It's Groundhog Day and Punxsutawney Phil Didn't See His Shadow: Cheer Up, Bill Murray!

By Kevin Fallon

Last week, the Culture channel's Hampton Stevens wrote an open letter to Bill Murray imploring the actor to take a break from playing downtrodden film roles and lighten up (and also, just sign on for Ghostbusters 3 already). Because today is Groundhog Day, we thought we would resurface a clip of Murray at his downright gloomiest: deriding the "pitiful" people "freezing their butts off waiting to worship a rat" in his 1993 film Groundhog Day:



One can only imagine that Murray is channeling his character's dreariness in the film today. After all, the Chicago native's hometown is currently blanketed under 17 inches of snow and enduring a crippling winter storm. The immediate outlook, at least, looks bleak. But allow us to join Hampton in encouraging Murray to cheer up, as today—the namesake of his famous movie—brings glad news. Punxsutawney Phil surfaced shortly after dawn to conduct the ceremonial search for his shadow, and it was not there! Spring is coming early!

It's only fitting, then, that Murray mute the Sonny and Cher song playing on his clock radio, and join us in dancing along to the "Pennsylvania Polka":



Read Hampton's full open letter, "Dear Bill Murray, Cheer Up! (And Make 'Ghostbusters 3')." Read the full Punxsutawney Phil story at The Washington Post.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2011/02/its-groundhog-day-and-punxsutawney-phil-didnt-see-his-shadow-cheer-up-bill-murray/70647/