• Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell star in Groundhog Day, which was released 20 years ago.


If you were forced to relive the same day over and over again, would it make you a better or a worse person? Such is the premise behind Groundhog Day, the beloved big-screen comedy that was released 20 years ago this month. Written and directed by Harold Ramis, the film starred Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell, who chatted with American Way about making the movie.

“One of the things people like to talk about is how often I slap Bill in the movie. I think it’s 10 times in the finished film, which means it had to have been over 100 while we were making the movie. I don’t know what he was thinking, but Bill insisted I really slap him. He said, ‘Don’t fake it.’ So I didn’t. Now, I did my best not to hurt him, but I did hit him over and over again. I’m not sure any other actor can say that. The groundhogs were also a really interesting part of making this movie. These are not soft, warm, fuzzy animals — they’re bristly and ornery. They may be good at forecasting the weather, but they’re nothing you want to snuggle with, that’s for sure. So not only did Bill get slapped by me, constantly, but he also got bitten twice by the groundhog.”