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15 Cracking Wallace and Gromit Facts

How much do you know about this cheese loving inventor and his cautious canine companion? Grab some Wensleydale and read these Wallace and Gromit facts to find out!

Beano Team
Last Updated:  June 23rd 2024

Whether they're going on a daytrip to the moon, defeating evil penguin geniuses or befriending cursed rabbits, Wallace and Gromit are always up to something! With their squashy cardigans and love for cheese they've become huge stars - even if slightly unlikely ones! But how much do you know about this legendary twosome? Read on to find out where they came from, their biggest successes, and how they overcame disaster!

For more stuff like this, check out these Chicken Run facts, these moomin facts - and for something totally different, we've also got these Atilla the Hun facts! You know, just in case!

But anyway, let's get back to the main event - these 15 cracking Wallace and Gromit facts!

1. ...Mr Wallace?

Aardman Productions | Youtube

Wallace and Gromit were created by Nick Park, an animator at Aardman Animations. Nick Park based Wallace on characters he knew well, like his old English teacher and his distinctive smile and balding head. And as for Wallace's love for cheese, that was inspired by Nick Park's own cheesy appetite!

2. A Grand Day Out

Wallace and Gromit: A Grand Day Out | Nick Park | Aardman Productions

Their debut was in the 1989 short film "A Grand Day Out," which originally started as Nick Park's final project at the National Film and Television School. The thing is, Nick actually had the idea a whole 6 years earlier, and it just took that long to get it done!

3. Gromit the... cat?

In Nick Park’s original idea, Wallace had a moustache, and Gromit was… a cat! They still had the same personalities though, with Wallace being a bit daft and Gromit cautious. Aardman’s bosses saw the potential for the characters and encouraged Nick to work on the project with them!

4. The Wrong Trousers

Wallace and Gromit: The Wrong Trousers | Aardman | BBC | Nick Park

After the huge success of A Grand Day Out, Nick Park and the team at Aardman fast-tracked the next Wallace and Gromit movie, The Wrong Trousers! It was here that we met the evil penguin Feathers McGraw. The movie was shown at Christmas in 1993, and went on to win over 40 big awards!

5. Stop-motion classics!

Aardman Productions | Youtube

The creation of Wallace and Gromit needs a dedicated team at Aardman Animations. Each character is meticulously crafted using clay, with hundreds of replacement mouths and eyes to achieve their expressive features. The animators painstakingly move the characters frame by frame to create the stop-motion. Yes, it would be much easier to use CGI… but where would the fun be in that?

6. A bigger and bigger team!

Aardman Productions | Youtube

As Wallace and Gromit got more and more popular, the team behind them grew. With each movie the production got smoother, faster, and with creator Nick Park taking more of a supervising job rather than doing the animation himself. By the time they made a Close Shave in 1995, Nick almost had no time to animate!

7. TAXI!

An early problem for the team was when Nick Park was on a business trip to New York and accidentally left Wallace and Gromit in a taxi! Thankfully they got back in touch with the driver and managed to get them back, but Nick Park was devastated for a short while. Unfortunately though, a bigger disaster was waiting for Aardman which we’ll find out about soon!

8. Gromit is left-handed

Wallace and Gromit: The Wrong Trousers | Aardman | BBC | Nick Park

If you were paying close attention, you might have noticed that Gromit is left-handed (or maybe, left-pawed?). This is meant to show that he is inventive and creative, as that’s something that people used to say about left-handed people. Don’t worry if you're a right-handed artist though, there’s no real evidence that lefties are more imaginative!

9. Curse of the Were-Rabbit

The Curse of the Were-Rabbit | Aardman Productions | Dreamworks | Steve Box | Nick Park

This was Wallace and Gromit’s next biggest movie, and it took a really long time! “The Curse of the Were-Rabbit" took five years to make, with animators producing just a few seconds of footage per day. It was worth it though, as it earned Nick Park a fourth Oscar and "Best Animated Feature" at the Academy Awards!

10. More Easter Eggs, Gromit?

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget | Aardman | Netflix | Pathe | Sam Fell

The Wallace and Gromit films are packed with hidden details and Easter eggs. In "The Wrong Trousers," you can spot a calendar with the month marked as "Gromit," and in "A Close Shave," there’s a newspaper headline about a giant vegetable, hinting at the plot of their future film "The Curse of the Were-Rabbit." In the credits to Chicken Run 2, there’s also a tiny hidden reference to Feathers McGraw, the evil penguin!

11. Disaster strikes!

Wallace and Gromit: The Wrong Trousers | Aardman | BBC | Nick Park

Early on October 10th, 2005, a fire broke out at one of Aardman’s storage warehouses, wiping out hundreds of pieces of their history, including props, sets, and an entire Wallace and Gromit exhibition that had just returned from Japan. Fortunately, all the film footage was safely stored elsewhere. Oh, and no one was injured! Most importantly!

12. Other shows!

Creature Comforts | Aardman Productions via Youtube

Whilst Wallace and Gromit have carried on for over 30 years now, Nick Park hasn’t stopped coming up with new ideas. He’s worked on lots of other shows with the same animation style, like Creature Comforts, Chicken Run, Shaun the Sheep, and Early Man.

13. Gongs for Gromit

Wallace and Gromit have been recognised with a whole load of big awards. Their movies have won three Academy Awards, and been nominated for another 4! Nick Park has won even more, a whopping 9 Academy Awards in total! Wowee!

14. Stamps and Statues

Over the years Wallace and Gromit have outgrown just the telly, and have been featured on stamps, been made into statues, video games, theme park rides, and even been taken on tour as far away as Hong Kong!

15. A Wallace State of Mind

Wallace and Gromit have some catch phrases that have become world-famous, and mostly involve cheese! Cracking cheese, Gromit! More cheese? CHEEEESE? Somehow, these cheesy phrases have become key parts of British culture. Weird how that happens, isn’t it?