If “bear gets into a cocaine payload and goes on a rampage” doesn’t hook you to see a movie, we don’t know what will. Seriously, check out this new post for February 2023’s Cocaine Bear, hitting theaters from Universal Studios. It’s full of majesty and, well, a cocaine-fueled bear.
That hook and this movie poster are part of what director Elizabeth Banks is counting on in the upcoming movie, starring Ray Liotta (in his last feature film posthumously released), Alden Ehrenreich, O’Shea Jackson Jr., and Keri Russell, and loosely based on events in Kentucky in 1985. In the film, a bear consumes a mind-boggling amount of cocaine, which triggers–what else?–a bloody rampage filled with coke… and more coke… and more coke. A group of assorted teens, tourists, and law enforcement find themselves in the Georgia wilderness and in the path of the titular Cocaine Bear. Chaos ensues.
The actual tale of Cocaine Bear is a bit different. Former narcotics officer-turner-narcotics smuggler Andrew Thornton unloaded 75 pounds and $15 million worth of cocaine from his plane due to the coke weighing down the plane. Thornton hoped to recover the cocaine of the ground, but died from a failed parachute.
Enter the bear, who stumbled across the cocaine and died from a massive overdose. His body, which was recovered in Kentucky, was taxidermed and passed through several hands over the years, including music star Waylon Jennings. Cocaine Bear now resides in the shop Kentucky for Kentucky, where the bear has become a staple and an attraction.
Cocaine Bear roars into theaters on February 24th, 2023.