Last week, I got to sit down with the legendary Robin Williams to talk about his new movie, Happy Feet 2. We got chatting about how he finds his voice for the characters , what he thinks about the future of the world and other deep stuff like that! I’ve transcribed the interview with the mega-talented man and I hope it comes across OK. Throughout the interview, he’s doing voices and keeping myself and the others that attended the interview thoroughly entertained.
Happy Feet 2 is released in cinemas this Friday, December 3rd and also stars Elijah Wood, Elizabeth Daily, Sofía Vergara, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, Hank Azaria, Magda Szubanski, Pink and Hugo Weaving.
Keep your eyes peeled for the Elijah Wood interview which should hit tomorrow.
HeyUGuys: George Miller (The Director) brings the actors in together to the same recording session but you play two voices! Can you do them at the same time?!
Robin Williams: At the same time, no! Simultaneous quantum recording, no! I usually do Ramon first just because he’s more active and then you do Lovelace later because he’s got that deeper Barry White thing going. Usually we’d do Ramon and the amigos because vocally it’s easier.
How did you find your own penguin within yourself?
My own Latino penguin? It’s a small fierce side of myself! Being a hopeless romantic of my own and in real life I’m lucky to have my own Carmen. With Lovelace, it was just Barry White. I grew up in Detroit so I heard a lot of Baptist preachers and I could find that voice very easily.
How was it coming back?
Really great because it’s the same people. All the amigos were these Latin comics and add to that Elijah who’s the sweetest man in show business and on top of that you have Sofía Vergara. She’s so sweet and so sexy and is just a gift! She makes the room 3d! It was like a reunion.
You said the voices are easy to find but how exactly do you find them?
Well with George (the Director) on the first day we met, an Adelie penguin lives on the top of Argentina in Patigonia so he said let’s try a Latino. With Lovelace I just saw that look because he’s big and heavy and he just looked to me like Barry White or Don King!
You’ve done a lot of animations recently, do you still like doing live action?
I still like to act. I did a film with Robert De Niro recently called The Big Wedding. But doing the voice is a gift. It’s literally like a paid vacation where you go to Australia and work with these guys for 2 weeks and then come back. The weird thing is how long it takes – three years. I think when we did the first sessions, it was a year ago since we did the last session.
Robert De Niro is the opposite of you, very shy, how is it working with him?
We’ve been friends for years It’s great, he’s my greatest friend in the world. He’s the best. He’s very sweet.
Does he make you laugh?
Big time!! I broke his nose when we were doing Awakenings. We were doing this scene where we were supposed to be having a struggle and I caught his nose with my elbow and he comes up and says: “I’m OK” and I went “Oh f*ck he’s alive!”. Actually his doctor says I clicked it back in from when he broke it in Ranging Bull! He makes me laugh because everyone thinks of him being that way but he’s really articulate and really funny.
This film deals with many issues, global warming being one of them…..
Totally. The opening scene when we see the iceberg break off has been recorded from satellite imagery that George used as research. As it’s melting it’s making more oil available which continues the cycle. To ignore it would be insane. George is now saying that it’s melting so much that the penguin populations are forced into smaller areas and there’s an overlap. The saddest thing in this movie is that polar bear holding onto that small bit of ice and an orca’s coming along – you know that isn’t going to end well!