Pudsey, the winner of Britain’s Got Talent 2012, to support this release we have interview material with former BGT judge, DAVID WALLIAMS, who is also the voice of Pudsey in the film
PUDSEY IS AVAILABLE ON DVD FROM 10th NOVEMBER, COURTESY OF EONE FILMS
From director Nick Moore (Love Actually, About A Boy) comes a heart-warming and hilarious ‘tail’ about doggy determination, starring David Walliams (Little Britain, Great Expectations) as the voice of Pudsey, Jessica Hynes(Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix); John Sessions (Filth, The Last Station); Olivia Colman (Hot Fuzz, The Iron Lady), and Izzy Meikle-Small (Snow White and The Huntsman), with a special appearance from Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden.
Cheeky London stray Pudsey (Walliams) has just found a new loving family in the shape of Gail (Hynes) and her three children Molly (Meikle-Small), George and Tommy, and things couldn’t be better. However, his new life comes under threat when their dog-hating landlord Mr Thorne (Sessions) plots to demolish the entire village, leaving Pudsey no choice but to stop him by whatever means.
What follows here is a Q&A session with David Walliams as he chats about Pudsey.
Question:Can you explain the story of Pudsey the Dog: the Movie?
Pudsey: The Movie is the story about Pudsey running away from his life as a showbiz dog. He goes to the country to live with his family and he makes all of their lives better.
Question:How did you get involved in the movie?
I got involved in Pudsey: The Movie because Ashleigh, who trained Pudsey, I know from Britain’s Got Talent of course because I’m a judge and she won and she just said – when I went to see her in pantomime – she said, “would you like to do the voice of Pudsey” and I went “yeah. Yeah I would’. And at first I was starts growly voice thinking it was more like that stops growly voice but I don’t think um Ashleigh liked that because I thought it was too sounded like a criminal. Starts pudsey voice So I’ve made it more sort of eager … more like … up there stops pudsey voice. And um … hopefully… that’ll work ok. Pudsey actually has a lot to say in this movie so … um… hopefully I haven’t ruined it by being annoying.
Question:What attracted you to the role of Pudsey?
What attracted me to the film is that I really love Pudsey and um … even though Pudsey doesn’t seem to love me back, in fact he never seems to recognize me or remember me… and also I know that Pudsey is a very special dog because …over the years as an actor I have worked on things where they’ve brought we’ve brought in animals to do y’know scenes and things, and so rarely does the animal actually ever do what you’d like it to do even if it’s something very simple like just… stay….But Pudsey is so many brilliant things, he could do so much personality I just thought I’d love to be involved in it. And actually I got Pudsey to be involved with (an)…adaptation of one of my chidren’s books ‘Mrs. Stink’… which was about sort of 18 months ago…He was absolutely brilliant in that – stole the show – so I thought it would be lovely to be associated with this.
Question: You obviously are familiar with Ashleigh and Pudsey. Do you think Pudsey and Ashleigh have changed since winning the show?
I don’t think Ashleigh and Pudsey have changed that much I’m not sure Pudsey really completely understands what’s happened…. because I think Pudsey is just sort of doing the next trick for the next bit of ham sandwich… that Ashleigh gives him so I’m not sure he really knows quite how famous he’s become … Ashleigh is a very sweet girl from a lovely family… she doesn’t seem to have changed in any way … I’ve never noticed anything… diva-ish about either of them so they seem really nice. But I think she comes from a very… grounded family… who are very supportive and who are also involved in… bringing Pudsey to the screen so … yeah I don’t think she’s changed at all and I’m just delighted for her success.
Question: How did you decide on the voice for Pudsey?
I used to do Pudsey’s voice around the house to amuse my wife… but starts growly voice he was sort of down here stops growly voice – that sort of voice… and… I actually did it on the Alan Carr show because it has been announced that I was doing Pudsey’s voice and… Ashleigh saw it and didn’t like it cause she thought it I made him sound like a criminal so starts Pudsey voice I’ve gone a little bit higher and eager stops Pudsey voice and also… how Pudsey is in this film he’s like a sort of he’s like a child really … he’s part of this family and he really is like a sort of 11 or 12 year old boy or something starts Pudsey voice so it was kind of right that his voice was up there stops Pudsey voice rather than he was sort of a grouchy old man. I’d I-I also had to pick a voice that wasn’t going to be … too annoying because my voice is throughout this movie … because Pudsey is talking all the time and you hear his thoughts so …I had to pick something that was not 1) something that I could sustain… to record and 2) something that was not going to hopefully grate on the audiences. So hopefully it hasn’t, I don’t know.
Question:How has the experience been recording the voice of Pudsey?
Well doing the voice over is actually quite technical because… basically the film is pretty much finished and edited and then you have all these cues – there’s actually 210 cues for Pudsey of things he’s saying, sounds he’s making. Some of it is his thoughts, some of it is him speaking to the other animals. There’s a kind of rule in the film that you hear Pudsey’s thoughts when he’s with the humans… but he doesn’t have conversations with them, but when he’s with other animals … he does talk to them so its quite a clever rule and you just go through cue by cue … doing the voices and you know you do it … and we do that again and you… we just go through cue by cue doing each line. So it’s quite technical… and… it’s quite a slow process … but I’m used to it and I’ve done things like this, audiobooks before. But I’ve …never played the lead voice in a movie so its so… there’s quite a lot to do and its just keeping that energy and focus all the time… because its really important and just trying to get as much music into your voice so you’re not just on the same level all the time.
Question:How did you get into character for Pudsey?
Getting into character as Pudsey it’s mainly about watching Pudsey on the screen. I went back and watched you know bits and pieces of him on TV as well and trying to capture his personality because he has got a very strong personality, he’s got he’s got an underbite as well starts Pudsey voice he’s his teeth are like up there and he sort of … knocks his head side to side trying to stops Pudsey voice understand what people are trying to say to him. And so I just starts Pudsey voice try to… get that… you know sense of… eagerness and optimism stops Pudsey voice because he is just like a child really.… in the movie and the way he’s portrayed… so yeah its important to just, with what I’m doing to just keep watching him on the screen… and keep you know trying to … so that the voice really matches him… I wouldn’t say its that hard exactly but you’ve got to just keep concentrating and watching what he’s doing. …So that the two match properly.
Question:Do you find that you get animated while recording the voices?
I love to get animated and you know if he’s got his paws up I’ve got my paws up starts Pudsey voice I’ve got my paws up too… so I can be oh-oh-oh stops Pudsey voice sort of like that and try to get his energy and and also try and get his sounds you know when he’s running or jumping, you’ve got to move your body a little bit as well… so… I probably look quite crazy … if anyone was wondering and not know what I was doing they’d probably think … god he’s finally lost his mind.… but yeah I you’ve got to throw yourself into it… and… you know there’s got to be real energy in the voice as well and Pudsey is the lead character in this movie… so he’s driving it all the time.
Question:How was working with the director Nick Moore?
The director of the film is Nick Moore and I did do one session with him here in…London but he’s had to go back to Los Angeles so now he’s on Skype… the funny thing about that is the time we’re doing here is actually like the middle of the night there so … we were watching him and he’s like sort of in darkness you know it’s like 3 in the morning but then when we finished the session yesterday he was like… and it’s January now in London and he was like its going to be 82 degrees today in Los Angeles and the sun is shining an we’re all really, really jealous by the end of it but the only good thing is that he has to get up in the middle of the night to do the Skypeing because we’re doing it in the daytime here. And Nick Moore the director’s done a fantastic job just you know watching the film, he’s got some fantastic performances from the kids you know which can often be something that’s often hard to do, great performance from Pudsey too and also there’s two brilliant … you know comedy performers in this film as well John Sessions and Jessica Hynes and he’s got really great performances from them so I think its going to be a real family favourite and… Because I started off doing you know quite an adult comedy show in little Britain and I moved into doing more family friendly things like children’s books … its really lovely to think you’ve done something that hopefully will appeal to a family and … kids and their parents can watch it all together and enjoy it.
Question:Have you met any of your co-stars in the film?
I know Jessica Hynes… quite well because we were in the national youth theatre together so I met her in 1990… and she was about… 16 and I was like 18 or something um so I’ve known her for a very long time and have always thought she was brilliant talented and I’ve met John Sessions a couple of times and umm I’ve always been a fan of his I don’t know his well but um if you meet him it’s a treat because he starts doing his amazing impressions … and I think the last time I saw him he’s just been doing a film with Al Pacino and … he started doing his Al Pacino for me and Rob Brydon and we were absolutely hanging on every word so.. as for the rest I don’t think I have met anyone else apart from Pudsey… who I have met many times but who never remembers me.
Question:What did you think of the casting choices for the movie?
I think … Jessica and John are fantastic comedy performers with a lot of warmth and so they’re ideal for this film.. and Jessica’s a mum herself and has got a real… you know natural warmth with the kids and John is fantastic at playing this very pompous character who is kind of a little bit ….. well he’s cat-crazy so he’s quite eccentric character and John really brings out the sort of craziness of this person so I think they’re both really brilliantly cast.
Question:Why do you think people should people go and see the movie?
People should go and see this film… because there’s not many dog movies around… in fact you could probably count all the dog movies on one hand, right? Digby the biggest dog in the world, there’s quite a lot of Lassie films, … there’s lots of cartoons but a live action dog film is a rare thing, it’s a British film we can all be proud of, its funny, its exciting, and overall its just a great film for the family and I think er you know you really want if you have kids is taking them to the cinema for something you’re going to enjoy too I think and mums and dads will.
Question:What do you think audiences will take from the film?
Hopefully audiences will just find the film you know funny, and exciting and go along on this this ride and with Pudsey and… I think that Pudsey is so… aside from all the human actors in the film, Pudsey has such amazing charisma, I could just watch Pudsey all day. I’m actually quite annoyed that Pudsey is not actually my dog and I asked Ashleigh if I could buy Pudsey …and also I said well can I have a Pudsey puppy and she said no… which seems cruel … there’s only one Pudsey and she wants to keep it that way.
Question:How would you describe the film in 5 words?
How would I describe the film in five words: funny, exciting … warm … joyful… and doggy. After all it’s a doggy film. If you like dogs, you’re gonna love this film because apart from Pudsey there are lots of other dogs in it.
Question:How has the experience as a whole been playing Pudsey?
It’s been really fun playing Pudsey …It’s quite a technical enterprise you know doing the voice because there’s all these different cues and you don’t have the fun of being on set and being with all the other actors but um… it it’s definitely fun and its … the kind of crazy thing about being an actor you know … I’ve just been doing like a Shakespeare play and now I’m doing the voice of a dog you know I mean it’s I love the fact that its something different and its something new … and its lovely to carry on the association you know because the first year I did Britain’s got Talent was the year Ashleigh and Pudsey won and it felt like a very golden year because it was… you know Pudsey was soo popular… and I think just appealed to the whole nation so I just I’m just really pleased that I can still be associated with it in a way.
PUDSEY IS AVAILABLE ON DVD FROM 10th NOVEMBER, COURTESY OF EONE FILMS