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December 21, 2008

Not since the "Dr. Doolittle" movies with Eddie Murphy has a guinea pig to be 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 certification Adam Sandler and Keri Russell -- opens. The flick is an adventure comedy, in which Sandler finds the bedtime story he speak his niece and nephew start to mysteriously come true in real life. However, the adventures really begin as soon as the kids start adding their own fantastical contribute to his stories.

One of Sandler's co-stars -- and by much the cutest in our publication -- is Bugsy the guinea pig. Walt Disney Studios was kind enough to contact us below at the rescue and also share Bugsy's story and also an interview with his trainer.


Originally, the movie was claimed to feature a hamster, but Steve Berens, a veteran pet trainer with pets of Distinction, persuaded the filmmakers to consider one more furry actor. “Hamsters don’t really favor being taken on a lot,” he said in an interview. “Guinea pigs are more laid ago and easy going.”

With the readjust in spreading accomplished, Berens -- having never personally trained guinea pigs -- realized he had actually to make certain that guinea pigs could even it is in trained, therefore he began prepping part resident guinea pigs. “While rats are smart, guinea pigs aren’t as bright,” he stated in one interview.

Eventually, though, Berens identified guinea pigs could be trained because that the duty in the movie. And so he actors Stitches and Thimbles, and found them their own understudies. Using positive training techniques, and also a totality lot that treats (we know exactly how guinea pigs love their treats), he and Stitches and also Thimbles gained down come the company of discovering their roles.

One of the learned habits had Bugsy to run on a makeshift treadmill fashioned indigenous an i turned down sander. “Guinea pigs aren’t well-known for speed and agility,” Berens said. “But us were may be to acquire them running on that treadmill. You gain a little bit the movement and pay that off and also eventually lock understand.” The treadmill step took 3 weeks of cultivate to traction off.

Another trick was a bedtime regimen that took Berens and also the guinea pigs double as lengthy to master. It involved Bugsy ringing a bell at bedtime and also then tucking himself into bed. First, Berens hosted a treat in ~ the bell -- consisting of carrots -- to attract the piggies come the preferred spot; once they ordered the rope to ring the bell, they were rewarded.

“From there, us taught the guinea pig to run up into his bed, rod his sleep in and also crawl under the sheet,” claims Berens. “It’s great to show world that these animals can execute these things themselves.” Lest friend think Bugsy's power is every 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 up this Thursday.

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If you haven't already seen the trailers, you have the right to view castle online through Windows Media Player in high-resolution and low-resolution video. If you view the movie during your Christmas vacation, be sure to come earlier here and tell united state all what you thought of it!!