In the Austin Powers franchise, one of the most memorable characters is not a secret agent but a hairless pet cat named Mr. Bigglesworth. This unique feline serves as the faithful companion of the iconic villain, Dr. Evil. In this article, we will delve into the story of Mr. Bigglesworth, his transformation, the challenges faced during filming, and his role in the movies.
The Origin of Mr. Bigglesworth
Mr. Bigglesworth’s origins can be traced back to the James Bond franchise, where Ernst Stavro Blofeld, a prominent Bond villain, always held a long-haired white Persian cat. Drawing inspiration from this iconic character, Mr. Bigglesworth was created as Dr. Evil’s pet companion. Initially, Mr. Bigglesworth resembled a long-haired Persian cat.
Mr. Bigglesworth’s Transformation
During a hasty escape in a cryogenic capsule, both Dr. Evil and Mr. Bigglesworth undergo a transformation. As a result, all of Mr. Bigglesworth’s fur falls out, leaving him permanently hairless. This unique trait became synonymous with the character, accentuating Dr. Evil’s eccentricity and giving Mr. Bigglesworth a distinctive appearance.
The Real-Life Mr. Bigglesworth
In real life, Mr. Bigglesworth is portrayed by a champion purebred hairless Sphynx cat named SGC Belfry Ted Nude-Gent. Ted Nude-Gent was bred by Michelle Berge of Belfry Cattery. Despite their name, Sphynx cats actually originate from Toronto, Canada, rather than Egypt. These cats are known for their sociability and ease of training.
The Filming Challenges with Mr. Bigglesworth
Filming the scenes with Mr. Bigglesworth presented unique challenges. Cats are typically known for their independence and can be difficult to train. However, Sphynx cats, including Ted Nude-Gent, are among the most trainable of all cat breeds. Nevertheless, some scenes required extra effort due to Ted’s fondness for Mike Myers, the actor who portrayed Dr. Evil. Ted would often be found sleeping on Myers’ lap, causing delays during filming.
Mr. Bigglesworth’s Appearance in “Goldmember”
Despite being a significant character in the Austin Powers franchise, Mr. Bigglesworth only appears in one scene in the film “Goldmember.” In a flashback to the British Intelligence Academy, a young Dr. Evil is seen holding Mr. Bigglesworth as a kitten when he still had hair. For this particular scene, a 12-week-old kitten named Chloe was cast to portray Mr. Bigglesworth. Although more scenes were initially planned, they were ultimately scrapped due to time constraints. Ted Nude-Gent’s only appearance is in the blooper reel for the film.
The Relationship between Dr. Evil and Mr. Bigglesworth
The bond between Dr. Evil and Mr. Bigglesworth is a unique one. Dr. Evil often states that when he becomes angry, Mr. Bigglesworth becomes upset, and when Mr. Bigglesworth becomes upset, people around him tend to meet an unfortunate fate. This humorous connection adds a touch of eccentricity to Dr. Evil’s character and showcases the close relationship he has with his hairless companion.
Trivia about Mr. Bigglesworth
- Mini-Me, Dr. Evil’s sidekick, has a miniature version of Mr. Bigglesworth aptly named Mini-Mr. Bigglesworth.
- Three Sphinx kittens named Mel Gibskin, Paul Nudeman, and Skindiana Jones were cast to play the role of Mini-Mr. Bigglesworth.
The Parody of Bond Villains
Mr. Bigglesworth serves as a parody of the Bond villains’ tendency to keep similar animals as companions. The character’s hairless appearance adds a comedic twist to the stereotype and highlights the over-the-top nature of the Austin Powers franchise.
Mr. Bigglesworth, Dr. Evil’s hairless pet cat, has become an iconic figure in the Austin Powers franchise. His unique transformation, real-life portrayal by Ted Nude-Gent, and his humorous relationship with Dr. Evil have made him a fan favorite. Despite limited screen time, Mr. Bigglesworth continues to leave a lasting impression on audiences worldwide.
- Q: What breed is Mr. Bigglesworth in the Austin Powers movies? A: Mr. Bigglesworth is portrayed by a hairless Sphynx cat named SGC Belfry Ted Nude-Gent.
- Q: Are Sphynx cats really hairless? A: Although they are often referred to as “hairless,” Sphynx cats actually have a fine layer of fuzz-like hair on their bodies.
- Q: Who played the role of Mr. Bigglesworth in “Goldmember”? A: A 12-week-old kitten named Chloe was cast to portray Mr. Bigglesworth in the film.
- Q: Why were additional scenes featuring Mr. Bigglesworth scrapped? A: Time constraints during filming led to the decision to remove the additional scenes from the final cut of the movie.
- Q: What is the significance of Mini-Mr. Bigglesworth? A: Mini-Me, Dr. Evil’s sidekick, has a miniature version of Mr. Bigglesworth as his companion, showcasing their close bond.