Jennifer Lopez & Drake Interview For ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’
One of filmdom’s most beloved trios – ‘Ice Age’s’ Manny, Diego, and Sid – embark upon their greatest adventure after cataclysm sets an entire continent adrift. Separated from the rest of the herd, they use an iceberg as a makeshift ship, which launches them on an epic seafaring quest. Manny and the gang are challenged like never before to become heroes and do the impossible, as they encounter exotic sea creatures, explore a brave new world, and battle ruthless pirates. Scrat’s reunion with his beloved but cursed acorn catapults him to places no prehistoric squirrel has gone before. Opening in 2D, 3D and IMAX 3D cinemas July 13th, ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’ is directed by Steve Martino and Mike Thurmeier. The voice talents of Ray Romano, Denis Leary and John Leguizamo are reunited with Queen Latifa and Seann William Scott in this new instalment of the award-winning and Oscar-nominated animated series. They are joined by new voices Jennifer Lopez, Nick Frost, Aziz Ansari, Alan Tudyk, Josh Peck, Peter Dinklage, Wanda Sykes, Keke Palmer, Drake, Heather Morris, Joy Behar, Nicki Minaj, Josh Gad, Kunal Nayyar, Alain Chabat and JB Smoove. In the fourth installment in the popular franchise, Jennifer Lopez lends her voice to Steffie while Drake voices Ethan.
Can you tell us a little bit about your characters in ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’?
Jennifer Lopez: I play Shira, who’s a Sabre-toothed tiger. She runs with a pirate crowd, they’re like a “gang” I guess, and she kind of belongs to that gang. She’s left her pack, she didn’t like the whole pack mentality and she decided to leave. She didn’t believe she belonged anywhere and then she got in with Captain Gutt’s group. With them she felt like she belonged somewhere for the first time, in a way. Gutt embraced her and made her his First Mate. Shira, she’s very smart and she becomes his right hand. And then they encounter Diego and the other ’Ice Age’ main characters, who’ve been separated from their families. They try to take them as their prisoners. Then the ‘Ice Age’ crew, they try to escape and it becomes a whole thing back and forth (laughs). To see if they’ll get away and get back to their families.
How about you Drake?
Drake: I play a Mammoth in the equation, and his name is Ethan. He’s a young, strapping, handsome jock. He’s really good at turtle football, he’s very “popular”. He catches the eye of Peaches in ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift.’ I was really excited about my character. If I get an action figure out of this whole deal, I think I’m gonna attach it like a pendant on a chain, and get a jeweller to cover it in flawless VVS diamonds (laughs). I’ll wear it in my next video, that’ll be cool (laughs).
Jennifer, your character has an interesting arc with Diego in the story?
Jennifer Lopez: Yeah. I think Diego and Shira’s relationship is kind of funny, kind of that classic movie leading lady and leading man relationship where the girls kind of tough, and the guy, he kind of falls for her right away (laughs). But he’s always trying to show that he’s better than her, can one up her or whatever….but he really can’t (laughs). And I think, there comes a point in the story where Shira has to choose between going down the path with the pirates and Captain Gutt, or starting a life with Diego. Love, what do-ya-do (laughs)?
I can imagine the process of capturing your performance as Shira bringing a whole set of unique challenges to acting….?
Jennifer Lopez: Definitely. When you’re trying to transmit just through your voice, even though there’s going to be animation and visuals, I think as an actor you get really disappointed with how your voice sounds. Because you’re so used to using your face and your body to get a feeling across. When you’re doing this it’s really challenging. You have to do more than you would when you’re acting. Just to get the feeling of what you’re trying to do and what you’re trying to say and what you’re trying to make people feel, that has to come across with just using your voice.
Drake, even considering all of your experience in a recording studio, how was that process for you on ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’?
Drake: It’s interesting because I had a movie that I was working on that’s so super serious, which is about the financial world, and then I get to be this over the top Mammoth in ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’ (laughs). A lot of capturing these characters is going as far as you can. Because you realise that the audience is not gonna see your face, they’re not gonna see you look awkward and screaming if you have to do things which are a little over the top. All that people are gonna do is hear it, so that’s something to really digest when you first step into that studio, like, “OK, I’ve got to go above and beyond of what I think is normal and what I think is good. I’ve got to give it a little bit extra.” It was a cool learning experience.
What was it about Shira and this project that intrigued you?
Jennifer Lopez: I just love playing tough women characters in movies. It’s always great to have a role where she really has a big part in the story. This could be the beginning of a family for Diego and Shira. For Diego, it could be a whole shift in his character after a few movies. She’s a great character. She’s a strong female lead character, in a really poignant, sweet story about family. I was down!
Even though you’ve acted before, with ‘Ice Age 4: Continental Drift’ it’s not you personally on the big screen. What do you think that experience will be like watching the film?
Drake: I will probably be the guy who’s at the theatre every night with the 3D glasses on with my friends – especially because I feel like it’s going to be so cool to see that I’m in it, but as you said, I’m not personally “in it”, I don’t have to look at myself and see bad moments or anything (laughs), I can just go and watch an animated character with my voice. I’ll be at the theatre a whole bunch of times when this is in theatres, in my free time. I’m excited.
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