Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 25 January 2015

Steve Carell: People don’t care for chickens

MADRID, SPAIN - JUNE 18:  Actor Steve Carell attends the "Despicable Me 2" (Gru 2 Mi Villano Favorito) photocall at the Villamagna Hotel on June 18, 2013 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)
Steve Carell

Steve Carell is worried he has offended a “chicken lobby” by admitting he doesn’t like the birds.

The actor voices the character of Gru in animated sequel Despicable Me 2. This time around Gru is a good guy, who is asked to help find a master criminal using his knowledge of villainous ways.

One part of the film involves an evil chicken, with Steve pondering about why birds are often malevolent in movies.

“I think it’s why we love to eat chicken because I don’t think we like them personally. So, we enjoy the taste of them but we don’t necessarily want to befriend them,” he laughed to BBC Breakfast. “I’m probably going to get into trouble for that one.

“This chicken is really funny, this chicken is a menace. The chicken in the movie is a villain and you know, chickens seem very innocuous, very benign, really a non-threatening animal. In this movie, the chicken poses probably a greater threat than the shark did in the first movie.”

Having a villainous chicken portrayed in the release didn’t bother Steve. He freely admits he is spooked by the feathered creatures and doesn’t like being around them.

“I’m not a big fan of chickens, I don’t love them. I know that there’s probably a chicken lobby out there that will be upset that I’m saying I don’t care for chickens,” he said. “I don’t want to say that all chickens are masters of evil… like anything else, there are good chickens and there are bad chickens.”

Steve is pleased Despicable Me got a sequel as it is the film his children were most excited about him doing. He has Annie and Johnny with his wife Nancy Walls and knew he’d nailed the character of Gru when he put on the voice for his kids and they kept asking him to repeat himself.

The actor’s comedy credentials are legendary and he reprises his role as Brick in the hotly-anticipated movie Anchorman: The Legend Continues. He loves the dopey character and won’t hear a word against him.

“I don’t see him as stupid. Are you referring to Brick? Oh he’s not stupid. He’s maybe counter-intuitive. Maybe you just don’t understand the level at which this man thinks,” he joked. “It’s a parallel way of thinking, I don’t think it’s a lesser way of thinking.”

Steve also touched on the death of James Gandolfini during the interview. The star passed away in Italy earlier this week of a suspected heart attack, aged 51.

The men appeared in The Incredible Burt Wonderstone together and Steve has nothing but praise for the late Sopranos actor.

“He was an incredibly sweet guy. He obviously was a great actor, everyone knew that side of him but I think when you knew him on a personal level – I didn’t know him extremely well – he was kind, he was generous and he was a little shy as well,” he said.

“I think he was a genius. When I had a chance to work with him everyone I know was jealous because this guy was the real deal, a consummate actor, but apart from that just an incredibly generous good man.”

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