chat Amanda Seyfried talks about her experience on the sets of Epic
Amanda Seyfried, the popular actor from movies such as Les Miserables and Mamma Mia , does the voice over for Mary Katherine, in Epic. Excerpts from an interview with the actor
How was it doing a voice over for a character in a major film for Blue Sky Studios?
I think what made me want to do the movie was when they put together a bunch of clips of my voice to something animated. I wasn’t confident about doing it, but Chris Wedge and everybody at Blue Sky believed in me. Chris was certain that I was perfect for Mary Katherine so I agreed. I’ve also never done anything like this before and I like to try new things.
Was it strange to walk into a booth and act without any of your other co-stars or any props or wardrobe…?
It’s hard to prepare yourself to walk into a dark room with just words. All you can do is believe in the story and the message and you can embody the character. Luckily, all the actors involved with Blue Sky movies have Chris Wedge, who’s one of the best actors ever. He plays every character so beautifully. He has so much energy. We do our sessions four hours at a time, which can get long and tiring.
What was it like when you saw Mary Katherine in animation with your voice and your own gestures?
It was great. That’s the whole other thing that I haven’t mentioned — they really try to infuse as much of you into the character as they can. They’re always inventing new ways to capture you communicating as yourself, but through your character. It’s weird to see the final outcome, but also really awesome. It’s actually quite a privilege to be a part of something like this.
Can you tell us about Mary Katherine and her part in the story?
When we meet Mary Katherine, she’s just lost her mother, so she’s coming from a dark and traumatic place in the beginning of the story. Although she’s holding on to some hope and trying to rekindle a connection with her father, which is what her mother would have wanted, there’s a lot of resentment, but she also needs him. Unfortunately, he’s not really there for her in the beginning since he’s obsessed with his work and the “tiny people” that live in the forest. It becomes frustrating for MK, she loses hope, and decides to leave. But in a random turn of events, she ends up chasing after their dog one night in the middle of a thunderstorm and somehow awakens to find herself transported to another world. She meets the Leafmen, the people her father has been looking for, and realises he’s not crazy. So her story throughout the rest of the movie focuses on giving her father a second chance and really believing in him. It’s quite beautiful.
There are a lot of animated films out there, but Epic seems much deeper.
Most animated films, especially from Blue Sky, always have a good message since they’re geared towards kids. I think the message from this film is particularly powerful and one we can relate to a bit more since it’s part of our real world.
Was it fun for you not having to worry about hair and make-up and costumes?
When I’m actually working on set, the whole process is great. There’s always a time when I’m getting my hair and make-up done and going over lines. With an animated film, it’s a completely different set up. With four hours per session, it seems to get done so quickly and you feel like you’re not really experiencing it enough.