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Anthony Anderson Riffs on Transformers

Published June 28, 2007 in Movie Interviews
By Fred Topel | Image property of Paramount.
Transformers Transformers

Big action movies are long, carefully planned endeavors where everything has to go just right. There's not a lot of room for working on the fly when the actors have specific marks to hit for CGI effects to be added later. When there are some non-robot scenes in Transformers though, then they can let Anthony Anderson riff.

Anthony Anderson on Transformers

"When you have talent such as myself who’s known for his comedic ability and his improv skills, I think any director worth his weight in salt would want to milk that as best he could," Anderson joked. "This is our first project together, Bay and myself, but we’ve known each other professionally for quite some time now. I would think the director would want to capture something like that and use as much of it as he could if he could use anything."

Anderson plays a hacker who still lives with his mom, but may be the only hope of decoding the Decepticons' signal. Though military and technological issues are addressed, it's all with a sense of fun.

"It’s a deeper subtext if you put it there and want it to be there. In my opinion it’s just a summer popcorn film. You want to sit back and be entertaining and I think that’s exactly what you get from this. You can read between the lines in anything and form your own conclusion about something, regardless of what it is. In my opinion it’s just great, fun entertainment for the family to go out and see this. It does draw parallels and things of that nature. But what happened to just going to the theater and sitting back and eating a hotdog and some popcorn and enjoying it, and just leaving reality for a while, regardless of what’s on the screen?"

Though he may not know his way around a computer mainframe, Anderson definitely knows his Autobots and Decepticons. "I still have them at the house. I have kids now who play with them and so when I got the opportunity to be in this movie, I just had to do it. I was going to make it happen by any means necessary just because it’s sort of pop icon-ish. To be a part of that growing up thinking that you were Optimus Prime and battling Megatron for peace on earth or whatever universe you lived in. Yeah, yeah, I did and I still do. I play with my son now."

A boisterous personality like Anderson's may conflict with another one such as Bay's, but Anderson knew how to handle him. "Knowing Michael personally, I mean it’s no news that Michael’s a bit crazy on set. But we’re all crazy to do what we do in this industry. He’s a bit of a tyrant but it’s worth it. You see it on the screen. It’s his process. It may not be the process that we as actors are used to or want on a set, but it’s his process to get you to where he needs you to be and to get the performance out of you that he needs, and it definitely shows on the screen."

Transformers opens to theatres on July 2nd.

For the other trailers, clips, posters, more pics and movie info, go to the Transformers Movie Page.

Stay tuned for updates.

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Compiled By (Sources)
Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of Paramount.

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