Were People All Around the U.S. Inundated With Calls After Their Phone Number Was Given in the Film Bruce Almighty?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about movies and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the movie urban legends featured so far.

MOVIE URBAN LEGEND: People all across the United States were flooded with calls due to their number being shown in the film Bruce Almighty, including a church with a pastor named Bruce!!!

Bruce Almighty was a 2003 blockbuster film starring Jim Carrey, Jennifer Aniston and Morgan Freeman where God (played by Freeman) gives all of his powers to Bruce (Carrey) to see if he can do a better job than God.

The film’s massive popularity backfired a bit when the filmmakers failed to fully vet a phone number.

In most films, when phone numbers are given, they use the prefix 555, or more specifically 555-0100 through 555-0199 (as 555 numbers outside of this group might actually exist, as they ARE available for use).

In Bruce Almighty, however, in a scene where God pages Bruce, the number given is (no area code) 776-2323. The filmmakers checked that number in Buffalo, New York, Area Code 716, (where the film is set) and found that it did not belong to anyone.

However, they did not check the rest of the country, and soon, people and companies and groups with that number (with different area codes, of course) began receiving calls directed to “God.”

One of the numbers even led to a church, and their pastor’s first name actually WAS Bruce!!!

For the DVD release of the film, the number was changed to 555-0123.

The legend is…

STATUS: True

Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future urban legends columns! My e-mail address is bcronin@legendsrevealed.com

One Reply to “Were People All Around the U.S. Inundated With Calls After Their Phone Number Was Given in the Film Bruce Almighty?”

  1. When I was growing up on the Gulf Coast if you dialed 867-5309 you would get one of the extensions for Gulfport Memorial Hospital. I bet they got sick and tired of getting callers asking for Jenny.

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