Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012)

PG-13 | 93 mins | Drama, Fantasy | 2012

THIS TITLE IS OUTSIDE THE AFI CATALOG OF FEATURE FILMS (1893-1993)
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HISTORY

Paul Etheridge, T-fer/Percussion player from the band The Lost Bayou Ramblers, was mistakenly credited as Paul Ehteridge.
       Beasts of the Southern Wild is based on the play Juicy and Delicious written by Lucy Alibar that, according to a 22 Jul 2012 Var profile of Alibar, was originally performed at performance space the Tank in New York City in 2007 and featured as its main character a nine-year-old boy living in Georgia who learns that his father is dying.
       The film's production notes at AMPAS library mention that director Zeitlin and Alibar had known each other since they were thirteen-years-old and both attended a playwriting camp. While the production notes also stated that it was Zeitlin's idea to change the lead character from a boy in the play to a girl in the film, the 22 Jul 2012 Var profile of Alibar suggested the change was made upon the discovery and casting of Quvenzhané Wallis as "Hushpuppy" at open auditions.
       Zeitlin was inspired to move the location of the play from Georgia to Louisiana based on his own experience living in bayou country, according to a 19 Aug 2012 NYT interview with the director, he was particularly taken with the Isle de Jean Charles and its population that features a mix of Cajuns and two Native American tribes, the Houma and the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw.
       A 17 Jun 2012 LAT profile of Zeitlin noted that he and Alibar were able to collaborate on the screenplay after he was awarded a $30,000 insurance settlement when a drunk driver rear-ended his car in 2008, shattering his pelvis. He and Alibar spent six ...

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Paul Etheridge, T-fer/Percussion player from the band The Lost Bayou Ramblers, was mistakenly credited as Paul Ehteridge.
       Beasts of the Southern Wild is based on the play Juicy and Delicious written by Lucy Alibar that, according to a 22 Jul 2012 Var profile of Alibar, was originally performed at performance space the Tank in New York City in 2007 and featured as its main character a nine-year-old boy living in Georgia who learns that his father is dying.
       The film's production notes at AMPAS library mention that director Zeitlin and Alibar had known each other since they were thirteen-years-old and both attended a playwriting camp. While the production notes also stated that it was Zeitlin's idea to change the lead character from a boy in the play to a girl in the film, the 22 Jul 2012 Var profile of Alibar suggested the change was made upon the discovery and casting of Quvenzhané Wallis as "Hushpuppy" at open auditions.
       Zeitlin was inspired to move the location of the play from Georgia to Louisiana based on his own experience living in bayou country, according to a 19 Aug 2012 NYT interview with the director, he was particularly taken with the Isle de Jean Charles and its population that features a mix of Cajuns and two Native American tribes, the Houma and the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw.
       A 17 Jun 2012 LAT profile of Zeitlin noted that he and Alibar were able to collaborate on the screenplay after he was awarded a $30,000 insurance settlement when a drunk driver rear-ended his car in 2008, shattering his pelvis. He and Alibar spent six months interviewing local bayou residents and working on the script at the Pointe Aux Chenes Marina.
       Although the film was made by Court 13, a filmmaking collective co-founded by Zeitlin, much of the financing – $1.2 million dollars – came from the New York-based non-profit Cinereach. This was the first film financed by Cinereach, which previously had only awarded smaller grants to filmmakers. Other financing came in the form of grants from the Rooftop Filmmakers' Fund, the Sundance Institute and the San Francisco Film Society.
       A 10 Jun 2012 NYT article stated that the crew worked out of an abandoned gas station in Montegut, a small town in the Louisiana parish of Terrebonne. Parish resident Mike Arcenaux developed and operated the pulley system that moved "Wink" and Hushpuppy's boat. Wink's home was built by Zeitlin's sister Eliza, who lived in the shack during its construction. Production notes say that the large Auroch creatures were real pigs wearing specially made headdresses with horns.
       The film made its debut on the morning of 20 Jan 2012 at the Sundance Film Festival, according to a 25 Jan 2012 DV article. Although several distributors were interested in the film, it was eventually acquired by Fox Searchlight, although terms of the deal were not announced. Production notes report that the film won two prizes at Sundance: the Grand Jury Prize and the Excellence in Cinematography Award; and the 19 Aug 2012 NYT article noted the film later won the Cannes Film Festival's Caméra d'Or.
       Despite all of the festival accolades, the 29 Jun 2012 LAT notes that the film initially opened in only four theaters in Los Angeles, CA and New York City, NY.
       Critical reception to the film's release was generally positive, especially singling out the performances of newcomer Wallis. In the 23 Jan 2012 DV review, Peter Debruge described Wallis as "possessed of incredible Poise and almost feral intensity;" while David Denby in a 23 Jul 2012 New Yorker review said Wallis "speaks her lines with a light but firm articulation that a trained actor might take years to achieve."
       However, despite the accolades for Wallis, a 3 Oct 2012 NYT article reported that she was ineligible for a SAG Award nomination as she had never acted professionally before and the film did not "meet the terms of the guild's low-budget feature agreement."
       Beasts of the Southern Wild was named one of AFI's Movies of the Year. Among its numerous award nominations, the film was nominated for four Academy Awards in the categories: Actress in a Leading Role, Directing, Writing (Adapted Screenplay), and Best Picture.
       The end credits include the following acknowledgements: "This film was supported by the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program, with additional support from the Sundance Institute Annenberg Feature Film Fellowship and the Sundance Institute Feature Film Creative Producing Fellowship as the Mark Silverman Honoree;" "Produced in association with the San Francisco Film Society/Kenneth Rainin Foundation;" "Supported by Sundance/NHK International Filmmakers Award organized by Sundance Institute, NHK, in cooperation with NEP, NHK Enterprises;" and "This film was generously supported by the Rooftop Filmmakers Fund and Eastern Effects."
       The end credits also include the following Special Thanks: "Andrew Adair, Sharon Alford, The Arceneaux Family, Aunt Elaine, Laine A. Aucoin, Jon "Big Dawg" Aune, Dr. Josh Baron, Damon Baldone, Lauren Bartlett, Jeanine Basinger, Michelle Benoit, Bernice Billiot, Daniel Bird, Larry Blake, Dr. Eugene K. Bostian, Claude Bourg, The Bourg Family, Christopher Brantley, Anthony Bregman, Mike Brown, Jason Buch, Ed Buckner, Drew Burnside, Nicole Buskey, Joseph Cahill, Rachel Carrico, Anne Chaisson, The Chaisson Family, Julie Condy, Cullen Conly, Emily Cooper, The Cortez Family, Windell Curole, The Cutrera Family, The Daigle Family, Katie Daigle, The Dardar Family, The Doob Family, The Doria Family, Sara Dosa, Amy Dotson, Jerry Duke, The Dupre Family, Brittney Dupre, Jessica Dupre, Randy Dupre, The Fanguy Family, Lorna Farrar, Claudia Ferrer, Rebecca Ferris, Martin Folse, Scott Frank, Willy Friedman, Percy Gabriel, Gyula Gazdag, Joe Gillis, Karen Gillis, Becky Glupczynski, Zack Godshall, The Goldblatt Family, Michael Goldenberg, Andrew Goldman, Bill and Connie Gottwald, The Grande Family, Megan Griffith, Alan Grotheer, The Guidry Family, Michael Haggen, Percy Ham, Angela Hammerli, Ollie Hammond, Caleb Hammons, Jerald Harris, Barbara Harrison, Gina Hebert, Trace Henderson, Sarah Hess, Jared Hopkins, Lynette Howell, Tim Hurley, Viktor Jakovlevski, Kyle James, Adam Janvey, Rae and Richard Janvey, Geremy Jasper, Liza Johnson, Troy Johnson, Al Jones, Kent Jones, Burwell Jordan, Chris Kaminstein, Lars Knudsen, Katie Kuchler, Anne Lai, Loren Legendre, Caroline Libresco, Rose Lichter-Marck, Daniel Lippel, Tate Lirette, Tony Longoria, Tara Lugibihi, Brian Maloney, Cara Marcous, Kyle Martin, Kenneth Mattherne, Claudia Mezey, Charlotte Mickie, Katie McCown, Ilyse McKimmie, Laura McKnight, Cree McRee, Mama Jo Campbell, The Naquin Family, Chief Albert Naquin, Rev. Roq Naquin, Steve Nebesny, Colin Nelson, Dan Nuxoll, Dana O'Keefe, Todd Oldham, Roy Parfait, Linda and Steve Penn, Sonya Penn, Jamie Perez, Zoe Petkanas, Thomas Phillip, Glen Pitre, Mike Plunkett, Albie Price, Jen Rainin, Uno Reggio, Debbie Reinisch, Spencer Rhodes, Gasper Riggio, Brenda Robichaux, Mark Elijah Rosenberg, Dennis Rouselle, Evelyn C. Rubin, Gabrielle Russomagno, Ira Sachs, Nat Sanders, Michelle Satter, Danya Sherman, Gary Shtetler, Sister Joyce, Mary Jane Skalski, Erik Skillman, Anne Marie Smith, Paul Steele Smith, Jake Springfield, Kerry St. Pe, David "Salty" Stapler, Christipher Stelly, A Sunny Day in Glasgow, Sally Sushan, Graham Taylor, Joe Thompson, Robert Thompson, John Tintori, Sophie Tintori, Nancy Toscan, An Tran, Chris Tricarico, Mike Tully, Michele Turnure-Salleo, Alicia Van Couvering, Jay Van Hoy, Katie Van Syckle, Kieran Vandenbosch, Ed Vassalo, Kirby Verret, Peter Viguerie, The Waguenspack Family, The Wallis Family, Alesia Weston, Kenny White, Bradford Young, Nazgol Zand, Steve & Amanda Zeitlin and the residents of Lafourche and Terrebone Parish, Louisiana;" "And the support of: Abelcinetech, Anytime Rentals, Art Egg, Bug Band, The Buttermilk Drop, Cake Café and Bakery, Cano, Cort Rentals, The Crash Pad, Crystal Hot Sauce, Dixie Beer, Dooley's Nightclub, LLC, Frederick Douglass High School, Flynn's Bar, Frost Lumber, Hubig's Pies, Klondyke Hardware, Lacrosse Footwear, Town of Madisonville, Mermaid Masquerade Costumes, Montegut Fire Department, Montegut Lions Club, 9th Ward Studios, One Source Disposal, Orleans Coffee, Paladin Rentals of Louisiana, Parts and Labor Films LLC, Pointe Aux Chenes Marina, Pointe Aux Chenes Supermarket, Revitilizations, LLC, Rocket Music Entertainment, Roland's Mini Mart, T River Bars, Terrebonne Parish Government, Terrebonne Parish Sheriff's Office, Try Me Coffee Mills;" and "Cinereach wishes to thank our supporters, friends, families and Nicholas Constantakis, Asher Friend, Leah Giblin, Reva Goldberg, Adella Ladjevardi, Jeff Marcello, Claudia Mattheiss, Sonny Nunes, C. Jones Perry, Jr., Bruce Rabb, Steven Schmigelski, Joachim Schuetz, Karen Shatzkin, John Van Wyck, Kathryn Whitfield, Cameron Yates."
       The end credits then conclude with the following notes: "Shot on location in South Louisiana;" "To Wendell 'Wink' Emmet Ashley who inspired the use of the name Wink;" and "In Memory of Floyd Naquin."

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
23 Jan 2012
p. 9
Daily Variety
25 Jan 2012
---
Hollywood Reporter
3 Feb 2012
p. 64
Los Angeles Times
17 Jun 2012
Section D, p. 1
Los Angeles Times
27 Jun 2012
p. 1
Los Angeles Times
29 Jun 2012
p. 3
New York Times
10 Jun 2012
p. 14
New York Times
27 Jun 2012
p. 1
New York Times
19 Aug 2012
p. 3
New York Times
3 Oct 2012
p. 3
New Yorker
23 Jul 2012
pp. 80-81
Variety
22 Jul 2012
---
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Featured performers:
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANIES
PRODUCTION TEXTS
A Film by Court 13
Fox Searchlight Pictures Presents
In association with Cinereach
A Cinereach and Court 13 Production in association with Journeyman Pictures
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
2d 2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Co-prod
Co-prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Cam loader
3d asst cam
Addl asst cam
Still photog
Addl still photog
Best boy elec
Company elec
Company elec
Key grip
Best boy grip
Company grip
Behind the scenes photog
Addl behind the scenes photog
Addl behind the scenes photog
Cam equip provided by
Cam equip provided by
Film stock provided by
Grip & elec equip provided by
Grip & elec equip provided by
Grip & elec equip provided by
Grip & elec equip provided by
Aerial & glacier footage provided by
Aerial & glacier footage provided by
Aerial & glacier footage provided by
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir
Art dept coord
Graphic des
FILM EDITORS
1st asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Addl asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Const coord
Const foreman
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Charge scenic
Scenic artist
Scenic artist
Addl scenic artist
Addl scenic artist
Greenswoman
Set dec
On set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Set dresser
Addl set dresser
Propmaster
Asst propmaster
COSTUMES
Cost des
Ward supv
Cost assoc
Seamstress
MUSIC
Mus/Mus rec and mixed/Piano, celesta, accordion, g
Mus premix
Mus premix eng, Dig It Audio
Mus premix eng, Dig It Audio
Addl mus premix
San Francisco
Addl mus premix eng, Polarity
Addl mus premix eng, Polarity
Mus supv
Mus coord
Violin and viola, Musician
Cello, Musician
Bass, Musician
Trumpet, Musician
Trombone, Musician
Fiddle, Musician
Toms, percussion, dulcimer, Musician
Bass drum, cymbals, Musician
Piano, Jazz band
Saxophone, Jazz band
Guitar, Jazz band
Snare drum, Jazz band
Addl audio eng
Addl audio eng
Addl audio eng
Fiddle and vocal, Lost Bayou Ramblers
Accordion, Lost Bayou Ramblers
Guitar, Lost Bayou Ramblers
Upright bass, Lost Bayou Ramblers
T-fer/Percussion, Lost Bayou Ramblers
Rec eng
Rec at
Fafayette, Louisiana
SOUND
Prod sd mixer
Prod sd mixer
Addl prod sd
Addl prod sd
Addl prod sd
Boom op
Post prod sd services
A Lucasfilm Ltd. Company, Marin County, California
Supv sd ed, Skywalker Sound
Rerec mixer/Sd des and sd eff ed, Skywalker Sound
Rerec mixer, Skywalker Sound
Rerec mixer, Skywalker Sound
Sd des and sd eff ed, Skywalker Sound
Supv dial and ADR ed, Skywalker Sound
Dial ed, Skywalker Sound
Dial ed, Skywalker Sound
Asst sd ed, Skywalker Sound
Foley artist, Skywalker Sound
Foley artist, Skywalker Sound
Foley mixer, Skywalker Sound
Foley rec, Skywalker Sound
Digital audio transfer, Skywalker Sound
Digital audio transfer, Skywalker Sound
Rec, Skywalker Sound
Video services, Skywalker Sound
Video services, Skywalker Sound
Eng services, Skywalker Sound
Eng services, Skywalker Sound
Digital ed services, Skywalker Sound
Digital ed services, Skywalker Sound
Digital ed services, Skywalker Sound
Client services, Skywalker Sound
Client services, Skywalker Sound
Client services, Skywalker Sound
Client services, Skywalker Sound
Skywalker spec thanks, Skywalker Sound
Skywalker spec thanks, Skywalker Sound
Skywalker spec thanks, Skywalker Sound
Skywalker spec thanks, Skywalker Sound
Dolby sd consultant, Skywalker Sound
ADR rec
New Orleans
ADR mixer, Swelltone Labs
ADR coord, Swelltone Labs
Addl ADR rec
Houma
Addl ADR rec
New Orleans
Addl ADR eng
Addl ADR eng
VISUAL EFFECTS
Aurochs and spec eff unit dir
Aurochs and spec eff unit prod
Spec eff coord
Lead spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Addl spec eff
Armorer
Armorer, Tac One Ops
Pyrotechnician
Spec eff tech
Pyrotechnics coord
Animal tamer, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Project development and coord, Aurochs and spec ef
Lead eng, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Lead artist, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Lead artist, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Lead artist, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Miniature pyrotechnic eng, Aurochs and spec eff un
Miniature pyrotechnic eng, Aurochs and spec eff un
Laser cutting artist, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Art crew, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Art crew, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Art crew, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Art crew, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Art crew, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Asst animal tamer, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Asst animal tamer, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Nutria expert, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Char concept artist, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Swimming Auroch rigger, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Swimming Aurochs puppeteer, Aurochs and spec eff u
Swimming Aurochs puppeteer, Aurochs and spec eff u
Cloud tank consultant, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Pig adoption services, Aurochs and spec eff unit
On Set VFX adv, Aurochs and spec eff unit
On set VFX adv, Aurochs and spec eff unit
1st asst cam, Aurochs and spec eff unit
2d asst cam, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Swing, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod coord, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod asst, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod asst, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod asst, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod asst, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Prod asst, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Intern, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Intern, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Intern, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Intern, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Animal Performers:
Leading Aurochs, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Supporting Aurochs, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Supporting Aurochs, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Supporting Aurochs, Aurochs and spec eff unit
[and]
Supporting Aurochs, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Aurochs lab facility, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Aurochs sd stage, Aurochs and spec eff unit
Visual eff
Senior visual eff supv, Space Division
VFX art dir, Space Division
Senior compositor, Space Division
Senior compositor, Space Division
VFX prod coord, Space Division
Digital mattepainter, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX artist, Space Division
VFX dir of photog, Space Division
Addl VFX dir of photog, Space Division
VFX gaffer, Space Division
Spec eff tech, Space Division
Spec eff tech, Space Division
Visual eff
San Francisco, Studio 400A
Visual eff supv, Academy of Art University
VFX prod mgr, Academy of Art University
Compositing supv, Academy of Art University
Lead compositor, Academy of Art University
Lead compositor, Academy of Art University
Lead compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Compositor, Academy of Art University
Rotoscope artist, Academy of Art University
Rotoscope artist, Academy of Art University
Rotoscope artist, Academy of Art University
Rotoscope artist, Academy of Art University
Particle eff artist, Academy of Art University
VFX prod asst, Academy of Art University
VFX prod asst, Academy of Art University
Tech asst, Academy of Art University
Tech asst, Academy of Art University
Computer lab mgr, Academy of Art University
Dir of anim and VFX, Academy of Art University
Addl visual eff
Addl visual eff, The Molecule
Addl visual eff, The Molecule
Addl visual eff, The Molecule
Addl post prod VFX support
Credits
Film title des
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Hair stylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Featuring the art of
Chief boat capt
Casting consultant
Louisiana casting coord
Louisiana casting
Louisiana casting
Louisiana casting
Louisiana casting
Louisiana casting
Addl New Orleans casting
Animal kingdom and maritime coord
Animal kingdom wrangler and deckhand
Boat op
Boat op
Boat op
Master of The Vickie L. Gardner
Picture vehicles prod asst
Asst loc mgr
Scr supv
Prod coord
Asst prod coord
Prod accountant
Transportation coord
Cinereach operations mgr
Key set prod asst
Key set prod asst
Set prod asst
Set prod asst
Set prod asst
Set prod asst
Set prod asst
Wrap prod asst/Demolition
Wrap prod asst/Demolition
Childcare coord
Child caretaker
Child caretaker
Child caretaker
Cast liaison
Acting coach
Substitute teacher
Head chef
Head chef
Head chef
Caterer
Caterer
Caterer
Craft services
On set medic
On set medic
On set medic
On set medic
On set medic
Lifeguard
Swim instructor
Prod legal services
Prod legal services, Gray, Krauss, Des Rochers
Prod legal services, Gray, Krauss, Des Rochers
Cinereach legal services
Court 13 legal services
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Office intern
Walkie talkie rentals
Payroll services
Insurance broker
Peter Marshall
Insurance broker
Insurance broker
Insurance broker
Prod vehicles
Louisiana audit firm
Accounting consultant
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunt double
COLOR PERSONNEL
Digital intermediate services and dailies
DI colorist, Alpha Cine Labs
DI prod, Alpha Cine Labs
DI prod, Alpha Cine Labs
Dailies col, Alpha Cine Labs
Lab coord, Alpha Cine Labs
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Juicy and Delicious written by Lucy Alibar (production date undetermined).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHOR
MUSIC
"Valse De Balfa," performed by The Lost Bayou Ramblers, written by Will Balfa, published by Flat Town Music Company (BMI).
SONGS
"Henry," performed by Lost Bayou Ramblers, written by Louis Michot, OTUT Publishing (BMI), courtesy of Bayou Perdu Records; "Les Veuves De La Coulee," performed by Leroy 'Happy Fats' LeBlanc; written by Leroy Leblanc & Oran Guidry, courtesy of La Lou Music; "La Danse De Mardi Gras," performed by The Balfa Brothers, written by Dewey Balfa, Flat Town Music (BMI), courtesy of Swallow Records; "Jole Blon," performed by Harry Choates, written by Buddy Dee, courtesy of D Records; "(It Will Have to Do) Until the Real Thing Comes Along," performed by Fats Waller and His Rhythm; written by Sammy Cahn, Saul Chaplin, L.E. Freeman, Along Mann Holiner and Alberta Nichols, courtesy of RCA Records, by arrangement with Sony Music Licensing.
SONGWRITERS/COMPOSERS
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
2012
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 27 Jun 2012
Production Date:

Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby® Digital in selected theatres; SDDS Sony Dynamic Digital Sound in selected theatres; Datasat
Color
Lenses
Arri
Duration(in mins):
93
MPAA Rating:
PG-13
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Hushpuppy, a six-year-old girl, lives by herself in the Louisiana bayou in a makeshift shack elevated above the ground. Her father Wink lives nearby in another elevated shack on the same property along with a menagerie of animals, including several chickens, a pot-bellied pig, dogs and cats. Wink and Hushpuppy float in a makeshift boat made out of a pickup truck's bed and survey the levee that keeps their swampy home separated from dry land. The isolated community they live in is called the Bathtub, the residents of which celebrate almost everyday as a holiday, shooting off fireworks. At school, Hushpuppy learns about giant prehistoric animals called Aurochs from her teacher Miss Bathsheeba. One of these Aurochs is frozen in a glacier at the South Pole. Arriving home from her lessons, Hushpuppy cannot find her father. While Wink is away, she imagines having a conversation with her mother, who has been absent since Hushpuppy was born. Hushpuppy makes her own dinner by cooking a pot of gravy and cat food on the stove. Wink finally shows up on the property wearing a hospital gown and yells at Hushpuppy to leave him alone. Back in her shack, Hushpuppy turns up the heat on her dinner, which erupts in a burst of flames. Wink is unable to put the fire out, so he chases his daughter across the swamp, slapping her as punishment. Hushpuppy hits Wink back in the chest and he falls to the ground, unconscious. At that moment, Hushpuppy hears a large thunder crack, which she imagines is a glacier falling into the ocean. Miss Bathsheeba gives Hushpuppy a glass jar full of healing plants, but when the girl ...

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Hushpuppy, a six-year-old girl, lives by herself in the Louisiana bayou in a makeshift shack elevated above the ground. Her father Wink lives nearby in another elevated shack on the same property along with a menagerie of animals, including several chickens, a pot-bellied pig, dogs and cats. Wink and Hushpuppy float in a makeshift boat made out of a pickup truck's bed and survey the levee that keeps their swampy home separated from dry land. The isolated community they live in is called the Bathtub, the residents of which celebrate almost everyday as a holiday, shooting off fireworks. At school, Hushpuppy learns about giant prehistoric animals called Aurochs from her teacher Miss Bathsheeba. One of these Aurochs is frozen in a glacier at the South Pole. Arriving home from her lessons, Hushpuppy cannot find her father. While Wink is away, she imagines having a conversation with her mother, who has been absent since Hushpuppy was born. Hushpuppy makes her own dinner by cooking a pot of gravy and cat food on the stove. Wink finally shows up on the property wearing a hospital gown and yells at Hushpuppy to leave him alone. Back in her shack, Hushpuppy turns up the heat on her dinner, which erupts in a burst of flames. Wink is unable to put the fire out, so he chases his daughter across the swamp, slapping her as punishment. Hushpuppy hits Wink back in the chest and he falls to the ground, unconscious. At that moment, Hushpuppy hears a large thunder crack, which she imagines is a glacier falling into the ocean. Miss Bathsheeba gives Hushpuppy a glass jar full of healing plants, but when the girl returns to feed the medicine to her father, he is missing again. Hushpuppy hides the jar in the exposed roots of a tree. As the glaciers continue to melt, an Auroch encased in a block of ice floats across the ocean. Bathtub residents are fearful of the approaching storm and while many of them evacuate the area, Wink, Hushpuppy and several others stay to ride it out. Father and daughter huddle in Wink's shack while torrential rains pour down. Although Wink implores Hushpuppy to sleep, she cannot. Wink drinks from a bottle of moonshine, then runs out and fires a shotgun at the rain. Meainwhile, the rain melts the ice and frees the frozen Auroch. The next day, the Bathtub is completely flooded. Wink and Hushpuppy survey the area from their makeshift boat, but are unable to find their neighbors. Wink also teaches his daughter how to catch catfish with her bare hands. That night, Hushpuppy watches Wink sleeping and sees a large sore on his chest that looks like the veins are going to burst out of his skin. Hushpuppy believes she caused the storm by hitting her father and she imagines a horde of Aurochs are racing towards the Bathtub. Eventually, Wink and Hushpuppy find several people taking shelter in the local bar. As the adults sit around drinking beer, Wink tells a story of Hushpuppy's mother, who killed an alligator with a shotgun and fried the dead animal's meat for dinner. Hushpuppy paddles her boat by herself and rescues Miss Bathsheeba and several little girls from the school, bringing them all back to the bar where everybody feasts on crawfish and crabs. When one of the local men tries to teach Hushpuppy how to crack a crab with a knife, Wink shows her how to tear one in half with her bare hands. Since the floodwaters aren't receding, the remaining Bathtub residents make a floating shelter out of a house and several makeshift boats. The Aurochs trample through a nearby town. Two weeks later, the animals of the Bathtub begin to die, so Wink and a few of the other men leave early one morning to blow up the levee. Hushpuppy sneaks onto a motorboat steered by Miss Bathsheeba who races to prevent the men from accomplishing their task. Wink has hidden explosives in a dead alligator and, although Miss Bathsheeba stops him from blowing it up, Hushpuppy gets her hands on the detonator, setting off the explosives that create a large hole in the levee. The floodwaters immediately recede. Back at home, Wink collapses from fatigue. Hushpuppy tries to get her father to drink Miss Bathsheeba's medicine, but he refuses. Wink shares some moonshine with Hushpuppy and tries to assuage her fears about him dying. Elsewhere, one of the rampaging Aurochs falls over dead, so the others eat its corpse. Men from the mainland come into the Bathtub and force the residents to evacuate against their will. The residents, including Wink and Hushpuppy, are brought to a medical shelter filled with other survivors of the storm. Dr. Maloney tries to talk to Wink about his illness, but the ailing man picks a fistfight with the doctor. After throwing a few punches, Wink collapses from exhaustion. An operation is performed on Wink and he fights with the nurses during his recovery. Later, Wink jumps up from his hospital bed, finds Hushpuppy and attempts to break out from the shelter with the other Bathtub residents in tow. Wink forces Hushpuppy onto a departing bus, but Hushpuppy jumps off and confronts him about trying to send her away. Wink falls to the ground and spits up blood. The other Bathtub residents escape the facility and drag Wink back home. Hushpuppy and the young girls of the Bathtub go swimming in the ocean where they are picked up by a boat. Hushpuppy tells the captain that she is trying to find her mother. Eventually, they happen upon and board a rundown riverboat that hosts a bar where women dressed in lingerie dance with men. Hushpuppy finds a pretty woman who looks like her mother working as the riverboat's cook. The woman fries up several pieces of alligator meat for Hushpuppy to eat, then dances with her in the bar. Hushpuppy and the Bathtub girls return home with the Aurochs chasing right behind them. One of the mighty beasts walks up to Hushpuppy, but instead of being scared, the young girl calls him a friend. The Aurochs leave and Hushpuppy finds Wink dying in bed. She dips a piece of fried alligator in some hot sauce and serves it to Wink. He implores his daughter not to cry even though both of them begin to sob. Hushpuppy lays her head on Wink's chest, listening to his heartbeat until it stops. As Wink's body is placed on a funeral pyre on his boat, Hushpuppy sets the pile of wood on fire and pushes her father's corpse into the ocean.

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Offscreen Credit
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AFI Life Achievement Award
The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.