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December 21, 2008


Not given that the "Dr. Doolittle" movies with Eddie Murphy has a guinea pig been so prominently featured in a theatrical release.

You are watching: Bugsy the guinea pig from bedtime stories

On Christmas Day, "Bedtime Stories" -- the film from Walt Disney Studios starring Adam Sandler and also Keri Rusoffer -- opens up. The flick is an adundertaking comedy, in which Sandler finds the bedtime stories he tells his niece and nephew begin to mysteriously come true in genuine life. However, the adventures really begin when the children start including their very own fantastical contributions to his stories.

One of Sandler's co-stars -- and also by far the cutest in our book -- is Bugsy the guinea pig. Walt Disney Studios was kind enough to call us right here at the rescue and share Bugsy's story and also an intercheck out with his trainer.

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Originally, the movie was intended to function a hamster, yet Steve Berens, a veteran animal trainer with Animals of Distinction, encouraged the filmmachines to consider an additional furry actor. “Hamsters don’t really prefer being tackled a lot,” he said in an intercheck out. “Guinea pigs are more lhelp back and also basic going.”

With the adjust in casting accomplished, Berens -- having never before personally trained guinea pigs -- realized he had actually to make certain that guinea pigs might even be trained, so he began prepping some resident guinea pigs. “While rats are smart, guinea pigs aren’t as bappropriate,” he said in an intersee.

Ultimately, though, Berens figured out guinea pigs might be trained for the role in the movie. And so he cast Stitches and Thimbles, and found them their very own understudies. Using positive training methods, and a whole lot of treats (we know exactly how guinea pigs love their treats), he and Stitches and Thimbles gained dvery own to the company of finding out their roles.

One of the learned actions had Bugsy running on a makechange treadmill fashioned from an overturned sander. “Guinea pigs aren’t well-known for speed and agility,” Berens shelp. “But we were able to acquire them running on that treadmill. You acquire a little little bit of motion and pay that off and also ultimately they understand also.” The treadmill scene took 3 weeks of training to pull off.

Anvarious other trick was a bedtime regime that took Berens and also the guinea pigs twice as lengthy to grasp. It affiliated Bugsy ringing a bell at bedtime and also then tucking himself into bed. First, Berens organized a treat at the bell -- consisting of carrots -- to draw the piggies to the preferred spot; when they ordered the rope to ring the bell, they were rewarded.

“From tbelow, we taught the guinea pig to run up into his bed, stick his nose in and also crawl under the sheet,” states Berens. “It’s great to show human being that these pets have the right to carry out these things themselves.” Lest you think Bugsy's performance is all smoke, mirrors, and CGI (computer-generated images), Berens says that the only point that's computer-generated is Bugsy's overly big eyes.

The movie opens this Thursday.

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If you haven't already viewed the trailers, you have the right to watch them virtual with Windows Media Player in high-resolution and low-resolution video. If you see the movie throughout your Christmas vacation, be sure to come back right here and also tell us all what you thought of it!!