Ladies and Gentlemen it is Groundhog Day.
For those that are not aware, this is the day we discover whether we are in for more winter or not. As you’ve probably deemed this is all determined by a groundhog. A groundhog that will emerge from it’s den and either see it’s shadow, (which would mean more winter), or not.
This is a tradition rooted in Pennsylvania German it’s first know occurrence in America was in 1841. And though I’m very curious to know if we are in for more cold weather…
I want to focus on what really made Groundhog Day something special. And that’s the movie by the same name.
It’s a movie that chronicles the transformation of an ornery weather man named Phil as he is forced to relieve the same day time and time again. Phil – played by Bill Murray – struggles with, and ultimately addresses those issues which had kept his life an unfulfilled misery. Ultimately he relives February 2nd, 38 times. Whew.
What you might not have known is that Tom Hanks was originally cast for the role of Phil, but director Harold Ramis thought he was too nice. So in steps Bill Murray.
And yet, Ramis and Murray argued constantly while this movie was being made. Murray thought the film should be more philosophical, while Ramis thought it should be a comedy.
Too my eyes, it seems like Murray tipped the scales a little. Perhaps it’s this that lead the United States National Film Registry to add it to its’ list calling it – culturally, historically and aesthetically significant.
Anywhoo, on this day I wish two things for you. One that little groundhog sees no shadow (unless of course you are a snowboarder – then I wish the opposite). And secondly a bit of reflection.