THE CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK - Q&A with Vin Diesel and Alexa Davalos
Movie interview by Neils Hesse
VIN DIESEL: Otherwise known as Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall [everybody smiles].
Alexa what aspect of the film besides working with Vin Diesel was challenging?
ALEXA DAVALOS: Vin helped me survive on this film, but yes the action stuff was hard to do.
Vin in a way this is your CONAN movie?
VIN: Well the fusion of genres was what interested me, but when I hear CONAN that is a good thing. In the training, a year before we started shooting I bought a trampoline - I wanted a Frank Ferzetta presentation of Riddick. Frank designed the style for CONAN, so I wanted my anatomy to have that look to it.
Vin how do you manage to put on such a scary look and what scene is your favourite in the movie?
VIN: Well I was a bouncer for many years so I had a long time to perfect a look that says I'll kill you. My scenes with Alexa Davalos were hot and sexy and strong, but the scene I enjoyed when I watched the movie was the scene where I pet the Hellhound. I had just gotten through elephant training and the trainers said that big animals want to be petted hard, so I hit it hard.
Vin you went after Judi Dench for your movie if she came after you for a role in the theatre would you do it?
VIN: Of course as long as it wasn't Callaban. [Everybody laughs]
What was it like working with Judi Dench?
VIN: We needed someone to explain the whole Necromonger saga and she has the credibility to do that and make everyone believe it. Once everyone heard that we had her we could have gotten anybody to be in our movie. She is great. At the end of the first day that I shot a scene with her I sent off the pictures to my mother telling her that no matter what happens next my dream had come true I had done a scene with Judi Dench!
Alexa are you a fan of this genre and have you seen PITCH BLACK?
ALEXA: No I haven't and I am not really a fan.
Vin and Alexa would you do more?
ALEXA: I had such a wonderful time working with Vin that I would start right now if I could.
VIN: That is so sweet. As for me - yes of course I would want to. The concept is very specific with a very daring ending to enable us to tell what happens next when Riddick travels to the Underverse. When we gave the script to the studio I placed them in leather binders labelled Chronicles 1, Chronicles 2 and Chronicles 3 and C2 and C3 are still locked and I have the key. C3 Riddick will interact with other elementals as he discovers more about his Furian origin.
Vin, you passed on the other two sequels to THE FAST AND FURIOUS and XXX to do this, why and have you seen 2 FAST 2 FURIOUS or do you intend to see it?
VIN: I have not seen it and I do not intend to see it but my business partner has seen it. PITCH BLACK was a small film that turned into a cult hit. I did not want to do a sequel just because it was a financial success I needed more reason to do a sequel.
Vin is the elephant movie [HANNIBAL] going to be more realistic?
VIN: I started elephant training two years ago, Timbo is his name and he is the biggest elephant in America. David Franzoni has written the script based on a book by a Scotsman [Ross Leckie]. I am going to Malta to scope out locations as there are still some very old structures there dating back to that time. Yes the film I am most passionate about is HANNIBAL, he proved that unity amongst varied races and creeds was possible and could fight tyranny.
Vin are the Alps going to part of the film?
VIN: Yes definitely. In fact Yorick van Wageningen will play the leader of the Gauls.
Vin back to Riddick , underneath that hard exterior is a soft side true?
VIN: Yes there is a soft side to Riddick.
Has it lived up to your expectations?
VIN: I guess that I like to think about what I am going to do next, so while I was on the set of PITCH BLACK I was thinking about CHRONICLES and now I can't wait to do HANNIBAL.