Strange Wilderness

When the ratings of their wilderness-themed cable television show plummet, two hard-partying slackers decide to pursue a wild lead guaranteed to revive their numbers and keep their show on the air. With zero budget and a ragtag film crew, they set off for the Andes in search of Bigfoot.

  • Starring: Steve Zahn, Allen Covert, Jonah Hill and Kevin Heffernan
  • Director(s): Fred Wolf
  • Producer(s): Peter Gaulke
  • Screenwriter(s): Fred Wolf, Peter Gaulke
  • Distributor: 20th Century Fox
  • Animal Coordinator: Animals of Distinction, Working Wildlife
  • Release Date: Friday, February 01, 2008
  • Rating: Outstanding

Featured Animal Action

Turkeys

When Peter (Steve Zahn) takes a bathroom break in the woods, he sees a nest of turkey chicks on the ground. Animal handlers brought in 25 turkens, also known as Transylvanian Naked Necks, to be alternated for this scene. This unusual-looking fowl with a bald area around the neck looks like a cross between a chicken and a turkey, though it is really all chicken. Crew members from the props department created a fake nest for the birds, and the animal handler placed eight chicks at a time into the nest. The birds merely stayed in place as the cameras rolled, surrounded by trainers and props personnel off-camera should any decide to stray. The extremely perturbed mother bird that comes to her chicks' rescue was a prop turkey.

Snakes

As the gang treks through the South American jungle, they cautiously walk past snakes dangling from overhead branches. A wrangler positioned Colombian boa constrictors on the branches and stood just off-camera. The wrangler also conducted a brief discussion with the cast and crew about the snakes to quell any possible fears and inform them that the species used was nonvenomous. He repositioned the boa constrictors at the end of each take to ensure they did not stray too far up the branches. The wrangler and the American Humane Animal Safety Representative monitoring the production had previously inspected the branches to make sure they had no sharp edges or points that could potentially injure the snakes.

Other animals

Although the goldfish seen in the aquarium in Pete's living room were real, the one scooped up and put into the bong was a rubber fish attached to a glass bead that had been put together by the prop master.

Most of the animal action seen in the film was stock footage of Bill Burrud's Animal World licensed by the production. This includes the chimpanzee, goats and ostrich seen with Burrud himself, as well as the bears, sharks, lions, monkeys, gazelles, moose, fighting giraffes and birds eating a zebra carcass. The man mauled by an alligator in the everglades was licensed footage from Faces of Death. The footage of sea lions on the shore was shot from a cliff road in La Jolla; no one approached the sea lions directly. Pastoral shots in Latin America of sheep, donkeys and cows were also stock footage.