This papercraft is a realistic Scrat, based on the American computer-animated adventure comedy film Ice Age. The paper model is designed by elsocraft. There is another version of the Scrat rat paper model here: Ice Age – Scrat Free Papercraft.
Scrat is a saber-toothed squirrel who is obsessed with collecting acorns, constantly putting his life in danger to obtain and defend them. He has his own stories in the film, independent of the main plot, which are parallel with the journeys of the other main characters, causing them to interact with him at times.
The character is enormously successful and Scrat is viewed as a breakout character, the most popular of the franchise. In a special feature in the second film’s DVD, his name has been stated to be a mix of the words “squirrel” and “rat”, his species allegedly believed to have been a common ancestor of both. In the Ice Age DVD commentary, he is referred to as “The Scrat” by directors Chris Wedge and Carlos Saldanha. Scrat is never referred to by name in the films. He is only named in the credits.
Scrat is voiced in all Ice Age movies and short films by director Chris Wedge. He directly interacts with the story’s main characters on six occasions. In the first film, he attacks Sid when the latter tries to eat his acorn, successfully regaining it, and later appears when Manny asks him for directions to where the baby’s family is and Diego kicks Scrat away before he could tell about nearby saber-toothed tigers. At the end of the second film, Scrat creates a hole in the valley and releases all the melted ice. He later attacks Sid for saving his life (when he had already died and gone to paradise and was about to get a giant acorn). In the third film, Scrat is stepped on by Manny and falls onto Sid’s head while chasing his acorn. Finally, he appears when Sid’s “children” are batting a ball around, the ball actually being Scrat. In the fourth film, when Sid prys open a clam, he finds Scrat inside. Sid’s grandmother mistakes Scrat for a rat and continuously whacks him with her cane until he falls into the ocean.
Scrat constantly hunts for his acorn either to bury it or eat it, but fate always gets in the way. He invariably ends up in humorous or painful situations: being struck by lightning, pursued by avalanches, and repeatedly knocked unconscious while fighting for his acorn. Yet he never gives up. Scrat generally loses, except when he defeats a school of piranhas and successfully battles Sid for his acorn.
Scrat is supposedly the only character to survive the ice age, as at the end of the first movie he was frozen in ice. He thaws out 20,000 years later on a tropical beach, where he causes an eruption.
Scrat is the main character in three short films. In the first, Gone Nutty, he loses his collection of acorns in a catastrophic chain of events. He jams his acorn into a hole in the middle of the collection, which shatters the pile and with it the entire continent – which begins the continental drift.
In the second film, No Time for Nuts, Scrat finds a time machine left by a time-traveler and visits several historical events. He becomes trapped in a frightening future when oak trees have become extinct, but somehow manages to return to the series’ time period.
A third Scrat short, Scrat’s Continental Crack-up, was released in 2010 accompanying the feature Gulliver’s Travels, and later with Rio as a promotion for the fourth Ice Age movie Ice Age: Continental Drift.
Scrat also has a cameo in Surviving Sid which was important to the plot. Scrat is the main character in the Ice Age: The Meltdown video game. He is also playable in the other two games based on the series.
Scrat also made a cameo appearance in the Family Guy episode Sibling Rivalry when Peter Griffin said Scrat’s nuts were his, as a result, Scrat pounces and attacks Peter as he was going to steal his nuts.
The origin of Scrat is disputed. Cartoon designer Ivy Supersonic claims she created the character in 1999, after seeing a squirrel-rat hybrid in Skidmore College’s Case Green. She called her character “Sqrat” and says she presented the idea to 20th Century Fox movie executives. A CNN report by Jeanie Moos of Ivy’s discovery was aired in 2000, two years before Ice Age went into development. Supersonic claims the studio’s own documents actually identified the character in Ice Age as “Sqrat”, though her creation was not sabre-toothed.
Ivy Supersonic turned it down and subsequently lost in court. The case is currently in appeal. She still has hopes of receiving damages for her claimed infringement.
Supersonic did win a partial summary judgement from the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board in a reverse suit, Fox Film Corporation v. Ivy Silberstein, in which Fox had tried to prevent her from registering the trade mark “SQRAT”.
According to Wedge, artist Peter de Seve came up with the design for Scrat after a visit to the Museum of Natural History. Wedge called it “sort of a squirrel based on some lemur.”
While initially created as a fictional species for comedic purposes, in 2011 scientists have discovered a mammal quite similar to Scrat. The newly described taxon, Cronopio dentiacutus wasn’t a true squirrel nor it did live in Cenozoic era. Instead it was a dryolestoid a group of mammals distantly related to therians and it lived around 100 million years ago in Patagonia. The precedence of the animated character to the discovery of the real one is an example of what is known as the “Dim Effect”.
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