Kevin James didn't mind being upstaged by an animatronic gorilla in his latest film.
The actor stars in The Zookeeper as a man who decides he needs to ditch the animals in order to sharpen his image and conquer the dating scene.
Alongside the 'will he leave the zoo and get the girl?' plot is a touching tale about his character's growing friendship with Bernie the gorilla (voiced by Nick Nolte), who's been put in solitary confinement after an alleged incident with another zookeeper.
"This is my first buddy comedy in which my buddy outweighs me, so that makes me feel very happy," Kevin said.
But it proved a challenge to work with an animatronic gorilla.
"At times he can't see and he runs square into a wall," he said.
He added that he knew what he was getting into by working with so many animals.
"We wanted a natural environment for these animals, and then we could write towards them. When you try to get the animals to do something, that's where it gets tricky," he said.
:: Zookeeper is released in cinemas on Friday, July 29.