Hank Azaria Talks SMURFS 2, Acting With a Cat, Shooting in Paris, Whether he Prefers Voice Acting or Live Action, and More

     July 31, 2013

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Opening in theaters this week is Raja Gosnell’s Smurfs 2.  The film picks up three years after the first installment when Gargamel (Hank Azaria), now a successful Paris-based stage magician, devises a plan to become the most powerful wizard on earth by kidnapping Smurfette (Katy Perry) and stealing her Smurf-essence.  When the little blue guys team up to rescue Smurfette they turn to old friends Patrick (Neil Patrick Harris) and Grace (Jayma Mays) for help, and set off to Paris for  an adventure that has a surprisingly genuine message about identity and the meaning of family.  Smurfs 2 also stars Brendan Gleeson, Christina Ricci, Jonathan Winters, Anton Yelchin, George Lopez, and John Oliver.

At a recent Las Vegas press day I sat down for an exclusive video interview with Azaria.  He talked about Gargamel’s  feline companion Azreal, acting with a cat, how voice work prepped him for CG, shooting in Paris, how Parisians reacted to his Gargamel getup, whether he prefers voice acting or live action, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Hank Azaria:

  • Talks about his relationship with his cat in the films
  • Is there a cat on set with him when they’re filming
  • Does his work as a voice actor helps him when he’s acting to nothing
  • What was it like shooting in Paris
  • How did the people of Paris react to his Gargamel costume/makeup
  • Were the prosthetics any faster to put on making the sequel
  • Once he’s in costume does he feel like he can go even crazier
  • Does he get more satisfaction doing voice over work or live-action

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