The Wildest Animal-Related Incidents On Movies

List Rules
Vote up the stories that would make you think twice about co-starring with a wild animal.

Animals are unpredictable. Movie production is unpredictable. Combine the two and you have hilarity, disaster, or a mixture of both.

But it's not only animals and filmmakers that run wild on set. Animal protection agents often join the chaos. Below is a collection of the wildest clashes between creatures on features.


  • 1
    6 VOTES

    3,000 Locusts Were Sexed For 'Exorcist II'

    Steven R. Kutcher's career in showbuzziness began when he was asked to handle 3,000 African locusts for the 1977 sequel, Exorcist II: The Heretic. The then-entomology student accepted the job, which included sexing every bug to make sure all were male and thus unable to reproduce (six female locusts were found and removed). When his wards weren't annoying the hell out of Linda Blair and Richard Burton, Kutcher contained the patriarchal plague in large cages filled with rye grass. “That was really an interesting experience,” Kutcher put it mildly.

    His six months of work on Exorcist II ballooned to 45 years in Hollywood, as Kutcher is still the industry's premier Bug Wrangler. Another of his notable gigs was staging a spider talent show for Sam Raimi to pick the non-human star of Spider-Man. Steatoda grossa (false widow) was the winner.

  • 2
    33 VOTES

    Tony Todd Got $1,000 For Every Bee Sting He Received On 'Candyman'

    Over 200,000 real honeybees were used for 1992's Candyman, many of which covered Tony Todd as he played the titular apparition. Despite numerous on-set safety measures, Todd and his co-workers got stung. At least in Todd's case, the stings came with a financial reward:

    I negotiated a bonus of $1,000 for every sting during the bee scene. And I got stung 23 times. Everything that’s worth making has to involve some sort of pain. Once I realized it was an important part of who Candyman was, I embraced it. It was like putting on a beautiful coat.

    That's $23,000 for just under two dozen bee stings. Would you accept that exchange?

  • 3
    19 VOTES

    A Cinematographer Was Scalped By A Lion On 'Roar'

    Roar was a cat-astrophe. The film about human-animal cohabitation employed over 100 big cats and other wild animals, which shredded the cast and crew. Even while counting numerous bites, several broken bones, multiple cases of gangrene, blood poisoning, and the near-loss of an eye, the injury to Jan de Bont stands out as particularly gruesome.

    The cinematographer was scalped by a lion and needed 220 stitches to put his skin back onto his skull. He recovered, as did the rest of his mangled co-workers. The only deaths were among the animals; police officers killed three lions when they escaped the set.

  • 4
    28 VOTES

    A Lumberman Sawed Off His Own Foot After Suffering A Snake Bite On 'Fitzcarraldo'

    You know a film set is cursed when a snakebite-caused self-amputation barely cracks the top five craziest events. Amid multiple plane crashes, inter-tribal warfare, role-ending dysentery, and a proposed assassination of the lead actor, production of Fitzcarraldo was disrupted by a lumberman's envenomation and hasty response in the Peruvian jungle. Recalled director Werner Herzog:

    He was bitten by a snake which is the most dangerous of all of them [likely a fer-de-lance]. And he had dropped his chainsaw and he looked at his foot, where he was bitten, and within seconds he started the chainsaw again and cut off his own foot, which actually saved his life.

    More of these chaotic events are chronicled in the making-of documentary Burden of Dreams.