Born To Be Wild

Born to be Wild is the heartwarming story of a young boy, Rick, and his quest to free Katie, a Gorilla that had been stolen from her family out of the jungle at a very young age and is now on her way to be a side show at a local flea market. Rick is a rebellious 15-year-old whose mother has had a tough time trying to keep him in line after Dad walked out on them. Rick's mother is currently doing work on Ape behavior at her research center. She has been working with Katie, a very intelligent Gorilla, teaching her sign language. Unfortunately, Rick's mom has only leased Katie from her legal owner, Mr. Charnley, also the owner of the local flea market. He refuses to renew her lease, as his other Gorilla, Bobo, who had been his side show feature, died. He now intends to replace Bobo with Katie, and does just that. Rick, upon seeing Katie in this horrible little caged-in exhibition, decides there is nothing else to do but break Katie out. He hides in the flea market bathroom until after the store has closed and releases Katie. He and Katie evade the night guards and take off in Rick's mom's van. Rick goes by Lacey Carr's house, a friend from school, hoping she can help him find a place for Katie to hide. She gives him the name of her Uncle Max, who lives in Washington, telling Rick that her uncle will be able to help Rick get Katie across the Canadian border, where Katie will be safe. We watch as Rick and Katie start on their long journey to Uncle Max's house, and along the way, boy and Gorilla become life long friends.

  • Starring: Peter Boyle, Helen Shaver and Will Horneff
  • Director(s): John Gray
  • Producer(s): Fine Animal Productions
  • Screenwriter(s): Paul Young, John Bunzel
  • Distributor: Warner Brothers, Inc.
  • Release Date: Thursday, January 26, 1995

Featured Animal Action

Although this movie revolves around Katie the Gorilla, all Gorilla action was done with animatronics and the aid of an actor in a Gorilla suit. No real Gorillas were used in the making of this film. Live animal action is minimal. In one scene at Max's house, Max's dog is seen lifting his leg on a policeman. The dog was filmed close up standing next to the policeman from an overhead angle. The dog's trainer was out of camera range holding a fake plastic dog leg at the side of the dog. The trainer then squirted a water gun from underneath the dog, making it appear as though the dog relieved himself on the policeman. In another scene, you see approximately a dozen cows in a fenced in area alongside an old country road. Max, Rick, Lacey and Katie, in trying to elude the police, swerve off the road and crash their van through the fence, landing in a large muddy ditch. The cows were on the far end of the area. The van was never close to the cows, nor did it appear to be.