From the creators of ‘Chicken Run’ comes this new claymation film that follows a tribe of cavemen in the Stone Ages who are forced to defend their home from a Bronze Age army.
Eddie Redmayne is an Oscar winner with an exceptional knowledge of Fantastic Beastswizardry. But he’s well aware of his own acting limits.
So when director Nick Park, from the beloved British studio Aardman Animations, asked if he would voice the prehistoric Dug in Early Man (in theaters Feb. 16), Redmayne made a rare request: Could he try out for the part?
“I was keen to do it, but I hadn’t done much voice work. I didn’t want to be the one to butcher it,” says Redmayne, a major fan of Aardman’s stop-motion work on gems such as Wallace & Gromit shorts. “I’ve heard of people doing voice-overs and getting fired a couple days in. I thought I’d save everyone the embarrassment and get fired before getting hired.”
Turns out Redmayne makes a top caveman. Here’s how:
He brought the giddy teen-cave enthusiasm
Park agreed to try out Redmayne as requested. But the director says he knew he had already found his Dug, describing the caveman as a “born optimist, full of enthusiasm,” who challenges Bronze Age intruders to a pivotal soccer game to save his tribe.
They talked about how the teenage Dug believes, despite strong evidence, that his tribe is capable of great things.
“And Eddie suddenly went into this teenager voice,” says Park. “I knew immediately, this was good.”
There is an Eddie/Dug resemblance
Park and his Aardman team had already sculpted Dug from clay before casting Redmayne. There were 18 Dug dolls made by the team of 23 model makers shooting the stop-motion film. But Redmayne sees a likeness.
“I definitely have a massive mouth and huge teeth,”…