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Top 10 Fictional Movie and TV Owls

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Written by Nick Spake. Deep down, we all wish that an owl would deliver us a letter or give us advice on a quest. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the top 10 fictional owls in movies and TV. For this list, we’re taking a look at pop culture owls that stand out due to their wisdom, loyalty, and wit. These owls all proved that they are one of the coolest and most interesting species of birds. They’re a hoot! Special thanks to our users jkellis, Alfaz Nanji and coult45 for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest.
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Script written by Nick Spake.

Top 10 Fictional Owls in Movies and TV


Deep down, we all wish that an owl would deliver us a letter or give us advice on a quest. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 fictional owls in movies and TV.

For this list, we’re taking a look at pop culture owls that stand out due to their wisdom, loyalty, and wit.

#10: Wan Shi Tong
“Avatar: The Last Airbender” (2005-08)

The world of “Avatar” has given us some of the most imaginative creatures in all of animation, one of the most memorable being Wan Shi Tong, a giant owl who amasses information in his library. Proclaiming himself as an all-knowing spirit, he looks down on mortals as lesser beings that are only driven by violence. He’s not entirely wrong as even the heroes of “Avatar” seek out his library to win a war. Neither a good guy nor bad, Wan Shi Tong will protect his library’s knowledge by any means necessary.

#9: Bubo
“Clash of the Titans” (1981)

It’s said that Hephaestus, the god of metalworking, forged Bubo the owl. Film buffs know, however, that this golden mechanical owl was really brought to life by Ray Harryhausen, the god of stop-motion. Sounding like a hooting R2D2, Bubo is sent by Athena to assist Perseus rescue Princess Andromeda. Bubo is always there to show Perseus the way and even help him defeat the Kraken. Over thirty years after “Clash of the Titans” came out, though, we still don’t have a flying, fully functional Bubo toy. Somebody, please make this!

#8: Soren
“Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole” (2010)

Soren is one bird that usually has his head in the sky, spending most of his carefree days dreaming about the legendary owls of Ga’Hoole. The simple owl is swooped away on the adventure of a lifetime when he is kidnapped by an army of evil owls. Refusing to let his captors break his spirit, Soren takes flight with a band of misfit owls to find the Guardians. In dark times of uncertainty, Soren acts as a beacon of hope that encourages his fellow owls to keep fighting and flying.

#7: Friend Owl
“Bambi” (1942)

While he might get a little cranky when others make a racket, Friend Owl is a genuinely friendly owl, as his name suggests. Seemingly the only owl in the forest, Friend Owl is a reclusive bachelor who enjoys his solitude. He always has time to share a cheerful conversation with the young prince of the forest, though. Since Bambi’s mother is dead and his father is an absent loner, Friend Owl brings it upon himself to give him the sex talk, or the “twitterpated” talk as he would put it.

#6: Big Mama
“The Fox and the Hound” (1981)

After Tod’s mother is given the classic Disney parent sendoff, this owl with the sassy voice of Pearl Bailey takes the little fox under her wing. Even when the kindly old Widow Tweed adopts Tod, Big Mama still keeps a watchful eye on him. Like any caring mammy, Big Mama helps Tod deal with romance, friendship, and the inevitability of growing up. She’s also very upfront with Tod about the dangers of hunters and where a lack of education will land him.

#5: Mr. Owl
“Tootsie Pop” commercial (1969)

Mr. Cow, Mr. Fox, and Mr. Turtle never finished a Tootsie Pop without biting, but surely Mr. Owl can tell this nude boy how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop. Apparently, it takes three. Either that or Mr. Owl is just a smart aleck who doesn’t know jack. That’s probably not even his mortarboard. In any case, his classic line is the reason this commercial is still going strong over four decades later and why the world is still plagued by this question.

#4: The Great Owl
“The Secret of NIMH” (1982)

“The Secret of NIMH” was definitely one of the darkest animated movies of the ‘80s, truly treating its audience like adults. A particularly intimidating scene is when Mrs. Brisby seeks the aid of the Great Owl. With a booming voice that echoes through his tree hole and eyes that shine like lanterns, the Great Owl is a beast as wise as he is gritty. Although he’s only onscreen for one scene, he leaves a dominating impression that will stick with you well after the movie is over.

#3: Owl
“Winnie the Pooh” franchise (1966-)

A bit like the Frasier Crane of the Hundred Acre Wood, Owl is wise, sophisticated, dignified, and enjoys entertaining his unintellectual friends. That being said, he also has a somewhat large ego, often prattling away with life stories that clearly bore everyone else. He isn’t quite as smart as he makes himself out to be, however, constantly misreading situations and making spelling mistakes. Even if he is occasionally misguided, Owl loves to give his friends advice and lend a helping wing.

#2: Archimedes
“The Sword in the Stone” (1963)

You can probably tell from this list that Disney has a knack for creating wonderful owl characters. Their absolute best is Archimedes, a talking owl who’s sarcastic, cynical, and closed-minded despite the fact that his master is a wizard. Named after the Greek philosopher, Archimedes takes great pleasure in shooting Merlin down every time he fumbles. Nevertheless, the judgmental owl does have a soft spot for old Merlin and the young boy who would become king through their guidance.

Before we soar over to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Woodsy Owl
“United States Forest Service” commercial (1970-80s)
- Hoots the Owl
“Sesame Street” (1969-)
- Mr. Owl
“Franklin” (1997-2004)
- Owl
“Little Bear” (1995-2003)

#1: Hedwig
“Harry Potter” franchise (2001-11)

Ever since she was given to Harry on his 11th birthday, this snowy owl has faithfully stood by the boy who lived. Whether he needs a crucial letter delivered or somebody to talk to, Harry can always count on Hedwig. She’s much more than just a pet. She’s one of Harry’s dearest friends and the epitome of every animal companion we wished we had grown up with. Hedwig is further a symbol of Harry’s childhood innocence, which makes it especially tragic when she…well, we won’t spoil that for you here.

Do you agree with our list? Who’s your favorite fictional owl? For more entertaining Top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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