After four deadly serious Batman films in a row, The Lego Batman Movie is here to inject a little silliness back into the Caped Crusader. We sat down with the stars to talk about the new film... and some other nonsense.
Will Arnett (Batman)
On his famously throaty voice:
"Once I hit puberty it just kind of started to drop. With everything else. It's just always been kind of raspy and deep. Just for vitamins and stuff we had a steaming cup of crushed glass in the morning. My dad has a pretty deep voice so he's always claimed that if anything happens to me that he could take over my career. I'm like 'Thanks a lot - your son is dead. Are you not worried about...'"
On his Bat-spiration: "Michael Keaton man. He's obviously an amazing actor and I think doesn't get enough credit, just because there's been so many other good Batmen I guess."
On his chemistry with Zach Galifianakis: "A lot of it was improvised. We had a day when we were in a room and we had boom operators like on a movie set and we just kind of knew the area we were gonna play in and just started improvising and we kind of dug out that relationship and turned it basically into a rom-com between two enemies."
Rosario Dawson (Barbara Gordon/Batgirl)
On her interview expectations:
"No pressure, but everybody's been loving the movie. Nobody's been asking generic questions like 'Did anything funny happen on set?' or 'Anyway, interesting movie, who are you having sex with these days?'".
On her character's strength: She's pretty boss. She's just great at what she does and she's so patient and like collaborative so she eventually wins people over to her perspective and that's really really beautiful. And like, very empowering in a way that you don't normally see, especially in this glorifying of bullying world that we live in right now.
Zach Galifianakis (The Joker)
On his inspiration:
"The Tim Burton movie [1989's
] is the one that really made an imprint on me. That live action version of
is the most cartoony but is also the creepiest in a great way. It also can be spooky too. Jack Nicholson's performance in that, there were so many non-sequiturs that were just so wonderful. That performance, just because it was so over the top and cartoony, was more of an inspiration for me."
Michael Cera (Robin)
On his favourite Robin:
"I guess I would say the old Burt Ward Robin [from the 1960s TV show], because that was the one that I watched when I was a kid. That and
were my favourite shows. They were replaying
and they were my favourite band and I remember when I was 9 years old my friend looking me in the eye and saying 'It's not their time'."
On Will Arnett: "I'm a big fan of Will in general in my personal life and as a fan. Which are the same thing. I met Will when I was 14 and I was like, 'That's the funniest guy ever.' And I still feel that way."
On his lunch: "I had a Waldorf Salad. They put chicken in it. Don't order a Waldorf Salad at The Montage Hotel. Maybe they were resentful that I ordered another hotel's namesake [salad]."
The obligatory Kiwi connection
One aspect of The Lego Batman Movie that should especially thrill Kiwi audiences comes via the film's use of a wide variety of classic movie villains. In addition to King Kong, Voldemort, some Gremlins and Agent Smith from The Matrix, none other that Sauron from the Lord of the Rings turns up, in the form of a giant flaming eye atop a huge (Lego) tower. And he's voiced by Jemaine Clement.
"That was [Executive Producer] Phil Lord's idea," says director Chris Mackay. "Phil wanted [a New Zealander] I think for obvious reasons, and I he really was a big fan of What We Do In The Shadows and Flight of the Conchords. It's one of my favourite bits."
Who: Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson and Zach Galifianakis
What: The Lego Batman Movie
When: In cinemas today