find and retrieve the baby.

Later, Sid and Manny spot Roshan and his mother near the lake, having survived her plunge. The mother only has enough strength to entrust her baby to Manny before she disappears into the water. After much persuasion by Sid, they decide to return Roshan, but when they reach the human settlement, they find it deserted. They meet up with Diego, who convinces the pair to let him help by tracking the humans. The four travel on, with Diego secretly leading them to his pack for an ambush.

After encountering several misadventures on their way, they reach a cave with several cave paintings made by humans. There Sid and Diego learn about Manny's past and his previous interactions with the human hunters, in which his wife and child were killed, leaving Manny a depressed loner. Later, Manny, Sid, Diego and Roshan almost reach their destination—Half-Peak, but encounter a river of lava. Manny and Sid, along with Roshan, make it across safely, but Diego freezes, about to fall into the lava. Manny saves him, narrowly missing certain death by falling into the lava himself. The herd takes a break for the night, and Roshan takes his first walking steps towards Diego, who starts to change his mind about his mission.

The next day, the herd approaches the ambush, causing Diego—now full of respect for Manny for saving his life—to change his mind and confess to Manny and Sid about the ambush. As the pair turn hostile towards him, Diego asks for their trust, and tries to foil the attack. The herd battles Soto's pack, but despite their efforts, Soto's associates manage to corner Manny. As Soto closes in for the kill on Manny, Diego jumps into the middle of the attack. Soto injures Diego as a result. Manny knocks a distracted Soto into a rock wall, causing several sharp icicles to fall on Soto, killing him. The rest of the pack retreat. Manny and Sid mourn for the injury caused to Diego, which they fear would be fatal, and continue on their journey without him.

Soon, Manny and Sid manage to return Roshan to his tribe, and to their surprise, Diego manages to rejoin them, in time to see the baby leave. The group then begin to head off to warmer climates.

20,000 years later, Scrat, frozen in ice, ends up on the shores of a tropical island. As the ice slowly melts, the acorn is washed away. Scrat then finds a coconut and tries stomp it into the ground, only to mistakenly trigger a volcanic eruption.

Cast[]

Main article: List of Ice Age characters

The characters are all prehistoric animals. The animals can talk to and understand each other and are voiced by a variety of famous actors. Like many films of prehistoric life, the rules of time periods apply very loosely, as many of the species shown in the film never actually lived in the same time periods or the same geographic regions.

  • Manfred "Manny", a woolly mammoth, is voiced by Ray Romano
  • Diego, a Smilodon, is voiced by Denis Leary
  • Sid, a giant ground sloth, is voiced by John Leguizamo
  • Scrat, a "saber-toothed" squirrel, is voiced by Chris Wedge
  • Soto, a Smilodon, is voiced by Goran Višnjić
  • Zeke, a Smilodon, is voiced by Jack Black
  • Oscar, a Smilodon, is voiced by Diedrich Bader
  • Lenny, a Homotherium, is voiced by Alan Tudyk
  • Carl, a Brontops, is voiced by Cedric the Entertainer
  • Frank, a Brontops, is voiced by Stephen Root
  • Rachel, a female giant ground sloth, is voiced by Jane Krakowski
  • Jennifer, a female giant ground sloth, is voiced by Lorri Bagley

Production[]

Template:Refimprove section

Development[]

The idea of Ice Age was originally conceived in the 1990s during the Disney Renaissance. The film was intended to be a dramatic, non-comedic hand-drawn animated film directed by Don Bluth and Gary Goldman and produced by Fox Animation Studios, However, in 2000, Fox Animation Studios shut down due to the box office under-performance of Titan A.E., Don Bluth and Gary Goldman turned down the opportunity to direct the film. Blue Sky Studios got the opportunity with the Ice Age script to turn it into a computer animated comedy, Chris Wedge and Carlos Saldanha took over as the directors. Reportedly the reason Don Bluth refused to make the film is when 20th Century Fox said they wanted it to be CGI after the perceived failure of 2D animation, Bluth refused due to his dislike of fully CG animation and walked away from the project. The drama was also dropped from the film because 20th Century Fox would only accept it as a comedy.[citation needed] However, the drama aspect was kept in to make it more of a dramadey film.

Writing[]

Writer Michael J. Wilson has stated on his blog that his daughter Flora came up with the idea for an animal that was a mixture of both squirrel and rat, naming it Scrat, and that the animal was obsessed with pursuing his acorn. Chris Wedge, director, is the voice of Scrat, but has no intelligible dialogue; the plan to have Scrat talk was quickly dropped, as he worked better as a silent character for comedic effect. The name 'Scrat' is a combination of the words 'squirrel' and 'rat', as Scrat has characteristics of both species; Wedge has also called him "saber-toothed squirrel." Scrat's opening adventure was inserted because, without it, the first real snow and ice sequence wouldn't take place until about 37 minutes into the film. This was the only role intended for Scrat, but he proved to be such a popular character with test audiences that he was given more scenes, and has appeared in other movies.[citation needed]

According to an interview with Jay Leno on July 12, 2012, Denis Leary's character Diego originally died near the end of the film, which caused a negative reaction such as the test audience of children bursting into tears, so it was re-done.[citation needed]

Originally, Sid was supposed to be a con-sloth and a hustler, and there were two finished scenes of the character conning some aardvark kids and a very suggestive scene with two female sloths later in the movie. Sid was also supposed to have a female sloth named Sylvia chasing after him, whom he despised and kept ditching, however all of her scenes were removed. Some scenes of her were removed, while many scenes, which were finished, were retooled and re-animated for the final film. All the removed scenes of her can be seen on the "Super Cool Edition" DVD.[citation needed]

Casting[]

For mammoth Manny, the studio was initially looking at people with big voices.[1] James Earl Jones and Ving Rhames were considered, but they sounded too obvious and Wedge wanted more comedy.[2][3] Instead, the role was given to Ray Romano because they thought his voice sounded very elephant-like. Wedge described Romano's voice as "deep and his delivery is kind of slow, but he's also got a sarcastic wit behind it."[3]

John Leguizamo was cast as Sid, he tried 30 different voices for Sid. After viewing a documentary about sloths, he learned that they store food in their mouths; this led to him wondering what he would sound like with food in his mouth. After attempting to speak as if he had food in his mouth, he decided that it was the perfect voice for Sid.[citation needed]

All the actors were encouraged to improvise as much as possible to help keep the animation spontaneous.[citation needed]

Animation[]

Blue Sky Studios has engineers on its staff who understand the physics of sound and light and how these elements will affect movement in characters.[citation needed]

The responsibility for animating Sid's snowboard sequence was given to animators who went snowboarding in real life.[citation needed]

Release[]

Box office[]

The film was released on March 15, 2002, and had a $46.3 million opening weekend, a large number not usually seen until the summer season, and way ahead of Fox's most optimistic projection of about $30 million. Ice Age broke the record for a March opening (later surpassed in 2006 by its sequel, Ice Age: The Meltdown) and was the then-third-best opening ever for an animated feature—after Monsters, Inc. ($62.6 million) and Toy Story 2 ($57.4 million).[4] Ice Age finished its domestic box office run with $176,387,405 and grossed $383,257,136 worldwide, being the 9th highest gross of 2002 in North America and the 8th best worldwide at the time.[5]

Critical reaction[]

Ice Age was met with generally positive reviews from critics (making it the best reviewed film in its later-existing franchise). Rotten Tomatoes gave the film 77% approval rating, based on 164 reviews. The site's consensus reads: "Even though Ice Age is treading over the same grounds as Monsters, Inc. and Shrek, it has enough wit and laughs to stand on its own."[6] Similar site Metacritic had a score of 60% out of 31 reviews.[7] The film was nominated an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, but lost to Spirited Away.[8] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 stars out of 4 and wrote "I came to scoff and stayed to smile".

CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend, cinema audiences gave Ice Age an average grade of "A" on an A+ to F scale.[9]

Accolades[]

The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:

  • 2008: AFI's 10 Top 10:
    • Nominated Animation Film[10]

Home media[]

Ice Age was released on DVD, VHS and D-Theater[11] on November 26, 2002. Both releases included a short film Gone Nutty, featuring Scrat from the film.[12] The film was released on Blu-ray on March 4, 2008, and beside Gone Nutty, it included 9 minutes of deleted scenes.[13]

Video game[]

Main article: Ice Age (video game)

A video game tie-in was published by Ubisoft for the Game Boy Advance, and received poor reviews.[14][15]

Sequels[]

Main article: Ice Age (franchise) § Films

Ice Age later received four sequels, making it the first theatrical computer-animated film to do so.

  • The first sequel, Ice Age: The Meltdown was released on March 31, 2006. The film focuses on the melting of a dam (due to, as Sid puts it at the end of the first film, global warming) and the impending flood.
  • The second sequel, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs was released on July 1, 2009. The film focuses on the herd finding dinosaurs being discovered underground.
  • The third sequel, Ice Age: Continental Drift was released on July 13, 2012. The film focuses on the continental drift on Earth.
  • The fourth sequel, Ice Age: Collision Course was released on July 22, 2016.[16]

See also[]

  • List of animated feature-length films
  • List of computer-animated films

References[]

  1. Fine, Marshall (March 20, 2002). "Animation star of 'Ice Age,' Romano says". Gannett News Service. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
  2. Longsdorf, Amy (March 9, 2002). "'Ice Age" natural". The Morning Call. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ausiello, Michael (May 15, 2002). "Ice Age's Ray of Light". TV Guide. Retrieved June 6, 2014.
  4. "Ice Age enjoys mammoth opening weekend". Entertainment Weekly. 2002-03-18.
  5. "Ice Age (2002)". Box Office Mojo. Box Office Mojo, LLC. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
  6. "Ice Age (2002)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
  7. "Ice Age". Metacritic. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
  8. "The 75th Academy Awards (2003) Nominees and Winners". The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. March 23, 2003. Retrieved March 8, 2013.
  9. "CinemaScore". cinemascore.com. Retrieved February 14, 2015.
  10. "AFI's 10 Top 10 Nominees" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-08-19.
  11. Netherby, Jennifer (November 3, 2002). "High def, Spanish vids set to heat up 'Ice Age'". Variety. Archived from the original on January 14, 2016. Retrieved January 14, 2017. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (|url-status= suggested) (help)
  12. Fretts, Bruce (November 29, 2002). "Ice Age Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  13. "Ice Age (Blu-ray)". High-Def Digest. March 14, 2008. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  14. "Ice Age (gba) reviews". Metacritic. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
  15. "Ice Age for Game Boy Advance". GameRankings. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
  16. "Ice Age 5 Set for July 15, 2016, Anubis Moves to 2018". ComingSoon.net. December 20, 2013. Retrieved December 20, 2013.

External links[]

Template:Ice Age Template:20th Century Fox Animation Template:Blue Sky Studios Template:Chris Wedge

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