Press Conference Interview With Jeff Bridges And Ryan Reynolds On R.I.P.D.


Jeff, you’re a writer, photographer, artist, musician and songwriter.

Ryan Reynolds: That’s just a few of my qualities. [Laughs]

With all of this art, is there one you prefer most?

Jeff Bridges: No, not really. They’re all kind of the same to me in a way. I approach them all in the same way, which is to get out of the way and let the thing come through. They all relate to each other. I remember when I started writing songs, it was early in my career, and I would be studying my script, and all of a sudden, I’d say, ‘ Oh, that would make a good song.’ Then I’d find myself with my guitar in my hand and writing a song and I would get so angry with myself. I’d say, ‘No! You’ve gotta be studying!’ But now I’ve come to find that they’re all interrelated and inform each other. That song will help my acting, my drawing sometimes, and sometimes they put it in the movies.

Ryan Reynolds: It’s a great byproduct to work with Jeff because you get to be privy to all this stuff. You come on the set and you never know what he’s gonna be doing. He’s got a squeezebox one minute, the next he’s playing guitar, then we’re reading novels out loud. He’s kind of this Renaissance man.

Ryan, are your dad and brothers happy with this character and how you play a dead cop? And Jeff, how’d you create this archetype of a Western Cowboy?

Ryan Reynolds: Neither my brother or my father are dead cops. They’re very much alive. They’re great. They love this stuff. They get into it. When I was a young 17 or 18-year-old whippersnapper wanting to go down to Los Angeles to become an actor, that was the worst idea they’d ever heard. My dad, it looked like I told him I was getting a sex change or something. He just couldn’t fathom a life like that. Now though they see that it is in fact a real job and a real career. They come to set, they go, ‘I can’t believe you just worked 16 hours!’ It’s not all puppy dogs and ice cream, but, they’re into it. They think it’s kind of a cool chosen field.

Jeff Bridges: What comes to mind is my dad, Lloyd Bridges, who was in a lot of great Westerns. High Noon was an example. I remember as a kid, him coming home in a cowboy hat and boots, and all that stuff, and I would love to get all those things on. And whenever I get a chance to play a cowboy, especially guys like Wild Bill, I loved it. And the history, there’s such an amazing part of the history of our country. It only existed for a brief, short time, but some wild characters came out of that. It’s great to get into those guys. I love that.

Ryan, you’re great in The Croods and Jeff, you’re working on The Little Prince, so how does doing an animated movie compare to a live-action one?

Ryan Reynolds: Well, a live action movie is work and an animated movie is you showing up in your pajamas once every three months, or in my case, just a splash of baby powder. It’s not any kind of heavy lifting. Doing an animated movie is just a ton of fun. The most work I did on Croods, or Turbo for that matter, was just showing up at the premiere. When they ask you to do movies like that, you just say, ‘Absolutely. When and where?’

Jeff Bridges: One of the fun things about doing an animated film, it’s all about honing. You just keep perfecting and they never commit to the final product because it’s so expensive until down the line so you work on it for three years. Woody Allen kind of can do that. He can shoot his whole movie over again. But I love that. You can really experiment with different things and you’re always encouraged to improvise. They have video cameras on you capturing the actual live action. I really enjoy it.

Ryan Reynolds: But you’re right. They don’t know the story even until they’re sort of halfway through. They start shaping it.

Jeff Bridges: It’s a long process. And The Little Prince, being involved with that, I’m really excited about it.

Jeff, I love your accent in this movie. Can you talk about developing your character’s accent and dialect?

Jeff Bridges: Yeah, the sound man didn’t like that too much. It’s kind of hard to understand some of it. Sometimes, when I’m preparing for a role, I’ll kind of invite the character into me, and that’s how the guy sounded. He’s like one of those, not séances – what do they call it? A medium!