Crocodile Dundee: The Iconic Australian Film That Defined a Generation

Crocodile Dundee
Crocodile Dundee

Crocodile Dundee is a beloved Australian character known for his charming wit, rugged good looks, and adventurous spirit. The character was first introduced in the 1986 film “Crocodile Dundee,” which became an instant classic and spawned two sequels as well as a television series. The films follow the adventures of Mick “Crocodile” Dundee as he navigates life in the Australian Outback and later in New York City.

The origins of Crocodile Dundee can be traced back to the true-life exploits of Rod Ansell, an Australian crocodile hunter who survived a harrowing ordeal in the wilderness. Paul Hogan, who co-wrote and starred in the film, was inspired by Ansell’s story and created the character of Mick Dundee as a tribute to the rugged and adventurous spirit of the Australian people. The film was a massive critical and commercial success, grossing over $328 million worldwide and earning Hogan a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor.

Key Takeaways

  • Crocodile Dundee is a beloved Australian character known for his charming wit, rugged good looks, and adventurous spirit.
  • The character was first introduced in the 1986 film “Crocodile Dundee,” which became an instant classic and spawned two sequels as well as a television series.
  • The films follow the adventures of Mick “Crocodile” Dundee as he navigates life in the Australian Outback and later in New York City.
Crocodile Dundee
Crocodile Dundee

Origins of Crocodile Dundee

Inspiration

Crocodile Dundee is a beloved character that has become a cultural icon. The inspiration for the character came from a real-life Australian man named Rod Ansell, who was a crocodile hunter and bushman. Ansell gained notoriety in the late 1970s after surviving for two months in the Australian wilderness. His story inspired the character of Mick Dundee, a rugged and charismatic crocodile hunter who becomes a fish-out-of-water in New York City.

Creation of the Character

The character of Mick Dundee was created by Paul Hogan, who also played the role in the film series. Hogan was a successful comedian and television host in Australia before creating the character of Dundee. The first Crocodile Dundee film was released in 1986 and was a massive success, grossing over $328 million at the box office. The film was also critically acclaimed, receiving an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay.

Hogan’s portrayal of Dundee was praised for its authenticity and charm. The character was a departure from the typical Hollywood action hero, as he relied on his wit and charm rather than brute force to overcome obstacles. Dundee’s iconic catchphrase “That’s not a knife, this is a knife” has become a cultural touchstone and is still referenced in popular culture today.

In conclusion, the character of Crocodile Dundee was inspired by the real-life experiences of an Australian bushman and was brought to life by the comedic talents of Paul Hogan. The character’s unique blend of ruggedness and charm has made him a beloved cultural icon.

Plot Overview

Crocodile Dundee

Crocodile Dundee is a 1986 Australian comedy-action film. The plot follows the story of Michael J. “Crocodile” Dundee, an Australian crocodile hunter who lives in the Australian outback. He runs a safari business with his trusted friend and mentor Walter Reilly. After surviving a crocodile attack, a New York journalist named Sue Charlton arrives to interview Mick about how he survived and learns more about the crocodile hunter. The two develop a romantic relationship, and Mick accompanies Sue back to New York City, where he experiences culture shock and various adventures.

Crocodile Dundee II

Crocodile Dundee II is a 1988 Australian-American adventure comedy film. The plot follows Mick Dundee and Sue Charlton, who are now living together in New York City. They become embroiled in a plot involving Colombian drug lords when Sue’s ex-husband is kidnapped. The couple travels to Australia, where Mick uses his tracking skills to rescue Sue’s ex-husband and defeat the drug lords.

Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles

Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles is a 2001 Australian-American comedy film. The plot follows Mick Dundee and Sue Charlton, who are now married and living in the Australian outback with their young son. Mick is invited to Los Angeles by a movie studio to provide his expertise on a film about a detective investigating a murder in the Australian outback. While in Los Angeles, Mick and his family become embroiled in a plot involving art theft and a Hollywood movie producer.

Main Characters

Michael J. ‘Crocodile’ Dundee

Michael J. ‘Crocodile’ Dundee, played by Paul Hogan, is the main character of the “Crocodile Dundee” film series. He is a crocodile hunter and is known for his rugged charm and quick wit. Dundee was inspired by the true-life exploits of Rod Ansell, a crocodile hunter from the Australian Outback. Dundee is portrayed as a man of few words, preferring actions to words. He is also shown as being very resourceful, able to survive in the wilderness with only the bare essentials.

Sue Charlton

Sue Charlton, played by Linda Kozlowski, is a New York City journalist who travels to the Australian Outback to interview Michael Dundee. She is initially skeptical of Dundee’s abilities as a crocodile hunter but soon comes to respect and admire him. Charlton is portrayed as being intelligent, independent, and resourceful. She is also shown as being very determined, never giving up on a story or a cause she believes in.

Walter Reilly

Walter Reilly, played by John Meillon, is a friend of Dundee’s and a bar owner in the Australian Outback. He is portrayed as being friendly, jovial, and always ready for a good time. Reilly is also shown as being very loyal to his friends, always willing to lend a hand when needed. He is a supporting character in the film series, but his presence adds to the overall charm and humor of the films.

In summary, the main characters in the “Crocodile Dundee” film series are Michael J. ‘Crocodile’ Dundee, Sue Charlton, and Walter Reilly. Each character brings their own unique personality and strengths to the films, making them memorable and enjoyable to watch.

Cultural Impact

Influence on Australian Stereotypes

Crocodile Dundee, starring Paul Hogan, had a significant impact on Australian stereotypes and how they were perceived globally. The character of Mick Dundee, a rugged, outback adventurer with a good sense of humor, became the archetypal representation of the Australian male.

The film helped to reinforce the perception of Australians as laid-back, friendly, and adventurous people. It also highlighted the country’s unique wildlife and vast, unspoiled landscapes. The character’s catchphrase, “That’s not a knife, this is a knife,” became a popular cultural reference and is still used today to describe a situation where someone is outmatched.

Global Reception

Crocodile Dundee was a massive success both in Australia and internationally. The film grossed over $328 million worldwide and became the second-highest-grossing film of 1986. It was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

The film’s success helped to boost tourism to Australia, with many visitors wanting to experience the country’s rugged outback and unique wildlife. The success of the film also paved the way for other Australian films to gain international recognition.

Overall, Crocodile Dundee has had a lasting impact on Australian culture and how the country is perceived globally. The film’s legacy has helped to reinforce the image of Australians as friendly, adventurous, and laid-back people who love the great outdoors.

Behind the Scenes

Production

Crocodile Dundee is an Australian-American comedy film that was released in 1986. The movie was produced by John Cornell and directed by Peter Faiman. The production budget for the film was around $8.8 million, and it grossed over $328 million worldwide. The movie’s success led to two sequels, Crocodile Dundee II and Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles.

Direction

Peter Faiman was chosen to direct the movie due to his success in the Australian television industry. Faiman’s experience in comedy and his familiarity with Australian culture helped him to bring the story of Crocodile Dundee to life. He worked closely with the film’s writer and star, Paul Hogan, to ensure that the movie’s humor and characters were authentic to Australian culture.

Casting

Paul Hogan was the driving force behind the creation of Crocodile Dundee. He not only wrote the screenplay but also starred in the film as the titular character, Mick Dundee. Hogan’s natural charm and charisma helped to make the character of Mick Dundee an instant fan favorite. Linda Kozlowski was cast as the female lead, Sue Charlton. Kozlowski’s chemistry with Hogan helped to make the on-screen romance between Mick and Sue believable. The supporting cast included a mix of Australian and American actors, including John Meillon, Mark Blum, and David Gulpilil.

Overall, the success of Crocodile Dundee can be attributed to the strong collaboration between the film’s production team, director, and cast. The movie’s unique blend of Australian humor and culture, along with its charming characters, helped to make it a cultural phenomenon that is still beloved by audiences today.

Legacy

Crocodile Dundee left a lasting legacy on the film industry and popular culture. The film’s success led to a number of sequels and spin-offs, as well as references in other media.

Sequels and Spin-offs

After the success of the first film, two sequels were made: “Crocodile Dundee II” and “Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles”. While not as successful as the original, they still garnered a significant following.

In addition to the sequels, a television series titled “Crocodile Dundee: The Series” was produced in the late 1990s. The show followed the adventures of Mick Dundee and his partner, Sue Charlton, as they traveled the world.

Crocodile Dundee’s impact on popular culture can be seen in a variety of ways. The film’s iconic scene featuring Mick Dundee’s use of a large knife has been referenced and parodied in numerous films and television shows. The character of Mick Dundee has also been referenced in music, with the Australian band Men at Work referencing him in their hit song “Down Under”.

Crocodile Dundee’s legacy has also extended to tourism in Australia. The film’s success led to an increase in tourism to the country, with many visitors seeking to experience the outback and other locations featured in the film.

Overall, Crocodile Dundee’s impact on popular culture and the film industry cannot be overstated. The character of Mick Dundee has become an iconic figure, and the film’s legacy continues to be felt today.

Frequently Asked Questions

What other movies has Paul Hogan starred in?

Paul Hogan, the star of Crocodile Dundee, has acted in several other movies throughout his career. Some of his notable films include “Lightning Jack,” “Almost an Angel,” and “Flipper.” He has also made cameo appearances in movies such as “Charlie & Boots” and “The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee.”

How big was the knife used in Crocodile Dundee?

The knife used in Crocodile Dundee was a custom-made Bowie knife with a blade length of approximately 13 inches (33 cm). The knife was designed by the movie’s production team and was intended to be an iconic symbol of the character of Mick Dundee.

Was Crocodile Dundee actually filmed in Australia?

Yes, Crocodile Dundee was primarily filmed in various locations throughout Australia. Some of the filming locations included Kakadu National Park, the Northern Territory, and the Gold Coast of Queensland. However, some scenes were also filmed in New York City.

How old was Paul Hogan when he starred in Crocodile Dundee?

Paul Hogan was 46 years old when he starred in Crocodile Dundee. The movie was released in 1986, and Hogan was born on October 8th, 1939.

Who was the inspiration for the character of Crocodile Dundee?

The character of Crocodile Dundee was inspired by a real-life Australian bushman named Rod Ansell. Ansell survived for 56 days in the wilderness after his boat capsized, and his experiences were the basis for many of the adventures depicted in the movie.

What is the box office performance of Crocodile Dundee?

Crocodile Dundee was a commercial success, grossing over $328 million worldwide. The movie was the highest-grossing film of 1986 in the United States and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

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