Groundhog Day time estimates

I’ve sorta been loosely fascinating with the question of how long does Bill Murray stay in Puxatawnny, PA in the movie Groundhog Day.  Fascinated in a drunken barroom kind of way, but still. 

It started when Bill Simmons addressed this question in a mailbag and estimated that Murray’s character was there for at least 27 months, or just over two years. 


Recently, one someone else speculated that Bill Murray’s character spent a total of eight years, eight months, and sixteen days reliving the same 24-hour period in Groundhog Day.

I always figured it was much longer, given the certain set of skills he masters and how well he learns the patterns of the day.  Thankfully, director Harold Ramis weighs in: “I think the ten-year estimate is too short. It takes at least ten years to get good at anything, and, allotting for the downtime and misguided years he spent, it had to be more like 30 or 40 years … People have way too much time on their hands. They could be learning to play the piano or speak French or sculpt ice.”

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