Belfast Telegraph

Stiller on hair-raising form

Ben Stiller has revealed the most striking similarities between his animated character Alex the lion in the film Madagascar and himself - their hair.

Stiller was at the Cannes Film Festival to support Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted, and told a press conference he and Alex shared the same barnet.

Asked by a reporter what made them similar, he said: "Our hair. His hair is much bigger but mine was like that in 1982."

Jada Pinkett Smith, who provides the voice of Gloria the hippo, David Schwimmer, who appears as Melman the giraffe, and Chris Rock, who voices Marty the zebra, all accompanied him at the press conference.

Stiller, who recently appeared in Tower Heist opposite Eddie Murphy, said the actors had each settled into their roles and connected with their characters now they were on to the third film of the series. "The process has become more and more fun actually," he said.

The packed press conference erupted in laughter when comedian Rock said he carried on with the franchise for different reasons. "Cash," he said. "But more fun than anything."

Friends star Schwimmer added: "It feels like putting on your favourite comfortable jacket.You break it out of the closet every now and then and you're like 'oh my god, this feels great'."

The newest film in the popular series also features the voices of Sacha Baron Cohen and Frances McDormand, who also stars in the festival's opening film, Moonrise Kingdom.

Madagascar 3 sees Alex, Marty, Gloria and Melman determined to make their way back to the Central Park Zoo in New York City.

They leave Africa behind, take a detour and resurface in Europe. Two newcomers - Italian sea lion Stefano, voiced by Martin Short, and exotic Italian jaguar Gia, voiced by Jessica Chastain - also join the crew on their adventure.

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