Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs Wiki

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is a computer-animated film produced by Sony Pictures Animation based on the 1978 children's book by Judi and Ron Barrett. The film was written and directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller in their directorial debuts and released on September 18, 2009.

The film centers around quirky aspiring scientist and inventor Flint Lockwood, who develops a machine that can convert water into food. While his invention initially brings joy and whimsical food-filled wonderlands to the town of Swallow Falls, overuse of the machine causes the food to overmutate, creating dangerous storms and natural food disasters. With the help of his friends, Flint must stop his machine in order to save the world.


See also Transcript

Have you ever felt like you were a little bit different? Like you had something unique to offer the world, if you could just get people to see it? Then you know exactly how it felt to be me.
— Flint Lockwood
Young Flint Intro

Young Flint

From a young age, aspiring scientist Flint Lockwood dreamt of making the world a better place. His hometown of Swallow Falls, a tiny island in the Atlantic Ocean with a sardine-based economy, had fallen on hard times after "everyone in the world realized that sardines are super gross." Forced to eat the sardines they could no longer export, Swallow Falls fell into an uninspired, depressive slump.

Flint has wanted to use his passion for invention to create something that will make a positive impact on the world. But instead of helping the town and its citizens, every invention—from Spray-on Shoes to a Flying Car that doesn't fly or Ratbirds that escaped a became an invasive species—caused chaos. Ostracized for his failures, Flint spent his childhood alone, his monkey lab assistant Steve his only friend.

In spite of his isolation, Flint remained undeterred, with plans to unveil his latest invention: the Flint Lockwood Diatonic Super Mutating Dynamic Food Replicator (FLDSMDFR), a machine that can turn water into food. However, when the machine overloads and shorts the power out in the house, Flint's father, Tim Lockwood, implores his son to work at the family tackle shop.

Mayor Shelbourne unveils a sardine-themed amusement park called Sardine Land in a bid to revitalize the town. Flint was able to sneak out of the tackle shop under cover of the opening ceremony to connect the FLDSMDFR to a local substation. Unfortunately, the power overload sent the FLDSMDFR careening through the amusement park. It weakens the support beams on a giant fishbowl in the park before rocketing into the sky. The bowl rolls across Sardine Circle, crushing the remaining attractions before being launched into the sky by an explosion, landing atop Flint and Steve.

Burger Rain Flint

Cheeseburger Rain

Ashamed and humiliated, Flint flees the square and hid beneath the docks, where aspiring weathergirl Sam Sparks accidentally kicks Flint in the face. The two of them were the first to witness a miracle: Flint's invention worked, using the clouds in the atmosphere to rain cheeseburgers on the town.

The strange and wondrous weather phenomenon gave Sam a second chance at her weather reporting career and redeemed Flint in the eyes of the town. Swallow Falls was also completely revitalized, renamed Chewandswallow to capitalize on the food weather phenomenon. On an Ice Cream Snow Day, Sam invited the global community to come to the Chewandswallow Grand Opening that upcoming Saturday.

Flint and Sam bond over their shared passion for science. Flint surprises her with a Giant Jell-O Mold, remembering her favorite food from an offhand comment made weeks prior. There, Sam confides that she had been hiding her true, nerdy self due to childhood bullying. Flint reassures her, expressing that he found her beautiful just as she was, glasses and all.

As the townspeople grew greedier and more gluttonous, Flint overburdened the FLDSMDFR, causing the food to mutate and drastically increase in size. Tim Lockwood expresses his concern over the large portion sizes, which Flint interprets as a lack of parental support. The mayor, on the other hand, was overjoyed at the increasing amount of food and insisted that Flint make a spaghetti dinner for tourists arriving for the town's grand reopening.

Spaghetti Twister

Spaghetti Twister

The spaghetti dinner turned disastrous when it manifested as a spaghetti tornado, spitting meatballs and oregano across the town, destroying the renovated buildings and causing chaos. Realizing he was the only one who can shut down the FLDSMDFR, Flint charges through the tornado and heads into his lab, only to discover that the mayor was already there ordering a Vegas-style all-you-can-eat buffet, refusing to cancel his order. In the following scuffle, Flint and the Mayor accidentally destroy Flint's only method of communicating with the machine.

Meanwhile, Sam discovered the scope of the danger using her childhood weather radar. When Patrick Patrickson on Weather News Network ignored her pleas, Sam patched through the broadcast with the help of her friend and cameraman Manny. With the world in imminent danger due to his invention, Flint fell into despair, but his dad encouraged him, reminding him that his inventing skills could still help people. Inspired, Flint redesigns the Flying Car. In town, Officer Earl Devereaux takes accountability for contributing to the danger, then leads the evacuation. Accompanied by Sam, Manny, Steve, and childhood bully and former town mascot Brent, Flint flies into the heart of the storm to destroy the FLDSMDFR using a kill code copied to a USB.


The Meat-a-roid

Upon reaching the FLDSMDFR, they discover it had surrounded itself in a giant Meat-a-Roid and created sentient food creatures for protection. As the group reached the interior, the flash drive was destroyed, prompting Flint to call Tim and instruct him to email the drive's code to his cell phone via his laboratory's computer. Finding the FLDSMDFR, Flint connects his phone with the flash drive's code sent by Tim to it, only to discover that the wrong file was sent. All seems lost until Flint uses his Spray-On Shoes on the machine, clogging up its flow and causing it to explode and destroy the meatball, ending the storm. After surviving the destruction, Flint reunites with Tim, who finally shows appreciation for his son's inventions, and Sam, with whom he shares a kiss.


Role Actor
Flint Lockwood Bill Hader
Sam Sparks Anna Faris
Steve Neil Patrick Harris
Tim Lockwood James Caan
Mayor Shelbourne Bruce Campbell
Brent McHale Andy Samberg
Earl Devereaux Mr. T
Calvin Devereaux Bobb'e J. Thompson
Manny Benjamin Bratt
Patrick Patrickson Al Roker
Fran Lockwood Lauren Graham
Joe Towne Will Forte



From the first character to the last soda can took exactly two years. The can was a garbage piece that we crushed and put next to a dumpster.
— Marvin Kim, modeling supervisor

On May 9, 2003, a year after establishment, Sony Pictures Animation announced its first animated slate, including Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, a film adaptation of the book of the same name[1]. The Brizzi brothers were brought to direct the film, with Wayne Rice adapting the screenplay. In 2006, it was reported that the film had been helmed by new directors and writers, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Lord and Miller said later that year that it would be a homage to, and a parody of, disaster films such as Twister, Armageddon, The Core, and The Day After Tomorrow[2].

Story and script

After a year working on the script, Lord and Christopher Miller were fired for story issues and replaced with new writers, who after a year were also fired. Lord and Miller were then re-hired in 2006. The two completely redid the script, this time with the creative input of their crew.[3] The new draft had the protagonist as a failed inventor who wanted to prove himself to his town. The two were almost fired again after Amy Pascal, then-head of Sony Pictures, criticized the film for lack of story.[3] Although the film succeeded on the comedic front in the animatic stage, Pascal cited the lack of an anchoring relationship in the film as a failure in the story telling. Unable to create new characters and environments to suit the new story demands, the two elevated the character of the tackle shop extra to be the protagonist's father, thereby creating the relationship Pascal had requested.[3] The pair's experience on Cloudy taught them two valuable lessons: the power of creative collaboration and the importance of emotion in a story.


On September 18, 2008, Variety announced that Bill Hader and Anna Faris had signed on to voice the two lead characters[4], with James Caan, Bruce Campbell, Mr. T, Andy Samberg, Neil Patrick Harris, Bobb'e J. Thompson, Benjamin Bratt, Al Roker, Lauren Graham, and Will Forte also in the voice cast.


Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is the second film after Monster House that was made using the animation rendering software Arnold.

Sound Effects

An alphabetical list of all sound effects used in the film can be found here.


Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs premiered on September 12, 2009, at the Mann Village Theatre in Los Angeles, California. The film had its wide release on September 18, 2009, along with a digitally re-mastered release to IMAX 3D theatres.

Home media

The film was released on DVD, Blu-ray Disc, and PSP UMD on January 5, 2010[Citation needed] in the United States and Canada. A 3D Blu-ray was released on June 22, 2010. It was the first 3D Blu-ray sold individually in the United States.


In 2010, Burger King released a series of six Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs toys, accompanied by this commercial.

Cloudy burger king toys

Carl's Jr. also released a series of three toys and a recipe book.

Carls jr cloudy

4D Experience

In 2011, a 10-15 minute subsection of the movie was shown in limited locations as a 4D experience.[5]


Box office

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs earned a total of $243 million on a reported budget of $100 million. Of the gross, 51%, or $124,870,275, came from the domestic market, while the rest, $118,135,851, from other territories[6]. The film earned $8,137,358 on its opening Friday, and ranked #1 at the box office with a total of $30.3 million for the first weekend. On its second weekend, it remained at #1 with a decrease of only 17%. Documents from the Sony Pictures hack revealed the film turned a profit of $6 million.