Walking with dinosaurs: Interview with Chris Pratt

By Zaki JufriMovies - 12 June 2015 4:34 PM

Walking with dinosaurs: Interview with Chris Pratt

In just two years, Chris Pratt has gone from "that chubby guy" from 'Parks and Recreation' to one of Hollywood's hottest leading men.

After a standout performance in 2014's 'Guardians of the Galaxy' and 'The Lego Movie' (being the voice of male lead Emmet), Pratt stars in 'Jurassic World' where he plays Owen Grady, a dinosaur trainer.

The actor recently landed a spot on Time's 100 Most Influential People list and he is the happy husband of Anna Faris and proud father of their two-year-old son Jack. There is even talk that the 35-year-old could be the new Indiana Jones.

But before we see him wearing that famous fedora, he talks about his 'Jurassic World' character, memories of the original 'Jurassic Park' and his favourite dinosaur.

Chris Pratt and wife Anna Faris (left) at the 'Jurassic World' premiere in LA | Photo: UIP

Will you describe your character in ‘Jurassic World’?

I play Owen. He is as merciless in his repartee as he is with his decisive action. He is a hero. He is on the cutting edge of some really exciting science and is working closely with Velociraptors, attempting, essentially, to get them to follow commands.

MORE: 'Jurassic World' review

He works on the outskirts of the island and doesn’t necessarily like the way the Jurassic World Corporation treats the animals. He has a strong respect for the natural order and relishes those opportunities when people need him. And nobody has ever needed him more than when this big dinosaur flips out and starts killing people.

How would you describe his relationship with Bryce Dallas Howard’s Claire?

This is the first time there has been a real romance in a ‘Jurassic’ movie. Claire, played by the incomparable Bryce Dallas Howard, is beautiful, stunning but also very Type A. She’s a corporate, C-level executive, like a CEO or CFO. She rose to the top and she wears power suits with power heels.

She is all about the bottomline and taking care of the shareholder. She engages everything based on the metrics of testing audiences and whether or not they like the dinosaurs. She doesn’t really care about the wellbeing of these animals. 

She looks at them as assets and we have a contentious relationship similar to the relationship in the ‘Indiana Jones’ movies, ‘Romancing the Stone’ or ‘The African Queen’. There’s a banter that happens between us, and a history that we allude to, and one date that didn’t end well. We couldn’t be more opposite, but the audience gets the sense that they are really attracted to one another.

Director Colin Trevorrow (left), Chris Pratt (centre) and Bryce Dallas Howard on the set of 'Jurassic World' | Photo: UIP

Could you share your memories of when you first saw ‘Jurassic Park’ back in the 1990s?

I can’t believe it has been 22 years. I was 13 years old and I saw it at the theatre on opening night. It was my first ‘event movie’.

MORE: 10 iconic moments from the 'Jurassic Park' trilogy

I remember really wanting to see the movie having seen the trailer. And being a fan of Stephen Spielberg and ‘The Goonies’, even at that young age, I knew he was a director that I liked. It just captured my imagination, like it did the entire generation, and I will never forget it.

Can you describe the process of acting in a film like this, which is a mix of live action and visual effects?

When you are creating a movie that is part-live-action and part-animation like this, the process of interacting between a live-action character and what is essentially a computer-generated character, really varies in terms of process. 

Sometimes you are acting opposite nothing, which can be hard, and sometimes you are acting opposite actors who are dressed as dinosaurs, which can also be hard. 

And then sometimes you have animatronics, which is really my favourite thing because you have this beautiful dinosaur right there. It is there, it is physical and it is breathing and you can react to it. It really depends on what the set-up is, which in turn depends on how wide the lens is, whether it is a moving shot or a played shot and it varies take by take. 

Do you have a favourite dinosaur? 

My favourite dinosaurs even before I knew I would be an actor training them in the movie are the Velociraptors, the pack hunters. They are wildly intelligent and ever since Sam Neill’s first monologue to that kid with that raptor claw (in ‘Jurassic Park'), saying "It’ll cut you here and it’ll cut you here, eat your guts when you’re still alive", they became my favourite. 

'Jurassic World' opens 11 June 2015

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Jurassic World
  • Jurassic World

  • Rated
    PG13 /
    Action, Adventure, Science Fiction
  • Language
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