One of the greatest comedy actors in Hollywood, Jim Carrey is back doing what he does best, making audiences laugh. He graces the big screen in a family-friendly movie loosely based on the children’s book Mr. Popper’s Penguins, playing a wealthy businessman who has lost sight of what’s really important—until he inherits six penguins that turn his life upside down. Carrey co-stars with Carla Gugino and Angela Lansbury.
Carrey sat down with us for an exclusive interview to talk about his recent project, being a grandfather and his early years at In Living Color.
Movies.com: I always hear people in Hollywood say, “Don’t work with children and don’t work with animals,” but you seem to throw that out the window all the time.
Jim Carrey: Oh, yeah. I love it. I like to mix it up. I like to have things be unpredictable and dangerous. I’m not happy unless something or someone in the scene could potentially peck my eye out. [Laughs]
Movies.com: The film actually uses six real life penguins and I heard they were total divas, true?
Carrey: They definitely have their demands. First of all the set had to be at 30 degrees, you know, because that’s their method. Basically they wouldn’t work with me unless I had fish hanging out of my pockets so yeah, it was a problem. I was very stinky.
Movies.com: Your daughter had a child last year. You are so young at heart that it’s hard to see you as a grandfather. How are you handling this new adventure?
Carrey: I love it. I welcome life. I still feel young. I’m keeping it together. [Laughs] For me it’s just another human being and another wonderful and loving phase in my family. It’s a great thing.
Movies.com: We recently saw you in an episode of The Office after Steve Carell’s departure. How did that come about?
Carrey: I love Steve Carell. One of the reasons why I wanted to be on The Office is because I love that show so much, I love his work. A lot of the guys that are executive producing the show started out writing with me, doing things for Liar Liar, so it was great to just pop in for a couple of minutes and do something with those guys.
Movies.com: I grew up watching In Living Color and it’s fascinating to witness your tremendous success. What comes to mind when you think about your time at In Living Color?
Carrey: Ah, the thing that gave me everything. I miss all of those guys so much. I talked to Damon Wayans a couple of weeks ago. Everyone went off in their own direction. I ran into David Alan Grier at Saturday Night Live and there’s this same connection as if we never left.