John C. Reilly on Why He Agreed to Do ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ Even Though He Dislikes Animated Roles

Being somewhat of a real-life cartoon character himself and having a distinctive voice, John C. Reilly seems like he is a perfect fit for an animated film.  That’s why it’s so surprising that Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph is Reilly’s first lead role in an animated film, but also that Reilly tells Moviefone that he generally would prefer not to work in animation.  So what type of films does Reilly want to do?  He talks about how he ended up agreeing to do Wreck-It Ralph and what genre he’d like to do in the future.

Curiously, Reilly ended up taking the lead role in Wreck-It Ralph after telling director Rich Moore why he’d rather not do an animated movie.  He reveals, “I told him all the reasons that I didn’t want to do it: That animation was boring for actors, that you just stand in a room by yourself and they don’t even give you the whole script, you have to just kind of be a trained chimp or a marionette. Rich was like, ‘You know what, you’re right. That is the way most animated movies are made. But we can make this movie however we want to make it and if you want to improvise, it’s fine with me. If you want the other actors in the room with you so you have someone to react off of and riff with, that’s fine. We’ll do it that way. If you want to come to story meetings, or you want to meet with the animators…’ So he really included me in the whole process, which I think is fairly rare for actors in animation, and as a result, it ended up being something I’m really proud of. They put a lot of heart in the character and he ended up resembling me in a lot of ways… it became written just for me in the process of all of us working this way. I tailor-made myself into Ralph and Ralph was tailor-made for me.”

As was revealed in a prior interview with Reilly, he insisted on recording his dialogue with his co-stars — something rare for animation.  He gives a look into this process, adding, “Every time I did any kind of interactive dialogue, there was always someone there. And that really lent itself to the scenes, because Sarah [Silverman] and I, that opening scene where we first meet each other in the tree, a lot of that scene was improvised. It was just Sarah and I playing with each other. And then the scene where I kind of have to break her heart in order to save her, I don’t know if that would have been as powerful if we weren’t there, right across from each other. I think that lent a lot.”

As for his future projects, Reilly admits that he misses doing musical films (he was nominated for an Oscar for his role in Chicago and also sang in Walk Hard and A Prairie Home Companion), confessing, “I feel like I was born to do musicals. I wish there more movie musicals being made.”  As for his dream musical roles, Reilly points to two, “I love the music of Sweeney Todd. I know it’s been done a lot and there’s already a movie of it, but that’s the part that I would love to play someday. Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls is another one. That’s sort of like the Holy Grail, that one.”

Leave a Reply

Latest Videos

Watch: Benedict Cumberbatch Film the Smaug Motion Capture for ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’
Though Peter Jackson‘s movie adaptations of The Hobbit haven’t received the same critical acclaim as his films based on the book’s sequel, The Lord of the Rings (turning a 300 page book into 9+ hours of film tends to do that), fans are still eagerly anticipating the release of the final part of The Hobbit […]
Watch: Daniel Radcliffe on the Differences Between American and British Theater Audiences
Though moviegoers can see Daniel Radcliffe in the fantasy film Horns, which opens today, Broadway fans will have to wait a bit longer. Radcliffe is an unapologetic fan of Broadway — he has starred in Equus, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and The Cripple of Inishmaan — but he hasn’t yet made […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/watch-anna-gunn-jacki-weaver-and.jpg
Watch: Anna Gunn, Jacki Weaver and Virginia Kull on ‘Gracepoint’ and Strong Female Roles on TV
The actresses also speak candidly about how they feel about their characters in the series and why its important for TV to feature series with strong female leads.Check out the conversation above!
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/watch-cristin-milioti-talks-a-to.jpg
Watch: Cristin Milioti Talks ‘A to Z’, ‘Once’ and ‘How I Met Your Mother’
Few actresses have the kind of rise as Cristin Milioti has had in the last few years. A virtual unknown in 2011, she became a bona fide Broadway star in the 2012 hit Once, appeared in a supporting role in the 2013 film The Wolf of Wall Street, and was featured as the titular mother […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/watch-bryan-cranstons-acting-adv.jpg
Watch: Bryan Cranston’s Acting Advice
With Breaking Bad: The Complete Series Barrel being released on Blu-ray with all kinds of goodies today, it gives us yet another opportunity to reflect on the series’ star Bryan Cranston and all of the incredible advice he has offered actors in the wake of his success. In a video he filmed in 2013 for […]