Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott
Plot: A weather man is reluctantly sent to cover a story about a weather forecasting "rat" (as he calls it). This is his fourth year on the story, and he makes no effort to hide his frustration. On awaking the 'following' day he discovers that it's Groundhog Day again, and again, and again.
Bill Murray was bitten by the groundhog twice during shooting. Murray had to have anti rabies injections because the bites were so severe.
On the DVD, Harold Ramis states that the original idea was for him to live February 2nd for about 10,000 years. Later he says that Phil probably lived the same day for about 10 years.
According to director Harold Ramis, most of the times when he tried to explain a scene to Bill Murray, Murray would interrupt and ask, "Just tell me - good Phil or bad Phil?"
All the clocks in the diner are stopped, mirroring Phil's predicament.
Not filmed in Punxsutawney, but actually in Woodstock, Illinois (just 45 miles from Bill Murray's hometown of Wilmette). There is a small plaque that reads "Bill Murray stepped here" on the curb where Murray continually steps into a puddle. There is another plaque on the building wall at the corner that says "Ned's Corner" where Bill Murray was continually accosted by insurance salesman Ned Ryerson.
The scene where Phil picks up the alarm clock and slams it onto the floor didn't go as planned. Bill Murray slammed down the clock but it barely broke, so the crew bashed it with a hammer to give it the really smashed look. The clock actually continued playing the song like in the movie.
Director Harold Ramis originally wanted Tom Hanks for the lead role, but decided against it, saying that Hanks was "too nice".
The idea comes from 'The Gay Science', a famous book by Friedrich Nietzsche. In his book, Nietzsche gives a description of a man who is living the same day over and over again.
Harold Ramis directed the kids in the snowball fights to hit Bill Murray as hard as they could. Murray responded by throwing snowballs back as hard as he could.
Bill Murray was undergoing a divorce at the time of filming and was obsessing about the film. He would ring Harold Ramis constantly, often in the early hours of the morning. Ramis eventually sent writer Danny Rubin to sit with Murray and iron out all his anxieties, one of the reasons why Murray stopped speaking to Ramis for several years.
In the original version of the script by Danny Rubin, Phil Connors was already trapped inside Groundhog Day at the start of the story. We joined him on a typical day, with the audience wondering how he knew everything that was going to happen. Harold Ramis promised not to change this aspect of the script, but ultimately decided to do so.
Since the film's release, the town of Punxatawney has now become a major tourist attraction.
One of the groundhog officials is Brian Doyle-Murray, one of Bill Murray's brothers.
Harold Ramis makes a cameo in the film as the Punxsutawney doctor that assures Phil that he is okay, but should perhaps talk to a psychiatrist.
In the penultimate encounter between Connors and annoying insurance salesman Ned Ryerson, Bill Murray was ad-libbing when he tells Ned, "I don't know where you're headed, but can you call in sick?" and causes Ned to run away.
While filming the "Kidnapping Phil" scene, Bill Murray spontaneously improvised the line "Don't drive angry, don't drive angry!" to cover the fact that the groundhog (which he was holding on his lap) was agitated and trying to escape by climbing over the steering wheel. A moment later the groundhog bit Murray's hand so badly he had to seek medical treatment.
In the final shot, Phil carries Rita over the gate and then climbs over it. This is because the gate was actually frozen shut.
Danny Rubin's first draft of the screenplay ended with Phil waking on February the 3rd to discover that Rita was trapped in a time loop of her own.
Ramis and Danny Rubin considered including an explanation for Phil being stuck in a time loop. The possibilities included was that Phil had been cursed by a scorned lover or someone he had verbally abused. But they decided it was best to leave it a mystery.
The last time it is February 2nd and Phil kisses Rita, it begins to snow, foreshadowing that the loop has been broken. The same thing happens at the end of It's a Wonderful Life (1946), where the snow signifies George being back in the reality where he exists.