Hugo the Jungle Animal (Danish: Jungledyret Hugo) is a character created by Flemming Quist Møller whose adventures are the subject of a franchise. The only known surviving member of the fictional species Hugus primiticus, he is the "world's rarest animal" and frequently sought after by numerous people for wealth and prestige. Hugo is the main protagonist in three feature films and the interquel television series.
Also Known For Stephen Squirrelsky
- He is Rita's boyfriend and Darla's father.
Hugo was created in 1966 in a lullaby for Møller's then-infant son Carl. In later years Møller sought to turn Hugo's adventures into a book, and in 1986 wrote a radio play for Danmarks Radio that was followed shortly after by a picture book illustrated by his son.
Design and personality
Hugo's appearance was developed by Carl Quist Møller in consultation with his father as part of a promotional animated short for the radio play. The design, which Møller describes as a cross between "a cat, a monkey and a bear", served as the basis for the book illustrations. It was reworked for the first film into a more Disney-like style reminiscent of a teddy bear or koala. Hugo's fur was also recoloured light yellow to better distinguish him from Rita the fox.
Hugo has prehensile hands with opposable thumbs and human-like feet. He is bipedal, but can run quadrupedally, and can use various tools including levers and skateboards. He eats mainly fruits and is especially fond of bananas, although he is omnivorous and quickly develops a liking to meatballs while on board the banana ship. He is clever and mischievous, able to outwit other animals, is prone to bragging and selfishness, but nonetheless has a kind heart and is concerned for the well-being of his friends.
Hugo made his first appearance in Jungledyret Hugo (later redubbed in English as Go Hugo Go).
Hugo is first seen living in his natural home, the Jungle. Upon waking up and getting a little breakfast, Hugo decides to mess with his two monkey friends, Zig and Zag. Tying their tails together while they sleep, he lets out a roar similar to that of a lion, causing the two to try and run away in fear, but end up dangling from their tails. Upon telling the two it’s time to wake up, Hugo untangles the two monkeys' tails and drops them onto a tree branch below. The trio then sing the song Wulle Wulle Wap Wap, talking of their everyday lives (while partaking in swinging from vines, riding parrots and enjoying some fruit (during the last event, Zig and Zag trick Hugo into kissing a chameleon, much to his displeasure) and how there "the freshest of the animals in the jungle". After the song, the trio happily play around on the jungle floor.
Hugo is next seen racing with Zig and Zag through the trees; unfortunately, one of the vines Hugo grabs turns out to be a massive snake! Clearly displeased, the snake intends to swallow Hugo whole; luckily, through some quick thinking, Hugo creates a lie about how he is extremely poisonous if consumed and that, if he were eaten, the snake would suffer stomach pains, impairment of vision and finally death. Though the snake is skeptical, it slithers off, deciding it's best not to find out if Hugo really is poisonous or not. After taunting the fleeing snake with a cry of "Wulle Wulle Wa!", Hugo has a good laugh with his friends.
Some time later, during the afternoon, Hugo is enjoying watermelons with Zig and Zag. After throwing away a watermelon rind (which is used by Conrad Cupmann and his native guide to track down Hugo), Hugo tries to wake his friends with a good-natured tickle, but is unintentionally punched in the nose (much to the enjoyment of his two friends). Annoyed at having been punched in the nose and having been laughed at by his friends, Hugo decides to leave the part of the jungle his friends liked to hang around in (but not before he has a run in with the snake from earlier); unfortunately, Hugo ends up with more than he bargained for when he ends up caught in a net and then placed into a crate set up as a trap by Cupmann and the Chief.
When Hugo is finally able to leave the crate, he finds himself in the hands of Izabella Dehavalot (referred to in all European dubs as "Izabella Scorpio"), a crazy starlet who's been on the hunt for a rare creature to co-star with her in a film so that she and Cupmann can make a ton of money. Naturally, Hugo doesn't take kindly to being held against his own will (nor does he take kindly to Izabella's kisses), so he bits her on the nose and jumps off of the yacht in an attempt to swim to safety. Unfortunately, Hugo is chased by the ever-determined Izabella and eventually falls off a waterfall, seemingly to his death.
Fortunately, Hugo survives the long fall, but finds himself lost in a horribly deforested part of the jungle. As Hugo walks onwards (recounting the number of unpleasant events that transpired that day), he eventually reaches a cluster of palm trees teeming with plantains (though Hugo assumes they're just bananas with green skins). Devouring one greedily, Hugo soon falls asleep afterwards.
Unbeknownst to Hugo, he chose one of the worst possible places to fall asleep- a plantain farm. Woken by the sounds of the farmhands cutting down bunches of plantains, Hugo ends up unintentionally in a bag with several plantains, which is loaded on a truck, taken to a harbor and thrown onto a conveyor belt leading to a massive cargo ship bound for Copenhagen, Denmark (which, ironically, Izabella and Conrad are using to get back home from their vacation).
During the trip, Hugo start to get seasick, due to the rocking of the cargo ship, and eventually vomits. Calling for help, he is saved by a pair of rats. After commenting that Hugo smells awful, the rats direct Hugo out of the hold of the ship by pointing him to a ventilation shaft that leads up to the top deck, where he can wash the vomit out of his fur. As quickly as possible, Hugo clambers onto the top deck and, after cleaning himself (and nearly sliding off of the ship and into the ocean), he decides to grab something to fill his empty stomach.
Picking up an unfamiliar scent, Hugo follows his nose to the ship's galley. Finding a pot of stew, Hugo sticks his finger in for a taste; unfortunately, Hugo never learned it's unwise to play near a stove and burns his hand in the process. Unexpectedly, he receives some help, Meatball Charlie, the ship's cook, discovers Hugo and (after applying some ointment to Hugo's burned paw) gives him a sample of his meatballs, which Hugo enjoys quite a bit. After making himself at home in Charlie's kitchen, Hugo kicks back and (unintentionally) starts up the song (Ship Song) (in which he provides the drum music by banging pots with wooden spoons). Sadly, things take a turn for the worse, as Hugo's playing hardly goes unnoticed and the ever-psychotic Izabella finds the jungle animal. Luckily, Charlie refuses to let Izabella have Hugo (ignoring the fact that she'll pay any price) and, when decent reasoning doesn't work, he shoves the crazed woman out of his kitchen and locks it up tight.
Some time later, the cargo ship makes its way to Copenhagen's ports and Hugo marvels at this new, strange world. Though intimidated, Hugo is promised by Charlie that he'll be safe, because he's going to a zoo. Following Charlie, Hugo is taken to the zoo (unaware that Izabella has yet to give up on her chase).
Hugo doesn't quite enjoy his new home at the zoo, a massive crowd of paparazzi are constantly taking photographs of him, he's in a cage and the claustrophobia is quick to settle in. Once Charlie and the media take their leave of him, Hugo begins to panic and, eventually, cries out in fear. A zoo lion doesn't take kindly to Hugo's racket and tells him to calm down and forget the jungle, since a zoo animal's life is the best (according to the lion, at least). Despite the lion's attempt to help, Hugo still wants to break out; luckily, he receives a visitor, a city fox named Rita. Hugo becomes smitten with Rita, who talks of her family life and her street smart ways. Though the two share a tender moment (and Hugo's food), the happiness is short-lived, as Conrad and one of his goons goes in to capture Hugo. Through some quick moves, Hugo escapes and tries to find Rita; sadly, this plan fails, as Hugo avoids getting run over by cars, is spooked by traffic lights, gets electrocuted several times* (note* this was cut out in the American version) and finally winds up on top of a building. Exhausted and horribly lost in the concrete jungle, Hugo falls asleep.
The next morning, Hugo wakes up and, thinking for a brief moment that he's back home, tries to get breakfast in the usual way. To his misfortune, he gets a nasty shock as the only thing falling into his hands is bird feces. Wiping his hands off, Hugo quickly finds the cure for his hungry stomach- piles and piles of food! Going to the nearby market and quickly beginning to chow down on the local foods, Hugo meets another animal denizen of Copenhagen; a stuck-up, prissy poodle named Sabrina Sandhurst. The two discuss breed rarity (while Sabrina notes her various accomplishments in dog shows to the completely oblivious Hugo) and Hugo, curious about Sabrina's life and believing that Sabrina seems kind enough, decides to slip into the groceries brought along by Sabrina's owner (after having ridden in a car before, Hugo is hesitant to riding out in the open).
Arriving at Sabrina's home, Hugo slips away and clambers onto a bookcase. He eventually gets Sabrina's attention; eventually, Sabrina gets the impression that Hugo is a cat (based on the fact that he can climb and dogs can't) and orders him out. Hugo, not one to be ordered around, promptly throws Sabrina's awards back at her, which gets her in trouble with her owner, who drags her outside.
Not intending to get caught, Hugo runs away again and ends up in a children's room. After having a brief look around at the toys in the room, he ends up cornered on top of a dollhouse by two children. To Hugo's misfortune, the two children decide to keep him as a pet and play house with him (even going and dressing Hugo up in a doll's pajamas). Preferring to remain free, Hugo leaves the dollhouse and disposes of his pajamas; on his path to freedom, however, he stops and notices a news report stating that he is now at large and is being sought after by Izabella (who Hugo has now grown to hate with a fiery passion). Slipping out of the house through a chimney, Hugo finds he is lost again and will need help to survive.
During his journey through the city, Hugo begins to long deeply for his old jungle home. Narrowly avoiding getting run over by motorcycles, Hugo cowers in a nearby alley. For once, though, Hugo stumbles on a bit of good luck; he runs into Rita again. Relating all the trouble he's been through in the past couple of hours, Hugo decides to join Rita to get something to eat; unfortunately, Rita's idea of dining is eating spoiled and/or rotten food from a dumpster. Luckily, Rita offers a solution to Hugo's hunger pangs, she knows of a restaurant where the food is much more up to Hugo's caliber. The only drawback is that a pack of cats like hanging around the restaurant and, since cats and foxes have a poor relationship because foxes kill and eat cats, Rita doesn't want to get spotted; thus, she is willing to help Hugo get there, but will leave if the cats are hanging around.
Following Rita through the streets, Hugo and his fox guide reach a playground and stumble upon a skateboard. Intrigued by the skateboard, Hugo learns from Rita how to ride it and, after a little fooling around, the two continue their journey, singing (Skateboard Song) as they cruise through the city. Soon enough, the duo reach the restaurant, but find that the cats have already arrived. Undaunted by the felines, Hugo tries to show good will to them. The cats, believing that Hugo is one of them, regard Hugo with some suspicion (in the Danish original, the cats are curious about Hugo because he was on a ship and one of the cat leaders was a sea cat before; however, in the English dub, Hugo mentions a mouse army and the cats suspect him to be a spy for the mice). Trying to keep on the cats' good side, Hugo says that he's an expert mouse catcher/hypnotizer and that he can help the cats catch mice using his special rat-commanding call; unfortunately, this is all a bluff and, naturally, Hugo runs, making his way to the second floor of the restaurant, which is home to several wedding cakes. Getting a taste of one, Hugo experiences his first sugar rush and, perhaps feeling a bit tougher than normal, decides to have some fun by throwing frosting at the angry cats below. Unfortunately, these hijinks don't go unnoticed, as an angry chef finds Hugo and throws him down to the angry cats below. None too happy with Hugo's prank, the cats try to kill him; luckily, Rita shows up with the skateboard and saves Hugo from certain death (with Hugo taunting the cats during the escape).
Stopping in a construction site, Hugo and Rita take a quick breather; Rita angrily rebukes him for being reckless and selfish, (and since Hugo was the only one to get something to eat) she walks off in a huff, temporarily ending her and Hugo's relationship. Realizing all too well that he won't live long without some help, Hugo asks her if he can come home with her. At first she reluctant, but she agrees to take him to her her home.
Going to the city outskirts, Hugo and Rita reach the den at daybreak; unfortunately, Rita's mother is upset with her daughter for shirking her responsibilities (Rita was supposed to be back home to watch her siblings). She initially refuses to let Hugo stay, stating the den is too crowded, but after Rita's explanation that Hugo is in serious trouble, Rita's mother agrees to let Hugo stay for the rest of the day, promising to take Hugo to the cargo ship that brought him here.
While the rest of Rita's family rests, Hugo tells Rita about the jungle; fruits in every tree, freedom and plenty of interesting creatures to see. Unfortunately, like Copenhagen, the jungle has its own dangers. It's no problem for Hugo, since he can climb trees, but Rita can't climb (which comes as a serious downer for Hugo). Hugo's plan for the future is a simple one; find the banana boat that he rode to Copenhagen and use it to get back home.
Later that night, Hugo tries to slip off with Rita to the docks, only to have Rita's mother intercept them and tell Rita to stay at home with her siblings while Hugo is forced to ride the older fox to the docks. Unfortunately, the journey quickly becomes dangerous when a pack of Bounty hunters hired by Cupmann and Izabella attack; in the confusion, Rita's mother (who is worried about her children) abandons Hugo, who climbs onto the rooftops to escape the hunters and their tracking dogs.
Trying to make his way to the docks (which are on the far end of the city), Hugo gets lost and stops in a construction site to get his bearings. Surprisingly, Rita shows up and the two share a tender moment; sadly, this moment lasts for a few seconds, as the pack of cats from earlier arrive with an intent to give payback for Hugo's earlier mischief. Though Hugo and Rita try to save their hides by lying about having rabies, the cats don't buy it and prepped to tear the duo apart; things take a turn for the worse when one of the bounty hunters arrives (though the cats are scared off).
Slipping into the sewers (which disgust Hugo), he and Rita make their way towards the docks (occasionally surfacing to take a breath of fresh air), swimming through the pipes and (after knocking loose a gateway) eventually reaching the docks. The two hug in joy of their goal, but both realize that they may never see each other again. Though saddened by this realization, Hugo tells Rita that she’s a great best friend and the two share a brief happy moment. Unfortunately, Izabella and the bounty hunters strike at that very moment, forcing Hugo to make a quick getaway. Through good luck and determination, Hugo slips on board the banana boat, leaving Spider- one of the bounty hunters -and his dog floundering about in the bay.
Later on, with the ship leaving the harbor, Hugo laments the possibility of never seeing Rita again and begins to cry; however, before the ship leaves, Rita shouts to Hugo from atop a crane, telling him to come back next year when she's all grown up so that they can live together. At a loss for words, Hugo can only wave goodbye and smile happily until the ship pulls clean out of the harbor. With the ship leaving Copenhagen, Hugo has another run in with Meatball Charlie, who has figured out that the zoo wasn't exactly enjoyable by Hugo's standards and that Hugo wants to return to the jungle.
After several days' travel, Hugo makes it back to South America and, after biding farewell to the rats he met previously, he and Meatball Charlie hitch a ride in a taxi driven by Chief Iztintatel. One quick drive later and Hugo is back in the jungle, where (after giving greetings to the snake from earlier in the movie) he happily reunites with Zig and Zag and performs a reprise of Wulle Wulle Wap Wap (during which Meatball Charlie tries to join in on their antics with mixed results). The movie concludes with several cuts of scenes from the movie, with Hugo dominating most of them.
Hugo returns in Jungledyret 2- Den Store Filmhelt (later redubbed in English as Hugo the Movie Star), which (apparently) takes place a year after the first film.
Hugo is first seen during a song that Rita made to get her little siblings to fall asleep. During the song, Rita imitates the various sounds that Hugo makes as he goes through his daily routine (i.e. waking up, eating, going for a morning swim, etc.); in the English dub, the song is actually a summary of what transpired throughout the first film.
Hugo is next seen back in his home; however, his visit to the outside world has altered him from a fun-loving, careless, happy-go-lucky king of the jungle into an unhappy, lonesome and brokenhearted hermit. Seeking refuge from the many predators of the jungle, several small jungle animals climb onto the barren tree that Hugo has taken to living in. After listening to the begging from his fellow jungle dwellers, Hugo relents and shares of the horrors he faced while in "the other jungle", namely his encounters with humans and their beastly children. Despite his suffering, Hugo relates that there was one good thing about his trip; he met Rita. Having been away from Rita for so long, Hugo is naturally upset and yells her name with pain, driving away everyone but Zig and Zag (unbeknownst to Hugo, he has been overheard by Cupmann and his new star, Barbie Turner).
The next morning, Hugo is seen wide awake (most likely unable to sleep given his depression) next to the slumbering Zig and Zag when the two monkeys wake and point out a massive beast devouring the jungle. However, one look and Hugo can tell that the thing destroying the jungle is no animal and that humanity must have a hand in it. Whilst his friends flee in fear of the metal monster, Hugo tries to stop it, but only ends up knocked aside and knocked out by Brutus, Cupmann's muscle-bound lackey. Coming to a short time later, Hugo finds things have taken a turn for the worse as the jungle is being consumed by a fire. Following his fellow jungle animals, Hugo attempts to escape the flames, but ends up imprisoned by Conrad once again.
On the flight back to Copenhagen, Hugo shows nothing short of complete and utter contempt and hatred for his captors. Knowing all too well that customs officials won't allow him to take Hugo into Copenhagen, Conrad ties a parachute to Hugo's cage and airdrops him into his movie studio. Afterwards, Hugo is presumably knocked out by a tranquilizer dart and removed from his cage.
When Hugo finally comes to, he finds his new surroundings frightening, he's surrounded by stuff that looks like him! Before Hugo can even begin to think about what's going on, Cupmann and Turner show up, along with a third human- a renowned animal psychologist named Doctor Loongkoffer, who was brought in to tame Hugo. However, Hugo is no fool and knows all too well that most humans can't be trusted, so he keeps his distance; sadly, his hunger forces him to go over to the doctor so that he can have some bananas to eat. Hugo's suspicions of the doctor prove to be correct, as he attaches a collar to Hugo so that any attempts that Hugo makes to run away will be stopped. Unexpectedly, Hugo converts his new hinderance into a whip, which he uses to scare off the doctor. Venting the rest of his rage on the various pieces of merchandise, and rips out a pillow, causing Hugo to sneeze. Unexpectedly, hope comes to him in the form of a robin. She ask him what’s he doing here, he tells he’s been captured, and says he only knows one friend in the human city; Rita. She tells him she knows Rita, and asks her if she can find her and tell her about his current predicament, Mrs. Robin agrees and flies off to deliver the message in exchange for a bundle of feathers that Hugo tore out of a Hugo pillow during his brief rage.
Unfortunately, Hugo's brief bit of happiness is ruined by the doctor's return; what's worse, the doctor has come decked out in a makeshift suit of armor made out of various articles of sporting gear (i.e. an umpire's vest, a football player's helmet, shoulder and knee pads, etc.) so, this time, he won't have to fear Hugo or his whip. His whip ensnared, Hugo is taken to Studio E, where Hugo is to be the co-star of Beauty and the Jungle Beast. Unfortunately (for the humans), Hugo is not an easy actor to work with (as his hatred of Ms. Turner's singing is understandable, for she is a poor singer; likewise, he's incredibly stubborn) and, naturally, the scene ends up being a massive flop after some props collapse.
After the flop in the studio, Mrs. Robin appears and informs Hugo that Rita shall arrive when night falls upon the studio. Unfortunately, Hugo can't enjoy his solitude for long, as Conrad is back with another idea to make Hugo an actor. Feeling that Hugo might better learn how to act if he met another acting animal, Conrad introduces Lizzy- a trained movie dog -to Hugo (along with making it very clear that Hugo won't eat if he doesn't act) in the hopes that Hugo will learn to be an actor. Conrad leaves the two alone; the minute that he does, Lizzy promptly gives Hugo all that's left of her food (which is a king's feast) while she states that animal actors have the best life- all the food they want, fame, fortune and product endorsement. Frankly, though, Hugo doesn't quite understand (or, for that matter, like) what acting entails; this earns him the labeling of "untalented" by Lizzy.
Luckily, Hugo could care less for being talented, especially when Rita arrives that night at the window. Happily, the two speak for the first time in a long while, as Hugo laments his situation and how he wants to be free again and to be himself (as he can't stand how the film producers want him to feel what he's not feeling). Rita says that she likes Hugo just the way that he is and Hugo states that Rita is his best friend; sadly, the two can't say much more, as Rita stumbles and falls, one of Conrad's guards and his watchdog promptly chase Rita away (thankfully, she slips under the nearby fence). Hugo is grateful that Rita managed to escape; unfortunately, Lizzy doesn't approve of Rita (even though she's never met her), stating her and all foxes to be "ill-mannered, untrustworthy and disgusting". As Lizzy states plainly that the only way Hugo will ever be free is if he becomes an actor, Hugo finally relents and learns what he can.
The next morning, Hugo awakes to a disturbing sight- Conrad right in his face! Quickly proving to Conrad that he can act, Hugo earns a decent morning breakfast before being taken back to Studio E to try the scene from yesterday again. This time, Hugo acts perfectly and the scene goes off without a hitch. Barbie has nothing but praise for her furry little co-star, showering him with a mountain of sugary sweets and some ginger ale. Soon enough, Hugo becomes hypnotized by the lavish lifestyle of the movie stars (he begins to mimic Barbie's gum-chewing habits and even has his hair restyled); the only good thing to come out of this situation is the fact that Hugo is released from his collar. Back in his "jail cell", Hugo states to Lizzy that he has become a star; Lizzy, however, seems a tad upset. She soon reveals that Hugo's room was once hers, as she had merchandise of her own (her wallpaper lies right beneath the Hugo wallpaper that now covers the room) and practically begs Hugo to remember the one who got him where he is today. Just then, Rita arrives and urges him to escape from the studio. However, Hugo insists that he should stay and finish the movie. She rebukes him for putting the comforts of the movie studio against his own freedom, (and thinking that Hugo is cheating on her with Lizzy) and storms off. Hugo promises her while she leaving that he’ll escape tomorrow. Heartbroken, Hugo realizes something important; fame changes people so much that, by the time they realize it, they're unable to recognize themselves. Tossing away the gum he was chewing and restoring his hair-do to its natural look, Hugo plans his next move; escape the studio and apologize to Rita.
Unfortunately, this is easier said than done, as Brutus grabs Hugo the next morning to take him to Studio E for the next scene, in which Hugo's goal is to kill an animatronic, three-headed dragon. Despite being only armed with a helmet for protection and a spear, Hugo confuses the beast and tricks it into tangling itself up in its multiple necks. Hugo soon finds that the battle he was in was all just one big show; however, Hugo sees his chance to escape when the operator of the Hydra walks away for a moment. Though he lacks any knowledge on how to work such a device, Hugo actually gets the machine moving and smashes through a nearby wall and fence before he escapes.
After some traveling down the railroad tracks, Hugo finds Rita back at her home. As is expected, Rita is still mad at him after letting the fame take over his head from the night before; however, Rita doesn’t stay mad at him, as she just glad he escaped. Sharing a hug, the two quickly realize they don't have many options in terms of living conditions; Rita's den is getting crowded. Luckily, Rita gets an idea, she and Hugo can make their own den! Singing Nobody Is Sweeter, the two begin getting to work, but their work is halted when Cupmann and an entire security regiment of his own hiring -arrive to capture Hugo. With no other choice, Hugo and Rita are forced to run, catching a ride on a passing train and effectively escaping Conrad... for the moment.
The duo sleep for a little while, but are soon spotted and chased by Cupmann's crew into a nearby Pig farm. The stink of the place isn't quite to Hugo's liking; thankfully, Mathis - the leader of the pigs -is willing to allow these "strange-smelling" visitors in. Curious of the outside world, the pigs are convinced by Hugo (through the song Free Pigs) to revolt and be free in the wilderness. The plan works and Cupmann and his crew are sent splitting. After helping the newly-minted wild pigs to find food, Hugo goes to find some food while Rita goes to set up a home in the forest.
Hugo runs into a Squirrel, who he competes with to claim food. Knowing too well that the squirrel won't share, he does a guessing game with the squirrel and manages to earn some food. Meeting back with Rita, he finds that she has located a proper home for the both of them; an Abandoned Den, the former home of a badger.
Their new life seems happy at first, but Hugo adapts poorly to the forest ecosystem, never learning to forage his own food, and with the onset of Autumn he start to believe he’s going to die from hunger and cold, and says that maybe he should go back to Cupmann’s Film Studio for food and a warm place to sleep. Rita, sad and angry to hear this, yells at him to go back to the studio and forget about her and storms off.
- Jungledyret/Go Hugo Go - (1993) - (film) - (Danish) Jesper Klein (speaking voice), Mek Pek (singing voice) - (English) Bronson Pinchot
- Jungledyret 2- Den Store Filmhelt/Hugo the Movie Star - (1996) - (film) - (Danish) Jesper Klein (speaking voice), Mek Pek (singing voice) - (English) Bronson Pinchot
- Jungledyret Hugo (TV series) - (2003) - (TV series) - Jesper Klein
- Jungledyret 3 - (2008) - (film) - (Danish) Jesper Klein (speaking voice), Mek Pek (singing voice) - (English) unknown actor
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