Tom Hanks is certainly considered to be one of the finest actors currently working in Hollywood. Having scooped two Academy Awards, and starred in some of the most successful blockbusters of all time, Hanks is a globally adored household name. But, there’s one movie of his you may not have seen (or heard of): a little under-the-radar 1989 cop comedy called Turner and Hooch, which is certainly one of his most underrated flicks.
This is pretty much a buddy-cop movie, except one of the characters is a dog. Hooch is a canine, and the only witness to his owner’s murder, so he is taken in by small-town cop Scott Turner. Together the two investigate and try to piece together the puzzle of what happened while bringing down the bad guys. Here are some fun facts you never knew about his criminally (sorry) underrated movie.
It took ages to cast Hooch
The producers actually spent a long while looking for exactly the right type of dog for the role of Hooch. This meant going through many different breeds until they found the perfect breed for the part – eventually settling on the Dogue de Bordeaux. In fact, there were actually multiple dogs that were cast in the role of Hooch – Beasley, a 17-month-old played the bulk of the scenes, however, there were four dogs in total fulfilling the role.
The original director was fired
The sets of Hollywood movies have their fair share of controversy and incident, and Turner and Hooch was no different. Directors get fired from projects and replaced pretty regularly, but two weeks into the shoot? That’s pretty crazy! But that’s exactly what happened here with original director Henry Winkler being fired just 13 days into the shoot. Winkler, best-known for portraying The Fonz in Happy Days, was fired following creative differences with Hanks and was replaced by Roger Spottiswoode.
Hanks carried a clicker
They say never work with animals and children, and for good reason. On a set, the dogs will generally look at the trainer, who stands beside the camera. To ensure the dogs didn’t keep doing this on film, they were trained to look at whoever had a special clicker. So Hanks would take and use the clicker before each shot, ensuring the dog kept character and would look at him on cue.
There was an alternate ending
The ending of the movie is very sad and sees Hooch die after taking a bullet for Turner. However, screenwriter Daniel Petrie Jr. revealed that there was actually an alternate ending as well. One ending saw Hooch die, while another had him survive when test screenings were shown. Results indicated almost no difference between audiences reactions, so it was decided to go for the more emotionally charged ending of Hooch dying.
Turner and Hooch is a great movie and one you can watch again and again. We never grow tired of this ‘80s classic, and there are so many great things we never knew about this flick. These are just a few of the cool and fun facts about Turner and Hooch that we think will increase your enjoyment next time you watch it.