- “71% of the Earth's surface is covered by water. That's a big place to find one fish.”
Finding Nemo is a 2003 American computer-animated comedy-drama adventure film written and directed by Andrew Stanton, released by Walt Disney Pictures on May 30, 2003 and the fifth film produced by Pixar Animation Studios. It tells the story of the over-protective clownfish named Marlin (Albert Brooks) who, along with a regal tang named Dory (Ellen DeGeneres), searches for his son Nemo (Alexander Gould), who has been abducted in Sydney Harbour. It is Pixar's first film to be released theatrically during the Northern Hemisphere summer. The film was re-released in 3D on September 14, 2012 and it was released on Blu-ray for the first time on December 4, 2012.
The film received critical acclaiming and won the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. It was the second highest-grossing film of 2003, behind The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, earning a total of $867 million worldwide in its initial release. This made it at the time of its release the eighth highest-grossing film of all time worldwide (behind Titanic, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Jurassic Park, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring), the highest-grossing Disney film until it was surpassed by Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest in 2006, the highest-grossing animated film of all time worldwide until it was surpassed by Shrek 2 in 2004 and the highest-grossing animated Disney film until it was surpassed by Toy Story 3 in 2010. Finding Nemo is also the best-selling DVD of all time, with over 40 million copies sold as of 2006 (which was both before and after the release of the 2006 film Cars), and was the highest-grossing G-rated film of all time, before Pixar's own Toy Story 3 overtook it. It is also the 10th highest-grossing animated film of all time, the 9th highest grossing CGI animated film of all time, and the 49th highest-grossing film of all time.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Cast
- 3 Production
- 4 Home media
- 5 Reception
- 6 Music
- 7 Theme park attractions
- 8 Video game
- 9 Sequel
- 10 Trivia
- 11 Goofs
- 12 Cameos
- 13 Releases
- 14 Gallery
- 15 References
- 16 External links
Two clownfish, Marlin and his wife Coral, admire the view from their new home within a sea anemone overlooking the drop off of a coral reef. Below them, their clutch of eggs lies hidden in a small hole. Excited to be first-time parents, they discuss names, Coral expressing her fondness for "Nemo". They flirt playfully with each other until Coral's attention is distracted by the appearance of a barracuda. Ignoring Marlin's order to hide, Coral moves to protect her eggs and the barracuda lunges. Marlin rushes in but the barracuda knocks him out with a flick of its tail, sending him back into the anemone. When he comes to that night, he discovers that Coral and the eggs are gone but manages to find a single surviving egg with a scratch on its right side. Vowing to protect it, he names the codling Nemo.
Marlin raises Nemo in a secure anemone further into the reef. On the morning of his first day of school, an excited Nemo wakes his father, flapping his tiny right fin wildly. Marlin helps him prepare for the day, showing to be overprotective and doubtful of Nemo's ability to take care of himself. Marlin escorts Nemo to school - along the way, Nemo asks Marlin how old sea turtles live to be; Marlin doesn't have an answer. Mr. Ray, the local teacher, takes the children on a field trip. When Marlin learns that they are going to the drop-off, he swims after them in a panic. Upon arrival, Nemo follows three of his peers, bored with Mr. Ray's lesson, to the very edge of the reef where they see a speedboat (misnaming it a "butt") anchored in the distance. They dare each other to swim out into open water to touch the butt as Marlin arrives and yells at Nemo for endangering himself. While talking to Mr. Ray, Marlin fails to notice Nemo swimming fiercely out to sea, stopping beneath the boat. In an act of defiance, Nemo touches the boat with his fin and starts to swim back. Moments later, a scuba diver appears behind him as the three peers scream. Nemo is calling for help, so Marlin tries to save him. However, he is prevented from saving Nemo as a second diver appears. Mr. Ray tells the three peers to take cover as one of the divers catches Nemo in a net. The other diver takes a photo of Marlin. Regaining his sight, Marlin swims after the divers as the boat departs the reef. The diver places Nemo in a cooler full of water and accidentally drops his mask into the water.
Marlin swims after the boat but eventually loses the trail. He swims to the sea floor, begging passing schools of fish for help until he bumps into a blue tang named Dory. She claims to have seen the boat and leads a thankful Marlin in the direction it went but, as they swim along, she becomes lax and even tries to evade Marlin when she notices him behind her. When she confronts him, he questions her and is then told that she has short-term memory loss. Dumbfounded, Marlin turns to leave but is stopped by a great white shark who introduces himself as Bruce. He invites Marlin and Dory to a get-together he's having and, despite Marlin's objections, escorts them to his lair in a sunken submarine surrounded by live sea mines. They meet Bruce's fellow sharks, hammerhead Anchor and mako Chum, before beginning an assembly where they pledge to abstain from eating fish.
When Marlin spots the diver's mask stuck on a shard of metal he discovers markings on the strap that might provide a clue to Nemo's whereabouts. Dory picks up the mask to see if the sharks can read but Marlin tries to take it back, engaging in a tug-of-war before the mask snaps into Dory's face, causing a nosebleed. The smell of the blood excites Bruce's inner carnivore and, though Anchor and Chum try to stage an intervention by holding him back, he mindlessly chases Marlin and Dory through the submarine, taking hold of the mask in his mouth in the process. During this time, Dory reveals that she can read human words before she and Marlin take refuge in a torpedo well. Dory releases the torpedo which wedges in Bruce's mouth, giving Marlin enough time to grab the mask and flee back into the well. Bruce throws the torpedo away and Anchor and Chum are able to regain his attention in time before the torpedo sets off one of the mines, causing a violent chain reaction of explosions from the others.
Meanwhile, Nemo is placed into a new container revealed to be a fish tank in a dentist's office. There he meets a few of the original inhabitants including Bloat the puffer fish, Bubbles the yellow tang, Peach the ochre sea star, Gurgle the royal gramma, Jacques the French-accented Pacific cleaner shrimp, and Deb a black-tailed humbug who believes her reflection to be her twin sister, Flo. A pelican named Nigel perches himself on the window near the tank and greets Nemo after briefly discussing dental procedures with the other fish. He's shooed away by the dentist who shows Nemo a picture of his niece, Darla, whom Nemo has been promised to. The other fish cringe and call her a fish killer ('she wouldn't stop shaking the bag'). Afraid and wanting to go home, Nemo backs away and gets stuck in the suction tube of the filter. The other fish go to help him but Gill, a wise and old moorish idol with large scars on his right side, tells Nemo that he must escape himself, giving Nemo instructions and encouragement. Nemo manages to free himself and Peach relates his strength to his ocean origins, like Gill.
Marlin and Dory awake in the aftermath of the explosions to find the submarine hanging precariously over the edge of a deep ravine. Their movements cause the submarine to suddenly tip forward and collide with the rock wall of the far side. During the chaos and blinded temporarily by the dust, Dory accidentally drops the mask into the darkness below. Marlin gives it up for lost but Dory cheerfully takes him into the depths, telling him to just keep swimming. After a moment, they come upon a mysterious and alluring light which, unfortunately, belongs to a hungry anglerfish. During the chase, Marlin finds the mask and distracts the anglerfish long enough so that Dory can read the address written on it. Marlin then leads the anglerfish towards the mask and traps it using the strap of the mask as a tether. Dory recites the address "P. Sherman 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney" and is ecstatic to find that she can remember it.
Back in the fish tank, Nemo is woken by Jacques who takes him to the tank's toy volcano, Mt. Wannahockaloogie, where the other fish perform an initiation to include Nemo in their club, giving him the nickname "Shark Bait". Gill then proposes a plan to escape the fish tank by blocking the filter which would cause the tank to become so dirty that the dentist will have to manually clean it and place the fish in baggies on the counter, allowing them to roll out the window to the street, cross it, and land in the harbor. Though the other fish are skeptical, Gill asserts that Nemo is small enough to fit into the filter and make it back through the tubing. Nemo agrees to do it.
Marlin and Dory continue their journey and request directions to Sydney from a school of moonfish. They tell Marlin and Dory to take the East Australian Current (EAC) after an impressive display of their synchronized impressions. When they come to a rocky trench, Marlin resolves to swim over it to avoid the ominous enclosure. With the EAC in view, Dory becomes distracted and is stung by a tiny jellyfish. As Marlin tends to her, they are suddenly surrounded by a school of larger jellyfish. Finding that the tops don't sting, Marlin and Dory bounce on them as they race out of the school. Marlin makes it out first and, when Dory doesn't appear, goes back in to retrieve her. He finds her unconscious and scarred from the stinging and struggles to carry her out as he is repeatedly stung. He makes it but, stung and exhausted, blacks out as a large shadow descends on him.
Nemo waits in the fish tank with Gill who is keeping an eye on the dentist for an opportune moment to jam the filter. Noticing Nemo looking at his scars, Gill explains that during his first escape attempt he landed on dental tools, though he was aiming for the toilet. He says that all drains lead to the ocean and that fish weren't meant to live in a tank. Peach cries out that the dentist is going for a bathroom break which cues Nemo to leap into the filter's toxic chamber. Gill tosses him a pebble and gives instructions as Nemo wedges the fan, stopping the flow of water. However, as he is moving through the pipe back into the tank, the pebble unhinges and the fan turns on again, sucking Nemo backwards toward the buzzsaw-like blades. The other fish hurry and send Nemo a tall piece of kelp. Nemo separates a portion of the kelp, but grabs onto it. Shaken, Peach asks Gill not to send Nemo in the filter again. Sullen and realizing his plan put Nemo in grave danger, Gill says they're done.
Meanwhile, Marlin wakes up to find himself resting on the shell of a sea turtle who introduces himself as Crush. Incredulous, he discovers that he's also riding along the EAC with dozens of other sea turtles and large fish. Marlin is reunited with Dory who sports a scar on her side from the jellyfish stings and meets Crush's son, Squirt. Marlin also meets Crush's spirited son, Squirt. While playing with the other sea turtles, Squirt is accidentally propelled outside the current. Marlin is panicky at first however Crush convinces him that Squirt can handle himself. Squirt is able to swim his way back into the current and gleefully joins his father. Marlin sees that even the youngest among the turtles can learn to survive in the ocean. Having been told some details of their journey and the encounter with the jellyfish, Squirt and the other hatchlings ask Marlin to tell them the rest of the story. Hesitant at first, Marlin relents and begins with when Nemo was abducted. His story is not ignored; it's passed on from turtle to fish to dolphin to bird and onward until it comes to the ears of none other than Nigel the pelican. Hearing Nemo's name, he flies off to the dentist's office. There, Nemo tries to apologize to Gill for the botched escape attempt but Gill says that his eagerness to escape almost cost Nemo his life and that nothing should be worth that. Nigel arrives, crashing into the closed window, but recovers and is able to tell Nemo the story of Marlin's journey as it was told to him. Renewed and invigorated, Nemo takes it upon himself to try the filter attempt again by stopping the fan in the toxic chamber and, this time, succeeds.
Marlin and Dory continue along the EAC until they come to their exit point where Crush and Squirt show them where to depart the main line. After a confusing instructional speech on "proper exiting technique" Squirt pushes them into the exit flume and back into open water. Thanking Crush, Marlin asks the turtle how old he is; Crush answers that's he is 150 years old and still young. They are instructed to continue through a large purplish plume of plankton to Sydney. However, they soon become lost and Dory resolves to ask a distant fish for directions. Though Marlin is afraid at first, he decides to trust Dory and she calls out to the distant figure. When she sees its a blue whale, she starts speaking 'whale', asking for help. Marlin grows frustrated with her again just as a whale approaches from behind and pulls them into its mouth.
Back in the fish tank, a couple of days' worth without a filter has rendered every surface covered in green algae. When the dentist sees this, he opts to clean the tank the following morning before Darla's arrival. Nemo looks out the window to the harbor outside, wondering if his father is there already, waiting for him.
In the whale's mouth, Marlin and Dory remain safe with enough water to swim in. Though Dory is complacent, Marlin futilely attempts to break out by ramming into the whale's baleen. He yells at Dory for claiming to have spoken whale, calling her insane and lamenting over the fact that he'll never see his son again. Dory tries to console him as the whale emits a call and the water in the mouth begins to drain. The whale then lifts his tongue to push Marlin and Dory to the back of the throat but Marlin refuses to let go until Dory assures him that, though she doesn't know what will happen, everything will be all right. Marlin closes his eyes and releases his grip on the whale's tongue. They fall to the back of the throat where they are then shot out of the whale's blowhole, landing in the harbor of Sydney. Overjoyed to have finally arrived, Marlin sends his thanks to the whale and encourages Dory to help him find the boat that took Nemo.
The following morning, Peach wakes up with the horrified realization that the tank is suddenly clean. The fish find that the dentist had installed a new talking prototype high-tech filter named the AquaScum 2003 the night before and, though they are impressed with the fluid functionality of the device, they worry about what they will do when Darla arrives. The dentist suddenly pulls Nemo up in a fishnet but Gill and the other fish swim into it and instruct Nemo to swim down, pulling the net into the tank and away from the dentist's grip. Despite their efforts, Nemo is quickly scooped up in a plastic bag and set on the counter. The other fish tell Nemo to roll out the window but, before he can get far, the dentist places the baggie in a tin to keep him from moving. Gill tries to assure Nemo that he'll be ok but, at that moment, Darla crashes into the office.
Marlin and Dory continue to search the harbor, both tired from looking at boats all night, when they are scooped up in the beak of a pelican. The pelican lands on a nearby dock and swallows them but Marlin refuses to have come this far just to be breakfast. He lodges himself and Dory in the pelican's neck, causing it to start choking. Nearby, Nigel wakes from a nap to notice the pelican, Gerald, choking and flies down to assist. He hits Gerald in the back, expelling Marlin and Dory from his mouth onto the dock where Marlin shouts out that he needs to find Nemo. Recognizing the name, Nigel turns to Gerald excitedly and tells him this is the fish that they've been hearing about. When he turns back to Marlin, he sees that he and Dory have flopped their way towards the end of the dock. Nigel chases after them but they are all forced to freeze when they notice that they are surrounded by hungry seagulls. When Nigel tells Marlin that he knows his son, Nemo, Marlin flips in excitement, causing the seagulls to rush forward, but Nigel manages to take Dory and Marlin in his mouth and fly off.
Darla torments the fish in the tank before going in to see her uncle. As he picks up the baggie with Nemo inside, he notices Nemo floating upside down. The other fish quickly realize that Nemo is feigning death so that he can be flushed down the toilet but the dentist moves towards the trash can just as Nigel arrives in the window. Marlin forces Nigel into the office and the dentist drops the baggie. Marlin sees Nemo floating and believes him to be dead as the dentist grabs Nigel and violently forces him out the window again, Marlin calling out to Nemo. Hearing his name, Nemo pops upright but Darla takes the bag and starts shaking it, trying to "wake up the fishy". Gill lodges himself into the top of Mt. Wannahockaloogie as the rest of the Tank Gang push the volcano and the force of the bubbles propels him out of the tank. He lands on Darla's head and she drops Nemo's bag on a table full of tools, breaking the plastic. Gill falls off Darla's head next to Nemo and flips him into the sink and down the drain using a magnifying scope as a catapult. The dentist quickly puts Gill back into the tank where he can breathe. Gill tells the others not to worry about Nemo; that all drains lead to the ocean.
Nemo travels down the piping until he reaches a water treatment filtration, a series of piping that travels on the sea floor out of the harbor. Nigel flies out of the harbor with Marlin and Dory and releases them into the water, offering his condolences. Distraught, Marlin thanks Dory for helping him and begins to swim away. She asks him to stay with her and that her memory is better when he's around, that she doesn't want to forget. Marlin refuses and swims away, leaving her alone.
Nemo emerges from the piping and calls out for his father. He finds Dory swimming confusedly under a buoy, saying that she's lost someone but can't remember. Nemo offers to search with her and Dory happily complies, though she doesn't recognize him. As they swim together, Dory comes upon a piece of piping and reads "Sydney" on it. Suddenly, all of her memories come back to her and she rushes at Nemo, hugging him fiercely, before leading him in the direction Marlin went. They find out that Marlin headed towards fishing grounds and reunite with him amongst a large school of fish. The school of fish then cries out in panic as a large net from a fishing boat above envelopes them. Dory is caught up in the netting and Nemo says that he must swim in and instruct the fish to swim down. Though Marlin fears for Nemo's safety, he lets go and allows Nemo to do what he can. Marlin instructs the panicked fish from outside the net and they all soon start swimming in synch downwards, pulling the net with them until it finally snaps away from the boat, freeing all the fish. Marlin and Dory find Nemo under the heavy netting - Marlin is stricken with grief, believing Nemo is dead. Nemo regains consciousness and Marlin gently tells him that he found out that sea turtles live to be 150 years old.
Marlin and Nemo come to an understanding and all three go back to their home in the reef. Marlin's demeanor has changed for the better and he is more upbeat and confident in his son's abilities. He takes him to school where Dory is dropped off by Bruce, Anchor, and Chum who have included Dory in their vegetarian program. Nemo hugs his father before heading off on another field trip with Mr. Ray. Marlin watches them leave, knowing that his son will be all right.
Back at the dental office in Sydney, the dentist curses the high-tech filter which has suddenly stopped working. He complains about having to put all the fish in baggies but notices that they have mysteriously disappeared from the counter. Horns honk out the open window as Peach is the last to cross the street and land herself in the harbor with the other fish. As they float in their baggies, unable to escape confinement, Bloat wonders "now what"?.
In a post-credits stinger, the tiny fish that was Chum's "friend" at the support group is stalked by the anglerfish. As the anglerfish moves in to swallow him, the tiny fish suddenly opens his enormous mouth and swallows the angler.
- Alexander Gould as Nemo, a juvenile clownfish, Marlin's son and the titular tritagonist
- Albert Brooks as Marlin, a male clownfish, Nemo's father and the protagonist
- Ellen DeGeneres as Dory, a Pacific Regal Blue Tang and the deuteragonist
- Willem Dafoe as Gill, a Moorish Idol, and the leader of the group
- Brad Garrett as Bloat, a Pufferfish
- Allison Janney as Peach, a Starfish
- Austin Pendleton as Gurgle, a Royal Gamma
- Stephen Root as Bubbles, a Yellow Tang
- Vicki Lewis as Deb (and "Flo," Deb's reflection), a Four-Striped Damselfish
- Joe Ranft as Jacques, a Pacific Cleaner Shrimp
- Geoffrey Rush as Nigel, a Brown Pelican
- John Ratzenberger as the school of Moonfish
- Andrew Stanton as Crush, a Green sea turtle
- Nicholas Bird as Squirt, a juvenile Sea Turtle, Crush's son
- Bob Peterson as Mr. Ray, a Spotted Eagle Ray, the school bus of the class, and the teacher of the class
- Barry Humphries as Bruce, a Great white shark
- Eric Bana as Anchor, a Hammerhead Shark
- Bruce Spence as Chum, a Mako Shark
- Jordy Ranft as Tad, a juvenile Yellow Longnose Butterflyfish
- Erica Beck as Pearl, a juvenile Flapjack Octopus
- Erik Per Sullivan as Sheldon, a juvenile Seahorse
- Bill Hunter as Dr. Philip Sherman, the dentist
- LuLu Ebeling as Darla, Dr. Sherman's bratty niece
- Elizabeth Perkins as Coral, Marlin's wife
- Carlos Alazraqui - Bill
- Jack Angel - Mr. Johanson
- Dee Bradley Baker - Barracuda (uncredited)
- James S. Baker - Dolphin
- Bob Bergen - Blenny
- Bobby Block
- Susan Blu
- Geoff Brooks - Blue Diver
- Jane Carr - Fish Mom
- Jennifer Darling
- Paul Eiding - Trump
- Jessie Flower
- Aaron Fors
- Leland Grossman
- Bradley Trevor Greive - Male Albatross
- Jess Harnell - Seagulls
- Rodger Bumpass - Gerald (uncredited)
- Lili Ishida
- Marc John Jefferies
- Caroline Kindred
- Oliver Kindred
- Noah Luke
- Sherry Lynn - Big Fish
- Danny Mann - Little Fish
- Andrew McDonough
- Mickie McGowan - Barbara
- Rove McManus - Bernie, Baz
- Alec Medlock - Swordfish
- Laura Marano - Sea Turtle Kid
- Vanessa Marano - Sea Turtle Kid
- Nicole Miller
- Laraine Newman - Female Albatross
- Annelise Nolting
- Lisa Peers-Lyleson
- Bob Peterson
- Jeff Pidgeon
- Phil Proctor - Bob
- Jan Rabson - Seagulls, Mr. Tucker and Prime Minister
- Katherine Ringgold - Kathy
- Daryl Sabara - Sea Turtle Kid
- Evan Sabara - Sea Turtle Kid
- David Ian Salter - Kung Fu Crab
- Emmott Shoemaker
- Eliza Schneider
- Andrew Stanton - New Zealand Lobster and Seagulls
- Ben Stanton - Jimmy
- Lee Unkrich - Baz
- Jim Ward - Ted
- Frank Welker - Anglerfish and Whale (uncredited)
- Kali Whitehurst
The inspiration for Nemo was made up of multiple experiences. The idea goes back to when director Andrew Stanton was a child when he loved going to the dentist to see the fish tank, assuming that the fish were from the ocean and wanted to go home. In 1992 shortly after his son was born, he and his family took a trip to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom (which was called Marine World at the time). There, he saw the shark tube and various exhibits he felt that the underwater world could be done beautifully in computer animation. Later, in 1997 he took his son for a walk in the park but found that he was over protecting him constantly and lost an opportunity to have any "father-son experiences" on that day. In an interview with National Geographic magazine, he stated that the idea for the characters of Marlin and Nemo came from a photograph of two clownfish peeking out of an anemone: "It was so arresting. I had no idea what kind of fish they were, but I couldn't take my eyes off them. And as an entertainer, the fact that they were called clownfish—it was perfect. There's almost nothing more appealing than these little fish that want to play peekaboo with you." Also, clownfish are very colorful and don't tend to come out of an anemone very often, and for a character who has to go on a dangerous journey, Stanton felt a clownfish was the perfect kind of fish for the character.
Pre-production of the film took place in early 1997. Stanton began writing the screenplay during the post-production of A Bug's Life. As such, it began production with a complete screenplay, something that co-director Lee Unkrich called "very unusual for an animated film." The artists took scuba diving lessons so they could go and study the coral reef. The idea for the initiation sequence came from a story conference between Andrew Stanton and Bob Peterson while driving to record the actors. Ellen DeGeneres was cast after Stanton was watching Ellen with his wife and seeing Ellen "change the subject five times before finishing one sentence" as Stanton recalled. There was a pelican character known as Gerald (who in the final film ends up swallowing and choking on Marlin and Dory) who was originally a friend of Nigel. They were going to play against each other as Nigel being neat fastidious while Gerald being scruffy and sloppy. However, the filmmakers could not find an appropriate scene for them that didn't slow the pace of the picture down, so Gerald's character was minimized.
Stanton himself provided the voice of Crush the sea turtle. Stanton originally did the voice for the film's story reel and assumed they would find an actor later. When Stanton's performance was popular in test screenings, Stanton decided to keep his performance in the film. Stanton recorded all his dialogue while lying on a sofa in co-director Lee Unkrich's office.
Crush's son Squirt was voiced by Nicholas Bird, the young son of fellow Pixar director Brad Bird. According to Stanton, the elder Bird was playing a tape recording of his young son around the Pixar studios one day. Stanton felt the voice was "this generation's Thumper" and immediately cast Nicholas.
Megan Mullally revealed that she was originally doing a voice in the film. According to Mullally, the producers were dissatisfied to learn that the voice of her character Karen Walker on the television show Will & Grace was not her natural speaking voice. The producers hired her anyway, and then strongly encouraged her to use her Karen Walker voice for the role. When Mullally refused, she was dismissed.
The film was dedicated to Glenn McQueen, a Pixar animator who died of melanoma in October 2002.
- Main article: Finding Nemo (video)
Finding Nemo was released on DVD and VHS on November 4, 2003. After the success of the 3D re-release of The Lion King, Disney and Pixar announced a 3D re-release of Finding Nemo on September 14, 2012. The film was also released on DVD in a "Gold Edition", which came with a Finding Nemo stuffed toy character. The film will be released for the first time on Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D on December 4, 2012, with both a 3-disc and a 5-disc set.
Finding Nemo was a major success. It currently holds a 99% fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes with an average rating of 8.7/10 based on 254 reviews. A rating of 89% on Metacritic indicating " Universal Acclaim" and four stars from Empire. Roger Ebert gave the film four stars, calling it "one of those rare movies where I wanted to sit in the front row and let the images wash out to the edges of my field of vision." Broadway star Nathan Lane who was the voice of Timon the meerkat in The Lion King, said Finding Nemo was his favorite animated film.
The film's use of clownfish prompted mass purchase of the animal as pets in the United States, even though the movie portrayed the use of fish as pets negatively and suggested that saltwater aquariums are notably tricky and expensive to maintain. The demand for clownfish was supplied by large-scale harvesting of tropical fish in regions like Vanuatu.
At the same time, the film had a quote that "all drains lead back to the ocean" (Nemo escapes from the aquarium by going down a sink drain, ending up in the sea). Since water typically undergoes treatment before leading to the ocean, the JWC Environmental company quipped that a more realistic title for the movie might be Grinding Nemo. However, in Sydney, much of the sewer system does pass directly to outfall pipes deep offshore, without a high level of treatment (although pumping and some filtering occur). Additionally, according to the DVD, there was a cut sequence with Nemo going through a treatment plant's mechanisms before ending up in the ocean pipes. However, in the final product, logos for "Sydney Water Treatment" are featured prominently along the path to the ocean, implying that Nemo did pass through some water treatment.
Tourism in Australia strongly increased during the summer and autumn of 2003, with many tourists wanting to swim off the coast of Eastern Australia to "find Nemo". The Australian Tourism Commission (ATC) launched several marketing campaigns in China and the USA in order to improve tourism in Australia, many of them utilizing Finding Nemo clips. Queensland also used Finding Nemo to draw tourists to promote its state for vacationers.
On the 3-D re-release, Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly wrote that its emotional power was deepened by "the dimensionality of the oceanic deep" where "the spatial mysteries of watery currents and floating worlds are exactly where 3-D explorers were born to boldly go."
Finding Nemo earned $380,843,261 in North America and $559,492,275 in other countries for a worldwide total of $940,335,536. It is the second highest-grossing film of 2003, behind The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. In North America, outside North America, and worldwide, it was the highest-grossing Disney·Pixar film, up until 2010 when Toy Story 3 surpassed it.
Finding Nemo set an opening-weekend record for an animated feature, making $70,251,710 (first surpassed by Shrek 2). It became the highest-grossing animated film in North America ($339.7 million), outside North America ($528.2 million) and worldwide ($867.9 million), in all three occasions outgrossing The Lion King. In North America, it was surpassed by Shrek 2 in 2004, and by Toy Story 3 in 2010. After the re-release of The Lion King in 2011, it stands as the fourth highest-grossing animated film in these regions. Outside North America, it was surpassed by Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, Toy Story 3 and Ice Age: Continental Drift. Worldwide, it now ranks fifth among animated films.
The film had impressive box-office runs in many international markets. In Japan, its highest-grossing market after North America, it grossed $102.4 million becoming the highest-grossing Western animated film until it was out-grossed by Toy Story 3 ($126.7 million). Following in biggest grosses are the UK Ireland and Malta, where it grossed £37.2 million ($67.1 million), France and the Maghreb region ($64.8 million), Germany ($53.9 million), and Spain ($29.5 million).
After the success of the 3D re-release of The Lion King, Disney and Pixar re-released Finding Nemo in 3D on September 14, 2012, with a conversion cost estimated below $5 million. For the opening weekend of its 3D re-release in North America, Finding Nemo grossed $16.7 million, debuting at the No. 2 spot behind Resident Evil: Retribution. From 36 foreign markets, it earned a total of $13 million. The re-release grossed $41,128,283.
The film's current domestic total is $380,843,261 with $936,743,261 worldwide.
Finding Nemo won the Academy Award and Saturn Award for Best Animated Film. It also won the award for Best Animated Film at the Kansas City Film Critics Circle Awards, the Las Vegas Film Critics Society Awards, the National Board of Review Awards, the Online Film Critics Society Awards, and the Toronto Film Critics Association Awards.
The film received many awards, including:
- Kids Choice Awards for Favorite Movie and Favorite Voice from an Animated Movie, Ellen DeGeneres.
- Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress, Ellen DeGeneres
Finding Nemo was also nominated for:
- Two Chicago Film Critics Association Awards for Best Picture and Best Supporting Actress, Ellen DeGeneres
- A Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy
- Two MTV Movie Awards for Best Movie and Best Comedic Performance, Ellen DeGeneres
In June 2008, the American Film Institute revealed its "Ten Top Ten", the best ten films in ten "classic" American film genres, after polling over 1,500 people from the creative community. Finding Nemo was acknowledged as the 10th best film in the animation genre. It was the most recently released film among all ten lists, and one of only three movies made after the year 2000, the others being The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and Shrek.
American Film Institute recognition:
- AFI's 100 Years...100 Movies (10th Anniversary Edition) – Nominated
- AFI's 10 Top 10 – #10 Animated film
Environmental concerns and consequences
The reaction to the film by the general public has led to environmental devastation for the clownfish and has provoked an outcry from several environmental protection agencies, including Marine Aquarium Council, Australia. Apparently, the demand for tropical fish skyrocketed after the film's release. This has caused reef species decimation in Vanuatu and many other reef areas. Additionally, after seeing the film, some aquarium owners released their pets into the ocean, but the wrong ocean. This has introduced species harmful to the indigenous environment and is harming reefs worldwide as well.
There have also been seafood restaurants called "Frying Nemo" in certain countries, which has a logo that includes a terrified Nemo being fried on a pan.
Finding Nemo is the original soundtrack album. It was the first Pixar film not to be scored by Randy Newman. The album was nominated for the Academy Award for Original Music Score, losing to The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. Also, English singer Robbie Williams performed a cover of "Beyond the Sea".
Theme park attractions
Finding Nemo has inspired numerous attractions and properties at Disney Parks around the world.
- Disneyland Resort
- Walt Disney World
- Disneyland Resort Paris
- Tokyo Disney Resort
- Hong Kong Disneyland Resort
- 2008 Turtle Talk with Crush (Hong Kong Disneyland)
The stage musical Tarzan Rocks! occupied the Theater in the Wild at Disney's Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida from 1999 to 2006. When it closed in January 2006, it was rumored that a musical adaptation of Finding Nemo would replace it. This was confirmed in April 2006, when Disney announced that the adaptation, with new songs written by Tony Award-winning Avenue Q composer Robert Lopez and his wife, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, would "combine puppets, dancers, acrobats and animated backdrops" and open in late 2006. Tony Award-winning director Peter Brosius signed on to direct the show, with Michael Curry, who designed puppets for Disney's successful stage version of The Lion King, serving as leading puppet and production designer.
Anderson-Lopez said that the couple agreed to write the adaptation of "one of their favorite movies of all time" after considering "The idea of people coming in [to see the musical] at 4, 5 or 6 and saying, 'I want to do that'....So we want to take it as seriously as we would a Broadway show." To condense the feature-length film to thirty minutes, she said she and Lopez focused on a single theme from the movie, the idea that "The world's dangerous and beautiful."
The forty-minute show (which is performed five times daily) opened on January 2, 2007. Several musical numbers took direct inspiration from lines in the film, including "(In The) Big Blue World", "Fish Are Friends, Not Food", "Just Keep Swimming", and "Go With the Flow". In January 2007, a New York studio recording of the show was released on iTunes, with Lopez and Anderson-Lopez providing the voices for Marlin and Dory, respectively. Avenue Q star Stephanie D'Abruzzo also appeared on the recording, as Sheldon/Deb.
Nemo was the first non-musical animated film to which Disney added songs in order to produce a stage musical. In 2009, Finding Nemo – The Musical was honored with a Thea award for Best Live Show from the Themed Entertainment Association.
A video game based on the film was released in 2003, for PC, Xbox, PS2, GameCube, and GBA.
In 2005, after disagreements between Disney's Michael Eisner and Pixar's Steve Jobs over the distribution of Pixar's films, Disney announced that they would be creating a new animation studio, Circle 7 Animation, to make sequels to the seven Disney-owned, Pixar films (which consisted of the films released between 1995 and 2006).
The studio had put Toy Story 3 and Monsters University in development, and had also hired screenwriter, Laurie Craig, to write a draft for Finding Nemo 2. Circle 7 had since been shut down after Robert Iger replaced Eisner as CEO of Disney and arranged the acquisition of Pixar.
In July 2012, it was reported that Andrew Stanton is developing a sequel to Finding Nemo, with Victoria Strouse writing the script and a schedule to be released in 2016. However, the same day the news of a potential sequel broke, director Andrew Stanton posted a message on his personal Twitter calling into question the accuracy of these reports. The message said, "Didn't you all learn from Chicken Little? Everyone calm down." Don't believe everything you read. Nothing to see here now. According to the report by Hollywood Reporter published in August 2012, Ellen DeGeneres is in negotiations to reprise her role of Dory. In September 2012, it was confirmed by Stanton saying: "What was immediately on the list was writing a second John Carter movie. When that went away, everything slid up. I know I'll be accused by more sarcastic people that it's a reaction to Carter not doing well, but only in its timing, but not in its conceit." In February 2013, it was confirmed by the press that Albert Brooks would reprise the role of Marlin in the sequel.
- The film would currently be the 16th highest-grossing animated film of all time worldwide if it and the original version of The Lion King had never been re-released.
- Finding Nemo was the first film by Pixar where the music wasn't composed by Randy Newman. Instead, it was composed by his cousin, Thomas Newman.
- The Polish title is translated as Where's Nemo.
- This is the first Pixar movie not to be released in November.
- This is the final Pixar movie until Up to be produced in 1.78:1 aspect ratio.
- The film's logo was created by Neil Kellerhouse, an acclaimed film poster designer who is known for creating the posters for The Social Network (2010) and Under the Skin (2014). He was also originally tasked to design the logo for Up, but the logo was instead designed by Susan Bradley.
- When Bruce bursts through the submarine door and shouts, "Here's Brucey!", this was a reference to Stephen King's "The Shining".
- When Dory wants to ask the whale for directions and Marlin doesn't, she says, "What is it with men and asking for directions?" this line was also in Mulan II.
- Nemo appears in Monsters, Inc. in a cameo near the end. He is also mentioned by Bugs Bunny in the film Looney Tunes: Back in Action when he was fishing in a flooded Alfa Romeo car and says "Hey, what do ya know? I found Nemo!"
- Nemo's mother's death was intended to be previewed in a series of flashbacks, but Lasseter insisted that it be shown in the beginning of the film to explain why Marlin was so overprotective towards his son.
- The lines "Curse you, AquaScum!", "He's dead" and "He's not dead" were omitted when the movie was aired on Disney Junior due to inappropriate language for younger children.
- This is also the similar case to The Incredibles in Dash's line "We survived but we're dead."
- The voice clips that were previously recorded are later replayed in the movie.
- This is the first Pixar film to include a classic cartoon sound effect (although some cartoon-like sound effects were previously used for the Woody's Roundup scenes in Toy Story 2); the bone bite sound effect (originally from various Hanna-Barbera cartoons) is heard when Bloat eats a piece of fish dust.
- The Highlights magazine can be seen during the fish tank scene.
- This was the fifth Pixar movie to be released on VHS.
- This is the first Pixar movie to ever feature blood (from Dory's nose).
- This is the final Pixar movie to star Joe Ranft in the main cast. Ranft was only an additional voice in The Incredibles, and he died in a car accident in 2005, during the production of Cars.
- The poster is surrounded by supporting characters, similar to that of Finding Dory.
- P. Sherman, the name in the diver's goggle was inspired by how Filipinos pronounce the word "fisherman".
- Finding Nemo is the favorite animated film of Nathan Lane.
- Finding Nemo came out on December 6, 2003 in Japan.
- This is the second film to be dubbed in the Navajo language, the first being Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope.
- The film came out four months before Dory's voice actress, Ellen DeGeneres, began her daytime talk show, the Ellen DeGeneres Show, and founded her production company, A very good production.
- Dedicated to the memory of Glenn McQueen (1960-2002), a Pixar animator who would later be honored as the namesake of Lightning McQueen in Cars (2006).
- Even though Dory's parents (Jenny and Charlie) were not in this film, Dory mentions them when she told Marlin she suffers from short-term memory loss, and at one point, she said where are they?
- Marlin is portrayed as a male clownfish. In reality, all clownfish are born male but led by a female, but turn female if said female dies, which would exactly happen to Marlin after Coral is attacked by a barracuda if this happened in real life. Also Coral is depicted as being just smaller than Marlin. In real life it is the other way around. Same thing about the balloon error in Up. This was a conscious choice by Pixar to go with believable rather than realistic.
- Despite the Australian setting, Nigel, Gerald, and other pelicans are based on brown pelicans, which are native to North American coastlines, not Australian coastlines. A more appropriate species for the setting would be the native Australian pelican, which is mostly white with black and gray wings.
- Mr. Ray and the 3 sharks, despite all being male, appear to lack claspers. This was most likely done on the purpose to make the movie appropriate for kids.
- In the first shot of Marlin and coral overlooking at their eggs, they are not seen in the view. When Marlin suggests naming the kids, some eggs are seen in the same view where they were not actually seen.
- When Marlin and Coral are overlooking at the entrance of the nest before the barracuda attacks her and all of her eggs (except for Nemo's), the cluster of eggs mysteriously moves closer between shots.
- When Marlin discovers Nemo's egg, you can see his fins are too short to touch each other, but he can still pick up the egg and his fins overlap.
- Pearl and her father Ted appear to have mouths drawn just below their eyes, much like a typical cartoon octopus. In real life, a flapjack octopus' mouth, like those of their octopi, is located under their bodies, where their tentacles are based. Based on this, this might suggest that what is supposed to be an actual octopus' mouth becomes Pearl's and Ted's anus.
- Tad said that Nemo looked funny and Bob slapped Sheldon and told him to be nice. It was Tad who said it. So why didn't his dad Bill tell him off?
- The "species" mentioned in Mr. Ray's song are actually classes, not species.
- Peach appears to have eyes and a mouth. In reality, starfish don't have faces like vertebrate animals.
- Bloat and Jacques both live inside Dr. Sherman's fish tank, but in real life, those two animals are not allowed to be together as pufferfish are natural predators of cleaner shrimp.
- Peach was bought from eBay. Buying live animals of eBay is prohibited. Of course, it is possible that this particular sale was overlooked by the eBay redactors, as sometimes happens.
- When Nemo first finds himself in the fish tank, Peach tries to report the dentist's actions, but her voice is muffled by a glass pane. She has to pull away to talk. However, when the other fish watch the dentist, Peach is talking perfectly normal and not muffled, even though she's pressed up against the glass again.
- Chuckles was mentioned to be a tank gang member. However, Chuckles is a goldfish and therefore couldn't possibly survive in a saltwater tank.
- Before Nemo is initiated into the Tank Gang, Bloat introduces the Ring of Fire. Bloat then retreats and goes between the on-looking fish. In the next shot, Bloat is on the outside/right. In the following shot, Bloat is again in the middle. However, it could be that he moved to these positions when offscreen.
- Unlike real jellyfish, the jellyfish in Finding Nemo sting by electrifying other fish, while real ones poison other fish with poisonous toxin with no antidote.
- If Gill and the Tank Gang were planning to go out through the window while in plastic bags, the bags would have burst open and popped when dropped to the ground.
- The sea turtles are all traveling via the East Australian Current in a huge group. In real life, sea turtles do not travel together.
- The whale's baleen is yellow and it's a Blue Whale. The whale's baleen should be black.
- When Marlin and Dory are inside the whale, there are sun rays coming down into the water inside its mouth. Being inside a whale where the Sun can't get in, this isn't possible. In real life, it would be so dark you could not even see two inches in front of your face.
- The whale appears to have a uvula and a giant throat. In real life, only humans have uvulas and the whale's throat is ridiculously tiny for its size, being about the size of a beach ball. But then again, it was not meant to look accurate.
- When the whale drops Marlin and Dory off at Sydney Harbour, if you look very closely at the Moon, it's facing the right-side up (Thyco Crater, the large crater on its southern hemisphere is facing down). However, since the Moon is always right-side up in real life, it would be only viewed in the northern half of Earth. So this would mean that when viewed from the Earth's southern hemisphere, it would appear upside down (Thyco Crater is facing up).
- When Dr. Sherman wants to put Nemo in a bag, he has a Ziploc (a plastic bag with a zipper). But when he finally catches him, it has changed into a normal plastic bag.
- When Dr. Sherman grabs Nigel and tosses him, Marlin and Dory out of the window, the "floss" crocodile poster located to the right of the window mysteriously changes positions.
- When Dr. Sherman puts Gill back into the tank after dropping Nemo into a spit sink so he can escape to the ocean, we see the waiting room from behind the tank, but the boy and the mother inside the waiting room are gone. Although the mother must have either postponed or cancelled her son's dental appointment and they both left after they saw what happened in the dentist's office earlier when Dr. Sherman was fighting off Nigel. From their point of view, he looked like as if he was hurting Darla.
- Although this movie portrays the idea that fish are flushed down the drain and are returned to the ocean unharmed, in reality, this isn't the case. In reality, though any water that goes down a drain does reach the ocean eventually, it will first go through the equipment that breaks down solids, meaning that Nemo would have been killed long before being released to the sea. Pixar extensively researched Sydney's sewage treatment facilites and planned a scene which would have shown Nemo plausibly getting past the grinding equipment unscathed, but this was cut for time.
- When Nigel puts Marlin and Dory in the water, the skies are cloudy and it's raining. But when the 2 fish swim underwater, the Sun is strangely shining through the water.
- As the fishing net is being pulled up, a fisherman is shown to the left of two wires on the boat leaning on his elbow. In the very next shot, the fisherman is between the wires and finally, he is leaning on his hand.
- When the Tank Gang are floating in the ocean in their plastic bags, the water levels in the bags are a few inches above that ocean. The two water levels should be the same.
- When Nemo first realizes he is in a fish tank in a waiting room, a Buzz Lightyear toy is seen on the floor.
- As Gill is telling his plan, the camera is in the view of the fish. After dropping out of the window, the Pizza Planet truck drives past.
- In the credits, Mike Wazowski appears wearing the diving gear he wore to protect himself from Boo in Monsters, Inc.
- A113 appears on a diver's camera.
- The Pixar Ball can be seen in the chest in the dentist's waiting room.
- Theaters: September 14, 2012
- DVD/Blu-ray/Blu-ray 3D: December 4, 2012
- Jez (23 May 2014). "Interview: Poster designer Neil Kellerhouse". Ego Creative. Ego Creative Ltd. Retrieved on 18 June 2016.
- Bradley, Susan (12 March 2015). "Branding for Pixar's UP: Title Design & Production Art". Behance. Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved on 18 June 2016.