"Snakes on a Plane": Behind the Scenes With the Movie's Snake Wrangler

Stefan Lovgren
for National Geographic News
July 24, 2006

Jules Sylvester remembers getting the call from the producers of the upcoming film Snakes on a Plane.

"They said, 'Boy, do we have a dream job for you,'" he recalled.

But Sylvester's idea of a dream job might not suit everyone.

Sylvester is a veteran snake wrangler and the owner of Reptile Rentals, a company that supplies snakes and other animals to the film and television industry.

He has worked on more than 300 Hollywood movies involving snakes, lizards, spiders, and other creepy crawlers. But his latest job is different, he says.

In Snakes on a Plane, Sylvester's slithery actors are the stars of the show.

Snakes on a Plane features Samuel L. Jackson as an FBI agent escorting a witness on a flight from Hawaii to Los Angeles when assassins release hundreds of deadly snakes on the plane.

Despite the fact that it won't be released in theaters until August 18, the movie has already generated a massive, cultlike following on the Internet, spawning Photoshop contests and song parodies.

When it comes to the film's appeal, Sylvester thinks the movie's title says it all.

"People love to get scared at movies, and there's nothing scarier to many people than snakes," he said.

"Here you know what you're going to get: a lot of snakes. On a plane."

Puff Adders

Continued on Next Page >>


SOURCES AND RELATED WEB SITES

ADVERTISEMENT

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC'S PHOTO OF THE DAY

NEWS FEEDS     After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.   After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS

National Geographic Daily News To-Go

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.
Click here to get 12 months of National Geographic Magazine for $15.