Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Will Gluck|
|Music by||Dominic Lewis|
|Cinematography||Peter Menzies Jr.|
|Edited by||Christian Gazal|
|Distributed by||Sony Pictures Releasing|
|Box office||$351.3 million|
Peter Rabbit is a 2018 American live-action/computer-animated comedy film directed by Will Gluck and written by Rob Lieber and Gluck, based on the stories of Peter Rabbit created by Beatrix Potter. The film stars the voice of James Corden as the title character, alongside Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, and Sam Neill in live-action roles, and the voices of Daisy Ridley, Elizabeth Debicki, and Margot Robbie.
In England's Lake District, Peter Rabbit, his cousin Benjamin Bunny, and Peter's triplet sisters Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail, spend most of their days picking on old Mr. McGregor and stealing vegetables from his garden. They are friends with a local woman named Bea who spends her time painting pictures of the rabbits as well as the surrounding nature. Bea took on a motherly role with the rabbits after their mother's death. Their father had been killed and eaten by McGregor when they were still young. One day, Peter is forced to leave his jacket in McGregor's garden and goes back to retrieve it. McGregor spots and catches him, but suddenly dies of a heart attack due to decades of unhealthy eating habits. Enthralled, Peter invites all of the local animals and takes over McGregor's manor.
Meanwhile in London, McGregor's great-nephew, Thomas McGregor, an uptight, controlling workaholic, works at the toy department of Harrods department store where he waits for a promotion to associate general manager. He indifferently accepts the news about his great-uncle's death, someone he was completely unaware of, but is infuriated over losing the promotion to a lazy nephew of the managing director and is fired for losing his temper. His now-former manager encourages him to get a hobby and spend some time in the country.
When Thomas learns that his great-uncle's manor is valuable and that he's inherited it, he decides to appraise and prepare it for resale in order to start his own toy store to get even with his former employers. He kicks out Peter and his friends and begins to upgrade the security of the garden wall and gates, despite Bea's objections. When Peter and Benjamin sneak back into the garden, Thomas catches the latter and attempts to drown Benjamin in a river. His relatives rescue him; Thomas instead accidentally drops a prized set of binoculars that Bea had given him earlier, forcing him to retrieve it.
Peter and Thomas start a war with each other by setting up traps and other offensive nuisances. Thomas and Bea end up falling in love with each other, which causes Peter to become jealous and wanting to separate them more. This all culminates when Peter rewires an electric fence set up by Thomas, prompting Thomas to throw dynamite at Peter's burrow. Thomas then attacks Peter in the garden, telling Peter that his antics caused him to become aggressive. When Peter detonates the dynamite to prove to Bea that Thomas was using it, he ends up knocking down the tree on top of the burrow, which crushes Bea's art studio. Bea, ignoring Thomas’s explanation of his quarrel with the rabbits, breaks up with him, and he goes back to London to work at Harrods again.
Peter feels remorseful for what he has done, and upon learning that Bea intends to leave the neighborhood, he and Benjamin head to London to find Thomas at Harrods. Tricking Thomas into believing he was imagining the rabbits’ ability to communicate, Peter explains his part of the conflict and encourages Thomas to follow his heart. They rush back to the country, where Peter shows Bea the detonator and presses it for her to see; thus confirming Thomas’s previous claims that the rabbits were responsible for the explosion. Peter and Thomas apologize to Bea and plead for her not to move away.
Wishing to remain with Bea, Thomas no longer wants to sell the manor but discovers that an unpleasant wealthy couple (who he had encountered earlier and been tormented by) had already bought the house and finalized the sale. Peter and his friends use their tricks to force the couple out of the house, allowing Thomas to move back in. Thomas and Bea resume their relationship, and he permits the wildlife to take food from the garden within reason.
Peter and his family restore the burrow with Bea and Thomas’s help. Thomas sets up his own toy shop in the village, where Bea showcases her paintings of the rabbits.
- Rose Byrne as Bea
- Domhnall Gleeson as Thomas McGregor, Mr. McGregor's great nephew
- Sam Neill as Mr. McGregor, Thomas McGregor's great uncle and gardener
- Marianne Jean-Baptiste as Harrods General Manager
- Felix Williamson as Derek
- James Corden as Peter Rabbit
- Margot Robbie as Flopsy Rabbit and the narrator
- Elizabeth Debicki as Mopsy Rabbit
- Daisy Ridley as Cottontail Rabbit
- Colin Moody as Benjamin Bunny, Peter's cousin
- Sia as Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle
- Domhnall Gleeson as Mr. Jeremy Fisher
- Rose Byrne as Jemima Puddle-Duck
- Sam Neill as Tommy Brock
- Fayssal Bazzi as Mr. Tod
- Ewen Leslie as Pigling Bland
- Christian Gazal as Felix D'eer
- Rachel Ward as Josephine Rabbit, Peter's mother
- Bryan Brown as Peter's father
- David Wenham as Johnny Town-Mouse
- Will Reichelt as JW Rooster II
In August 2016, Will Gluck was reported to direct from a script by Gluck and Rob Lieber.
The next month, Domhnall Gleeson was cast as Thomas McGregor, the descendant of the original Mr. McGregor, and Margot Robbie joined the cast, expected to voice a bunny. In November, Sia was cast as Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle.
On December 18, 2016, a first image of the title character, along with the film's logo, was revealed. Production began in December 2016. Live action scenes were filmed at Centennial Park in Sydney. In March 2017, filming took place at Central railway station, Sydney, which was depicted as London Paddington station along with Mortuary railway station being depicted as the country station.
The first trailer received negative feedback from critics and fans of the character, many of whom labelled the film as being too modern and insulting to Beatrix Potter's works. Collider called the trailer "garbage" and a "low brow 'comedy' cringe fest".
Stuart Heritage from The Guardian stated that "the Peter Rabbit film looks like the result of some blisteringly inept manhandling [...] there's something genuinely harrowing about the sight of Peter Rabbit – gentle, Edwardian Peter Rabbit – thoughtlessly injuring some birds, or grabbing a pile of lettuce leaves and making it rain like a banker in a strip club, or literally twerking" and argued "there is no way on Earth that [Beatrix Potter would] have ever given the green light to a slow motion car crash like this."
Metro writer James Baldock found that the trailer was "so gut wrenchingly bad" and that "if the movie lives up to its two minute preview – [it] is set to be the greatest abomination to grace the big screen since The Emoji Movie." He finished by writing "Listen carefully, and you can just about hear the sound of Beatrix Potter, turning furiously in her grave." On November 7, a new trailer for the United Kingdom was released.
Peter Rabbit grossed $115.3 million in the United States and Canada, and $235.9 million in other territories (including $20.5 million in Australia), for a worldwide total of $351.2 million, against a production budget of $50 million.
In the United States and Canada, the film was released alongside Fifty Shades Freed and The 15:17 to Paris, and was projected to gross around $16 million from 3,725 theaters in its opening weekend, with some estimates as high as $25 million. It ended up making $25 million over the weekend, finishing second at the box office behind Fifty Shades ($38.8 million). The film dropped 30% in its second weekend to $17.5 million ($23.4 million over the four-day Martin Luther King Jr. weekend), finishing second behind newcomer Black Panther.
In the UK, Peter Rabbit became the biggest family film of 2018, overtaking Pixar's Coco with $56.3 million. Totals from other markets include China ($26.5 million), Australia ($20.2 million), France ($12.3 million) and Germany ($12.1 million).
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 64% based on 143 reviews and an average rating of 5.76/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Peter Rabbit updates Beatrix Potter's classic characters with colorfully agreeable results that should entertain younger viewers while admittedly risking the wrath of purists." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 51 out of 100 based on 26 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale.
Olly Richards at Empire gave the film 3 out of 5 stars, praising the "splendid" animation and Gleeson's performance, though he felt that the 40-year old Corden had been miscast. Chris Nashawaty at Entertainment Weekly gave the film a 'B' grade, saying it was "clever, and funny, and moves as fast as a tyke on a sugar bender", noting its differences with the source material. Robbie Collin at The Daily Telegraph gave it 2 out of 5 stars, praising the "appealing double act" of Gleeson and Byrne but comparing the film unfavourably to Paddington and criticising the characterisation of Peter Rabbit. Susan Wloszczyna on RogerEbert.com gave it 2 out of 4 stars, agreeing that Peter "goes from likably cheeky chap to sneering sadist".
In the first week after the film's release, groups in multiple countries criticized it for "allergy bullying" and called for an apology from Sony. The accusations focused on a scene where Thomas McGregor — whose character has a known severe allergy to blackberries — is pelted with the berries until one enters his mouth, causing him to enter anaphylactic shock and grab for his Epipen. In response, Sony published a statement saying "We sincerely regret not being more aware and sensitive to this issue, and we truly apologize". In his review, Robbie Collin said "...it is a horrible scene – not because allergies are comedically untouchable, but because it makes Peter an irredeemably nasty piece of work."
|Teen Choice Awards||August 12, 2018||Choice Fantasy Movie||Peter Rabbit||Nominated|||
|Choice Fantasy Movie Actor||James Corden||Nominated|
|AACTA Awards||December 3, 2018||Best Production Design||Roger Ford, Lisa Thompson||Won|||
|Best Original Music Score||Dominic Lewis||Nominated|
Sony is developing a sequel set to be released on April 3, 2020. Gluck will return to write and direct the film. Unlike the first film, however, Sony Pictures Animation will not be involved, since The Angry Birds Movie.[clarification needed]
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