Instagram / Juniperfoxx
Instagram / Juniperfoxx

11 Amazing Animal Instagrams You Should Follow Right Now

Instagram / Juniperfoxx
Instagram / Juniperfoxx

If you’re looking to expand your Instagram feed beyond Internet famous cats and dogs, try following these unusual animals.

1. PUMPKIN THE RACCOON

Pumpkin was rescued by Nassau, Bahamas resident Rosie Kemp after falling out of a tree when she was just a month old, leaving her with a broken leg. The Bahamas Humane Society couldn’t take Pumpkin, so Kemp and her daughter, Laura Young, decided to raise the raccoon themselves. Eventually, Pumpkin moved in with Young, her husband, and their two rescue dogs—and an adorable Instagram was born. "Pumpkin considers the dogs her moms," Young told TODAY. “She respects them when they have had enough rough play and she loves to cuddle next to them when she is tired.” You can follow Pumpkin, whose favorite food is watermelon, here.

2. JACK THE WALLABY

Nashville-based lawyer Alex Fasching adopted Jack, a wallaby, two years ago. A year in, he started an Instagram account for Jack, who he regularly dresses up in fun outfits and takes on walks around his neighborhood. (The wallaby also accompanies Fasching to his office.) Now, Jack has more than 20,000 followers. “Jack sleeps in a pouch,” Fasching told the Daily Mail. “He will come up to you and reach his little arms towards you when he wants a scratch or a treat or to be picked up and held. If he wants to go in his pouch and you are holding it, he will reach at it until you lower it down for him to somersault into.” Follow Jack here.

3. PENNY THE GOAT

When yoga instructor Rachel Brathen adopted a baby goat, she probably didn’t think her new pet would be as enthusiastic about downward dog and pigeon pose as she was. But Penny Lane took quickly to yoga. On her Instagram—which has 65,000 followers—you can see her participating in her mom’s yoga routines and doing other fun things, like napping. Follow her here.

4. JUNIPER THE FOX

“I'm not the hero who rescued an orphaned baby fox from the wild. This isn't that story,” Juniper’s owner, who bought the fox from a breeder, writes on her pet’s Instagram page. So in addition to posting adorable photos and videos of Juniper doing everything from pouncing on the bed to going on walks, the fox’s owner also gives some real talk about what it’s like having a fox as a pet.

“I want to use my Instagram to be an educational resource,” she writes. Juniper does not act just like a dog, she says: “She's still a fox, and acts like a fox. ... It takes much more time and patience to care for her than it would [a dog or cat].” Foxes, she says, bite, require a special diet, and are prone to destructive behavior. “They're skittish, they smell horrid, and they pee on everything,” she writes. I hope that my posts can at least inform of the actuality that is living with such a rambunctious little life and stop the misinformation that will ultimately lead to foxes being the novelty pet.” Follow Juniper here.

5. MR. BAGEL THE CHINCHILLA

This 7-year-old mosaic chinchilla hails from the Bay area; his owner, Steve Byun, adopted Mr. Bagel from an animal shelter. “Some of my friends were talking about these cute bunnies they follow on Instagram,” Byun told SmallAnimalChannel.com, “and I thought it would be a great idea to dedicate an account to Mr. Bagel so I can informally document his life.” Now, Mr. Bagel has more than 100,000 followers, and Byun uses the platform to spread the message that fur isn’t fashionable and to encourage adopting over shopping. (Byun donates a portion of proceeds from Mr. Bagel-themed gear to a local chinchilla rescue.) You can follow Mr. Bagel here.

6. LUDWIK THE GUINEA PIG

Life wasn’t always so good for Ludwik, a 1-year-old naked guinea pig who spends his days participating in glamorous photos shoots featuring his favorite foods for an Instagram account that has nearly 29,000 followers. When his owner, Agata Nowacka, a student living in Warsaw, found him in a “very bad” pet store, she told The Dodo, he had pneumonia and other illnesses. It took six months to fix him up, and now, he lives with two Yorkies and another nude guinea pig. He even seems to enjoy his food-themed photo shoots: “Sometimes he even falls asleep, so I think he feels very comfortable,” Nowacka told The Dodo. “What is funny about Ludwik is the fact that he can fall asleep even during his vet's appointment. He could sleep all the time. He could spend most of his day in his blue polar blanket on my lap." Follow Ludwik here.

7. WALLY THE RABBIT

There’s no antidote for a bad day like the videos you’ll find on Wally’s Instagram page. This English Angora rabbit, who lives in Natick, Massachusetts and will celebrate his second birthday this year, has amazingly fluffy ears and a joyful jump. Wally’s owner, Molly Prottas, adopted the bunny after her Flemish Giant died. “My life had a big hole in it,” Prottas told ABC News. “I actually considered getting a dog, but I've always been so drawn to rabbits.” She trims Wally’s coat because he’s sensitive to brushing, but leaves his ears alone. “I let those go,” she said. “And he looked so adorable, soft and cuddly, so I just decided that that's going to be his look.” You can follow Wally here.

8. ESTHER THE WONDER PIG

When Steve Jenkins and Derek Walter adopted a piglet from an old friend in 2012, they were told she was a micropig who would grow to be 70 pounds. They had no idea that the animal they had adopted would grow into a full-sized, 670-pound pig. “Our vet raised concerns the first time he met her. He noticed her cropped tail and said it was a clear sign she was actually a commercial pig, not a pet at all. We were terrified but we had already fallen in love with her,” Jenkins told the Huffington Post. “We decided to wait and see what happened. But the longer we had her, the more we loved her—and, unfortunately, the bigger she got.”

Rather than give her up, Jenkins and Walter moved to a farm with Esther and their two dogs and two cats. Now, Esther has 195,000 followers on Instagram. “Derek and I are Esther's voice and some days it is really challenging to come up with new quips and I will sit there staring at a picture until something comes to me,” Jenkins told the Daily Mail. “Other days it's as if I can read Esther's thoughts and I swear she can convey them with her eyes and her smile.” Follow Esther’s exploits here.

9. BIKKE THE CHIPMUNK

We don’t know much about this adorable chipmunk, who lives in Japan, besides the fact that she has as much trouble getting out of bed on a Monday as we do. Bikke has nearly 100,000 followers; you can follow her here.

10. HENRY THE TORTOISE

Henry, a 16-year-old sulcata tortoise, got major news coverage earlier this month when his mom, Amanda Green (who writes for mental_floss) posted an ad for a tortoise walker on Craigslist. Green adopted Henry two years ago; initially, she was just fostering, but “I ended up falling in love,” she told Refinery29. “I was like, ‘If he needs a forever home, I'll be that for him!’” (Henry’s previous owner had young children and couldn’t give the tortoise the attention he needed.) Green said that Henry “definitely has a personality … more than I anticipated. He’s really social, he’s curious. … He's never really in his shell. Henry will greet anyone who comes into the apartment.” You can see Henry taking baths, wearing costumes, and walking around Central Park here.

11. CALICO THE HEDGEHOG

In addition to donning costumes and celebrating every holiday, Calico—an African pygmy hedgehog—also posts her vacation photos on Instagram, where she has 88,000 followers. This well-traveled hedgehog has been to the White House, enjoyed the views in Glacier National Park, and posed next to Seattle’s Space Needle. You can follow Calico here.

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Warner Bros.
19 Shadowy Facts About Tim Burton's Batman
Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.

Superhero movies are bigger than they’ve ever been before, but we arguably wouldn’t be here at all without 1989’s Batman. Produced at a time before comic book movies were considered big business, Tim Burton’s dark look at a superhero then best known for a goofy TV show is a pop culture landmark, and the story of how it was made is almost as interesting as the film itself. So, to celebrate Batman—which was released on this day in 1989—here are 19 facts about how it came to the screen.

1. AN EARLY MOVIE IDEA RELIED ON THE CAMPINESS OF THE CHARACTER.

As development of a Batman movie began, studio executives were still very tied to the campiness embodied by the Batman television series of the 1960s. According to executive producer Michael Uslan, when he first began attempting to get the rights to make a film, he was told that the only studio who’d expressed interest was CBS, and only if they could do a Batman In Outer Space film.

2. IT TOOK 10 YEARS TO MAKE.

Uslan lobbied hard for the rights to Batman, and finally landed them in 1979. At that point, the fight to convince a studio to make the film ensued, and everyone from Columbia Pictures to Universal Pictures turned it down. When Warner Bros. finally agreed to back the film, the issue of developing the right script had to be settled, and that took even more time. In 1989, after years of battling, Batman was finally released, and Uslan has been involved in some form in every Batman film since.

3. AN EARLY SCRIPT FEATURED BOTH THE PENGUIN AND ROBIN.

When Uslan finally got the chance to develop the film, he drafted legendary screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz, who had been a consultant on Superman, to write the script. The Mankiewicz script included The Joker, corrupt politician Rupert Thorne, a much greater focus on Bruce Wayne’s origin story, The Penguin, and the arrival of Robin late in the film. The script was ultimately scrapped, but you can see certain elements of it in Batman Returns.

4. TIM BURTON WASN’T THE FIRST POTENTIAL DIRECTOR.

Though Warner Bros. ultimately chose Tim Burton to helm Batman, over the course of the film’s development a number of other choices emerged. At various points on the road to Batman, everyone from Gremlins director Joe Dante to Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman was in line for the gig.

5. MANY STARS OF THE TIME WERE CONSIDERED FOR BATMAN.

The casting process for Batman was a long one, and involved a number of major stars of the day. Among the contenders for the title role were Mel Gibson, Bill Murray (yes, really), Kevin Costner, Willem Dafoe, Tom Selleck, Harrison Ford, Charlie Sheen, Ray Liotta, and Pierce Brosnan, who later regretted turning down the role.

6. TIM BURTON HAD TO FIGHT TO CAST MICHAEL KEATON.

At the time, Michael Keaton was best known for his comedic roles in films like Mr. Mom and Night Shift, so the thought of casting him as a vigilante of the night seemed odd to many. Michael Uslan remembers thinking a prank was being played on him when he heard Keaton’s name pop up. Burton, who’d already worked with Keaton on Beetlejuice, was convinced that Keaton was right for the role, not just because he could portray the obsessive nature of the character, but because he also felt that Keaton was the kind of actor who would need to dress up as a bat in order to scare criminals, while a typical action star would just garner “unintentional laughs” in the suit. Burton ultimately won the argument, and Keaton got an iconic role for two films.

7. JACK NICHOLSON WAS THE FIRST CHOICE FOR THE JOKER, BUT HE WASN’T THE ONLY CHOICE.

From the beginning, Uslan concluded that Jack Nicholson was the perfect choice to play The Joker, and was “walking on air” when the production finally cast him. He certainly wasn’t the only actor considered, though. Among Burton’s considerations were Willem Dafoe, James Woods, Brad Dourif, David Bowie, and Robin Williams (who really wanted the part).

8. TIM BURTON WON JACK NICHOLSON OVER WITH HORSEBACK RIDING.

When Nicholson was asked to discuss playing The Joker, he invited Burton and producer Peter Guber to visit him in Aspen for some horseback riding. When Burton learned that was what they’d be doing, he told Guber “I don’t ride,” to which Guber replied “You do today!” So, a “terrified” Burton got on a horse and rode alongside Nicholson, and the star ultimately agreed to play the Clown Prince of Crime.

9. EDDIE MURPHY WAS ONCE CONSIDERED TO PLAY ROBIN.

Though the character of Robin was ultimately scrapped because it simply didn’t feel like there was room for him in the film, he did appear in early drafts of the script, and at one point producers considered casting Eddie Murphy—who, you must remember, was one of the biggest movie stars of the 1980s—for the role. 

10. SEAN YOUNG WAS THE ORIGINAL VICKI VALE.

Burton initially cast Blade Runner star Sean Young as acclaimed photographer Vicki Vale, who would become Bruce Wayne’s love interest. Young was part of the pre-production process on Batman for several weeks until, while practicing horseback riding for a scene that was ultimately cut, she fell from her horse and was seriously injured. With just a week to go until shooting, producers had to act fast to find a replacement, and decided on Kim Basinger, who essentially joined the production overnight.

11. TIM BURTON WASN’T OFFICIALLY HIRED UNTIL BEETLEJUICE BECAME A HIT.

Though he was basically already a part of the production, Burton wasn’t officially the director of Batman right away. Warner Bros. showed interest in him working on the film after the success of Pee-wee’s Big Adventure, but according to Burton they only officially hired him after the first weekend grosses for Beetlejuice came in.

“They were just waiting to see how Beetlejuice did,” Burton said. “They didn’t want to give me that movie unless Beetlejuice was going to be okay. They wouldn’t say that, but that was really the way it was.”

12. DANNY ELFMAN THOUGHT HE WAS GOING TO BE FIRED UNTIL HE PLAYED THE MAIN THEME.

Danny Elfman is now considered one of our great movie composers, but at the time Batman was released he didn’t have any blockbuster credits to his name. He recalls meeting with Burton (with whom he had worked on Pee-wee’s Big Adventure) and producer Jon Peters to go over some of the music he’d already written for the film, and feeling “a lot of skepticism” over whether he should be the composer for Batman. It wasn’t until Burton said “Play the march,” and Elfman went into what would become the opening credits theme for the film, that he won Peters over.

“Jon jumped out of his chair, really just almost started dancing around the room,” Elfman said.

13. THE JOKER WASN’T ALWAYS GOING TO KILL BATMAN’S PARENTS.

In the final film, The Joker (then named Jack Napier) is revealed to be the gangster who guns down Bruce Wayne’s parents in the streets of Gotham City. It’s a twist that some comic book fans still dislike, and according to screenwriter Sam Hamm, it definitely wasn’t his fault.

“That was something that Tim had wanted from early on, and I had a bunch of arguments with him and wound up talking him out of it for as long as I was on the script. But, once the script went into production, there was a writer’s strike underway, and so I wasn’t able to be with the production as it was shooting over in London, and they brought in other people.”

Hamm also emphasizes that it was also not his idea to show Alfred letting Vicki Vale into the Batcave.

14. THE CLIMACTIC SCENE WAS WRITTEN MIDWAY THROUGH SHOOTING.

Though much of the film is still derived from Hamm’s script, rewrites continued to happen during shooting, and one of them involved the final confrontation between Batman and The Joker in a Gotham City clock tower. According to co-star Robert Wuhl, the climax was inspired by Jack Nicholson and Jon Peters, who went to see a production of The Phantom of the Opera midway through filming and watched as the Phantom made his final stand in a tower. Together, they somehow determined that a final fight in the tower was what Batman needed.

“The next day, they started writing that scene … the whole ending in the tower,” Wuhl said.

15. MICHAEL KEATON’S BATMAN MOVEMENTS WERE INSPIRED BY THE RESTRICTIONS OF THE COSTUME.

Batman fans still love to make jokes about the original costume, and Michael Keaton’s inability to turn his head (there’s even a dig at that in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight), but the restrictions of the costume actually inspired how Keaton performed as the Dark Knight. In 2014, Keaton revealed that his performance as Batman was heavily influenced by a moment when, while trying to actually turn his head in the suit, he ended up ripping it.

“It really came out of the first time I had to react to something, and this thing was stuck to my face and somebody says something to Batman and I go like this [turning his head] and the whole thing goes, [rriipp]! There was a big f***ing hole over here,” he said. “So I go, well, I've got to get around that, because we've got to shoot this son of a bitch, so I go, 'You know what, Tim [Burton]? He moves like this [like a statue]!’”

“I'm feeling really scared, and then it hit me—I thought, 'Oh, this is perfect! This is perfect.' I mean, this is, like, designed for this kind of really unusual dude, the Bruce Wayne guy, the guy who has this other personality that's really dark and really alone, and really kind of depressed. This is it.”

16. GOTHAM CITY WAS REAL, AND IT WAS EXPENSIVE.

Production designer Anton Furst put a lot of work into the incredibly influential designs for the film’s version of Gotham City, and the production was committed to making them pay off. The production ultimately spent more than $5 million to transform the backlot of London’s Pinewood Studios into Gotham City, and you can see the dedication to practical effects work in the final film.

17. PRINCE WAS PART OF THE PRODUCTION EVEN BEFORE HE JOINED IT.

Batman famously features original songs by Prince, who wrote so much new material for the production that he basically produced a full album. Even before the Purple One was drafted to write for the film, though, he was influencing it. Burton played Prince songs on set during the parade sequence and the Joker’s rampage through the museum.

18. THE FILM’S MARKETING WAS SO EFFECTIVE THAT IT INSPIRED CRIMES.

By the time Batman was actually on its way to release, it was becoming a phenomenon, and the marketing for the film was inspiring a frenzy among fans. People were buying tickets to other films just to see the first trailer, and selling bootleg copies of the early footage. The poster, featuring the iconic logo, was so popular that, according to Uslan, people were breaking into bus stations just to steal it.

19. IT WAS A BOX OFFICE LANDMARK.

Though studio executives resisted the idea of a “dark” Batman movie for years, the film ultimately set a new standard for box office success. It was the first film to ever hit $100 million in 10 days, the biggest film in Warner Bros.’ history at the time, and the box office’s biggest earner of 1989—and that’s not even counting the massive toy and merchandising sales it generated.

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Underwhelmed Tourists
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