A scene stealer is defined as a character that makes the most out of their limited screen time, to the extent that the viewer misses them when they’re not around. DreamWorks Animation has certainly been responsible for their fair share of scene stealers, with the following five standing as their most memorable:
Though the Shrek series features plenty of scene-stealers, it’s the Gingerbread Man who stands as the franchise’s most memorable periphery character. Created by the Muffin Man, the Gingerbread Man – also known as Gingy – has appeared in all four Shrek films and has helped the heroes on a number of occasions. Gingy virtually embodies the idea of a scene stealer, as he’s one of those characters that always leaves the audience wanting more. (And in a fun piece of trivia, Gingy’s voice is provided by Conrad Vernon – who is otherwise known as the co-director of both Shrek 2 and Monsters vs Aliens.)
Best Line: “It looks like we're up chocolate creek without a Popsicle stick!”
It’s now impossible to envision the Madagascar series without the penguins, as the flightless birds have been stealing scenes right from their first appearance in 2005’s Madagascar. The penguins, led by Skipper (Tom McGrath), are portrayed as sneaky troublemakers that seem to have a solution for every problem, with their inherently irresistible nature heightened by their peculiar manner of speech. (They sound like they’ve walked over from a 1940s detective movie.) The penguins have proven to be so loveable, in fact, that they’ve appeared in a short film called The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper and starred in their own show on Nickelodeon (The Penguins of Madagascar).
Best Line: “Remember: Cute and cuddly, boys. Cute and cuddly.”
On the long running sitcom Seinfeld, Patrick Warburton immediately became a fan favorite thanks to his scene-stealing work as Elaine’s (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) on-again-off-again boyfriend David Puddy. When the time came for Jerry Seinfeld to make the move to the big screen with 2007’s Bee Movie, Patrick Warburton was the obvious choice to provide the voice of Vanessa Bloome’s (Renee Zellweger) pompous, slightly dimwitted boyfriend. And, like he did on Seinfeld, Warburton delivers a hilariously deadpan performance that often overshadows the film’s stars, with Ken’s incongruous fear of bees resulting in a number of laugh-out-loud funny scenes and situations.
Best Line: “My nerves are fried from riding on this emotional roller coaster!”
Before his identity is stolen by Will Ferrell’s Megamind, Bernard (Ben Stiller) is a morose, depressive museum curator who harbors a crush on Tina Fey’s beautiful Roxanne Ritchi. The interesting thing about Stiller’s presence in this very small role is that the Madagascar actor was, at one point, rumored to voice Megamind, though he eventually decided to step aside and just take on an “executive producer” credit instead. Stiller’s hilariously subdued performance as the pathetic Bernard stands in sharp contrast to Ferrell’s over-the-top work as the same character, and it’s impossible not to wish that Stiller had been allowed just a little more screentime as Bernard.
Best Line: “This is the worst day of my life!”
Over the years, Martin Scorsese has directed some of modern cinemas most indelible and compelling films – including Raging Bull and The Departed. But Scorsese has also garnered a reputation based solely on his fast-talking manner of speech, with the filmmaker’s role as Sykes in Shark Tale certainly taking full advantage of his rapid-fire, motor-mouthed delivery. In Shark Tale, Sykes is a loan shark to whom Will Smith’s Oscar owes a sizeable amount of money – with the two eventually working together after Oscar becomes known as the Sharkslayer. As an added bonus, Scorsese appears frequently alongside Robert De Niro – who, of course, starred in many of the Oscar-winner’s best movies.
Best Line: “My brother, my player, the shark-slayer!”