DARKMATTERS - The Mind of Matt

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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Matt Adcock Meets Ricky Gervais

"Ricky (left) with Ewan McGregor (right) at the Valiant Premier"

Matt Adcock meets Ricky Gervais

I caught up with Ricky after the Premier of the new British animation film Valiant (having battled through a crowd of celebs including Ewan McGregor, Gail Porter, Kenzie from Blazin Squad, Justin from The Darkness etc etc). Valiant is a great 'old fashioned family film' which is brought to life with cutting edge CGI animation and Gervais voices one of the main pigeon heroes 'Bugsy'.

So do you like pigeons?

I like all animals. I saw a mad posh bloke hit one once with a stick and I wanted to take the stick and hit him.

Tell me about recording the voice of Bugsy?

I did four four hour sessions, the first time I just went and read the script and I was rubbish. I’d never done it before and I’m still mildly embarrassed being an actor, which is a terrible restriction and so I had to really warm up. They were like: “do it louder”, “do it like this”, “do it more cockney” and I said look I think you should have got Bob Hoskins and I saw them all look at each other and think – ‘he’s right!’ But then they let me ad lib a bit more and do my own thing and I made him more of that cowardly, wise cracking wide boy like Bob Hope or Woody Allen, because he is sort of a reluctant hero and there’s lots of “well I’d love to but I can’t”! All that sort of fear and by the end I wanted to start again! The director must have been very patient.

With something like this, you get the impression it’s very much you as the character…

Do you mean I’m a very, very limited actor?


Well I am!
I like to make things natural and it’s difficult in films when you don’t get the chance. I like to get a bit of naturalism because I just think people connect more with something they recognise as opposed to being force fed TV speak. I always try to give a bit of me…even to a pigeon!

You said you were ‘mildly embarrassed about being an actor’ why’s that?

Loads of reasons really, the association, most celebrities I don’t want to be associated with because they’re fools! Plus you get paid too much. You get paid more than nurses and you don’t really do anything so all I try and do is do my best and do a few things as well as I can because it’s not a thing to be proud of, it’s not like coming home from a war or saving a life, it’s mucking around. Which is what I would be doing anyway, so I just try and muck around as well as I can.

What do you enjoy about being famous?

I’ve worked out the only upside of fame is that people, even some of my heroes, like what I do. That’s the biggest perk, when I find out that Ben Stiller’s a fan or David Bowie or Matt Groening’s a fan. As long as you keep it in context it’s fine.

Bugsy is very much a closet hero. Is there anything you’re secretly very, very good at that no-one knows about and we’d be surprised to hear about?

No, I’ve given everything; I’ve got no hidden talents. Some would say no outward talents but no…
I suppose I’m quite a good shark hunter… no, that’s not actually true.

"From Jedi to pigeon and back to Jedi..."


Unknown said...

I just found this interview on here - how did I manage to miss this, I wonder. I love Ricky Gervais, he's absolutely brilliant.

Unknown said...

Indeed, Ricky is brilliant. Though as an American I prefer to call him a genius. He's quite possibly my favorite comedian or better yet my favorite human being. Our world is a much better place because of the likes of him. England gave us Thomas Paine and Ricky Gervais, mankind is so lucky.