The ’90s were a prime time for Disney classics we’ve all come to love. One of those films was the comedy George of the Jungle, based on an animated series sharing the same name. The movie’s release in 1997 was a breakout role for the handsome Brendan Fraser, who portrayed George. His comedic timing and loincloth outfit had viewers swooning over his muscular body and charm. Fans were not the only ones falling for Fraser. Co-star Leslie Mann recently revealed that while she played George’s love interest, Ursula Stanhope, in the movie, she fell in love with Fraser while filming George of the Jungle.
‘George of the Jungle’ was a huge success
Based on the animated series George of the Jungle, the hit 1997 movie told the story of a baby boy raised by apes to become known as the king of the jungle and his first interaction with other humans. The film begins with San Francisco heiress visiting Uganda with a local guide, and her fiance, Lyle Van De Groot, tracks her down and joins her on her jungle tour. Once the guide tells the story of the “White Ape”, Ursula is intrigued about finding the superhuman primate.
During Ursula and Lyle’s White Ape search, a lion attacks them, and the King of the Jungle, George, swings by to save Ursula from danger. After taking Ursula to his treehouse and introducing her to his animal friends, it’s no secret George is smitten by her. As he tries to win Ursula over, she falls for him and ends up taking him back to San Francisco for medical attention after Lyle accidentally shoots George. While in the states, Ursula has second thoughts about her current engagement and realizes her love for George after he leaves in the middle of the night when Tookie, his toucan, comes to share the news of Ape’s capture by Lyle’s poacher friends. Ursula heads back to the jungle to find George and confess her love. The two then marry and live in the treehouse, where they later raise their son.
Mixing comedy and love with talented actors make George of the Jungle a worldwide success. Even over two decades later, people still reference the film and can’t help but sing along with catchy “George, George, George of the jungle.”
Mann recently revealed being in love with Fraser while filming
Mann recently appeared on Busy Phillips’ show Busy Tonight to reveal Fraser was her work crush during her early acting days. She said while she was supposed to fall in love with George in the movie, she “just fell in love with him in real life.” Only getting married to Judd Apatow a month before the release of George of the Jungle, she reminisced how she told him that she loved her co-star. She even remembers becoming “weird” around Fraser on set. She revealed to Busy the morning routine of Fraser kissing her and telling her “good morning” while they were getting ready in the stars’ trailer until she had just taken a big spoonful of oatmeal right before he kissed her. Afterward, the morning kisses ended for the remaining filming of the movie. While she did not reveal her love at the time, Fraser found out being a surprise guest on Busy Tonight.
Fraser’s response about filming with Mann
Recently appearing on Busy Tonight, Fraser and Mann reminisced about their time on the George of the Jungle set. He recalled a cut scene where George and Ursula were stranded in quicksand, and the two spent the entire afternoon in a “mud-spa bath.” During the time, Fraser said he saw someone peeking through the bushes, later realizing it was Judd Apatow. Fraser referenced getting the “I’m watching you” look because Apatow loved Mann that much.