Before ‘Ted’: Hollywood’s History of Talking Animal Movies

Who can talk to the animals? Mark Wahlberg, that’s who. But, it turns out, he’s by no means the only one.

Wahlberg and his ‘animal’ buddy, a foul-mouthed talking teddy bear named Ted, are returning this summer in Ted 2, which will hit theaters June 26. In this sequel, a newly married Ted wants to become a parent with his human wife, but the government won’t let him until he proves he’s a person in court.

Related: Watch the Ted 2 Trailer

Of course, Ted is by no means the first talking animal (stuffed or otherwise). Such mysterious creatures have been around in movies and TV well before Ted creator Seth MacFarlane was even born—just ask Francis the Talking MuleMr. Ed (that’s him in the video clip above), ’70s super spy Lancelot Link or (as you will see below) Jimmy Stewart. Yes, Hollywood’s history of chatty critters goes well back into the black-and-white era…and continues right up to the present.

Not every attempt works, of course. So below we’ve picked out the best: Behold‘s top 10 most noteworthy talking animal movies of all time.


1. Harvey

True, the audience never actually sees the talking animal here. Still, this 1950 black-and-white film starring the great James Stewart—adapted from a hit play on Broadway—does a great job of making you question whether or not there is a 6-foot-3.5-inch talking rabbit lurking around in the shadows.


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