Video:Interviews with Jeff Bridges and the Surf's Up Filmmakerswith Rebecca Murray
Jeff Bridges lends his voice to the character of Big Z in the animated movie Surf's Up directed by Ash Brannon and Chris Buck, and produced by Chris Jenkins. At the film's LA premiere, Bridges joined the Surf's Up filmmakers to discuss the film.See Transcript
Transcript:Interviews with Jeff Bridges and the Surf's Up FilmmakersRebecca Murray from About.com Hollywood Movies at the Los Angeles premiere of Surf's Up.
Jeff Bridges (The Voice of 'Big Z')
You're a surfer so were you worried about how they would animate this? How do you think it turned out?
Jeff Bridges: "I wasn't worried. That's really what sold me on the project was when I saw the quality of animation that these guys came up with. I mean, they hired Kelly Slater the world class surf champion to come onboard and counsel them on how these waves should look. For those who surf, you guys won't be disappointed. And for those people who have always wondered what's it like being on a wave like that, this will give you a good idea. That's kind of what hooked me and I'm very pleased with the whole thing, but that in particularly."
Was it fun to be able to work in the studio with the other actors instead of having to do the voice by yourself?
Jeff Bridges: "Oh yeah, that made all the difference. It was like playing when you're a kid, going to work. You'd come over there and you'd do it like the script says and then they'd say, 'Okay, now play around with it. What do you guys feel like doing?' We would do a lot of improvisation, a lot of kind of writing on the spot. A bunch of that's in the movie."
What about the mockumentary style? What did you think about that?
Jeff Bridges: "That was a wonderful idea. It was a little hard for me to completely understand what they had in mind. I mean, I'd seen Spinal Tap and was a big fan of that movie with Rob Reiner and those guys, what they did with that movie. So I loved kind of the concept but I said, 'Gee, that's going to be a pretty small target to hit. I hope you guys can do that.' I think they did a great job with it."
Do you think there's going to be a sequel? I've heard a lot of people talking about how they'd love to see these characters again.
Jeff Bridges: "I don't know. I sure would consider it. Sure."
Directors Ash Brannon and Chris Buck and Producer Chris Jenkins
The animation is amazing and the waves are amazing. Did you know you could capture that going into the film?
Producer Chris Jenkins: "No, it couldn't be done before we started on it actually. We knew what we wanted to see but we had an early test and we said, 'If we can't do this test, we're going to have snowboarding penguins. Or skateboarding. That's even cheaper. We could have done that. Maybe that's the next one. Anyway, so we did an early test and our fantastic visual development crew showed us a test that blew us away. And that was just the first step because from there on it got crazy."
Director Chris Buck: "They kept pushing it and pushing it. Even when we approved it and said it looks fantastic, they'd say, 'Well, we've still got a little more work we can do and make it even look better.'"
I love the fact you let your actors work together in the booth. It comes across on the screen that they're actually together. How was that decision made because that doesn't usually happen?
Director Ash Brannon: "Well, I'd wanted to do it even before I came on this movie. And then when Chris said, 'This is a documentary,' it was like, 'We've got to do this.' It's a no-brainer. The usual way is It's not really easy to get actors together in a booth but we lucked out in scheduling them. We didn't have to fake a natural performance. We got a natural performance, just like they do in live action."
Director Chris Jenkins: "It had to be a reality TV show, right? I mean it had to feel like that all the way through. It had to feel spontaneous and so this was just one way in which you make sure that you kept that chemistry. If you tried to do actors separately, they're brilliant people and you'd be able to bring it together into the same space and time, but where they took it together was completely different than what they would have done alone because they're feeding off one another."
Will there be a follow-up? Is there going to be a sequel to this?
Director Chris Buck: "I guess it depends on June 10th, June 9th "
Producer Chris Jenkins: "Would you like there to be a follow-up?"
I would love that.
Producer Chris Jenkins: "For you, we'll do it."