Second helpings really satisfy
The directors of animated sequel Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 chew the fat with Neala Johnson
FOODIMALS. For those who missed a term of the zoology course ( or should that be home economics?), foodimals are a cross between animals and food.
Examples include the flamango, shrimpanzee, hippotatomus, buffaloaf, double bacon cheespider, mosquitoast and the tacodile supreme. How did these creatures come into being? Well, after inventor Flint Lockwood’s FLDSMDFR machine caused the skies to rain meatballs, pizza, ice cream and hamburgers over Swallow Falls in Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, the town was abandoned.
But the FLDSMDFR kept working, so when Flint and the gang return to Swallow Falls in Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, they find the place is now inhabited by mutated foodimals.
Perhaps even more interesting is how the directors of the sequel to the animated movie hit decided which food- and- animal crossovers they wanted to use in the film.
“I did some produce sculpture using map- tacks for eyes,’’ co- director Cody Cameron says.
Yes, the animator took real pickles, strawberries and potatoes and what- not into his backyard, stuck googly eyes on them, took photos, pitched the idea to the studio and voila! Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 was good to go.
The first instalment in the fun animated film franchise was a homage to disaster movies, co- director Kris Pearn says.
“When we started working on it we were watching all the Bruckheimer smash- bangboom films. The meatball in the sky, that was our Armageddon.’’
For the sequel, the pair decided the story should be less about something falling on your head and more about the scary things that lurk in the shadows.
“So it was a monster movie,’’ Pearn explains.
“We started cribbing cues from the movies of our childhood, like The Goonies, E. T. and Raiders of the Lost Ark.”
Voice talent returning in Cloudy 2 includes Bill Hader ( as Flint), Anna Faris ( as Flint’s love interest and news reporter Sam), Neil Patrick Harris ( as Flint’s chimp Steve) and James Caan ( as Flint’s grumpy dad). Comedians Kristen Schaal and Will Forte are newcomers to the crew.
But legendary A- Team tough guy Mr T declined the chance to return as Swallow Falls’ policeman, Earl.
“Luckily Terry Crews was a fan of the film – he had even been to the premiere with his kids,’’ Cameron says.
Crews is a familiar face from many comedy and action flicks, from Bridesmaids to The Expendables.
“When we offered him the job, he was like, ‘ Please!’ His kids actually said, ‘ Dad, don’t mess it up’,’’ Cameron laughs.
“We told him not to do an impersonation ( of Mr T’s performance), but it’s amazing how much he sounds like Earl.’’
Meanwhile, the famously gruff Caan found himself singing along with a bunch of pickles in Cloudy 2. His reaction?
“What have you got me doing here? My acting coach is going to strike me down from heaven!’’
“He was game, though,’’ says Pearn of the veteran actor.
“Once we got him singing, the hard thing was to get him to stop.”
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2
Now showing Village Cinemas