One of the most magical and fun elements about Disney’s upcoming release, The BFG, which is based on the Roald Dahl book of the same name, is the giants. The giants live in giant country, far away from our lands and when the BFG brings Sophie to giant country, she learns that not all giants are as friendly and nice as the BFG (voiced by Oscar winner Mark Rylance). Some even EAT kids! The leader of these giants, who bully the ‘runt’- the BFG, is Fleshlumpeater (Jemaine Clement), who love eating human ‘beans’…and they are after Sophie.
The giants are what imaginations are made of, adding both villains and comedy to the magical world of giants. Courtesy of Disney, me and 24 other bloggers got to talk first hand with The BFG himself, Mark Rylance, and the big, scary giant, the ever sweet, Jemaine Clement. Here’s what they had to say about becoming giants and more.
How hard is it to speak in “giant”?
Mark Rylance: Very hard. Very hard indeed yeah, I don’t think there are any actors in the world that could have done what Jemaine and I have done.
Jemaine Clement: What is that actually, it’s improvising in giant.
Rylance: Improvising in giant, yeah it’s like improving in Shakespeare, it’s tricky. I’ve heard people who can do that actually very well, can improvise sonnets. You can say, I wanna sonnet on a fried egg, and they will improvise a Shakespearean sonnet on a fried egg, they’re from Liverpool. But improvising in giant is a little tricky. My favorite word I’ve decided is telly-telly bunkum box. I think that’s such a good word for the television.
Jemaine, how much fun did you have with this particular giant ‘cause I mean, he’s very scary but at the same time he’s hilarious.
Clement: Yeah he’s really fun, he’s really fun. Um, the bad– the bad giants, well– well Matt was filming all the time, the bad giants we would get to, um, rehearse our motion capture and just walking around like big, lumbering, um, lumps of meat, uh, and– and that– that was really fun and, uh, you know, smashing things and intimidating people and– and being stupid is fun.
Did your son like it?
Clement: My son really loves it, he helped me a lot actually. I read him the book again when we got to Vancouver, he’d already heard it but he would always, if he didn’t like the voice he’d go, no the other voice, and that’s how I found the voice was he’d guide me.
What do you hope kids come away from this feeling, what are you hoping their reaction is?
Rylance: I think that, you know the film tells a story of what kids have to offer older people. Older people get tired, they lose faith, they think maybe the world is just a jungle, a dog eat dog kinda thing and nothing will change, so best to just do the best I can, give some money to charity, maybe, you know, be kind to some people, but– but the big problems, nothing’s gonna change and– and– and we get tired. Young people don’t have this, there’s still the bravery and the hope like Sophie does to say, no I think we don’t have to put up with this, we can stop these people eating kids, we’ll– let’s go to the Queen. There’s such a lot of criticism of young people and things seem so hard for them, certainly for my daughters, life looks so difficult and hard but they’re so essential and that they keep their bravery and hope and don’t get pressed down by the the fears and the apathy of older people. I think that young people can change things, things can change you know? So that’s a good thing.
The BFG opens on July 1st.