A free Cocaine Bear 8-bit video game is available to play on the movie's official site.
We’re only a week and a half away from finally experiencing the campy carnage of Cocaine Bear, the Elizabeth Banks-directed true story of a 500-pound black bear who ingested a metric Rick James of cocaine before embarking on a drug-fueled rampage in 1985. However, in a move pulled straight from the playbook of Star Wars or The Simpsons Movie, Cocaine Bear can be experienced for free right now as a browser-based 8-bit game. The Pac-Man-style maze in which you play as the titular bear has you consuming pellets of cocaine to maintain your rampaging strength, mauling teenagers and ambulances along the way.
The real-life story of the Cocaine Bear became a viral hit on social media several years ago, sparking interest in a filmed adaptation. Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, best known as the writing and directing duo behind The Lego Movie and the Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum-led 21 Jump Street films signed on to produce before hiring Wet Hot American Summer alumnus Elizabeth Banks to direct. The film is set to star an ensemble cast including O’Shea Jackson Jr., Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Ray Liotta, in one of his final roles filmed before his unfortunate passing in May of 2022.
Due to the film’s popularity stemming from the viral story spreading online, the studio chose to promote Cocaine Bear using the 8-bit video game, appealing to meme-loving youths and nostalgia for the 1980s gaming style. Both the film and the game seem to be leaning into the absurdity of the story, which has taken some creative liberty from the true events which took place back in a small Georgia town in 1985.
The true story behind Cocaine Bear saw a measly 175-pound animal, rather than the film’s 500-pound monster, consuming a duffel bag of cocaine before promptly dropping dead of an overdose, harming nobody in the process. In the film, the bear looks to be going on a coked-out spree of violent killings, presenting the animal as a victim of manmade narcotics while also showcasing the dangerous side of an uncontrollable force of nature. The real-life bear is currently on display at the Kentucky Fun Mall in Lexington, Kentucky.
Cocaine Bear was meant to function as a working title for the film, with a new sleeker title meant to replace the on-the-nose name. Of course, much like the famed story of Snakes On A Plane, the creators involved with the film ultimately realized that the broad appeal of the name is part of the fan-servicing nature that would drive viewers to the box office.
With fans continuing to hang on the edge of their seat for the upcoming film, this hilariously campy browser video game should help to alleviate some of the wait time. The Cocaine Bear game is available to play now on the film’s official website, sparking reminders of the classic Simpsons games used to promote the 2007 film. Of course, you’ll have to really put in some time with the gore-fueled game to place on the leaderboard, which currently touts a high score of over 21,000 points.