Chickens in movies and television

It feels like backyard chickens are the newest thing and that suddenly everyone is raising them. Not only are our friends keeping chickens now, but we're seeing them in movies and on television more and more. However, chickens have been popping up in movies and on TV for years. In fact, they have been used as everything from background scenery, to the main actor!

Chickens from movies and television shows, including cartoon chickens.

Most recently chickens were introduced in an episode of The Conner's when Jackie wanted a chicken coop in the backyard for eggs. Young Sheldon is another recent series that has chickens. The neighbors keep them and they are often in scenes. Lost In Space has Debbie the chicken in their most recent season. There are even chickens in prison in Orange is the New Black! 

It's not just television. Movies have been seeing a surge of chicken actors too! Most recently there are chickens in the scene when Kevin James's character is learning to fight in Here Comes The Boom. Commercials are cashing in on the trend too. Who can forget the bobbing head chickens from the Mercedes commercial? As you can see, chickens are used in lots of media these days!

Chickens in pop culture


Obviously when a movie take place on a farm you expect to see chickens. The Son In Law, Racing Stripes, Charlotte's Web, Babe, Bless This Mess and the reality show Homestead Rescue are just a few farm movies where chickens can be spotted in the background. Speaking of reality TV, Chicken People is a behind the scenes look at chicken shows and the competitors. If you would have told me 10 years ago that reality TV was going to follow chicken breeders I would have laughed!

When a movie takes a trip into the country it make a lot of sense that chickens will be in the scene. Bohemian Rhapsody comes to mind, though who expected to see a chicken in a movie about a rock band? it does make sense though. The Secret Life Of Pets 2 took a quick visit to a farm and encountered a rooster.

Many times the chickens just blend into the background or are used subtly to add to the characters depth. Such is the case in The Whole Ten Yards when Bruce Willis's hit man character is reformed and living the slow life complete with chickens.

Sometimes the chicken plays in a pivotal scene like when Rocky chases the chicken, or the hilarious chicken arrow from Hot Shots Part Deux. Then there is the giant chicken from Sleepers. lol Which kind of reminds me of Ernie the giant chicken from Family Guy...but now we're getting too far into the bizarre.

Speaking of bizarre though, who can forget Gonzo's one true love Camilla and her chicken friends from the Muppets? Then there's the talking chicken from Return To Oz who is one of the main characters.

Chickens have not been left out of fantasy movies either! Outlander, Snow White and the Huntsman, The Scorpion King and The Witcher are just a few that have chickens in scenes 

Chickens are often used to highlight the quirky characteristics of the characters. Like Joey from Friends raising a chicken (and a duck) in a tiny apartment in New York city. Or when Rose from The Golden Girls brought the chicken Count Bessie to live with them. Then there's the time Kramer bought a chicken in Seinfeld, who can walk on a leash by the way. 

It's typical for movies set in the good ole days to have chickens wandering around willy nilly. Back in the day (and this includes the wild west) chickens were kept by almost everyone for food, so they are peppered throughout movies and TV shows like The Hateful 8, Cold Mountain, Three Amigos, Oh Brother Where Art Thou? and pretty much every western ever filmed!

Lots of movies and shows shot pre backyad chicken fad had chickens in them as just part of life: Green Acres, Gunsmoke, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, The Beverly Hillbillies, Lassie, The Andy Griffith Show, Hee Haw, Little House on The Prairie, MASH, Dukes of Hazzard and The Wizard of Oz to name a few. It wasn't odd to see chickens in those times and situations so it just makes sense that they made their way onto the big and small screens.

Cartoon chickens


Of course Disney and other animators have always included chickens in the settings or as characters. Beauty and The Beast, Barnyard, Cow and Chicken, Moana, Animaniacs, Mulan, Surfs Up, Home On The Range, White Fang and even Paw Patrol all have chickens in them.

Generally the chickens are just side characters or part of the atmosphere of the scene. The whole point of some movies though, is chickens! Chicken Run, Chicken Little and Rock-a-doodle come to mind. Then there's the classic cartoon chicken Foghorn Leghorn and the newer Chuck Chicken by Netflix.

Even video games have included chickens in them. Minecraft, Ghost Recon, The Witcher, Skyrim and Legend of Zelda all have chickens. Some even explode into a puff of feathers when you kill them! 

Movies and television have always imitated life and no matter what trends are happening they always seem to pop up on screen. I probably notice chickens more than the average person though! Do you do the same thing? What's your favorite movie scene with chickens in it? Let me know in the comments down below!


~L

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